Listen, I am not a horror gal. I watched Supernatural and the third episode from season freaked me out so much I had nightmare for a week. (Though in my defense it wasn’t the entire episode, it was just that one split second scene of the kid poking out of the water). So when Shawn Burgess asked me to read his horror/suspense book, Ghosts of Grief Hollow, of course I said yes, because I hate myself, and more importantly, apparently I didn’t want to sleep.
This was quite an interesting book, however it is the second in a series. I did ask the author if I would need to read book one to understand book two, and he assured me I wouldn’t need too. However, he was not correct. There is a ton of information that I was clearly missing and needed to fully understand and appreciate Ghosts of Grief Hollow. So if this is a book you want to read, please ensure you read Tears of Grief Hollow first.
I would normally build up to my favorite thing about the book, but screw that. I loved the overall villain of this book. Fricken loved her. As a matter of fact, she kind of reminded me of one of my favorite characters of all time, Madame Zeroni. In reading this book, and learning about Lady Zuuva, I loved her. I loved her motives, I loved her character, I loved everything about her. I also know that if she were a real person, I would want to live nowhere near her. Shawn did an incredibly job of creating this character.
Another thing I really liked about this book, was it featured a Skin Walker. Now I know the basic lore of Skin Walkers (thanks supernatural), but I don’t really have any in depth knowledge. In addition, something as old as the lore of a Skin Walker, there are tons of different lore’s and ideologies behind it. It took approximately 55% of the way through this book for the author to actually tell me what his version of the Skin Walker was, and how it worked. While I wasn’t a fan of that, I did appreciate that he did include and helped build up the suspense too it. This is one of those instances, where I think I needed to have read book one to fully understand.
Something this author does that I don’t understand, to any degree, is why all of the characters except one are in a third person point of view, and then the final character is in a first person point of view. It truly makes no sense and pulls you out of the reading experience. I wish the author had just stuck with third person POV for the entire thing. It would have made much more sense.
Overall – I did enjoy this book, but there were definitely some lingering questions after it was over. I don’t know if this will have a third book to answer those lingering questions, but I do highly doubt it. The author does a great job of making it so you never truly feel that any of the characters are safe, which I greatly appreciated. However, the switching between first and third person, as well as the author assuring me I wouldn’t need to read book one to understand book two, when I really did need to, greatly reduced my overall joy of this book.
Ghosts of Grief Hollow (Return to Grief Hollow Book 2) – Shawn Burgess
Cost* – eBook is $.99. Paperback is $24.99.
*Cost is based upon what the book cost when book review is published
*Overall review ranking changed as of 11/15/2022, and is now out of a total of 5 stars.