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Ghost Roads #2

The Girl in the Green Silk Gown

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The second book in the Ghost Roads series returns to the highways of America, where hitchhiking ghost Rose Marshall continues her battle with her killer--the immortal Bobby Cross.

Once and twice and thrice around,
Put your heart into the ground.
Four and five and six tears shed,
Give your love unto the dead.
Seven shadows on the wall,
Eight have come to watch your fall:
One’s for the gargoyle, one’s for the grave,
And the last is for the one you’ll never save.
For Rose Marshall, death has long since become the only life she really knows.  She’s been sweet sixteen for more than sixty years, hitchhiking her way along the highways and byways of America, sometimes seen as an avenging angel, sometimes seen as a killer in her own right, but always Rose, the Phantom Prom Date, the Girl in the Green Silk Gown.

The man who killed her is still out there, thanks to a crossroads bargain that won’t let him die, and he’s looking for the one who got away.  When Bobby Cross comes back into the picture, there’s going to be hell to pay—possibly literally.

Rose has worked for decades to make a place for herself in the twilight.  Can she defend it, when Bobby Cross comes to take her down?  Can she find a way to navigate the worlds of the living and the dead, and make it home before her hitchhiker’s luck runs out?
There’s only one way to know for sure.
Nine will let you count the cost:
All you had and all you lost.
Ten is more than time can tell,
Cut the cord and ring the bell.
Count eleven, twelve, and then,
Thirteen takes you home again.
One’s for the shadow, one’s for the tree,
And the last is for the blessing of Persephone.

352 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 17, 2018

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About the author

Seanan McGuire

460 books14.9k followers
Hi! I'm Seanan McGuire, author of the Toby Daye series (Rosemary and Rue, A Local Habitation, An Artificial Night, Late Eclipses), as well as a lot of other things. I'm also Mira Grant (www.miragrant.com), author of Feed and Deadline.

Born and raised in Northern California, I fear weather and am remarkably laid-back about rattlesnakes. I watch too many horror movies, read too many comic books, and share my house with two monsters in feline form, Lilly and Alice (Siamese and Maine Coon).

I do not check this inbox. Please don't send me messages through Goodreads; they won't be answered. I don't want to have to delete this account. :(

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 358 reviews
Profile Image for Steven.
1,048 reviews386 followers
July 17, 2018
Thanks to Netgalley and Berkley for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

Holy cow, was that book a ride! I love Seanan McGuire (she's one of my favorite authors, if you hadn't noticed), and her Incryptid series is fantastic. I love that she's melded this ghost world into the Incryptid world, and chose to expand on Sparrow Hill Road's storylines. Sparrow Hill Road was originally a bunch of different short stories that got tied into a package deal, so while it is still really good, the overarching narrative was a little disjointed. This one, however, continues the story with aplomb.

Fair warning: the events of Sparrow Hill Road are vital to understanding what's going on in Girl in the Green Silk Gown, so make sure you read that first.

Rose Marshall is trying to move on with her afterlife following the misadventures of Sparrow Hill Road, but that danged Bobby Cross just won't leave her alone. He creates an intricate plan and acts on it, and Rose has to live out the dangers (literally) and try to find her way back to what she calls home.

Because this one was planned as a full book, it was plotted and planned and developed. And boy, did Seanan do a great job! It took everything I loved about the first book - Rose, routewitches and phantom diners, interesting ghost and afterlife lore - and not only pulled all of that back into a new story, but expanded on it, kept it interesting, and kicked it up multiple notches.

I won't say more because I'd gush over it like a fanboy and spoil something, but I hope you'll pick up this one and follow Rose's shenanigans as she takes on the last thing she'd ever expect to have to face after dying at 16 and being a ghost for so long -- life.
Profile Image for Montzalee Wittmann.
4,455 reviews2,319 followers
September 24, 2022
The Girl in the Green Silk Gown
By Seanan McGuire

This is actually book two in the series. I didn't know that so I read this first then the Sparrow Road. It didn't matter too much but I do wish I had read them in order. Needs a bigger notification on the book.
It continues the story of our ghost friends. There is much more suspense in here and it is not a bunch of short stories about ghosts Rose has encountered. There may be a few thrown in but this is a novel. There is a way to kill a ghost and a ghost and a human is after Rose! Pretty good!
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,575 reviews1,463 followers
July 17, 2018
3.5 Stars

This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart
Who the hell thought ghost spiders were necessary anyway.

Rose Marshall is far from sweet sixteen and never been kissed.  She has been sixteen for over 60 years now, so kissing is the least of it.   She is the phantom prom date, the girl in the green silk gown and depending on which ghost story you are listening to, she is either a protector or a harbinger of death.  A girl can be anything she wants to be it seems, even in death.

Rose has a new boyfriend, or maybe he’d be considered an old boyfriend, since she knew him in life.  Sure, he might look like a car today, but every relationship has its challenges. Too bad that isn’t the only thing making her afterlife challenging.  Rose also has a psychotic serial killer after her and he has a brand-new plan and a whole bunch of tricks up his sleeve.

