Once an exciting up-and-coming star of the burgeoning paranormal investigation TV genre, now Prudence Osgood finds herself as a barely functioning alcoholic living in daily pain, both physical, from a car accident nearly twenty years ago, and emotional, from the loss of Audrey Frost, her partner and best friend, over an ill-advised hoax. When a random and cryptic email shows up in her inbox, she must begin an investigation that is far more sinister than it initially seems, and far more connected to the last two decades of her own life than she could ever imagine.
Osgood As Gone cuts a trail from a lonely rest stop papered in missing posters, to a notebook full of symbols and sigils, to a band that could outsell The Beatles that vanished almost overnight. Can our intrepid hero Osgood follow the breadcrumbs, avoid texts from her one-night-stand Nora, make amends for the past, and still have a future? Find out in Osgood As Gone.
As a queer non-monogamous writer, Cooper S. Beckett endeavors to create characters that reflect the diverse lifestyles of his friends, his partners, and himself. From that mandate, he writes scary, silly, and sexy books and essays. Beginning his writing career as a podcaster and speaker in the sexuality education community, he wrote My Life on the Swingset, a memoir of his first five years in non-monogamy, then followed that up with two novels that take a brutally honest look at swinging and polyamory, A Life Less Monogamous, and Approaching the Swingularity. Returning to his first love, the horror genre, has been like a homecoming. From a young age, his obsession with horror movies and books seriously concerned his mother. It probably still does. Given a choice, he would rather winter at the Overlook than the Waldorf. Like Lydia Deetz, he has always thought of himself strange and unusual, be it his perspective on sexuality, monogamy, politics, or where Elder Gods ought to fall in the hierarchy.
He lives in Chicago with his wife, constant, and binary star, Ophilia Tesla, and their black cats Xander and Willow.
How many supernatural mysteries have you read that feature a pan-sexual, non-monogamous ghost hunter as the lead? Not enough, I'd wager. Well, why not start here?
This book touches on lots of my favourite things - cults, weird conspiracy theories, sex, vinyl backmasking, 90s pop star breakdowns, ghost hunters, inter dimensional beings...but all wrapped up with crackling dialogue and relatable characters.
Cooper S. Beckett is a name to watch, and I will certainly be reading the next book in the Spectral Inspector series.
Prudence Osgood once had a successful ghost hunting show but one terrible decision destroys her reputation and costs her the love of her childhood best friend. She hasn’t dealt with the fallout well at all and now heads a paranormal investigation podcast when she’s not too broken and too drunk to do so. She’s basically a hot mess who suffers from horrifying nightmares, chronic pain and chronic heartache and washes it all away with booze and sex with anonymous ladies she picks up while blackout drunk. After her latest binge, she receives a mysterious email that sets a fire under her butt to solve a long lost mystery and brings her back into contact with her old friend Aubrey which brings emotions bubbling back to the surface.
Osgood As Gone is a good read for those who enjoy a very flawed, very human main protagonist and for those looking for more of a strange occult mystery with some shades of horror. The majority of the story reads like an eerie mystery with clues strewn about here and there and connections that I never made because I am terrible at mysteries. The final few chapters morph into more of a surreal and bleak horror story and I loved that! Truth be told, I would’ve liked more of that but that comes down to my personal preferences.
The relationship between Pru and Aubrey is complicated and beautifully done. There’s pain and betrayal and loyalty and love and I felt it was all very well done. There’s also plenty of sarcasm and witty banter which I always enjoy. These characters felt like they knew each other inside and out. I would’ve liked to learn a bit more about Zack because I am nosy but I imagine that’ll happen in future installments of this series. I can’t wait to check out book #2 to see where it leads because it does end on a bit of a cliffhanger.
"Osgood shouts into the dark. No echo returns. She lifts her face back to the beacons. Beyond it, the sky is inky black emptiness, absent of clouds and stars, as though her world has shrunk down to only this place, swallowed up into darkness by some great leviathan, or cruising through outer-outer-space in a bubble of black. She startles herself by barking out a laugh that sounds more like a rough cough. A wave of relief washes over her as the laugh is reflected and echoes back to her."
I was contacted by the author, Cooper S. Beckett, to review his upcoming novel, Osgood as Gone. I don't accept many indie requests for one reason or another and I don't normally read digital copies, but how could I say no to this?! I couldn't. I mean.. firstly, IT'S QUEER AS FUCK. Yes, please! The concept is a bit of urban fantasy/horror/thriller. I've been branching out more within the urban fantasy subgenre lately (this is my second just this month), so that's also rad!
