Sunday, March 31, 2013

Review and giveaway: Notes from Ghost Town by Kate Ellison

March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb, or so the saying goes. And the way the weather has been throughout this month, I can see where that comes from. Although, it is going out more like an angry lamb instead of a nice sweet lamb.

I am here to help the transition to April just that much smoother. We are going to end the month with a giveaway of not one, but two books to one lucky winner. A hardcover copy of Notes from Ghost Town, and to celebrate its release in paperback (on the same day as NfGT came out), a paperback copy of  Ellison's critically acclaimed first book The Butterfly Clues. So stick around after my review and fill out the form at the end of the post.


 Notes from Ghost Town
 by Kate Ellison
 Published by EgmontUSA
 February 12, 2013
 Hardcover: 336 pages

About the book:
They say first love never dies...

When sixteen-year-old artist Olivia Tithe is visited by the ghost of her first love, Lucas Stern, it's only through scattered images and notes left behind that she can unravel the mystery of his death. 

There's a catch: Olivia has gone colorblind, and there's a good chance she's losing her mind completely--just like her mother did. How else to explain seeing (and falling in love all over again with) someone who isn't really there?

With the murder trial looming just nine days away, Olivia must follow her heart to the truth, no matter how painful. It's the only way she can save herself.

Ghost stories can be very hit or miss. It all depends on how it is written. There is a fine line between campy and good. And this book is good. Very good.

Just based on the premise of this book, I knew that it was not going to be a happy-go-lucky, fun filled ride. And I was right. It is a very beautiful, haunting story that unfolds bit by bit, pulling the reader ever further into Olivia's world. And it begins with two of the best opening sentences of a book that I can remember reading: “Think about a moment, a little centimeter of time you’d happily exist in forever, if time could be laid out along the spine of a ruler. Maybe it haunts you in that blue inch of half consciousness just before you’re fully awake.” I knew after reading that I would be in for a world of heartache.

I felt bad for Olivia. Not in a pitying kind of way. But the girl went through a lot. Her parents are getting divorced, she loses her color-sight (not a good thing when you are an artist), and her best friend/first love is killed, and someone close to her is awaiting trial for his murder. So she did what any 16 year old girl away at school in this type of situation would do. She rebelled. She was kicked out of art school, and found herself back at home to a life that is nothing like when she left it, living with her father and the woman he is going to marry in a house that is not her home.

Olivia pulls away from her friends and family, and is suspicious of absolutely everyone around her. Paranoid? Maybe. Justified. Probably. And then she sees the one person she never expected to see ever again. Stern. But is she imagining him, bringing him up at a time when she needs him the most. Or maybe she is going crazy, like her mother. Or, the least likely option, he is really there, and he needs her just as much as she needs him.

On top of the deep emotion radiating out of this book, was the mystery/thriller who-done-it aspect of it. This book will definitely keep you guessing. And even when you think you have it right, you will still second guess yourself until the end.

I will definitely be recommending this book to anyone and everyone out there.

4 1/2 STARS!

About the author
Kate Ellison is the critically acclaimed author of The Butterfly Clues. She spent a lot of time as a child, in Baltimore, pretending to be things she wasn't: a twin, a telekinetic, a benevolent witch with a box full of magical stones, a spy, a soccer player. She trained as an actor in Chicago and has walked across the entire country of Spain. She is a painter and jewelry-maker, and has at least one artist friend who really does keep his true name a secret from the world. He told her, but don't ask her to tell you—she's not gonna do it. Kate lives in Brooklyn, New York. Visit her online at

Find out more about Kate Ellison on FACEBOOK and through her BLOG.


One hardcover copy of Notes from Ghost Town and one paperback copy of The Butterfly Clues

a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree, ghost stories definitely can be hit or miss but this one is so good! Loved it a whole lot! :)

    ~Sara @ Forever 17 Books



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