Bobby Cross is back and he might just have a way to be able to kill Rose all over again if she isn’t careful.  With an unlikely ally, Rose will go through hell to make her way back to the twilight, and find a way to save herself from Bobby and his machinations.

The best thing about this series is, it is different.  How may books are out there with a ghost as the main character? It is interesting to walk on the other side of death with Rose. There are rules as to what kind of ghost you could become, if when you die you’re not ready to move on.  There are things and places that were loved so much in life that they leave an impression in the twilight, even after they are long forgotten in the mortal world. It is interesting and different and weird in so many ways and it might look a little bit cruel to those looking from the outside in.
Why is it that there’s always a point past which belief won’t go? You don’t get that with science. Say ‘we can make light where there is none by flipping a switch, and also we’ve flown out to the moon to say hello to the rocks, and these are equal applications of the scientific method,’ everyone smiles and nods their dead and says good for you, Science Person, congratulations. But when a bunch of ghosts and witches say Muses exist, everyone gets their knickers in a twist.

Sparrow Hill Road suffered a little from being disjointed since it was the culmination of a bunch of ghost stories about Rose, peppered in with the story of how she died, and then her current battles with Bobby.  The Girl in the Green Silk Gown is much more linear and that made it easier to follow and stay in touch with the story. It did get a little repetitive in a few parts but overall it has a much better flow and there was always something interesting happening.  I’m very interested to see how the wrap up will go in the finale to the series.

Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 5 books3,852 followers
January 27, 2019
This second book in the psychopomp business of Road Magic is well worth sticking a thumb up for. Or two.

But beyond the wonderful ideas of putting on the miles to get more powerful or always having a place to stay in ghostly diners or being friends with a bunch of dead people and half-cognizant ocean gods, I have to say I kinda fell over backward for the wonderfully wicked twist on Orpheus and Euridice. :) Seriously.

Where else could we twist the events changing Rose's "life" into a quest to end it by literally going to Hades and making a similar deal?

Only with Seanan. Totally cool.

I really wanna see the pretty boy Bobby get his. Maybe the next book.

You know what? I think I may like this new UF of hers even more than the Incryptid series! It has so much solid going on and even though it IS tied to the Incryptid, at least obliquely, it certainly doesn't depend on it.

Go psychopomp, go! :)
Profile Image for Wanda Pedersen.
1,811 reviews348 followers
December 13, 2018
A big step up from Sparrow Hill Road, the first book which was basically a series of short stories. Not that that’s a bad thing, just not what I had been expecting. This is a true novel, with one intense story line. I was “supposed” to read other books before picking this one up, but I couldn’t resist its siren song. And I read it in two evenings, desperately wanting to know if ghostly Rose Marshall could get where she wanted to be.

This was the confrontation Rose had been dreading, pitting her will against that of her murderer, Bobby Cross. She does it with style, smarts and bravery plus a generous dollop of help from her friends. Even her frenemies get involved. I was on the edge of my seat throughout, wondering how each twist and turn would pan out.

I was interested to see McGuire reference the Price family again (a connection with her InCryptid series) as a potential haven for Rose. Mary, the crossroads ghost, featured in Tricks for Free, #7 of InCryptid, so we now have no doubt that these two series take place in the same universe. McGuire also introduces a bean sidhe as one of Rose’s friends, perhaps a connection to McGuire’s October Daye series. Wouldn’t it be fun to see all three story lines intersect at some point in the future?
August 13, 2018
I knew last month when I picked up "Sparrow Hill Road" I would be continuing the series soon (plus I had an arc that was about to expire so I was on a timeline). However, despite that, this is a book that I couldn't wait to read. "The Girl in the Green Silk Gown" picks up where the first book in the series leaves off. Rose Marshall is still haunting the highways and trying to stay away from Bobby Cross, the man who initially killed her on that cold and dark night so long ago. This time around, Bobby is hot on her tracks and due to something that happens early on in the book, Rose is in more danger than ever. She also has to join forces with an individual who once tried to banish her ghost forever, so that makes for some interesting dynamics.

I don't want to give too much away since this is a sequel. I will say that once again, I feel in love with the world McGuire created as well as many of her characters. I will also note that this book is much more linear than the previous one and is a much easier read. If the formatting of "Sparrow Hill Road" has you doubting picking this one up, don't. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised once you dive in. I am still seriously in love with Gary, and I don't know if another book in this series is planned, but if so, I'll be jumping on that bandwagon as soon as I find out.

I received this book from the Penguin First to Read program in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Mike (the Paladin).
3,145 reviews1,781 followers
April 22, 2019
I haven't been doing my reviews of late...well for a while now. Sorry if you, you know care, LOL.

This has been here a while though I read it...well a while ago. I liked the first book of this "series" and found it a fascinating read. This one while still good was more of a standard ghost story type read.

