ARC Review – Ghostly Echoes by William Ritter

Book Review - Ghostly Echoes

Ghostly Echoes Cover

Ghostly Echoes (Jackaby #3)

Author: William Ritter

Publication: August 23rd, 2016

Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers

Format: e-ARC, 352 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Thriller

Read: July 2016

William RitterGoodreads

I received an e-ARC of this book from Algonquin Young Readers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

5 Stars

Synopsis
Jenny Cavanaugh, the ghostly landlord of 826 Augur Lane, has enlisted the services of her detective-agency tenants to solve a decade-old murder–her own. Abigail Rook and her eccentric employer, R. F. Jackaby, dive into the cold case, starting with a search for Jenny’s fiancé, who went missing the night she died. But when a new, gruesome murder closely mirrors the events of ten years prior, Abigail and Jackaby realize that Jenny’s case isn’t so cold after all, and her killer may be far more dangerous than they suspected.
Fantasy and folklore mix with mad science as Abigail’s race to unravel the mystery leads her across the cold cobblestones of nineteenth-century New England, down to the mythical underworld, and deep into her colleagues’ grim histories to battle the most deadly foe she has ever faced.

Critically

Plot – 4.5 out of 5 stars
This series just keeps getting better and better. The plot of this book is action packed and fast paced. There’s still so much mystery to be uncovered and the whole book has this giant feeling of suspense and heaviness which wasn’t present in the previous books. Yet it still keeps its entertainment factor and I loved the theme of friendship and the small aspects of diversity that are mixed in. This one built up a lot for what may happen in the next book, which we don’t know anything about yet but I need it!

Writing Style – 4 out of 5 stars
This is the section where I’ve complained about the most for this series. It was a bit of a struggle to get into in the first two books but now that I’m onto the third, it’s so easily to just jump right into its rhythm. It’s definitely improved from the precious book. Just like the plot, the writing style is a lot darker though it still has its funny moments and maintains it’s historical accuracy. It’s meaningful and detailed and descriptive and I’ve enjoyed it.

Characters – 5 out of 5 stars
I LOVE THESE CHARACTERS! In this one we get more of an inside look into a character that’s been around since the start of it all. We’ve known Jenny since the beginning of this series but this is the book where we really get to know her personality and we see her grow, as much as a ghost can though. She’s determined and smart. She had a very tragic passing and she’s hopeful that she’ll be able to find out the truth behind what happened in the last days of her life. But her development throughout the book is amazing and she’s so powerful and fierce! I just love her. Abigail is still one of my favorite characters in this series, she’s still the narrator but it feels like she kind of takes a back seat in this book. However, I love how open and caring and protective she is. She’s so intelligent and cunning and observant, she’s a great heroine. And of course, last but not least, there’s the ever lovely and eccentric Jackaby. It was really interesting to see more of his past and how he came into his gift. It hurt my heart a little but it was good to see a more vulnerable and deep side of him. He’s still his quirky self but he’s just as determined as his female companions to help Jenny out. I also wanted to quickly mention the presence of a minor transgender side character because I loved her! She was only in a few pages but her presence was thick and her words were heavy and I hope to see more of her.

Emotionally

With every book in this series, I just continue to fall in love with the characters more and more. It’s one of my favorite series!

The plot is intricate. We pick up right where we left off in the last book. The resident ghost of the series, Jenny is determined to find out more about her death and Jackaby and Abby are just as determined to help her. With their search, they find things that are a lot more sinister and a lot bigger and more complex than they ever imagined they could be. When I started this series, I thought the books were going to be all about different specific mysteries and the first two were a bit like that, but going into this one, all these specific details and different aspects from the previous books to this one came together to create a continuous plot line that blew me away because I didn’t see it coming at all. There were so many small connections between events, characters and plots points that converged to create this new threat and new purpose that will continue to drive the rest of the series. The plot is just as action packed and exciting as the first two books but the atmosphere and the tone were a lot darker. We find out a lot of truths about the past, some painful and heartbreaking. We also travel to different distinct places and things get super sketchy and intense. The paranormal elements were kicked up a notch and there were still so many different twists and turns. I loved the new additions of diversity into the plot.

Each book has a focus on a specific character however subtle it may be. The first was all about Jackaby and learning more about his personality. The second was more about Abigail and how she adjusted to her new life. And this third book is all about Jenny and finding out what happened those last few days toward the end of her mortal life. She’s finding her inner strength and her power and her confidence. It’s so inspirational and powerful. It made me like her so much more than I already did. I’m glad she finally got the answers she needed but she’s still around so there has to be more to do.

Jackaby was so sweet in this book. He’s such a good friend to Jenny and he’s still his very special, wacky self. But we got to see more of his past and how he became the person he is. It was great to see more depth and vulnerability with his character specially since he’s always so serious. Abby is my fave. I just love her, not only because of her personality and her awesome narration but because I feel like she’s the heroine in this series. She’s so determined and more powerful than she believes. She’s so caring and accepting and I really hope she gets some romance in her life soon because she deserves it. We get to see some of the older side characters come back in this book and that was really fun but we also meet some new people that spiced up the story line. I was really happy to see some diversity in the form of a transgender character, who for now doesn’t really have a central part in the series but who I hope will show up more often in the next books and however many follow after it.

Overall, I’m a huge freaking fan of this series. This book is entertaining, action packed and fast paced. The plot is a combination of snippets of the last few books that connect to create this build up for the rest of the story in the series. It gets dark and intense and a bit heartbreaking but it just made me fall in love with the characters even more. I’m so in love with them and how much they constantly grow and how many different sides to them there are. They’re a huge band of misfits and it’s super fun to see them interact. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the series has in store!

So that’s it for this review! Let me know if you’re now interested in reading this series or if you have, what you think about it! Thanks so much for reading and I’ll see you on my next post.

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