Osgood as Gone is about Prudence Osgood, a purple-haired former paranormal investigative celebrity turned occult podcaster. She was in a car accident decades before when a semi plowed into her, nearly killing her. Now she self-medicates with drugs and alcohol. One day she receives a mysterious message that sends her and her assistant Zack on an investigation that involves a band and numerous missing people.
Osgood as Gone is a wonderfully addictive beginning to the Spectral Inspector series! It was refreshingly diverse, with a motley crew of characters that I dug a lot. Os is especially great! I clearly find myself drawn to the fucked up and flawed characters and she is certainly that. Also? I fucking adore Zack. What a cinnamon roll! HE MUST BE PROTECTED AT ALL COSTS!!
Cults, ghost hunters, conspiracy theories & cringey sex.. OH MY!! This was a wild, twisty ride and just a shit ton of fun! THAT ENDING, THOUGH.
Beckett's writing is easy to fall into and I look forward to reading more from him!
“The drumbeats in the Hinterlands, Will lead me right to you…”
(Thanks again to Cooper S. Beckett for the chance to read this before it releases!)
This book is the perfect example of why I'm a reviewer. I get approached often by authors I've never heard of to read their books. Sometimes I take a chance because I get this feeling that a book could be one that I don't want to miss. Call it intuition, or more like an itch at the back of my brain. That's exactly what happened when Beckett sent me a DM and asked me to review his book. Something told me I should. And I'm so glad I did.
Prudence Osgood is a washed up paranormal investigator. She's also a pansexual, non-monogamous alcoholic who lives with chronic and debilitating pain. This is a character with layers. Someone who is way broken and just doing what she can to get through each day. She's so flawed, but she's such a real and genuine character that you immediately love her. Osgood doesn't sugar coat anything. She is who she is, and she does what she can to survive.
One night she gets a super cryptic email, and something tells her to dig into it. She enlists the help of Zack, a brilliant tech whiz who helps her with cases on occasion. Osgood doesn't really have friends, but Zack is the closest person to her, and knows all about her lifestyle and her addictions. When she sends him the email and he's unable to find a sender, the pair fall down a rabbit hole of a quest that leads them to some fascinating and totally unexpected places. Sincerely, this case had me turning pages as fast as I could. I was fully invested, and the more I read the more interesting it became. At the end of the book Beckett talks about his inspiration for the mystery, and it makes so much sense I felt a little giddy.
I seriously cannot recommend this one enough. Not only are the characters fantastic, but the mystery they become embroiled in is so entertaining that I wanted to actually be in that world, working the case with Osgood and her team. Pick this one up soon, because Beckett is currently working on book 2, and I'm already excited to read it.
I'm going to set this book aside for the time being. It's not a DNF. I won't shelve it forever--I just think there are too many competing books for attention and they keep winning out. I'm on a different wavelength with what I'm currently reading and reviewing--I'm distracted and I'd like to give this book a fair chance. It's just not engaging enough for me at this moment in time. Thank you to Copper Beckett for giving me a review copy. I promise I'll circle back to it soon.
It’s hard to know where to start when reviewing this book. Let me just start by saying it is awesome. You need to buy it. Like now.
Ok. Got that out of the way. Let me highlight a couple of things that really stick out as reasons why I feel you should part with your hard earned cash.
1. Prudence Osgood - formerly Pru, now Os. She’s a queer (very queer), smart-talking, paranormal investigator with a troubled past. She suffers from depression, has more than a few substance abuse issues, and I totally fell in love with her within a few pages. Her differentness from the stereotypical Raymond Chandler knock-offs that haunt most investigative novels is a breath of fresh air. 2. The Trio - Os undergoes her journey with two companions, Audrey and Zack. Audrey is the estranged bestie who comes back into Os’ life with a back story that adds depth and complexity to the mystery and Os both. Zack is the techie geek no investigator can be without these days. He is loyal, loving, and the perfect companion for Osgood’s witty and snarky repartee. It seems these three are here to stay for sequels and that only makes me want to read them more. 3. The Mystery - I won’t say too much about this. I don’t want to drop spoilers. Suffice it to stay that it involves 80s Rock, vinyl LPs, occult symbolism, conspiracy theories, possession, and trans-dimensional beings. Beckett takes you carefully through the unraveling, teasing you along the way, and the brings it to a crescendo that does not disappoint. 4. The Ending- This deserves its own number. While the mystery is really cool and compelling from the get go, Beckett takes it to a place that lives more in the horror genre than mystery novels. (Particularly, I smell some strong Lovecraft aromas in this brew.) For me, a confirmed Lovecraft nerd, that made the novel go from damn good to freakin great.
