Author: Erica Waters
Published:July 14, 2020
Thank you so much to Harperteen for providing an ARC of Erica Waters’s Ghost Wood Song in exchange for an honest review via Edelweiss!
Shady Grove just wants to be in a band and play but when her older brother is framed for murder, Shady needs to play for the ghosts of the past to unearth the truth. Shady confronts her fears and doing so may not only destroy the family she has known and loved, it may also lead her to her death as well.
Ghost Wood Song was just blended perfectly. It took my breath away. The passion of the characters to their music, the love that simmers through them, the secrets and how it ended–it was all just perfect.
The characters have their own voices, personalities and their own secrets. I love how they dedicate themselves to their friendship and to their music. Oh, their music is so lovely being described. I am not familiar with the genres mentioned here (such as bluegrass) but how it is described just makes me want to listen to it (I probably will after this), and how they play their instruments just makes me regret why I didn’t take up lessons when I was younger.
The romance between the characters was, I think, well done. Although the author hinted at a possible love triangle, it did not make me feel like ‘Ugh, here we go again’. In fact, the romance arc in this story was just done nicely, it did not obscure the main plot and the whole thing did not depend on the romance. It was like a side dish, a perfect side dish I think. We did not dwell on it, we don’t even get that many kiss scenes or some heart fluttering scenes but we see it unfold before us. We see the love between them but it doesn’t obscure her path, she does not become the damsel in distress that is to be saved by her prince. No, she’s perfectly capable and her significant other knows that and damn, I want more romance like that (I could go on more but I’m really trying hard not to spoil anything).
The mystery thriller aspect of this book was well done too. It baited us, then dragged it to the woods and made us run after it. Every turn of the page were more questions instead of answers which made it all the more confusing and I loved it! I couldn’t put it down, not until I knew the answers, not until I knew my guesses were correct or not. At first I really thought this would be another predictable mystery thriller but I was wrong.
Ghost Wood Song is not just another mystery thriller, or fantasy even, it’s a story about grief, hate, and death, but most importantly, it’s a story about moving on and acceptance. I can’t honestly put into words how beautiful Waters described and showed the emotions, the melody, and the relationships between the characters. I think that speaks for itself for the brilliance of this book.
I swear to you, this is such an amazing read. This is a must-read (yep, I don’t drop those words lightly). If you play instruments or play or listen to bluegrass and other genres of American roots, I think you’d love this. I wouldn’t say this would be paranormal despite ghosts being present in the book but if you like mystery thrillers and fantasy, this is the book you need to pick up next!
“This is what evil is—not some unnatural force, not demons or devils. It’s this right here—a man clinging so hard to hate it’s worth dying for.”Shady