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Notes From Ghost Town by Kate Ellison: Review and Giveaway!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

They say first love never dies...

From critically acclaimed author Kate Ellison comes a heartbreaking mystery of mental illness, unspoken love, and murder. When sixteen-year-old artist Olivia Tithe is visited by the ghost of her first love, Lucas Stern, it’s only through scattered images and notes left behind that she can unravel the mystery of his death. 

There’s a catch: Olivia has gone colorblind, and there’s a good chance she’s losing her mind completely—just like her mother did. How else to explain seeing (and falling in love all over again with) someone who isn’t really there?

With the murder trial looming just nine days away, Olivia must follow her heart to the truth, no matter how painful. It’s the only way she can save herself.

Goodreads Summary

What does a girl do when she flunks out of art school?  Olivia hasn't had an easy time lately.  Her best friend was murdered and her own mother is the accused murderer.  Her mother suffers from schizophrenia, a mental disorder that, when not treated medically, could potentially cause someone to murder another person.  Olivia isn't sure what to believe.  Her best friend, Lucas, was also an artist in his own way.  He stuck to musical instruments while Olivia painted and paid more attention to colors.  Right before Lucas was brutally murdered, Olivia belived herself to be in love with him.  When he dies, she feels empty.  What is a girl to do when the ghost of someone she loved in so many ways shows up to tell her that her mother is not, in fact, the culprit.  Olivia does not know how to handle this news, but she decides to help Lucas discover the true murderer.

Olivia's character was nice enough.  She had her flaws, such as her drama, but she also had a sweet side.  The author did a terrific job of portraying the typical artsy teenager.  The reader will likely connect with Olivia after the first few chapters.  Lucas is an interesting character.  The reader meets him when he is technically deceased.  The reader will see him both in Olivia's memories and as a ghost, in both scenarios he is sweet and kind, it is easy to see why Olivia fell in love with him.  The other characters are just as interesting and serve to provide background information.  

The plot itself didn't feel "new." However, I loved the twists in the story; I really did not see the ending or the twists coming.  The characters bring this novel to life; by the end of the book, I did not want Oliva and Lucas to leave.  The spooky undertones and mystery are carried out well.  Overall, this book is recommended to young adult/teen readers.

4 Stars

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  1. "What are you looking forward to from this book?"

    I love afterlife stories and I love a good mystery. Also, since afterlife novels deal almost exclusively with dead girls, it's refreshing to have a dead boy for a change ;).
    Thanks for all these great books!

  1. I only read good reviews about it so I'm looking forward for the book to be a good one... Thanks a lot for the giveaway!

  1. Man, my heart is breaking already just from reading the blurb!

  1. Chelsea B. said...:

    Everything about this novel sounds intriguing and exciting. I can't wait! :-)

  1. Meghan said...:

    I think a book with someone who has such an intense mental illness is very interesting. You never know what that person will do and is somewhat of a loose cannon in the frame of the book.
    THanks for the giveaway!
    mestith at gmail dot com

  1. I like that there is mystery in this novel. Would love to read it!

  1. I've been seeing this book around a lot lately and it just sounds so good and interesting. I'm intrigued by it and I can barely wait to get to it. Plus, you said there are twists in the story and I just love twists! Thank you for the giveaway! :)

  1. Erika said...:

    The whole "boyfriend ghost" part where he is haunting her! Sounds creepy but lovely at the same time! Thanks for the chance to win!

  1. Everything about this novel sounds intriguing and exciting. I can't wait!

  1. This sounds really good! I love the ghost part!

  1. I'm not really sure what I expect from this novel, just that I'm incredibly intrigued with how the issue of mental illness is tackled. Definitely on my to-read list!

  1. CCAM said...:

    Mona C. The answer is: emotions and a good plot

  1. I am looking for the mystery and it to be a great read.

  1. The storyline and ghost part :)