Twenty-five-year-old Ivy Rowan rises from her sickbed after being struck by the great influenza epidemic of 1918, only to discover that the world has been torn apart in just a few short days.
But Ivy's lifelong gift - or curse - remains. She sees the uninvited ones - ghosts of loved ones who appear to her, unasked for and unwelcomed, for they always herald impending death. On that October evening in 1918, Ivy sees the spirit of her grandmother rocking in her mother's chair. An hour later she learns her younger brother and father have killed a young German out of retaliation for the death, in the Great War, of Ivy's other brother, Billy.
Horrified, she leaves home and soon realizes that the flu has caused utter panic, and the rules governing society have broken down. Ivy is drawn into this new world of jazz, passion, and freedom, where people live for today because they could be stricken by nightfall. She even enters into a relationship with the murdered German man's brother, Daniel Schendel. But as her uninvited guests begin to appear to her more often, she knows her life will be torn apart once again, and terrifying secrets will unfold.
©2015 Catherine Karp (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers
I have to give this book four stars because it was well written and a good story, but unfortunately I didn't really enjoy it. That isn't the author's fault, however. It's because this book reads like an historical fiction romance, not a supernatural ghost story like I wanted.
A caution to those expecting this to be a creepy ghost story; nothing is creepy about this book and the ghostly elements in it are scarce. The book has a great twist but one I saw coming a mile away and didn't make up for the boredom I experienced waiting for the ghostly portion of this book to emerge.
It is a great story for those interested in a historical fiction romance vibe, set against a war backdrop and peppered with political statements (all of which bore me to tears in fiction) but will probably disappoint those looking for a supernatural thriller (like I was) such as those by Wendy Webb, John Harwood, and F.G. Cottam.
The narrator annoyed me to no end, but unfortunately I also have no objective reason to give for it. I simply didn't enjoy her voice or style but see no reason why others might not.
I highly recommend this book, I went into this book blind, Not even reading a review. It opend my eyes and my heart it made me think about how I see and treat people.
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