Blog tour time! And it's a review - I know! I know! I broke my own rule about doing reviews on blog tours. But when this book came on my radar, I was intrigued enough to go "Ok, just this once, I'm going to break my own rule as I am fairly certain I am going to like this!"
Hang on! Let me give you the vital information and I will get onto talking about Hungry Ghost!
- Title And Author: The Hungry Ghost by H.S. Norup
- Publisher: Pushkin Press
- Physical, eBook or Audiobook: eBook
- Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: eProof gifted by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review/write-up
- Length: 256 Pages
Freja has just moved to Singapore to live with her father, her new stepmum Clementine and her baby step-brothers, and Freja is in freefall. She's guilty for her leaving her mum behind in Denmark, not sure how she'll fit in in her new, happy family nor her new home city.
Plus, she's come during the seventh month, the month of the Hungry Ghost Festival. The festival where ghosts are said to come back and roam the streets and families must offer their ancestors offering to appease them. So, who is the mysterious girl with long black hair and dressed in white, seeming to beckon to her? And what secrets do both girls need to reveal to themselves before the festival is over?
I am going to admit this right now, when I started reading this, I was expecting a creepier of a ghost story. But I didn't get that. Instead, what I got was a compelling story dealing with memory, grief, mental health as well as family, friendship, heritage and cultures.
There is very little I can say about this as the story had elements I really liked and thought were tackled beautifully. I liked the drip-drip of the mysteries, how Singapore and the culture/mythology and folklore was described and delivered to Freja and the reader (you can tell that the author spent several years living in the city. I believe 4 years or so), and I really liked the relationship between Freja and Clementine. We didn't have the Wicked Stepmother, we had someone who really cared for Freja and worried about her, but you can tell that the two aren't sure how to talk to each other.
This is a bit of a struggle to write as I want to talk more about this, but I fear spoiling you. But this was such a lovely enjoyable read.