Publication date: October 9, 2012
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
When the “Ghost Trackers” heroes Trevor, Drew, and Amber head out to America’s Most Haunted Town in order to give a presentation at their local “Dead Days” convention, they don’t expect to be caught up in the middle of another paranormal murder mystery. Things start turning weird with inexplicable killings, unexpected appearances of former acquaintances, and the shimmery, half-there vision of the town’s infamous Dark Lady.
Fans of TV’s “Ghost Hunters”-turned-authors likely be pleased that this book featured quite a bit more actual “Ghost Hunting” than the first book. We also get a bit of a glimpse into what it’s like to ghost hunt within the popular media as the characters take part in the convention, promote their book, and tag along with a camera crew documenting the events in small-town Exetor. Though some of the additional characters that are added in are a bit cliche (psycho ex-boyfriend, pompous TV star, etc), the main characters gain more depth and Amber actually gets a backbone and some usefulness on the team as she develops her psychic abilities. It wasn’t as graphically gory as the first book, despite the fact that there are more deaths; many of the deaths are implied or only described at a surface level. I also liked that there were fewer dream and hallucination sequences, which made it easier to follow along with than the first book, and made it a more cohesive read.
This book did, however, have its disappointments. There was more foul language and sexual content than I remembered there being in the first book, which seemed out of place and unnecessary. One of the major plot twists was incredibly obvious, helped out by the fact that lines like the following were repeated over and over again: “Something else was going on with her, but he didn’t know what, and it bugged him.” These kinds of clues repeated so often, it was like hitting the reader upside the head, and anyone who didn’t get what was going on would have to be pretty clueless. Though the first part of the book had suspense-building events and kept the reader interested in figuring out who was causing the murders and why, but when its power was finally released, the final showdown played out with a Hollywood cheesiness that made it feel more like “Ghostbusters” than Stephen King. There were even a few pithy one-liners from the heroes that were overly nonchalant, considering their mortal peril. (“Surf’s up”???)
Though not as bone-chilling as the first book, it had its creepy moments, and was a fairly quick and easy read for someone interested in paranormal ghost stories and aren’t afraid of a bit of violence and gore, topped with the slightest taste of cheesiness.