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The Ghost of Graylock

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Does an abandoned asylum hold the key to a frightful haunting?

Everyone's heard the stories about Graylock Hall.

It was meant to be a place of healing - a hospital where children and teenagers with mental disorders would be cared for and perhaps even cured. But something went wrong. Several young patients died under mysterious circumstances. Eventually, the hospital was shut down, the building abandoned and left to rot deep in the woods.

As the new kid in town, Neil Cady wants to see Graylock for himself. Especially since rumor has it that the building is haunted. He's got fresh batteries in his flashlight, a camera to document the adventure, and a new best friend watching his back.

Neil might think he's prepared for what he'll find in the dark and decrepit asylum. But he's certainly not prepared for what follows him home. . . .

Scary, suspenseful, and surprising, Dan Poblocki's latest ghost story will keep you turning pages deep into the dead of night.

258 pages, Hardcover

First published August 1, 2012

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About the author

Dan Poblocki

22 books557 followers
Author of The Stone Child, The Nightmarys, The Ghost of Graylock, and the Mysterious Four series,The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe, and The Book of Bad Things.

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5 stars
1,835 (42%)
4 stars
1,476 (33%)
3 stars
804 (18%)
2 stars
169 (3%)
1 star
68 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 645 reviews
Profile Image for Mir.
4,778 reviews4,983 followers
September 17, 2018
This was a solid if unoriginal haunted-asylum story, leaning to the ghostly rather than horror subset.
Unoriginal isn't meant as a put-down here, I mean really what could you do new with "kids investigate abandoned haunted insane asylum" that would remain within genre parameters? I'm not sure whey they even keep producing new books with this plot rather than re-issuing the old ones, wouldn't that be cheaper for the publisher? But anyway, if you are a kid who likes thrillers hasn't already read a bunch of books that are similar to this you will probably enjoy it.

It was recommended to me by an 11-year-old who said it was "so creepy." She also likes Mary Downing Hahn. Let me know what else is creepy, goodreaders.
Profile Image for Tomoe Hotaru.
247 reviews839 followers
September 9, 2012
Ermmm... so this wasn't really geared towards my age group. That screws everything up because I usually have a standard expectation of quality, which I compare against a book when writing a review. This includes character development, plot progression, prose, and other such things that may detract/add to a book when done a certain way.
Of course, Middle Grade novels can also be written with a level of depth in them, so target age doesn't automatically excuse a book from failing short in these aspects.

I actually thought The Ghost of Graylock was a Young Adult horror/mystery novel, since that was how it was shelved in the (deceiving) Goodreads shelves. So I went into the novel, expecting a more mature style than the one that was used.
That meant, of course, that there was no depth to characters, the plot - although creepy in some parts - was simplistic, the mystery was passable but its conclusion seemed jarringly out of the blue as there had been no foreshadowing or any small hints that would lead us to draw such a conclusion.
If this were a Young Adult novel, I would have gone into the details of the problems I've mentioned above. I'd probably go on about the lack of significant parental/guardian supervision for these 12 and 16 year-old children, how unlikely the actions of each characters are based on their (nonexistent) motives, blah blah blah, on and on.
And if this had been a Young Adult novel, I would have given it two stars.

However, it isn't Young Adult. It's Middle Grade -- and even then, it's geared towards the more younger audiences of Middle Grade. The prose was direct and simple, cutting straight to the chase. There are no winding detours in this novel, the plot is focused entirely on the mysteries of Graylock Hall and the horror that follows them home from it. For younger audiences, I can see how this sort of fast-paced, thrilling adventure would be just fascinating.
The Ghost of Graylock also succeeds in the horror department. Middle Grade or no, it managed to creep me out. As a disclosure though, I'm just a wuss when it comes to horror movies/books/you-name-it. Plus I read this from midnight to around three in the morning. The hour of the devil and all that.

Anyway, yeah I'd recommend this for younger enthusiasts of horror and mystery novels, or someone looking for something light and straightforward.