I won't say too much as I think it's worth reading and I won't spill the beans for you. Let's just say that we pick with the characters we got to know before and doom seems to be creeping after our protagonist. While it's not the best of it's type I've read I can recommend it.
Profile Image for Eilonwy.
814 reviews203 followers
February 19, 2019
Hitchhiker ghost Rose Marshall, “the Phantom Prom Date,” has a decent-enough afterlife. She may be cold and hungry all the time, but she’s got a job to do, a community, and a boyfriend, even if he is part of a car and can only talk by flipping his radio dial to find songs with the right words. But she’s also got her murderer -- Bobby Cross -- still on her tail, still determined to make her dead-dead. And the lengths he’ll go to don’t only affect Rose.
I’ll confess that when I first saw this sequel to Sparrow Hill Road, I didn’t think there was any call for it. Hadn’t there been a happy-enough resolution to the first book? How much more could there be to tell about Rose? Then I saw Wanda’s review, and she convinced me that this book would be worth reading.

This is really different from the first book in that this one is a straight-forward novel, not a series of linked short stories, so a single plot is carried the whole way through. And what a chilling, dark plot it is. I loved it, but at the same time, I’m glad it was a fairly quick read, because it was also creeping me out with Rose’s sense of powerlessness and potentially perpetual victimhood at Bobby Cross’s hands. The story itself is full of Seanan McGuire’s trademark wisdom and creativity, and left me breathless with its tension and twists.

It’s almost left me hoping for another installment in this series. Nope, no resting in peace for Rose Marshall.
Profile Image for Tammie.
1,284 reviews148 followers
July 4, 2018
For Rose Marshall, death has long since become the only life she really knows. She’s been sweet sixteen for more than sixty years, hitchhiking her way along the highways and byways of America, sometimes seen as an avenging angel, sometimes seen as a killer in her own right, but always Rose, the Phantom Prom Date, the Girl in the Green Silk Gown.

The man who killed her is still out there, thanks to a crossroads bargain that won’t let him die, and he’s looking for the one who got away. When Bobby Cross comes back into the picture, there’s going to be hell to pay—possibly literally.

This is the second book in the Ghost Roads series and while it was pretty good, it lacked something that made it great for me. I enjoyed the first book more. Maybe that's because it was a compilation of several different stories and I didn't mind reading about Rose in shorter stories. This book was one long novel that didn't feel like it needed to be as long as it was. It started to drag in places before I even got halfway through. Certain things are repeated too much, and there is also a whole lot of exposition in this book, so much at times that it feels like the author is going off on tangents. Rose was also less likable for me this time around because she was really whiny, but at least she knew she was.

Parts of the story were compelling especially when Rose is trying to evade Bobby and the parts in the underworld. There are a few unresolved things at the end of the book, like Gary and his situation, and there is definitely more to explore there with his and Rose's relationship. I initially thought this was going to be a duology, but it's a series with, at this time, an undetermined number of books. While I like this ok, I really don't feel like I'm enjoying this enough to keep reading a whole series, so I'm good with stopping here.

Thanks to First to Read for giving me a copy of this book.

Review also posted at Writings of a Reader
Profile Image for ac.
545 reviews112 followers
July 17, 2019
God, Seanan McGuire is my favorite. There's a scene in this book that takes place on Halloween that was just. I want books and books about that.
Profile Image for Craig.
4,802 reviews103 followers
April 25, 2019
This is a nice follow-up to Sparrow Hill Road, following the (post-)life story of Rose Marshall, an American God-like character who's a road-witch and much more besides. Her story will be familiar to InCryptid readers. McGuire's writing is crisp and clever, as it always seems to be, and her characters ring true. Rather than casting out another cliché or platitude, I'll give you a beautiful line from page 318 to savor: "Someday it will vanish here as well, replaced by the skeleton of the store where someone fell in love, someone had their heart broken, someone died, because that's the way it works here, in this palimpsest twilight, where America overwrites America in an eternal dance of old becoming new becoming old again." The only other observation I have is that after twenty lovely covers on the October Daye and InCryptid books, as well as Sparrow Hill Road, this one has a really bad mess that looks like it should be on a very young kids' book. Read Sparrow Hill Road first and then give this one a shot despite the appearance.
Profile Image for Kira.
1,227 reviews131 followers
July 28, 2018
3.5 stars

Once I started reading, I realized I remember almost nothing about Sparrow Hill Road. It turned out that was okay. It still flowed well with only remembering the basics of Rose's history and the world building. Actually this flowed much better than the 1st book because it was written as a book rather than a collection of stories grouped together to make a novel.

I'm not sure what it is, but I have a hard time getting into this series. The pace is slow and the world building is repetitive at times. I like Rose but don't care too much about any of the side characters. Her relationship with her boyfriend Gary is weird for many reasons, one of them being he is a ghost car. Most of the other characters are friends but with conditions as long as it doesn't violate the rules of their positions. Although the story got more interesting about a third of the way through, it still wasn't a page turner.
Profile Image for Lauren Stoolfire.
3,407 reviews256 followers
February 8, 2023
The Girl in the Green Silk Gown (Ghost Roads #2) by Seanan McGuire is a great follow up to Sparrow Hill Road. Honestly, it's always good to have the chance to read Seanan McGuire. Her style is great and this novel showcases it well. I also appreciated that this includes the guide to types of ghosts at the back as well as the author's playlist to go along with the story.
Profile Image for Melliane.
2,005 reviews340 followers
July 17, 2018

Mon avis en Français

My English review

I love Seanan Mcguire and the first volume came out a while ago and I did not think that we would have a sequel. Also, I was surprised and delighted to see this new novel while continuing the adventures of our dear Rose Marshall.

