Written by: Seanan McGuire
Published by: Daw Books
Reviewed by: Naomi Downing
The Girl in the Green Silk Gown is the second book in the Ghost Roads series. Rose Marshall has been sweet sixteen for more then sixty years, hitchhiking along the roads of America. She’s happy enough until her killer, Bobby Dollar, interferes. Bobby made a deal on the Crossroads to stay young forever, but it’s tied to his car that he has to keep on the road and the tank filled with souls. Rose is the only soul that got away and Bobby is on a mission to correct that.
This book is very well written with an interesting storyline and diverse characters. It is a thrilling ghost story with elements of paranormal, Greek mythology, and urban legends. I loved how Seanan McGuire made the mythology and folklore more modern but still made it her own. Unfortunately I haven’t read the first book in the series, which I will be fixing soon, so some of the information was alittle confusing for me but the book still works as a standalone.
Rose is a very strong character, her development is really good for someone who hasn’t been alive for over sixty years. No matter how terrible the challenges are that are thrown at her Rose is always thinking and planning. The world within this story is complex and intricate; there are many different types of ghosts, each bound by their own rules, and many layers of the afterlife to travel through. The goddess’s are characterized as both terrifying and mysterious which created a lot of depth to them, but they were brief appearances so the characters didn’t get watered down. I liked the complexity of the afterlife. Some of the dead move on but others linger, trapped in patterns because of the way they died.
I will say that some points of the story seemed to drag to much, but over all it was a compelling read. There were many twists and turns that took me by surprise, which doesn’t happen often while I’m reading. I really loved the original feel to the old urban legend. With all the ghost stories out there it’s hard to find one I can really get into and read over three hundred pages while feeling like it was less. The ending was satisfying and wraps up the book well, but also leaves things open for another book.
Seanan McGuire has become one of my recent favorite authors and I look forward to reading more. If you are a fan of Seanan or of ghost stories in general this is a must read, after reading the first in the series that is.