Thursday, September 20, 2018

Review: City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab

City of Ghosts
(Cassidy Blake #1)
Victoria Schwab
Release: August 28, 2018
Goodreads Amazon
Cassidy Blake's parents are The Inspectres, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can REALLY see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspectres head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass—and Jacob—come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn't sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn't belong in her world. Cassidy's powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself.

It's that time of year again when I begin to crave reading books with monsters and ghosts and just those spooky fall vibes. And let me tell you that Victoria Schwab wrote a perfect fall read with City of Ghosts. It's an amazing book and it kind of reminded me of one of my all-time favorite spooky fall books, The Graveyard Book. This book was magical and I wish I would have had more books like this when I was growing up.

The story follows Cassidy, who can walk into the world of ghosts after she drowns in a lake and is saved by a ghost, Jacob, who becomes her best friend. Since coming back to life she has been able to cross the Veil and walk in the place where ghosts stay when they can't move on. Her parents are writers of paranormal books/ghost hunters and they've just started filming a new tv show. Their first stop is Edinburgh where trouble finds Cassidy in the form of a sinister ghost.

I adored Cassidy and Jacob's friendship! Their relationship has some challenges but it was fun watching them work them out. Like the problem of how to spend time together when one of you can't move anything in the other's world. I also loved the cat, Grim, and details about him make it clear that Schwab knows a thing or two about cats. :)

This story was just creepy enough to be considered a "ghost story" but definitely not too scary or dark for middle grade readers. I loved the characters and the adventure in the Edinburgh setting! It makes me want to go to Scotland even more than I did before I read it and I already want to go badly! It was also a great take on ghosts and what it means to be alive and dead.

City of Ghosts may be a middle grade book but I'd recommend it for readers of all ages. I loved it and so did my nephews when I read it to them! They loved the creepy parts and Grim the most! This book would be a perfect one to read on a chilly October day with a hot cup of tea or hot chocolate to get ready for Halloween. Both me and my nephews are excited to get our hands on the next one!

ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss.


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