Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Gap Year in Ghost Town” as Want to Read:
Gap Year in Ghost Town
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Gap Year in Ghost Town

(Ghost Town #1)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  234 ratings  ·  75 reviews
Let's get this straight - ghosts are everywhere. I can see them. You can't. And, see them or not, they're dangerous. This is why my family has hunted ghosts for hundreds of years to protect people like you.

The Marin family are outcasts of the ghost hunting world. They run a two-man operation in inner city Melbourne. Anton has the Ghost-sight, but his father does not.

Rani C
Paperback, 325 pages
Published August 2017 by Allen & Unwin
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Gap Year in Ghost Town, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Allen and Unwin No news of an international release yet Simi, so if you're keen to read it (and you should!) you'll need to order a copy from Australia.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.76  · 
Rating details
 ·  234 ratings  ·  75 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Gap Year in Ghost Town
C.G. Drews
This was absolutely hilarious and endearing and FULL OF GHOSTS. Aka one of my favourite topics. There's nothing like killing off characters like starting the book with most of them dead. Epic. I also can't flail enough over how FUNNY this book is! Anton is definitely a new favourite narrator because all he does is talk and talk add in a bucket of sass to that and generally nearly get himself killed...and as much as I love a dark broody YA hero, we need more happy talkative ones?! Plus AUSSIE AUT ...more
✨    jamieson   ✨
The strong australian energy in this! book characters talking about barracking for Melbourne in the AFL? Iconic

review to come
Trigger warnings: violence, death of a friend, death of a child, parental abandonment, car accident (in the past).

I stand by everything I said last time around. This is a blast from start to finish and I laughed out loud multiple times.

4.5 stars.

I've been excited about this book since I first heard about it in November/December of last year. Like...a book about ghost hunting that's set in Melbourne?? OBVIOUSLY I was on board. And I was not disappointed.

This was SO MUCH FUN.
DNF @ Page 229 (70%)

This is just not for me. Not even a little bit. I had so many issues it actually became painful to read. Even skimming wasn't helping. So onto my meagre DNF pile it goes.

Disclaimer: I'm pretty sure I'm not the target audience for this. Younger kids are gonna love it. It's just not crossing the barrier into 'aimed at young kids but loved by all' like a few other series I've enjoyed.

Let me start with the good stuff: It's set in my hometown, Melbourne, so I loved all the loc
Aug 06, 2017 rated it really liked it

Gap Year in Ghost Town was an unexpected awesome read for me!

Gap year is set in Melbourne (home town represent xD) Anton our main character is hilarious so straight off the bat this book hooked me. I mean it has Ghosts, A+ Melbourne references, amazing aussie slang AND smartassary could I ask for more?

I didn’t exactly love the authors short story in the Anthology and I’ve never read any of his other books so I went into this with rather low expectations and I’m kinda glad I did because it impres
ON HOLD AT @ 26%

I was feeling it and then it felt like it was trying too hard to be Percy Jackson. I was really shocked when I read the main character was a year younger than me since they read like a 12 year old (similar to Percy Jackson in the first book). I’ll pick this up again later.
Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: loveozya, allen-unwin
Throughout the quiet, darkened streets of Melbourne, eighteen year old Anton Marin searches for ghosts, delicately releasing their spirits from Earth by easing their passage. Anton is a delightfully charming young man who is reluctantly pursuing paranormal investigation to appease his father. The Marin spectre legacy now falls upon Anton, the Sight ability escaping his father who documents each encounter, maintaining the Marin archives from a hidden retreat in the family owned bookstore.

Rani Cro
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review first appeared on Readers in Wonderland


A different kind of Halloween read
This is a book about ghosts, but it’s not a scary haunting thriller type ghost story. It’s much lighter and more enjoyable. Which I’m grateful for because ghost stories creep me out.

