Cherry blossom lipstick: check
Smokey eyes: check
Skinny jeans: check
Dead kid in the mirror: check
For sixteen year old Mattie Hathaway, this is her normal everyday routine. She’s been able to see ghosts since her mother tried to murder her when she was five years old. No way does she want anyone to know she can talk to spooks. Being a foster kid is hard enough without being labeled a freak too.
Normally, she just ignores the ghosts and they go away. That is until she see’s the ghost of her foster sister… Sally.
Everyone thinks Sally’s just another runaway, but Mattie knows the truth—she’s dead. Murdered. Mattie feels like she has to help Sally, but she can’t do it alone. Against her better judgment, she teams up with a young policeman, Officer Dan, and together they set out to discover the real truth behind Sally’s disappearance.
Only to find out she’s dealing with a much bigger problem, a serial killer, and she may be the next victim…
Will Mattie be able to find out the truth before the killer finds her?
The Ghost Files Review
The Ghost Files was a surprisingly entertaining read, despite it’s problems. You have the teenage girl with a hard-knock life and a special ability. That rings the cliché / overdone bell right there. All the guys are hot and of course seemingly attracted to her. Because of course they are. It’s Young Adult, so of course they are. There’s a hint of a love triangle that pops up very soon after the story starts, because, again, it’s a Young Adult book. The writing itself is not fantastic, many phrases are repeated, and yes-yes-yes-we-get-it she’s had a hard life and she doesn’t trust people. Can we please move on?
Hearkening back to the love triangle: At the beginning of the book, Mattie is with this guy named Jake. He’s sweet and he’s the football star and what does he ever see in her, and she cares for him so much, blahblahblah. Then in comes Officer Dan. The relationship between Mattie and Officer Dan is interesting. A bit, uh, over-the-top in the “is this believable?” section at times, but interesting nonetheless. Dan is a 20-year-old rookie cop slash college student. Sometimes he acts way older than his years, sometimes he acts like a college student. It’s not consistent, so it makes it hard to get a good grip on who he is. [Slight spoilers ahead, but no names named. Text is in white, highlight it if you want to see.] There’s this whole “does he/she feel this way or this way or this way…” thing. Then there’s another twist at the end (maybe love square is more accurate?) So, as you can see, there are definitely issues with this book that could easily make it sink into obscurity…but it doesn’t.
Apryl Baker’s The Ghost Files kept me on the edge of my seat. I blew through the book at an incredible speed and finished it in just a few hours. The first few pages had me wincing and thinking “Oh lord, it’s one of those…” but I decided to read just a little bit further, and soon I’d forgotten the rocky start at the beginning and was completely engrossed in the story. When I was about seventy percent done, I sat back in my seat, a bit bemused at how I knew I should take issue with this book because of all the cliché elements, but couldn’t because of the story-telling skill of the author. A little later, I was done, and I looked at my partner and just stated flatly “This was a good book. A surprisingly good book.”
From beginning to end, this story sucks you and provides just the right amount of creepiness at the perfect time. Mattie is such a mouthy character that you can’t help but like her. At one point she decks someone and I found myself mentally cheering for her. It’s so rare to see a girl willing to hit first, think later, but it fits perfectly with her background and personality. This is such an easy-to-read book that I was shocked when I looked on Goodreads and saw that it was 275 pages long. It felt like a fast-paced novella, and was such a satisfying book to read. If you’re looking for sheer entertainment, and don’t mind the Young Adult elements, I would definitely say you need to give this book a chance. Especially since, at least at the time of me writing this, it’s a Kindle freebie!
Click here to get The Ghost Files now on Amazon.