Profile Image for ☠Kayla☠.
204 reviews72 followers
October 31, 2021
Ghost, a haunted psychiatric hospital in the middle of the woods, a small town, and a many years old myster waiting to be solved. What a great way to end the spooky season.
This book is about Neil and Bree, a brother and sister who move in with there aunts while sorting family issues back at home. They've heard stories about Graylock Hall and the ghost that haunt the building from a couple new friends named Wesley and Eric. The four decide to explore the place and see if maybe they'll be lucky enough to catch a ghost on camera, but they're not ready for the events, and something else, that follows them home after there little adventure.
I really enjoyed this book, it had a really spooky and gothic feel to it that really pulled me in. Plus as I have mentioned many times before in many other reviews and will continue to mention, I love a good ghost story. I also really liked how Dan Poblocki made Neil and Bree's aunts part of the LGBTQ+ community because I don't see that often enough in spooky books especially middle grade novels, which is what this book is. Though it is a middle grade novel it didn't really read as one to me, it's sitting on a fine line between middle grade and YA which again really had me sucked in. I found it super easy to read and always making me question what was going to happen next.
2 reviews6 followers
December 1, 2015
This was an amazing book. I got really engaded into and I recommend.
18 reviews2 followers
December 2, 2016
I really like this book because I like scary books. It was very interesting, there would be a nurse that would drag kids and teenagers and drown them in a lake next to the hospital. Graylock is a hospital. I recommend this book to people who like to read scary books.
Profile Image for Nastaran").
91 reviews30 followers
August 13, 2020
بنظرم اوایل کتاب یکم ضعیف بود و‌هیجان و کششی که بایدو نداشت اما کم کم بهتر میشه و‌ اواخر کتاب(حدود صد و پنجاه صفحه آخر)هیجانش زیادتر میشه و خوب‌ میشه کلا😁👌🏼. به جز اینا ایده داستان جالب بود،شخصیت پردازیش و اتفاقاتی که میوفتاد و روندش همه خوب‌ بودن😍��.ترجمه کتاب هم واقعاً خوب بود ، کتاب روون بود و سریع پیش میرفت پس‌اون اوایل کتاب که کم هیجان داره (یا اصلا نداره) اذیتتون نمیکنه و خیلی سریع میرسید به جاهای جذابش💃🏻.
Profile Image for Ofilia.
435 reviews27 followers
August 28, 2015
Solid seriously spooky ghost story. I figured out who it was prior to the big reveal, but a creepy mental hospital and vindictive ghost tale totally outweighed that. I also liked the main characters, Neil and Bree, as they seemed like real kids.
Profile Image for Michelle.
450 reviews34 followers
October 7, 2017
*shudder* A little creepy (for my taste, which is strictly no ghosts and no strange apparitions), but delightfully frightening! However, I believe the characters could be fleshed out more.
Profile Image for Satrina T.
834 reviews36 followers
October 18, 2022
Neil’s dad went away to California to pursue his acting career and Neil’s mom is having a hard time with this decision, so Neil and his sister Bree move to Hedston to spend the summer with Anna and Claire, their aunts. Neil and his new friend, Wesley decide to visit the local abandoned asylum where the legend says the ghost of a killer nurse haunts the place.

Favorite character: I liked Neil and Bree for the kind of relationship they have. I also would have liked to see more of Wesley, I liked him.

Favorite part: The last third of the book was good. I also enjoyed the chapters set in the old asylum. Some time ago I followed a few accounts about abandoned places and the photos were haunting and beautiful and sad and this book reminded me of those images.

Least favorite part: I had a bit of a hard time with the beginning of this book, but I’m guessing it had more to do with a busy schedule and tiredness than with the book itself. I also felt that in the beginning we were introduced to several characters who, as the book progressed, were left aside.
Profile Image for Fateme H. .
352 reviews69 followers
July 16, 2022
از این انتخابای ناگهانی بود، همین‌طوری نگاهم بهش افتاد و گفتم چرا نخونمش؟
انتظار داشتم دست‌کم یه ذره ترسناک باشه، نبود.
مجرم داستان به نظرم از همون اول‌ قابل‌تشخیص بود.
در کل برای وقت‌گذرونی بد نبود، در همین حد.
Profile Image for Baran.
56 reviews3 followers
December 12, 2019
Well,it was the first-scary book-that i was really sad after the end.
خب،این اولین کتاب ترسناکی بود که از پایانش غمگین شدم.
Profile Image for MasterGamgee.
1,350 reviews22 followers
February 10, 2021
Fairly creepy story - at least at first. I think the targeted audience would appreciate this. Not being the targeted audience I had some reservations about it. One of the biggest is the kids not listening to adults but then again, if they did, there wouldn't be a story to tell. But, overall I enjoyed this book.
Profile Image for Celestria.
176 reviews182 followers
October 21, 2022
I don't actually like stories about real ghosts, usually I avoid them, but this book was gifted to me for my birthday, so I felt obligated to read it. It wasn't as creepy as I was expecting (thankfully lol) and it wasn't hard to guess who the killer was.
Profile Image for Kelly.
616 reviews146 followers
October 2, 2012
(3.5 stars) In the aftermath of their parents’ separation, Neil and his older sister Bree go to stay with their aunts in a small town in the middle of nowhere. There’s not much to do there — not much, that is, except breaking into Graylock, the abandoned mental hospital in the woods. Along with two new friends, Neil and Bree explore the old asylum, and soon afterward find that a spectral presence has followed them home…

The Ghost of Graylock is a ghost story for middle-grade readers, and it’s also a mystery, because Neil and Bree have to figure out who is haunting them and why. Roughly the first two-thirds of the book are relatively slow, building up the spooky atmosphere without giving the reader many clues to chew on, but it genuinely is spooky and it works anyway. When the clues do start coming, they’re bombshells; I think I gasped when I read one of them!