Percy Jackson x Supernatural
I know we hate book comparisons, but this just fits so well! Anton reminds me a lot of Percy in terms of humour and voice. He’s sassy and has su
Clare Snow
Action packed and cleverly plotted. The supernatural dangers really come alive ;-)

I love the cover art (by Craig Phillips) and design (by Ruth Grüner).
Oct 10, 2019 rated it liked it
this was pretty fun ! i think 90% of my enjoyment came from the book being set in my city so i spent the entire thing going 'haha i knOw WhEre thAt iS'
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
This book made me laugh, and that's saying a lot. Years of reading in awkward public places has left me emotionally unable to show my feelings when reading most books (always odd when you laugh like a maniac on the bus, or have to start mopping your tears up with napkins at a cafe) But I was home today, and zooming through my to-read pile led me to finally starting and finishing this. It's just so damn AUSTRALIAN! From Tim Tams to possums it just shrieked loud and proud of Australia and I loved ...more
J.R. Koop
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
I actually really enjoyed this one. It was a light read and got me fully invested the whole way through 🙈 AND did I mention that one of the main female characters is Assamese/Chinese Malaysian? It is SO NICE to see an adopted character as a lead!
And this book is set in Melbourne. If you want to get a feel for what an Australian city is like, then I definitely recommend this one. The humour was spot on 👌
Lucy of Swords
Reseña en español debajo del preview!
English review below the image!!!

Here's the list of reasons why i need this book like yesterday:
- i beyond love ghosts (this has some lockwood and co vibes so i'm in)
- my mom's family name's marin so i'm in any other way
- this cover looks simply perfect and i love it so i'm in
- i hate so damn much goodread's "new releases" posts cuz they never put this kind of books in there so i never know about not so popular books about kick asses and then i fo
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I will be honest. When I saw the cover I did not think I would be interested. It looked like a book aimed at a 12-year-old boy. Well I have not been 12 for quite some time now and I have never been a boy, so I was very wrong because I loved it. I will not say it is perfect because nothing ever is, but it does deserve all 5 of those stars I am giving it.
Our main character is male, which is somewhat rare in the books I tend to read but it worked so well in this book that I want to read more male M
Yolanda Sfetsos
I borrowed this book from the library last week because I'd been hearing some great things about it, and the cover's so cool. Besides, I'm a total sucker for ghost stories. I love ghost stories so much I've even written a series about a ghost hunter set in Sydney.

So of course this one caught my attention...

But when I picked it up yesterday, there was something about it that just didn't work for me. I pushed on, but by Chapter Four I decided to put it aside. All the things that would usually mak
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this and found it a quirky and fun read on a rainy Melbourne day. Added bonus was recognizing some of the locations, particularly those near my old stomping grounds of Thornbury and Fairfield. I can see how some people would be annoyed by Anton's constant quipping - it didn't bother me, probably because he has the same "speak before you think" disease that I have myself.
Rachel (The Rest Is Still Unwritten)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bec (becklepanda)
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
I wrote a review of this awesome book! It's spoiler free. :D
Rania T
Sep 17, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. Read this to find out what could be lurking in the back lanes, old mansions, creepy greenhouses and sedate suburbia of the world's most liveable city; Melbourne...
Nov 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, rating-pg-13
Stacey Evans, or the person who had been Stacey Evans before she was transformed into this supernatural serial killer, put her hands together on her lap. "Would you like a biscuit? I have Tim Tams somewhere, I'm sure."
I hesitated. After all, Tim Tams.

OK, maybe you have to be Aussie to squeal excitedly at a line like that. Let's just say that gave me the same kind of joy as in that other Aussie urban fantasy, WR Gingell's Between Jobs, when someone started using the noble trifle as an illustratio
Nov 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fun book about ghost hunting in Melbourne. I loved the Australian feel and references and all of the little pop culture mentions. The story is interesting, about a ghost hunting family and a ghost hunting organisation, and the different ways they send spirits on to "the other side". Fun characters and just a good read :)
Carolyn Denman
Warning - do not read this book on an aeroplane unless you want to get frequent raised eyebrows from the man across the aisle like I did. So many snort-laughs. Anton is a beautiful soul with a cracking sense of humour and I loved spending time with him (I reckon he'd get along great with Lainie Gracewood - just sayin') His ghost hunting adventures through Melbourne's city streets had me intrigued and flipping pages the whole time. Chokkas full of sweet Aussie references that made me feel so righ ...more
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-for-review
Actual Rating: 4.5 Stars

Ghosts are real and they manifest in all different types, a Moaner, a Weeper, a Lingerer, a Rager and it's the obligation of the Marin family and companies around the world to deal with them. Anton Marin is the main character of this story and very much like any other seventeen-year-old in Australia he's just graduated high school and is doing a gap year but his gap year is a little different. Before Anton moves to a career and a future going to a university next year he'
Stef (Noveltea Corner)
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2017, loveozya
Gap Year in Ghost Town was the YA Room’s August Book Club pick, and boy, it did not disappoint.

