Lisa is an excellent writer with the knack of writing complex stories where you just don’t see the ending. You think you do but it all turns out to be different.
In this book Lisa tells the story of a place called The Hollows which seems to be a vortex of supernatural occurrences including a multitude of different types of psychics.
Eloise developed her psychic abilities after an accident which killed her husband and son but her grand-daughter came by hers naturally. In fact it seems to run in the family.
As a child, Finley :
[yes it’s really a boy’s name but so many American females have boy’s names eg Sidney- that I decided to look up the origins of it. Finley is a Gaelic name and means “white warrior” from Gaelic fionn “white, fair” and laogh “warrior” – and whilst now used for both males an female children, it was originally a male first name. And as for Sidney, whilst popular in the US as a girl’s name it is in fact originally a surname – derived from various place names in England meaning “wide island”, from Old English sid “wide” and eg “island”. ]
So Finley had a childhood playmate – invisible to others but who lived under her bed and played with her and other invisible people to whom she talked regularly. And noises that she listened to, but that her mother tried to persuade her were all her imagination. But in fact they were all ghosts and the noises were made by other ghosts trying to tell her something.
Eventually Finley moves to live with her Grandmother in the Hollows as she feels that trying to suppress the noises and visions – as her mother was encouraging her to do – was not helpful. She felt that Eloise might help explain what was happening to her and be supportive.
After her goes her (ex) boyfriend Rainier – who is also her tattooist. It seems that the ghosts need to be ‘drawn’ onto her skin in order for her to make sense of what she is seeing, and Rainier is an empath and can interpret her dreams and visions into a tattoo.
A number of girls go missing and Finley gets drawn into the hunt for the latest one with a local Private investigator and this is where the story really begins.
Lisa Unger has been compared to Stephen King for the spookiness and sense of menace in her stories and this book really has an underlying sense of things not quite right and wrongness that haunts the characters. It is definitely a page turner and the ending, as I said before, is not what was expected and hinted at – though I had a suspicion that things were not going to end as happily as you might have hoped for all the characters.