"As readers of Deb Atwood’s blog Pen In Her Hand know, Atwood is passionate about ghost fiction. Since 2011, Atwood has read, re-read, and written about ghost literature. 31 Ghost Novels to Read Before You Die presents a selection of the best of these posts.
Among the books discussed are old favorites (The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson) as well as some indie gems few people will know about (The 20’s Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz by June Kearns). There are ghost novels for every reader, in genres ranging from historical to literary to romance. "
Deb Atwood holds an MFA and lives in California with her husband and rescue dog Nala. Her time-slip novel Moonlight Dancer was selected as a front page Featured Review by Book Ideas. Deb's work has appeared in numerous anthologies. Her interests include ghost fiction, Korean culture, quilting, and, of course, reading.
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5 out of 5 Stars
I have not started reading any Ghost novels but I have wanted to… the problem is I don’t like really creepy subject matter. So this book was a heaven sent! I was able to read through all the different sub-genres and get a great overview of a large collection of books. Some that I found really fascinating and are now on my “To Read” list and some that I think “Wow I am really glad that I did not accidentally start my introduction to the Ghost genre with that book!”
Overall the reviews are thought out and well written, but they do not reveal the plot, which in my opinion is a MUST for reviews. Also as I really enjoy just reading blurbs at times (see about me on the side bar) this book was a perfect mix of information and fulfilling my odd enjoyment of finding out about a book without reading the whole thing.
I would recommend this book to anyone who loves the Ghost Genre or is looking into finding the perfect book to get you into this genre on the right foot.
I had great fun dipping into The 20’s Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz by June Kearns. I loved reading about the main character Gerry draped in her Aunt Leonie 20’s designer fashions from Patou to Vionnet, embellished with guipure lace and tiny seed pearls, especially since the creations are ostentatious in Texas and outdated in England. Gerry often observes herself in social situations overdressed but outdated and with no alternative since she cannot afford to buy a stitch. Nor would she if she could, for she never feels closer to her aunt than when she is wearing her clothes.
This novel will interest people looking for a clean, no-sex romance and would make a fitting mother-daughter book club selection. The Girl, the Ghost, and All That Jazz is not a chilling novel that will send you scurrying to check the deadbolts. Instead, you’ll find yourself warmed by non-traditional family ties and the sparks that fly when romance, along with a high-spirited ghost, is in the air.
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