Set in present day Melbourne, Anton Marin is takes a gap year after high school to figure out what he wants to do with his life and (possible) university career. His father talks him into going into the hereditary-family business of ghost hunting to make up his mind whether or not it’s the career path for him. The Marin family traditionally believe in assisting ghosts to ease their pain and allow them
2.5-3 stars.

This book was... okay. Unfortunately, because of all the positive reviews and high ratings it's received so far from other Aussies, I was expecting a lot more than just 'okay'. For me, it failed to deliver.

This novel relied a lot of humour to make it work - the narrator, Anton, is a smart-mouthed, witty teenager who has a comeback for everything and a mouth that works before his brain sometimes. But I found the continual, non-stop use of humour and pop-culture references to be either
Anton and Rani have just finished school - Anton in Melbourne and Rani in London. The one thing they have in common is that they can see ghosts and they are ghosthunters. Other than that - nada.
Rani has come to Australia to further her career has a ghost hunter/ destroyer. Anton is trying not to be ‘that’ sort of ghost hunter - he’d rather be a ghost helper.
But the ghosts have other plans. Something is making them cranky, and angry, and agitated, and powerful. Melbourne is in the grips of a gh
Gap Year in Ghost Town is a funny book. Anton is a lovely character. However, he struggles to be more than that, and the book itself is so busy cracking jokes that it isn’t as fun as it could/should be.
I was dumb and accidentally deleted the book from my library app before reinstalling it, so a lot of my favourite quips, lovingly highlighted, are gone. Here, however, is a wee sampler of the sort of hilarity you’ll find in this book.
“ You looked as if you’d become intensely interested in what’s
Jul 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
This book was super fun, and super Aussie. In the best way.

It’s set in Melbourne, which is my home, and it was just so great to recognise street names and locations. I imagine this is how the Americans must feel. Gotta say, could get drunk on it. It just feels special, being connected to the setting of a story. All the Aussie-isms were brilliant. Though, I gotta say, I didn’t catch all Anton’s pop culture references.

Anyway. Another thing that made this super fun was Anton. He was hilarious. The
Brittany Wouters
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book made me laugh, it made me tear up, and it definitely made me get defensive when someone insulted my hometown (Melbourne FTW guys)
While I was reading, the one consistent thought that I had was that 'Gap Year in Ghost Town' is a Percy Jackson-esque story, with Ghosts instead of Gods, with more Pop-culture references, and set in Melbourne, and it's so much fun!
The characters seemed almost set in their ways for most of the book, but when they started to change, it happened pretty quickly,
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Small Spaces
  • The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling
  • Hive (Hive #1)
  • In the Dark Spaces
  • Weapon (Whisper, #2)
  • Lenny's Book of Everything
  • A Song Only I Can Hear
  • Whisper (Whisper, #1)
  • This is How We Change the Ending
  • Monuments
  • An Assassin's Guide to Love and Treason
  • City of the Rats (Deltora Quest, #3)
  • Angel Mage
  • Ice Wolves (Elementals, #1)
  • What I Like About Me
  • The Blood Between Us
  • It Sounded Better in My Head
  • Sick Bay
See similar books…
Michael Pryor's bio

I was born in Swan Hill, Victoria. I spent my childhood in country Victoria and Melbourne before moving to Geelong at the age of 10. I lived in Geelong until I went to university in Melbourne after secondary school.

I currently live in Melbourne with my wife Wendy and my two daughters Celeste and Ruby. I’ve worked as a drainer’s labourer, a truck driver, a bathroom accessories s

Other books in the series

Ghost Town (2 books)
  • Graveyard Shift in Ghost Town

News & Interviews

Summer is a great time to lose yourself in a page-turning mystery. To help you sleuth out a new read, we asked five of the season’s hottest myst...
36 likes · 12 comments
“You should give up sarcasm. People could get the wrong idea about you.” 0 likes
“One kills so many people, these days, that it's hard to keep track.” 0 likes
More quotes…