Seanan McGuire, that talented and productive author, treats us to another installment in Ghost Roads series with The Girl in the Green Silk Gown.
Rose Marshall is dead. She’s a ghost – a hitch-hiking ghost to be more precise – and she wanders the highways, catching rides with the living in order to help them as they pass from one realm to the next. She’s been a ghost for sixty-some years and over time she’s developed a reputation. She’s sometimes known as the Ghost in the Green Silk Gown and sometimes as the Phantom Prom Date, but she’s just Rose.
Rose was killed by Bobby Cross, a once-famous actor who made a bargain and now drives through eternity, killing innocents in order to keep his demon car fueled. He killed Rose, but she accidentally escaped being consumed by him and now Bobby has a grudge against Rose and he’s bent on finishing her off.
There are rules in the Ghost Realms by which to live (or un-live) by and even those who are governed by the rules don’t always seem to understand them. Rose’s escape from Bobby was one such rule and now, when Bobby manages to make Rose mortal again, so is another. The dead aren’t supposed to be alive. Rose can die again, but to do so might completely change what type of ghost she is to become, if a ghost at all. Rose needs help to return to the dead and it’s possible that only the living can make this happen. But who do you turn to when all your relatives have died?
I greatly enjoyed this journey into the ghost realms. McGuire does such a fine job of creating a world with unique rules that feel so right and appropriate. She also manages to deliver these rules smoothly and in the course of story-telling rather than just giving us a big info-dump session.
Additionally, McGuire gives us compelling characters. Rose Marshall comes across as so real and alive, which is why we get caught up in her story and care about what happens to her. Never mind that she’s a ghost … that she’s fictional. We care about her.
One sentence surprised me, coming from Seanan McGuire. At one point our narrator (Rose Marshall) says to the reader “That speaks well of her intelligence, since I’m literally talking out of my ass.”
Really? “Literally” talking out of her ass? I read this and imagine a high, squeaking voice, like the air being let out of a balloon between the fingers. Had our narrator character said this out loud, I might have forgiven her, since people do say this, even though it is so incorrect. But to have written this as part of the narrator-to-reader it just really bugged me. Sorry Ms. McGuire – you’re better than this!
I loved the ending of this book. Too often I get to the end of a book I’ve enjoyed only to be let down, but McGuire gives us just the perfect conclusion.
But one sentence won’t really ruin a read and I highly recommend this book.
Looking for a good book? The Girl in the Green Silk Gown continues the ghost adventures of Rose Marshal, by Seanan McGuire, and is a recommended read.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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The Girl in the Green Silk Gown
author: Seanan McGuire
series: Ghost Roads #2
paperback, 325 pages