Again, this is a middle-grade book, and so the writing style “reads young” in a way that’s hard to describe. However, Dan Poblocki does add some depth to the novel that adult readers will appreciate, particularly Neil’s feeling of kinship with Graylock’s former patients (the kids’ mother is dealing with what appears to be depression, and Neil worries that he too has a “shadow” that could come to rule him) and Bree’s reflection that most ghost stories are sad. She’s right, of course, since almost all ghost stories start with a tragic death, and this one is no exception. So, there’s some meat here for the adult reader to chew on, in addition to the spookiness. And for a 9- or 10-year-old reader, this will be a great read in every way.

And now I get to the aspect of The Ghost of Graylock that most impressed me. It may seem like an odd thing to zero in on, but it worked so well that I just have to. I’ll call it… Chekhov’s Building. Or maybe… architectural foreshadowing. Neil and Bree, as mentioned above, explore Graylock early in the book. Then, the climactic scene also takes place in the asylum. Every single quirk of the building that is relevant to the climax is set up during that first exploration. If there’s a second way in or out of a room, we’ve seen it. If there’s a structural weakness that comes into play, it was already implied to be there. Thus, whenever some aspect of the building helps either the kids or the villain, we’re not thinking “Well, isn’t that convenient,” we’re thinking “Of course!” It works extremely well.

The Ghost of Graylock will be highly enjoyable for the target audience. Older readers may prefer a more complex prose style, but to those readers it will still offer good chills and some depth. I enjoyed it.

Profile Image for Alyssa.
605 reviews176 followers
January 4, 2014
Originally reviewed on Books Take You Places.

I was lucky enough to be gifted this book by my very dear friend Brittany for our All Hallow’s Read book swap and I know she struggled in finding me a novel with the proper amount of horror. I have a very high threshold, you see, and she wanted to make sure that I was properly scared! I am happy to say that this book was just right for me, it has just the right amount of thrill that kept me glued to its pages.

The characters in The Ghost of Graylock were fun and relatable. Neil and Bree are the new kids in town, and their curiosity shows through their many adventures. What I liked about Wesley and his brother is that they weren’t those stock “weird” kids in town. In fact, Wesley’s older brother is kind of a “cool” kid who has some typical teenage male snarky behaviors, which I think made him more real! Parents were missing from this one, but Neil and Bree’s aunts are their and take care of them well enough, I would have liked to see more from them.

One of the best things about The Ghost of Graylock was the way in which Dan Poblocki compliments the story with very vivid imagery. I found myself to be so engrossed while reading The Ghost of Graylock that though the book was not overly scary or horrific, I still jumped out of my skin a few times. The author provides the reader with such detail that I found myself hearing the drip of lake water falling from a ghostly girl. I felt terror as the characters ran and hid for their lives in the walls of the old asylum. The end of The Ghost of Graylock was incredibly twisty and though I suspected some aspects, I did not fully see it coming. I love it when that happens! I definitely had a look of surprise upon figuring out just who the real bad guy was and what terrible things crimes they had committed.

One of my sincerest wishes is that Dan Poblocki forays into adult horror, because he completely has the ability to scare even the most fearless reader. I have a very high tolerance for the scares, and this one felt a little bit juvenile to be classified as a proper horror novel. However it was still wildly entertaining and just the right amount of creepy, and comes highly recommended if you are looking for something to have you looking over your shoulder from time to time.
Profile Image for _ Mhtb _.
76 reviews2 followers
December 25, 2021
میدونستم قراره خوب باشه!
هم از لحاظ داستانی هم شخصیت ها
جزو ترسناک ها عالیه!خوب تونسته ایده رو پیاده کنه
البته یه جاهایی باید به داستان بیشتر می پرداخت ولی اونقدر نیست که بهش پنج ستاره ندم
1 review
May 22, 2014
Summary: Graylock was a hospital meant for healing ... but it wasn't. A nurse would drag kids and teenagers at night and drown them in the lake next to the hospital. Soon after the hospital was shut down, and it was never to reopen. Now the ghost of the nurse still lurks in teh hallways waiting for her next kill. Or so the myth says.
As the new kid in town, Neil, wants to find out for himself if the myth is true, but soon after strange events haunt him giving him more than what he bargained for...