This novel was fun as hell. It had a great mystery and better ending. It will make you want to read the next ones (coming soon, I hope). If you love it half as much as I did, your time and money will have been well spent.
Osgood As Gone is a fun, unique, paranormal mystery book that I recommend to anyone! It's got so many elements of the supernatural and urban fantasy thriller. There's a lot going on in this one book, the first book in The Spectral Inspector series. What makes this book unique? First and foremost, the protagonist is a badass, non-monogamous queer detective boomin' with wit, sass, and insight. I could seriously read about Prudence Osgood for years to come. She is real, down-to-earth, and doesn't take any bullcrap from anyone! And with all of her pros, she also has a comparable list of cons. Beckett explores both her strengths and weaknesses which just made me love her even more seeing her from every angle. My hope is that she takes the internet and book world by storm and everyone gets to know her.
There are so many cool topics covered in the book: cults, music/vintage music, supernatural elements, conspiracy theories, drug addiction, insane dreams/parallel dimensions, sex exploration, computer forensics/hacking, AND even true crime! Everybody will be able to connect with and enjoy something from this book. And Beckett's writing just makes it so easy, too. The pacing of the story is excellent and it helps make this book super hard to put down!
I already think this will go on my list of Top 5 favorite books of 2019. We still have a few months to go, so I can't swear by it. But I know I loved it that much! 5 stars! So now I just have to sit here eagerly awaiting the second book in this series. Patience is NOT my strong suit. But in the meantime, perhaps I can encourage as many people who find any of what I have said interesting to buy this book so that we can discuss it together!
Thanks to the author for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This was a fun read for me. Pru is a VERY imperfect main character who very much put me in the mind of older, crass PIs in old mystery novels and shows, but while similar she is also miles different. I like Beckett's twist on this; it is refreshing to read about characters along the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.
One of the things I really liked about this book was just how well Beckett was able to weave multiple characters and a crazy story line together so well. For the most part it worked, the next section mentions what didn't work so well, and I found myself reading about well developed characters who are human and flawed, and at a nice quick pace that kept the story moving.
A few of the scenes didn't work well for me and I think the last 1/8 of the book (except the last chapter) missed the mark a little. There are some parts that are very surreal and I found them to not fit with what I had experienced up to then. Don't get me wrong, it's still good; however, I found myself pulled out of the story and I had a bit of time suspending disbelief.
But this didn't make me enjoy the book any less and I will definitely pick up book 2. Maybe in a paperback this next time, the ebook experience just doesn't work for me as well, especially with books like this. I need to HOLD it.
"Once you walk down the road to darkness, it's so much harder to walk back."
I picked up Osgood as Gone after a couple friends were raving about it, and I'm so glad I did! This book is an absolute blast, and I really enjoyed reading it. I guess I would call it paranormal horror comedy. The mystery of the story was pretty layered, and I wasn't entirely certain that it was all going to come together, but it worked well! There are a couple creepy illustrations in the book, and I loved those. I really liked Osgood as a character, and I can't wait to read the next book!
What do you get when you mix a superbly badass (semi-dysfunctional, but who isn’t, to be honest) queer detective, a hard-boiled style mystery plot, enough supernatural crazy to knock your socks off, and a too-cool-for-school throwback Christopher Pike cover?
Something you really just need to read. Like right now.
Prudence Osgood is a completely new type of heroine. She’s a pan-sexual, non-monogamous, alcoholic, ghost-hunter with a dark, painful past that keeps coming to literally haunt her in her dreams. She considers drinking until she’s blackout drunk her self-medication to make it through the night without the pain and nightmares. She’s also whip-smart and often very funny, though she still needs to learn how to let people she cares about past all her armor.
The story revolves around a strange e-mail that leads to a piece of Pru’s past she simply can’t ignore. With the help of two friends, she dives in, and the trail gets stranger and stranger, involving long drives to rest stops, people who all mysteriously disappeared on the same day, an impossible-to-find record with cryptic backmasking, and so much more.
