Publication: February 2012 from Sourcebooks Fire
Rating: 4 ♥ / 5 ♥ – I really liked it
Jennie feels the tingling presence of something unnatural in the house now that Will is dead.
Her heart aches without him, and she still doesn’t know how he really died. It seems that everywhere she turns, someone is hiding yet another clue. As Jennie seeks the truth, she finds herself drawn even deeper into a series of tricks and lies, secrets and betrayals, and begins to wonder if she had ever really known Will at all.
Over the course of my life I have missed out on many a movie night because I refuse to watch scary movies. I am very susceptible to nightmares and hate being startled or anxious. Surprisingly, books have never really bothered me. The chills and shivers I get ready a creepy ghost story or thriller are very welcome, and Picture the Dead gave me chills as I was reading it – though reading a ghost story at 2am probably didn’t help!
Our main character Jennie receives news that her fiance Will has died on the battlefield during the American Civil War, when his brother Quinn returns home wounded. Having already lost her brother to sickness, and both her parents, Jennie is a bit adrift and feeling Will’s presence with her. But more than just trying to discover why Will is haunting her, Jennie is determined to find out exactly how he died – and Quinn seems to hold the answer.
The mystery of how Will died is the driving factor in this book and it flows very well throughout the course of the story. Jennie is driven to know what really happened and it helps that she is given signs from Will’s spirit. The pace of the story is kept marching along as Jennie moves from one clue to the next, and though you’re often wondering if Will’s ghost is actually there and leading her, Picture the Dead gives wonderful belief to ghosts. Jennie is a great main character – she’s distraught over the news of Will’s death, skeptical and yet a believer, unsure of her place in the family and constantly on the search for the truth.
Picture the Dead‘s mystery and ghostly elements are all based around an innocent and off screen love story. Even though Will is never present, he feels very much a part of the novel – especially since his ghost is haunting Jennie. I really enjoyed the twists in the plot and definitely recommend not reading this one late at night if you’re any little bit at all afraid of scary stories. There are scenes near the end that will send shivers right up and down your spine!
Paperback copy received for review from Sourcebooks Fire in exchange for my honest review. Thank you!