Having overdosed on YA dystopian and chick lit over the last few weeks I felt the need for something completely different. I thought as it was Halloween I would go for a nice creepy tale and what could be more creepy than a ghost catcher investigating a haunted house. Apparently a lot of things. This is possibly one of the least scary ghost stories I’ve come across.
It does start quite well, Ellie Jordan (ghost trapper at Eckhart Investigators) and new recruit Stacey are called to investigate a potential haunting in an old mansion in Savannah. New owners Dale, Anna and their daughter Lexa have experienced some strange occurrences in the middle of the night. A locked door which opens on it’s own, creaking on the stairs and a female presence who seems fixated on Lexa.
Anna and Lexa are understandably a bit worried but Dale is in denial and thinks it’s all a lot of nonsense. However as things escalate the house becomes increasingly dangerous for the family and the ghost hunters.
I thought this book was well written. The start is quite creepy as we hear of the scary lady who glares at the little girl, a very disturbing shower incident and the mysterious opening door.
Ellie is a very likeable character. She takes her job seriously, is very professional and knows when to bite her tongue. She also has a sharp wit, a good sense of humour and is pretty ballsy. Stacey is also likeable but in a different way. She’s enthusiastic, bouncy and generally quite excited to be hunting ghosts (at least until she meets one). The relationship between them is probably one of the highlights of the book.
Where it went wrong for me though was that as soon as they began investigating it lost the scare factor. The focus moved to the science of finding and catching ghosts, all of which was explained in detail. After that I just didn’t find it creepy anymore.
It didn’t help that things with the ghost accelerated too quickly. There was no tension building. Ellie turned up and within a few pages saw and followed the ghost before having a chat with it. I would have preferred more build up, creepy noises, not being able to see anything or things suddenly jumping out. Thermal and night vision goggles are obviously great for spotting ghosts but kind of waste the story.
I also felt that the story became a bit too predictable and you knew exactly where it was going.
Possibly the next books in the series will be better but I’m just not sure it’s my kind of ghost story. I’m off to find something scarier.
Overall an ok read but lacking the scare factor.