This narrative is bursting at the seams! I loved how the mystery kept expanding as they investigated, how as the pieces fell into place, there was more and more to uncover. It is such a well-crafted mystery that you really just want to keep reading to find the next piece of the puzzle and see how it’s all going to fit together.
For me, the ending was not quite as strong as the rest of the book—it strays a little too far from the track and was not as tightly written or (for me at least) easy to see exactly what was going on. But it definitely broadened my idea about what a “spectral investigator” might be!
As it appears this is going to be a series with the second book already in the works, you better jump on the train now and dive into Osgood’s world. Highly recommended.
My thanks to the author for sending me a copy of this book to read and review.
Prudence Osgood was once an up-and-coming star in the paranormal investigation TV genre. Today she finds herself as a barely functioning alcoholic battling chronic pain through the use of drugs. Not only does she have physical pain coursing through her body thanks to a car accident that happened twenty years ago, but she also suffers from emotional pain. When her TV career went belly-up she lost her best friend, Audrey Frost. They were partners until the fateful day an ill-advised hoax destroyed their dreams of fame.
Osgood has just received a cryptic email that she can’t seem to make heads or tails about. With the help of wizkid and computer extraordinaire, Zack, the two begin to uncover clues about what the email’s message could mean. On the trail to an almost abandoned rest stop they’ll uncover a plethora of missing children posters, a connection to a band that skyrocketed to fame and then vanished, and a strange link to Osgood’s past. As things start to take a sinister turn, will Osgood be able to discover the truth before she finds herself in harm’s way?
I haven’t read anything quite like OSGOOD AS GONE this year. One of the things I love about being an active blogger and #bookstagramer is the ability to discover lesser known authors. Beckett approached me in DM on Instagram and I knew the second I read the synopsis that this book was going to be a winner for me.
OSGOOD AS GONE centers around Prudence Osgood, our resident washed up paranormal investigator. Osgood has is an incredibly layered character, from her struggles with alcohol and drugs, to her open honesty about her sexuality, to the way she treats those around her. As Osgood works the case at hand you can see her evolve as a person, learning to acknowledge her faults and come face to face with demons from her past that have a connection to the case. She might be broken, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost. I love that Osgood owns who she is and doesn’t take any crap from those who might judge her.
Supporting Osgood are Zack and Audrey, who are there by her side to solve the case. Zack is an amazingly talented computer genius with a sharp eye for the obscure. Osgood doesn’t always treat him as the valuable team member that he is, but at the end of the day they have a strong friendship. Audrey is Osgood’s former partner and best friend. They haven’t spoken in years and their reunion adds to not only Osgood’s character development, but also helps to reveal the strange link this case has to both women’s pasts.
The vibe of OSGOOD IS GONE is a throwback to the older, campier horror stories that we all grew up loving. It hones in on that unique mixture of humor and horror that combine to create a memorable story. I absolutely loved the case, the characters, and every tiny detail that lead to something much bigger. I was sucked into the story within the first few pages and didn’t want it to end! I’m so happy that this is the start of a series. I definitely plan on keeping up with this one to see what other adventures Osgood gets into!
Disclosure: Thank you to the author, Cooper S. Beckett, for sending me a free copy of his book in exchange for my honest review!
*** I was sent a copy of this book by the author for review. This, however, did not influence my opinion or rating of this book.
We’ll start with the obvious.
Osgood As Gone is a book about a queer ghosthunter, and I think that’s a pretty good summary all on its own. Prudence Osgood is a breath of fresh air: it isn’t often that the world is gifted with books about the queer population that don’t focus on “queer tragedies,” as I’ve heard people say. But Osgood? She’s beautifully flawed in ways that don’t inherently center on her identity as a queer person. Beckett does an amazing job writing a woman who experiences real problems, who has lived through real tragedy, and reading it is like coming home.
In addition to Osgood, we have amazing supporting characters in Zack Nguyen and Audrey Frost (though I hesitate to call them simply supporting characters, with how much I fell in love with them).
Zack has major B.F.E. (best friend energy) and has attached himself to Osgood in a way that only a best friend can. He knows all her ins and outs, just what she needs in any given moment, and has made himself indispensable. When Osgood described him as “essential,” it not only made me cry and stuff my face with chocolate, it also made me think of my own best friend, who is my other half in all things, and “essential” would be a great word to describe her as well.
