Monday, January 7, 2019

Book Review | Ghost Story by Peter Straub

Ghost Story is a horror novel written by Peter Straub.



In a seedy motel in Florida, a young man holds captive a little girl in a soiled pink dress. He is anxious, tormented, introspective. She is calm, passive, strangely detached. She says her name is Angie Maule.

In the small upstate town of Milburn, New York, four old friends meet to honor the traditions of the Chowder Society. They drink good whiskey and trade ghost stories. As chilling as these tales are, and as strangely prophetic, they pale before the horrific nightmares that began a year ago when one of their members attended a party for a visiting actress--and there died of a heart attack. Or was it fright? Ask the actress. She says her name is Ann-Veronica Moore.

In California, a talented young novelist teaching creative writing at Berkeley finds himself hopelessly obsessed with one of his students. She is exquisitely lovely, infernally elusive. She says her name is Alma Mobley.

What is the connection between these places, these people, these agonizing events?

I'm so glad to have finally read Ghost Story. Haunted houses and ghost stories have always been my favorite so I've been a little shocked and embarrassed at how long I've put off reading Ghost Story. It turned out to not be at all what I was expecting.

I've often heard Ghost Story is a slow read, and in some ways this was true for me as well. Ghost Story is made up of several stories from several points of view. With each new story, the narrative slowed down for me as I tried to keep track of who was who and what was happening when. The writing style even seemed to change, but without fail, I got pulled back into the story and into the enjoyment of the book.

Ghost Story wasn't actually a "ghost story". It was a tale of friendship and good versus evil. Those elements combined with Straub's storytelling, though, made for a really great read.

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆

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12 comments:

  1. I read this when I was in high school so it's been YEARS! I recall it being slow but enjoyable, and that's about it. It's one of those books I see people mention and I'm glad I read, but then fell badly I don't remember. Glad you enjoyed it. I'm about 300 pages into The Passage and am loving it but had to take a break to read something else.

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    1. The Passage feels very epic so I understand. I do hope you go back to it!

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  2. I read this years ago too, and I remember very little about it. I would love to do a reread at some point. Glad you enjoyed it!

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    1. This would be an interesting reread. I feel like you could get away with a lot more misogyny back then.

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  3. The premise is intriguing. I'd give it a try.

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  4. Yeah this would be too slow for me personally!

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  5. Oo I love the way this sounds!! I will have to pick it up!!

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  6. I loved the movie, but I have never read the book. My October Halloween month theme is Ghosts, so I should add it to my list. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. 👍✨

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  7. Do all the stories connect up eventually? I don't mind a slow build if there's good characters and atmosphere to keep my interest

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