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Ghost Wood Song is the debut novel from Florida-born author Erica Waters, and I read it in one sitting! I came up for air when it was time for dinner, but stayed up until the wee hours to finish it, dabbing my eyes with a Kleenex tissue at the end. (FEB 2021 UPDATE: Ghost Wood Song is now a finalist for the Bram Stoker Award!)
Erica’s writing is lyrical and full of descriptive metaphors, which I loved. She describes places and emotions so well, and the metaphors she adds in takes those descriptions up another notch, allowing the reader to connect even more with the story. I love that I can picture exactly what’s going on, exactly what things look like as I’m reading.
I do love a good ghost story (which is why I write them!), and this one is great. It has just the right amount of creepy vibes to get that eerie feeling flowing through your veins. The MC (Shady Grove) has grown up with ghosts all her life, so she’s used to them, but some are scarier than others. Some died with secrets that were buried with them. She has a very unique gift that was passed down from her father that allows her to connect with the ghosts. She must decide whether to face the dangers that come along with using it, or let the truth go unknown, which will tear apart her family even more than it already has been.
There really isn’t anything I can say that I didn’t like about this book. It’s well written, the characters are real and believable, and the mysteriousness is also believable. It flows really well. Shady has personal conflicts going on as well as this Other Big Thing that she must face, and it has a touch of romance in the way of a love triangle, which is a good side-story. Shady is bi, and I love seeing more and more stories with all kinds of sexual orientation. Normalizing this is so important. Shady is also an independent, caring, teenaged girl who is growing into a strong young woman. I adore stories with strong female protagonists!
All in all, it’s a 5-star review from me. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I would recommend reading it if you like a good ghost story.
You can catch Erica on Twitter here, and stay tuned for her next novel, The River Has Teeth, which will be published in 2021. I’m excited to read it!