by Lorna Graham
Random House - Fiction with Paranormal
After many years of working for her father and putting off her dream, Eve has moved from Ohio to Greenwich Village in search of a new life and a connection to her deceased mother. Instead, she's discovering that life in New York is not as easy and charming as she hoped. Making friends and keeping a job is every bit as difficult as paying the rent. And, on top of all that, there's a ghost in her apartment.
Donald was a writer from the Beat generation whose life was cut short. He is stuck in his former home and he likes to crawl into Eve's head. Eve tolerates the ghostly Donald and is willing to help him fulfill his dream, occasionally putting up with his bizarre stories as he dictates them to her. Secretly, she's hoping to dig up some clues to her mother's life in the Village and hopes Donald will be the key, but he appears to be a dead end (no pun intended).
After finding a job working as a writer for a morning television show, Eve attempts to find her place in the city. She makes friends with a legendary fashion designer and the owner of a vintage clothing store. But, the rest of her world is one disaster after another, until a close encounter with a criminal propels her to momentary fame. Will Eve survive life in the Village? Is Donald massively talented or stunningly deluded about his ability? What incident drove Eve's mother from New York to Ohio? Will Eve's moment in the limelight cost her her job or propel her to a higher level?
I didn't fall in love with The Ghost of Greenwich Village or find it as enchanting as I'd hoped. Eve is not a particularly likable heroine, the ghost acts arrogant, possibly to cover up his wounded past, and Eve's friendship with a famous designer is hard to buy into. But, there was plenty to like about the book. I thought Eve's friendship with the owner of a vintage clothing store was believable and sweet. And, I understood her yearning to find out about her mother's past, make her escape from her hometown and create a new life.
This is the kind of passage that made me dislike Eve:
The next few days would be a time of goodbyes. Or would they? Undoubtedly easiest for everyone would be for her to simply slink out of town. It would be impossible to say goodbye to Gwendolyn face-to-face, anyway. She'd never had a friend like her.
-- from the uncorrected proof of The Ghost of Greenwich Village (changes my have been made to the final print version)
Say what? Eve's found a special friend and she's considering not even saying "goodbye" to her, let alone keeping in touch? I can't imagine just disappearing without even saying goodbye to a close friend, regardless of the circumstances.
There are also a lot of downright mean, nasty people in The Ghosts of Greenwich Village, which can be disturbing at times, and I'd hoped for a little romance but there is none. Eve has difficulty summoning a social life of any kind, apart from her friendship with the designer, at least partly because she's not willing to let anyone into her apartment because it's haunted. She's afraid to mention the fact that her home is occupied by a ghost, even to her closest friend, for fear she'll be thought crazy.
I guess I found Eve a little gutless and silly. I've had my own little ghost encounter and I don't frankly care whether anyone thinks I'm nuts or not. So, I could not relate to her refusal to tell anyone about Donald, especially close friends. And, I certainly couldn't understand why she'd regret the fact that her jerk of a date stopped calling because she didn't let him sleep over, thanks to her ghost. If a date will dump you because you're not willing to sleep with him, he's not worth your time, in my humble opinion.
The bottom line:
A so-so read about a woman struggling to make a new life for herself and unearth her mother's past while dealing with a ghost who has his own agenda. The heroine is not very likable and a wee bit spineless, although she does sort of redeem herself, eventually, (although her reaction after that particular scene is a bit on the clueless side). I thought the ending was decent. I had trouble buying into the storyline, though, including the ending.
My thanks to TLC Book Tours and Random House for the review copy.
I'm afraid this book suffered a bit from following a read that was so fabulous I still haven't stopped thinking about it along with my eagerness to return to reading Everything Beautiful Began After by Simon Van Booy, although I did set everything aside to focus on finishing The Ghost of Greenwich Village.
The cover shown above is apparently the final cover. I like it. The book is as much about life in Greenwich Village as it is about a ghost haunting a girl trying to change her life, so it makes sense to put a pretty photo of the area on the cover.
That's how I feel at the moment, thanks to a new, killer exercise class that I started, last night. So, I think I'll keep this post short and head to bed with a couple bottles of water (I'm pre-posting). If I have any energy at all, I'll come back and add some kind of picture to this post in the morning. We'll see if I can get out of bed in the morning. Should be interesting.
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