Audrey, on the other hand, is the scorned, estranged, former best friend. In the beginning, I wasn’t sure how to even feel about the idea of Audrey, as that’s all she really was for the first portion of the book, but once her physical character was introduced, it hurt. Because I’ve been the betrayed best friend before, and it sucked. Being able to put yourself into a character’s shoes is a terrifying, satisfying thing. Audrey and Osgood are both wandering, lost without each other in a way that is hard to describe, but when they come back together, it’s like the explosion of a star that you didn’t even know was hovering in the sky above you.
Together, they are the Scream Team. And together, they take on the Lord of the Hinterlands (which is a fucking badass name, let us be real). In my blatantly nostalgic mind, I picture the Lord as the Horned King from “The Black Cauldron,” my favorite childhood movie. He’s (he? Is the Lord a he? Or is he some interdimensional being that really is genderless?) a great villain, and it would take more than a 600 word review to explain just how beautifully put together and complex he is.
But my favorite part of this story? It’s the crossroads. I think a big part of why I enjoyed it so much has to do with my favorite show, “The Haunting of Hill House,” and how much it reminded me of Nell’s time jumping and adventuring into her own future and past throughout the course of the story. And the crossroads sound scary. To be reliving your past traumas every night is something I’m familiar with, but mine are more of the “trapped in a house” variety, not the “car crash that killed me for eight minutes” variety.
So, let’s wrap this up, shall we? I’ve been excited about Osgood As Gone for months now, but I never expected to read it as quickly and shamelessly as I did, or to fall in love with it. I encourage you, especially my queer pals, to pre-order a copy and give it a try. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Signing off, Kath
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Thank you to Cooper S. Beckett for providing me with a copy of Osgood as Gone in exchange for an honest review!
I gotta start this review with a little bit of cheese. I am so so so thankful that Cooper S. Beckett is a person, because he wrote the book that I had an inkling that I needed, but never knew it’d actually exist in my lifetime. Thank you Cooper S. Beckett — for giving me the new love of my life, Osgood, while also providing me with a Hell of a good time.
Osgood as Gone is the start of the The Spectral Inspector series which follows a queer ghost hunter (y’all queer ghost hunter is what originally sold me~) named Prudence Osgood. She’s a barely functioning alcoholic who suffers from physical & mental pain. While checking her e-mail one day, she finds a cryptic message that leads her on a mission that may be more connected to her past than she originally thought.
I fell in love with Osgood. I’ve always been a sucker for a damaged character (see: Jessica Jones), who’s extremely rough around the edges (again, see: Jessica Jones). Give me attitude, give me sass & give a woman that will kick my… Really, though, I loved her from the get-go & I love that this story gave me a queer girl (who identifies as bi or pan) without making that her main storyline. Yes, I loved any mention of her sexuality, but that wasn’t what this story was about & that, my ghouls, made it absolutely amazing. OH! & there’s mentions of polyamorous relationships! Hashtag BLESSED.
The mystery & spooky of Osgood as Gone had me mouthing ‘what the frick’ multiple times. There were twists, there were turns & there’s absolutely zero straightness to this read (that was a joke that probably just flopped). It’s definitely a read that will keep you on the edge of your seat & have you questioning what’s happening throughout.
Cooper S. Beckett’s writing is absolutely beautiful & gripping. Honestly, if life would stop rearing its ugly head at me, I would have probably had this read done so much quicker than I did. I can imagine there will be people who read this book in a day & want more of Cooper’s work.
Also it’s worth noting (because I’m a sucker for these kind of additions), there’s amazing spooky artwork separating sections in the novel that’s very reminiscent to Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. I absolutely adored the artwork & it added even more umph to Osgood as Gone.
I really can not wait for more books to come out in this series! I will be following Osgood to the end.
I was gifted a free copy of this book by the author in return a review.
Osgood As Gone sounds like a book I would be into; ghosts, unreliable narrator down on their luck, drama between friends and a mystery that rivals a Scooby-Doo episode! Fun stuff! However, I couldn't get into the story. The writing was confusing and messy and Pru was all over the place like the author was trying to combine a bunch of characters together to please everyone all in one person! That's a long sentence just to say I didn't like them, or the other characters. I liked Zach, the tech nerd, but he felt like a facsimile of every nerdy foil anywhere. Pru was the too-cool-for-school alcoholic too, BUT don't forget she's also queer and maybe trans?!IDK, it was nice to see nonstraight folk represented in a book, but can they be good people ?! I was also turned off at the repeated mentions of dildos. Like, I get it Pru likes to fuck and use dildos; cool, whatever, but the constant mentioning of them just chilling around felt like a bad sitcom playing a laugh track. This was in the first two chapters and I want you to know because I had to know. Also, WTF is up with the em dash use?! It's cool and all, but does almost every paragraph have to end with one?! Let these people finish their damn thoughts!