I personally think this book is and incredible story. It kept me turning the pages until the very end. I would recommend this book to people who don't scare easily and like mysteries bcause if you get scared easily you might end up sleeping with the lights on. The title tells the start of the story and it does not give away anything. The way the story ends is a perfect ending for an almost perfect story. I also felt as if the characters were as if it was their destiny to do what they did, so the way the characters are displayed is very excitng through out the book.
Profile Image for Sahar.
165 reviews10 followers
August 3, 2021
خیلی کیف کردم تابستون منو ساخت
اصلافکر نمیکردم اینقدر خوب باشه همینطوری برای وقت گذرونی از اکانت یکی از دوستام از طاقچه خوندمش ولی واقعا عالی بود
داستان یه تیمارستان توی یه شهر کوچیک که نیل و خواهرش بری رفتن اونجا تا با خاله هاشون یه مدت بمونن که حال مامانشون بهتر شه
با دو تا پسر محلی دوس میشن و میرن تو تیمارستان و روح ربکا میاد سراغشون اول ف�� میکنن قاتلش پرستار جنت بوده و بعد میفهمن یارو سیاهپوسته (من اینجوری فکر کردم) نا پدریه ربکا بوده و کار خودش بوده بعدم یارو میافته دنبال این دوتا . هم ترسناک بود هم مهیج. خیلی خوش گذشت 🥰😍پنج ستاره نوش جونش
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Lynette.
507 reviews
January 5, 2017
Extremely satisfying, and while reading it on a dark October night in front of the fire, it was deliciously creepy!!!
Profile Image for Hlma.
43 reviews23 followers
May 16, 2020
این کتاب رو برای برادرم خریدم، یه چند صفحه ورق زد و گذاشتش کنار،
امروز بعد مدتها گفتم یه نگاهی بهش بندازم و وقتی به خودم اومدم صفحه ۱۰۰ بودم!
سبک تینیجری ولی برای تغییر حال و هوا بد نبود!
9 reviews
March 29, 2019
I liked this book very much because it had some scary parts and really shocking parts. The most shocking part was when the kids found out that Nurse Janet was still alive. Everyone thought she died because she had drowned. The kids had help finding her in the nursing home. At the beginning of the book, they described how the hospital was meant for helping and curing kids. It used to be alive with lots of patients, now it's just an old, mysterious building. There was a rumor that went around the town that Graylock was haunted by the people who died in the building. Nobody ever went into the building until the curious kids did. They took pictures while they were in the building and when they looked at the pictures the first time, everything was normal. The next time they looked at the pictures on the camera, there were things that weren't there the first time. That part grabbed my attention as i was reading it because I wouldn't have ever thought that was going to happen.
Profile Image for Kennedy Cast.
13 reviews
May 4, 2021
I remember loving this book as a kid in middle school and after discovering it again this year I was excited to pick it up again. Although it had been a very long time since I read it I still remembered vague details. However, I unfortunately have to admit that The Ghost of Graylock isn’t as good as I remember. This could very well just be because I am no longer in the age group this book is for.
I feel I might have given it a two star rating had it not been for my nostalgia of the book. I do not intend to do sway others from reading though. Again, I loved this book as a kid. Has it held up over time? Not exactly. Does it have a few quality moments here and there? Sure.
Profile Image for Laura.
18 reviews14 followers
January 26, 2018
this was a young adult book but i really enjoyed it. My daughter is going to love it because she has recently been in to ghost stories. Neil and Bree have a ghost from graylock that follows them home and they can't seem to figure out why she has decided to follow them. Not only was this book a thriller but it was also a murder mystery that had to be solved. 4 stars because i literally could not put it down.
Profile Image for Cynthia Egbert.
2,078 reviews24 followers
October 15, 2022
I needed a ghost story for an October book challenge and I came across this one as I am trying to reduce my book load and it fit the bill! I appreciated the twist this novel took on some of the powerful things a ghost can do when necessary. This one is a ghost story with a mystery and it was a satisfying ending. Not perfect for everyone involved, but satisfying.
Profile Image for Marley.
9 reviews3 followers
February 10, 2019
From the first few chapters when the main characters explore the chilling legends of the new town to the suspenseful times of escaping death and finally to the creepy end, this book definitely fails at being boring.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 645 reviews

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