Always avoiding her former torturer, Rose will unfortunately face him again and the consequences will be disastrous. Become human again to better torment and kill her once and for all, Rose will have to find how to adapt in this new world and especially find a way to return from where she came from! Yet it will be far from easy and she does not know how bad Bobby is when he wants something!

I had a good time with this story. It was a pleasure to see Rose again and see one of her new stories. Besides, we learn a little more about mythology and I found it quite nice!

I enjoyed seeing Rose again even if I admit that I expected a bit more.
Profile Image for Carrie (brightbeautifulthings).
811 reviews29 followers
June 22, 2018
I received a free e-ARC through First to Read from the publishers at Penguin Random House. Seanan McGuire is one of my newer favorite authors, and my TBR officially includes everything she’s ever published. It will take me a while but, hey, I’m nothing if not a dedicated reader. There are mild spoilers ahead for Sparrow Hill Road.

Rose Marshall, famous hitchhiking ghost of Sparrow Hill Road, the Phantom Prom Date, and the Girl in the Green Silk Gown is locked in an ongoing afterlife battle with her killer, Bobby Cross. Bobby was the James Dean of Hollywood before there was a James Dean, but he made a deal at the crossroads and became something more. As long as he keeps feeding the souls of roadside ghosts into his car, he’s immortal. Protected by the blessing of Persephone, Rose is determined to find a way to stop him, but Bobby will stop at nothing to end her first.

If Sparrow Hill Road got stars for writing, character, and world-building, this one gets them for all those things, plus plot. The first book was, by admission, not entirely novel-like and somewhat meandering in its narrative, but The Girl in the Green Silk Gown revs its engine and takes the plot on a wild and gripping race through the ghostroads, the daylight, and the underworld. Presented early on with about as extreme a problem as a ghost girl can have, Rose spends the rest of the novel desperately trying to right the wrong Bobby has inflicted on her world, and it’s a hell of a ride. The storyline is much tighter and more straightforward, to awesome effect.

I still love our sassy deadgirl heroine, and her character development is surprisingly good for someone who died more than sixty years ago. The plot forces Rose into a whole new, not always charitable, light, and I empathized a lot with her situation, while also finding it hilarious (in true McGuire fashion–she pairs horror and humor better than many). I like that it demands she reevaluate some of the things that happened in the previous book (trying not to be spoilery). Professor Laura Moorhead also returns and has more page time than probably any other character besides Rose, and her involvement is fascinating. They’re not friends, but circumstances temporarily force them to be allies, and I really enjoyed Laura’s utter moral grayness. She isn’t evil, but she isn’t totally good; she’s not all that likable, but she can be sympathetic, and McGuire constantly keeps us guessing about her.

Given the mark of Persephone that Rose acquired in the last book, I probably should have been prepared for more Greek mythology tie-ins in this book, but it still caught me a little off guard. McGuire is so good at building her own mythology that I wasn’t expecting her to pull in someone else’s, but it works better than I thought it would. Her underworld reminded me a lot of her Hall of the Dead from Wayward Children, which is an interpretation I enjoy, and her characterizations of gods are both mysterious and a little terrifying–without giving them so much page time that they become watered down. The ending is satisfying and nicely wraps up this particular adventure, but there’s obviously more to come in Rose’s world. I’ll be eagerly awaiting the next book.

I review regularly at brightbeautifulthings.tumblr.com.
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,323 reviews1,013 followers
September 9, 2018
I've become a huge fan of Seanan McGuire's books over the last couple of years and I was really excited when I found out we'd be getting to spend more time with Rose in The Girl in the Green Silk Gown. Rose herself is such an interesting character but what I really love about her books is the way Seanan has woven so many different legends together to create the richly detailed world of the Ghost Roads and all the different types of ghosts that live there.

This book picks up Rose's story after the end of Sparrow Hill Road and I wouldn't recommend reading the stories out of order so make sure you start with that one. Rose has been reunited with Gary but considering he's now a ghost car they'll never have what anyone would consider a normal relationship, they're making it work though and Gary is just happy to be with her in any way he can. We may have thought that she'd gotten Bobby Cross off her back but previous events have only made him all the more determined to end Rose's afterlife. Bobby has been out of the picture but only because he had plans to make and he has put his time to good use coming up with a very elaborate plot that Rose is going to really struggle to survive.

I have to say this story went in a totally different direction to any I could have imagined and I think that's probably one of the things I enjoy most about Seanan's books, she always manages to surprise me! Rose has been dead for over 60 years but she has never had more to lose and her afterlife is only part of it.
Profile Image for Kathy Davie.
4,645 reviews699 followers
October 20, 2018
Second in the Ghost Roads urban fantasy series and revolving around Rose Marshall, the Phantom Prom Date from Buckley Township, Michigan.

