October 27: Halloween Freebie
These aren’t the kind of ghost stories that you’re used to. These ghosts all have something a bit different, a bit unconventional about them. But if you’re up for something different this spooky season, check them out!
1. Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella– When Lara’s great aunt Sadie turns up and asks a favor, Lara’s in for a rough ride. Great aunt Sadie has been dead for a while, but she has some definite ideas about how Lara should live her life!
2. Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger– When their aunt Elspeth dies, she leaves twins Julia and Valentina her apartment in London: there’s just one stipulation. They have to live in it together for a year before selling it, and their parents can’t come inside. Elspeth’s ghost is there too of course!
3. Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier– Rebecca is dead from the very first page of this one, and she stays dead throughout. But her specter haunts everyone from her housekeeper to her husband, to his new wife.
4. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield– I can’t say much about the nature of the ghost in this book without dropping some big spoilers, so I’ll just say it’s not what you’d expect.
5. Portrait of Jennie by Robert Nathan– Artist Eben Adams is fascinated when he meets Jennie, a young girl who chats about things that happened long before her time. But the next time he meets Jennie, she’s aged several years. He comes to realize that Jennie is a spirit outside of her own time, and she’s come looking for him. This also has a film version.
6. The Girl in a Swing by Richard Adams– Again, talking much about the nature of the ghost in this book would involve spoilers, but I do appreciate the ambiguity of the haunting here.
7. Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz- The title character in this book is a short order cook who communicates with the dead. This is actually the beginning of a series but I only read the first book, since I felt it worked well as a stand alone and didn’t want to ruin that. There’s also a film adaptation.
9. A Fine and Private Place by Peter S. Beagle– In this novel, two ghosts in a cemetery find the love of their lives, after their lives are over.
10. Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders- In 1862, a year in the civil war, Abraham Lincoln lost his eleven year old son, Willie. Newspapers reported that the distraught president returned to the crypt to see his son’s body. From this seed of historical fact, Saunders creates a novel of voices from the Georgetown graveyard, where a struggle breaks out over young Willie’s soul.