I got 45% through this story because I hate to be that bitch who writes a review for a book without reading it, and I want my time back.
I have received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I like when I pick up a book without having extremely high expectations and I end up enjoying it. That happened with this one. I liked the cover and I did think that I'd have fun reading it, but it was much more than that, I enjoyed it more than I expected. (I'm not writing a synopsis, you can read it up there.) Pros: I loved all the little details and clues that characters were solving and they were put together in a very creative way, in my opinion. The story happens in 2019, but I felt like it was happening in 1990s, it was a strange, but wonderful combo. Excellent job! At one point I thought to myself "This cover and the vibe of the story remind me of TMNT for some reason" and then Osgood and Zack started talking about it, it made me smile. Cons: Don't really have any; the last 15% of the book I liked a little less than the rest, maybe I was just tired and couldn't concentrate. But it was still good. Characters: Osgood reminds me of a person I have a love-hate relationship with. She is definitely likeable and fun, but she would be driving me crazy in real life. Audrey is just Audrey, I have nothing special to say about her, I kind of look at her as a side character. Zack was my favorite and I want to hug him. I also cannot wait for the book number two! This was one of the best reads for me this year.
Thank you author Cooper S. Beckett for providing me with a copy of Osgood as Gone in exchange for an honest review.
Osgood As Gone sounds exactly like something that I would read. It had a lot of potential but unfortunately, it didn’t work for me. I pushed myself to get as far as I did. I DNF’ed at 73%.
The writing was messy and the main character, Prudence, was just as chaotic. I’m all for LGBTQ+ in books but the constant reminder that Osgood is queer throughout the book was exhausting. Audrey was likable but not my favorite. Zack came off as an arrogant geek.
This book was definitely more mystery than horror for me. The most horror I got out of it was the little creepy doodles after Osgood’s visits to the crossroads.
Overall, the concept of this book was intriguing enough for me to accept to read it and review it but it fell completely flat for me and I wanted so much more.
I was lucky enough to read an ARC of this novel, and I am SO glad I did. Crossing into a few different genre's, Osgood as Gone is a damn good story. With well crafted characters and a world so fully formed you'd swear you had been there before, this book was hard for me to put down. This novel, the first in the Spectral Inspector series, follows Prudence Osgood as she is drawn into a mystery when she receives a strange cryptic email that pulls her into a case involving missing people from rest stops and a person from her past, but it is so much more than that. A bit noir, a splash of horror, and a complex mystery weave together to create this complex tale that will keep you up at night. Fans of the tv show Supernatural will devour this novel. After reading Osgood as Gone, I am a huge fan of Prudence Osgood, and Cooper Beckett.
I just finished my advanced copy of Osgood as Gone. This is a great page turner and I think that starting with the mysterious text was actually pretty genius. It gripped me from the beginning and kept my attention throughout.
This story centers around Prudence who's a bit down on her luck and trying to recover from her car wreck and loss of Audrey.
Horror, suspense, intrigue, and a hell of a leading lady make for an epic start to this series and I for one can't wait to see where it goes!
I would like to thank the author for providing me with an advanced Copy. This book was scary and funny with characters that are diverse and I really enjoyed it. The writing style was easy to follow and characters were easy to care for. The book is good but I ended up giving it a 3/5 stars because it ended not being my cup of tea even though it was a horror slash funny story.
I am grateful to say I was able to read and review this book from the author! I normally don't do a lot of mystery but this one peaked my interest! I loved the supernatural aspects of it and the relationships between the characters. There is not enough strong female leads out there! It definitely gets you thinking about what you would do in Osgood’s situation. I'd like to think I would kick ass like her. She teaches you it's ok to have hard times. And I am so down for the 80s/90s vibes! This book kept be hooked and guessing until the end. And I ended up just wanting more and more!