My Take
I enjoyed the premise of the story, but McGuire really padded it out with all of Rose's whining. It certainly did ram her distress home for me, especially as she's using first person protagonist point-of-view. Whew.

It is an amazing world that McGuire has created with all its rules and role-playing characters, among the living and the dead. And it's not only the people who are ghosts, but diners, roads, and more that still retain a presence. There's certainly a sense of the past in The Girl in the Green Silk Gown, as Rose discovers the many changes since she died, from Mercurochrome to the ease of flying.

It's Rose's first-ever plane ride, her first trip out of the country, and she's terrified of it all. Be aware that her perspective on all the things the living experience is negative. What terrified me was when she starts to become tempted and is whining on about Gary and his choices, her own loss of possibilities.

What's funny is how much Rose hates being alive. She is so grossed out by daily living, and yet she does make you think of all the humdrum, daily events we go through each day. It's...just not a perspective that's very pleasing. There's also the matter of being alive in a world of formal IDs, the TSA, and the power others have over someone who looks like a teenager.

There are some sad parallels that run between Rose and Gary and Laura and Tommy. Both sides obsessed but different sexes in different worlds.

Ooh, ick, Rose claims the NSA knows all about ghosts. Makes the mind boggle as to what they could do to, er, with them.

Interesting conflicts arise from Rose's resurrection: her tremendous power that threatens Apple, the horror of Gary, the realization that it has been 60 years(!) and what do they really know about each other, the slow dawning of possibility in being alive, the difference between saving and helping, and the discovery of a world she never got to explore.

It's good versus evil and love for family and friends that can get all mixed up.

The Story
Rose Marshall is the one who got away, and Bobby Cross can't have that. It'll be even sweeter since her prom date finally found a way to join her in the twilight.

But now Rose's tattoo is damaged, and Rose must quickly find a way to repair it lest she be forced to stay in the land of the living. It's wrong. It's all wrong. Rose has been sweet sixteen for more than sixty years, hitchhiking her way along the highways and byways of America. She's been dead longer than she was alive. She knows nothing of this world, and...

Bobby has forced her out of the twilight, where Rose is vulnerable.

The Characters
Rose Marshall was 16 when she died in 1952, sixty years ago on prom night when she was wearing her green silk gown. It's one reason they call her the Phantom Prom Date or the Girl in the Green Silk Gown. Now she's a hitcher because she died on the road that night. Every once in awhile, she's a psychopomp, escorting someone she knows. Rose also has a connection to the Prices from Incryptid.

Gary Daniels had been Rose's high school boyfriend. One of the popular boys, and the boy who tried to save her and has loved her for the past sixty years. He moved Heaven and Hell to be able to be with her now.

Emma is a beán sidhe who had been attached to Amy and who now manages the Last Dance, a diner and a mile marker for ghosts. Go past it, and there's no guarantee you can turn back.

Tommy's girl is Professor Laura Moorehead, a premier folklore scholar who knows Rose in depth, who hates Rose for what she thinks Rose did, and has already tried to hurt her. A mechanic and racer, Tommy is a phantom rider who loves the road and loves his car, and he's waiting for his love.

The routewitches are...
...ruled by Apple, a teen-age looking Asian American who ran from a Japanese concentration camp in America during World War II. The Ocean Lady is their goddess, the former Atlantic Highway, the first and greatest of the American highways, who was traveled so often and for so long that she became aware. Paul is paying for his challenge. Siobhan "Bon" Kavanaugh, eldest daughter of Richard and Jill and mother of two children: Donal and Minerva, was the woman at the boundary. Dana had been the routewitch Bobby suborned. Carl is a hybrid, a routewitch and an umbramancer, who just wants to rest. Trainspotters are routewitches of the rail.

London is...
...where the Elgin Marbles are. The goth Pippa is a Dullahan, a being just like the beán sidhle, predators who are neither alive nor dead, cousins to the reapers, whose heads are living and parasitic, operating someone's stolen, modified corpse.

Robert "Diamond Bobby" Cross had been one helluva an actor back in 1938. Only he traded it all away to live forever, as long as he can cram souls into his gas tank. Angie Mayhew had been one of the many actresses whose careers he boosted.

Becky had been Rose's horror of a niece who had summoned her for Bobby Cross; now she's a crossroads ghost, as is Mary Dunlavy, a quasi-friend Rose knows through the Prices. Corletta is a homestead who wants Rose to stay with her. June Harty lives in Buckley Township in Michigan and gave her collection of Rose Marshall stories to a publisher. Molly is a waitress at a truck stop. Michael had been a sweet boy in a group of ambulomancers in San Francisco. Katherine Lewis is a waitress at Hurry Up and Dine in Medford, New Jersey, who knows you don't pick up hitchers.

The Barrowmans live...
...on a farm, have ambulancer blood, and are trusted by Apple. Violet is the mother, Holly is five, Willow is missing, and Matthew is the dad. Of the dead who come back, Jimmy is a cocky high school football star who died a week ago, and Salem is upset with the rules.

