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BOOK REVIEW: The Word Ghost by Christine Paice

| 13 August 2014 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Word Ghost by Christine Paice
Allen and Unwin
June 2014
By Shane Pinegar
8 / 10

The Word Ghost by Christine Paice book cover

Poor Bec Budde is having a bad time of it of late. After one glorious summer, her boyfriend Dave doesn’t seem quite as interested as she is, and her Dad is moving the family to Brightly to become Parish Vicar – and Brightly is a LONG way from the bf!

To make matters worse the new vicarage doesn’t feel right, the local Lord of the Manor has a weird crush on her, and a ghost keeps keeping her up at night jabbering on endlessly.

There is some hope though, as the young Budde gleans some interesting tidbits from local eccentric and folklore keeper Flora Shillington, and a centuries old mystery not only uncovers itself but manifests anew in the village with potentially dire results.

Budde learns a lot about life in a tumultuous year in Brightly – including that not all ghosts are benevolent.

She also learns, with help from the long-deceased Algernon Keats (a cousin of the more famous poet Keats) that her path lies in poetry herself, and the quote “subtext, metaphor and meaning – that’s the job of a poet, to articulate their experience and allow that to speak through the work” reveals itself to apply not only to Budde, but also to Paice’s novel, which is written with warmth and an evocative hand that quickly dispels any hints that it might descend into a teen drama, an erotic thriller or a run-of-the-mill supernatural story.

The Word Ghost has elements of all these things, but it’s something considerably more unique and a thoroughly enjoyable read.

Category: Book Reviews

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