The Underworld is...
...from Greek myth where Persephone is a goddess and married to Hades. Orpheus was the son of Calliope, one of the Muses; the adopted son of Apollo; and, the husband of Eurydice.

The twilight is where dead folk go about their lives, not ready to move on. The next level down is starlight, and below that is midnight with sub levels in between. The ghost roads connect them all, including the living. Halloween is when the veil is thin, and ghosts can pay for a chance to live again.

A routewitch is a living person who works with the magic of distance and has a bond with the road, any road. An ambulomancer reads the future in the roads, allowing them to always see what's coming and prepare. An umbramancer is a fortune-teller or soothsayer. Never make a deal with a crossroads; all they want is to take what you treasure most.

There are all kinds of beings in the twilight: haunts, homesteads who love their home and their lands, ever-lasters who are the spirits of children and teens who don't like the idea of an afterlife and keep going to class, white ladies are those abandoned or betrayed, and more. Those who die in a car wreck come back as hitchers, phantom riders, homecomers who are sad and confused and tend to try and kill good Samaritans who try to help them go home, and coachmen. Rail ghosts had been trainspotters while those who die at sea become sail ghosts.

The Cover and Title
Whoa, that cover is electric...and busy! In fact, it's a good thing the title is in that bright yellow green or you'd never find that squeezed-in title that looks like a slingshot about to be released. It is a veritable mish-mash of Rose's destination, the Greek temple, the asphodels, and that pomegranate. I do like the author's name (in a distressed white font) screaming down the road Rose must follow. That diamond-shaped sign in the middle with the skeletal thumb up in that universal signal for hooking a ride was pretty funny.

The title is all about Rose, The Girl in the Green Silk Gown, who only wants to come home.
Profile Image for Lexxi Kitty.
1,948 reviews421 followers
January 21, 2022
Second book in the Rose Marshall (Ghost Roads) series. Quick note: This is a side series to the InCryptid series. You don't need to read Ghost Roads to fully enjoy InCryptid, though it helps to have read InCryptid before reading this series here, though more for the last book in this Ghost Roads series (if I recall correctly). Though you will have better understanding of some of the side characters in InCryptid if you read Ghost Roads & InCryptid following the publication dates.

Right, so, second book starring Rose Marshall hitchhiking ghost. Liked this one slightly more than book 1. Annnddd . . . I can't think of anything else to note/say. bah.

Rating: 4
January 21, 2022
Profile Image for Brittany.
882 reviews57 followers
March 5, 2022
A solid 4 stars! I have loved getting all the ghostly happenings and this book added a bunch more to Rose's story.
Rose was a bit whinier than I would have preferred for a good portion of the book. The bathroom details got reused too much although the first one was pretty funny to imagine. That being said it was a fun ride going on the quest to end her "life". I enjoyed the takes on myths and all the details added about various ghosts. I am constantly amazed by the detail and imagination of Seanan McGuire's stories.

Also all dogs really are good dogs! Cannot wait to read book 3!
Profile Image for ☕️Kimberly  (Caffeinated Reviewer).
2,965 reviews631 followers
July 17, 2018
The first book in the series, Sparrow Hill, originally was told as a serial and followed a non-linear timeline and while interesting it was hard to sink your teeth into the story. The Girl in the Green Silk Gown, follows a linear timeline and picks up where Rose's story left off and McGuire delivered an engaging story that held me firmly in its grasp.

Rose Marshall once again finds herself in the crosshairs of Bobby Cross. Bobby has schemed and laid out the perfect trap for Rose. Can she along with her friends and enemies outwit him or has he once again ripped her from her home?

I love urban legends, lores and mythology and McGuire has blended all three in a deliciously dark way. After the mark and blessing Persephone gave Rose she thinks she is safe, but Bobby is ruthless and he wants Rose. He will stop at nothing to have her. Rose finds herself ripped away from Gary and her friends, the Queen offers her aid and we experience the Twilight's version of Halloween. Twists, turns and walking amongst the living await Rose.

Unlike Sparrow Hill this story follows a linear timeline with summoning circles, twists and more. Moments were dark and filled with tests and trials. Rose Marshall has spent sixty years as a hitchhiker helping those about to pass move on and has gained power even she doesn't understand. Umbramancer, routewitches, lore and a deeper understanding of the rules and lands for the unliving were riveting.

I felt this story was stronger than its predecessor and allowed me to become more emotionally connected to the players. I loved all the footnotes to the urban legends surrounding ghosts, crossroads and mythology.

I absolutely loved the lore, the twists, betrayals and heart-pounding moments as we travel the highways, take to the air and visit the gods. Fantastic story from beginning to the end. While this tale wraps up nicely, Bobby still rides, and this story is far from over! This review was originally posted at Caffeinated Reviewer
January 4, 2019
My first book of 2019! Woohoo!

Okay, mythology, ghost cars, and Persephone, oh my!

There isn't really much to say about this book. Rose encounters Bobby Cross, somehow stays one step ahead of him.....maybe, kinda, sorta.....and goes on the adventure from (ha-ha-ha) Hades.

I love Rose, I love that this explores more about her and Gary's relationship, and I love this whole thing. Yes I'm biased. So what?

Oh Rose, what mess are you going to wind up in next? I cannot wait to find out!
Profile Image for Meaghan - H&WR.
249 reviews20 followers
October 22, 2018
"Rose Marshall lived. Rose Marshall died. And as of the time of this writing, Rose Marshall does not yet rest in peace."


TW: murder, suicide, some sexual content (no explicit scenes), panic attacks, abuse mention, bodily functions

It almost seems strange to be writing yet another positive review after a string of positive reviews, but here we are with another one! And a five star, too, which almost doesn't surprise me because this is Seanan McGuire! This is a Ghost Roads book! And I adored Sparrow Hill Road with my entire heart! So basically, everything was up to expectations and I was a very happy camper. 

I'll admit it: if you haven't read Sparrow Hill Road yet, you should probably turn around now, because there's definitely going to be some spoilers for it here. And also, it's just an amazing book, so do yourself a favor and read it, y'know?

ANYWAY, I think the best part about this book is easily the characters. While Emma figures less prominently than she did before (which is a shame because I really like her and want to know more about beán sidhe in general), we see more of Apple, the Queen of the Routewitches, and we see a ton more of Laura Moorhead, Rose's enemy and suddenly ally. We get more of Gary, who loved Rose so much he found a way to engineer his afterlife to be by her side. We also get more of the horrible Bobby Cross, and most of all, we spend a ton of time in Rose Marshall's head.

It's a far cry from the last book, which was originally a string of short stories with a common narrative thread before being bound up into a novel as Sparrow Hill Road. Back then, there wasn't nearly as much time spent in Rose's head, and there was more time spent on the ethereal lore and wanderings. Rose is, after all, a hitcher, a ghost who will fade if she doesn't hitch rides in the world of the living now and again. She does a lot of traveling, and much of the magic in both books is intrinsically tied to distance in the most fascinating way. But while Sparrow Hill Road had a loosely connected, beautifully nonlinear structure, The Girl in the Green Silk Gown was more focused, and there was a lot more time spent in Rose's head.

I'm a little torn on this, admittedly. I miss the loose structure because it had an ephemeral feeling to it that really appealed to me. Then again, because of plot reasons I won't spoil, it made a phenomenal amount of sense to spend this much time up close and personal with all of Rose's thoughts and feelings and fears, so I really can't say it took away from my enjoyment when it was so genius and grounded in the plot. 

It also allowed for a better look at all of Rose's stubbornness and snark and humanity, something she gets detached from now and again, being dead and whatnot. It's this character strength that makes me love this book so much. You see Rose as a fully developed character with some sixty years of ghost hitchhiking behind her. You get Laura, conflicted by her grief and her desire for knowledge. You get Gary, wrestling with what the afterlife means for him, and how to love a girl he outlived and is now reunited with. You get Apple, routewitch at heart and tied to her throne, unable to wander as her people do and set on seeing justice in the world after experiencing so much of it up close and personal. All the characters have depth and nuance to them that I really appreciate, and it makes even the dead seem like living, breathing people again.

Interestingly, you don't get that from Bobby Cross, and for once, I'm so delighted to say that I don't care for a villain with complexities. You hate Bobby Cross and the things he does. It doesn't matter how human he once was, or how human he can pretend to be, you hate him. It's cathartic, in a way, and makes him a remarkably effective villain. They say the best villains are relatable, but sometimes, the best ones are actually the ones you can't wait to see defeated, and Bobby Cross is absolutely one of those.

Additionally, I really enjoyed the plot. As I said, it has a very different flavor from the loose structure of Sparrow Hill Road, but it was wonderful in a way I was not expecting, and the way it twisted towards the end to take on some more Grecian aspects made the classics major in me very happy. It blended this unique American paranormal with pieces of ancient tradition, and I thoroughly enjoyed the crossover.

I hope someday that there's another Ghost Roads book. Sure, everything ends, but Rose Marshall's story is captivating and eerie and filled with a lot more heart than you might expect from a ghost. Best of all, its about characters who are ultimately doing the right thing, being the best people or ghosts or what have you that they can be. It's about doing the right thing instead of the easy thing, and it's about the right thing winning. It's hopeful in that sense, for all its paranormal grimness, and now more than ever, I truly appreciate that.
Profile Image for Anelis.
279 reviews34 followers
September 2, 2018
You know what I think? I think that Seanan McGuire's books would be a helluva lot better if she wrote fewer of them. Apparently she can't quite keep track of what she's written, so she always needs to make sure. How else would you explain the fact that she keeps explaining and repeating the same things in EVERY.SINGLE.CHAPTER.

This is something that becomes prevalent in her series rather than her standalone books. It always annoys me in her InCryptid series, and it almost knocked me out while suffering through the goliath that was the Parasitology series. And I'm sad because I thought she'd found a way to work through it. In the first Ghost Roads book, that's essentially a short story collection -unlike this one that is one story- it wasn't much of a problem because that's how collections of gathered tales go. It was charming, added character to the stories and helped intensify the feeling that they were tales about an urban legend. Maybe that's why it's one of my favorite books of hers under the Seanan name (because nothing will ever compare to killer friggin mermaids, NOTHING!).

My minds scatters and I'd forgotten much of the details from the first installment, even though I've read it twice thus far and plan on reading it again. Even so, the repetition killed me. Not repetition of events, people and relationships. The repetition of the premise, the pointless description of how one walks, enters a plane, does the smallest of things.

Ah, yeah I wish she wrote a bit better or maybe that she had a more severe editor. In all honesty Seanan is an amazing creator and I think, were she not a woman, she would have the fame she deserves, at least under her Mira Grant pen-name. But she doesn't and because of that I always feel uncomfortable criticizing her. Her books, current one included, are the ultimate comfort for me, action, fun, with strong women, queer people, feminist politics, sometimes magic, sometimes gore. And truly, what more can a girl ask?

I outta write a spoilerific synopsis of what happened, so I can remember it later on, but I'm out of time. This will probably be rectified sometime in the near future.

*the spoiler edit*
Ok so, infodump time for future granny Anelis who forgets everything.

In this book Rose is chilling with her boy, maybe Gary is his name? He’s the one who loved her when they were teens, and somehow managed to become a ghost car just for her, after he died. So Rose and the Car are hanging out in a diner, er, don't remember the name, which is run by her friend who's a banshee, but we spell it the proper way, something like bean sidhe? She also has a name; maybe someday I'll remember it. Rose also has a friend who's a ghost rider, Tony or Tommy, maybe Tommy. Tommy was with Laura when alive. In the previous book Laura fixated on Rose thinking her the cause of Tony’s death. Bobby Cross is the James Dean-type actor who killed Rose. He's a forever not dead prick that has a car that instead of diesel runs on souls or ghosts or something and he is also fixated on Rose because plot reasons. There are also route witches, Apple is their Queen, and a highway called the Ocean Lady is like their goddess or something.

Rose has had a tattoo that's a seal that's Persephone’s' blessing and protects her from Bobby Cross. Bobby finds a way, through a ritual that requires the self-sacrifice of a young witch, and damages her seal, while also managing to lock her away from the twilight, for some time, the twilight being the place where she's safe from Bobby. So to set things straight she needs to do a thing on Halloween. Dammit future self, don't ask me what it was because hell if I understood.

Some ghost hunt in a farm. Ghosts are set lose and whoever kills them -for good- earns another year of life, and if the ghosts kill a human they become human again. The owners of the farm are being coerced by Bobby to resurrect her and so they do. When she wakes up she barely escapes, finding shelter in a diner. Not knowing anyone in the mortal world –apart from the Price family- she calls Laura for help, who for some reason comes. Rose promises Laura she will be her psychopomp when she dies so she can be reunited with Tommy. Laura agrees to help and pretends she is Roses’ aunt. Girl-bonding happens, but we know not to trust Seanan. Ensue hillaridink jokes about Rose pooping herself and forgetting how to pee because she was dead for way too long.

She and Laura walk the Ocean Lady to find Apple who tells them to go through Hades’ gates like Persephone did, so Rose can die again. Rose now, alive, is a powerful witch, it's handy. Important: Rose needs to die in a way that will ensure she’ll be the same kind of ghost as before, hence the trouble. So they go to London, to look at all the stoles greek marbles and such. They are accompanied by a creature. They meet Hades and Persephone and Cerberus. Once they are close to the finish line Laura reveals she betrayed her and cooperated with Bobby. WHY? IT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE. WHY GO THROUGH ALL THIS TROUBLE? –Anelis, calme-toi, just state the facts dammit.-

Ahem, so, just before they exit the gates of the underworld Bobby comes, crashes Laura with his car, Rose is kinda trapped but at the last moment Laura looks at her, just before dying, so Rose not only dies again and becomes the same kind of ghost she was before, but she also has Persephone’s blessing intact again. She tells Bobby to fuck off and guides Laura’s spirit to Tommy and they unghost, or die-die, or go towards the light together. Kinda the end.
Profile Image for Mortisha Cassavetes.
2,080 reviews54 followers
July 30, 2019
This the second book in the Ghost Road series and I really enjoyed this story. I hope for a third book. The book follows Rose Marshall, the hitchhiker ghost that was killed over 60 years ago by the famous Bobby Cross, who made a deal with the crossroad ghosts for eternal youth. Rose is the only one that has got away and Bobby Cross will continue to hunt her down. Rose needs to find a way to stop him but at what cost. This is a wonderful story I can not recommend it enough. Awesome read during the Halloween/Autumn season.
Profile Image for Amy.
791 reviews48 followers
August 3, 2018
I did not expect my favorite ghost story to meet up with , but I am alllll for it. I felt that a little too much time was spent and not enough time , but it's such a minor quibble that I'm not going to deduct any stars.

Also, the chapter where Rose meets was too cute.

And since , that means there has to be (at least) a third book, right????!!!
Profile Image for Olga Zelenova.
72 reviews2 followers
June 23, 2018
I never really considered being alive to be an inconvenience. It’s definitely a thought I’m having now!

Galley courtesy of First to Read.
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