I just finished an ARC of this book, and I have to say, OSGOOD AS GONE is phenomenal. It's like Stephen king does creepypasta, with some excellent LGBT+ rep to boot. Beckett is expert at weaving a creepy, haunting urban legend of a mystery, full of King and Carpenter and other 80s/90s horror vibes that feel like a love letter to the style while still being something fresh and original of its own. The characters really pop, with distinctive voices across the board, and a distinctive narrative voice that worked perfectly in tandem. If you love the aforementioned creators, MARBLE HORNETS, or JOHN DIES AT THE END, this book is right in your wheelhouse.
Prudence Osgood is a paranormal investigator turned podcast host after a hoax not only lost Osgood her job but her first love, Audrey Frost, as well. When she receives a strange text from an unknown sender, she and her partner begin and investigation that leads her back to Audrey, her missing twin sister and a car accident that’s haunted her for years.
Osgood As Gone has tons of twists that had me intrigued from the first page until the very last. The characters are well written and they feel like friends by the end of the book. Osgood is a badass and I can’t wait to see what’s next for her!
Even though mysteries & supernatural/horror stories aren't usually my bag, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I was lucky enough to be an advance reader and read the entire thing in one sitting. I found it extremely compelling; the characters feel like real people and I got pretty lost in the story wondering how it would all unfold.
“...I have a new novel coming out about a queer female ghost hunter, done in the style of pulp detective novels meets cosmic horror. would you have any interest...”
YES I WOULD PLEASE
*ahem* That’s a snippet of the message I got from Cooper S. Beckett asking if I’d like to review his new book, Osgood as Gone. Between that description & the late-80’s/early-90’s Christopher Pike vibe to the cover, I was sold!
This is the story of Prudence Osgood. Prior to the events of this book, she co-hosted a ghost hunting show with her best friend, Audrey. And it ended in spectacularly bad fashion. The show & the friendship. She’s since moved on to podcasting, ghost hunting with her new partner, Zach, and drinking way too much in an attempt to chase away her personal demons, as well as cope with the chronic pain she lives with after a very traumatic (and weird) car accident.
Things get weird right away, with Osgood receiving a seemingly indecipherable & disturbing email. Fortunately, Zach is a technological wizard, so the two of them get cracking. The mystery that follows is truly bonkers, bringing into play tragic events from Osgood & Audrey’s past, as well as cryptic lyrics & imagery from an enigmatic 80’s band. Yeah, shit gets way weird.
Osgood as Gone just fucking delighted me, time & time again. Osgood is a character that reminded me of some of my favorite protagonists in more than a few ways, while still being a wholly original creation. The intense hard drinking, snarkiness, and self-loathing certainly reminded me a bit of Miriam Black & Jessica Jones!
This book touches on some super heavy themes...life & loss & grief & love & addiction & depression & trauma...there’s a lot going on with these characters, particularly Osgood & Aubrey. Their broken relationship is at the heart of this book, and definitely had me feeling a bit choked up more than a few times.
Osgood as Gone is the just-right amount of camp, backed up by strong characterizations & a real sense of threat. I enjoyed this one start to finish, and I can’t wait for the next installment in the Spectral Inspector series!!
This was a really fun read. Prudence Osgood is a lovable, snarky character. I immediately cared about her, and about Zack and Audrey. The mystery was engaging, the pace was good, and once I hit the 50% mark, I didn't want to put it down. There are lots of fun pop culture references--many of which probably went over my head. There's delightful queerness, campy ghost hunting, some lovecraftian terror, human tension, and good laughs in these pages. Perfect summer reading for horror fans. I'm looking forward to book two.
After reading this book, one thing is for certain: I need more Prudence Osgood in my life! I adored this story, and I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel. This was a great supernatural mystery, with relatable characters that I grew to love. Osgood is sassy, witty, and stubborn. She's flawed in many ways, and it's her flaws and her pain that make her relatable.I thoroughly enjoyed her adventure in this book, and I wish she was real so that we could be friends. I thought that the story was well written. The pace was great, all of the characters added something to the story, and there were moments of humor and heart amid the tension. These are all factors that make a great book for me. I look forward to reading more from Cooper S. Beckett in the future. Hopefully soon!
NOTE: I received a free copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review.
I just finished reading Osgood As Gone. It was such a dark and twisty page turner! It has a detective noir feel, with a helping of cosmic horror, characters you can get attached to and just in case your imagination isn’t up to the task, there are even a few spooky pictures.
It centers around Prudence Osgood, a ghost hunter and podcaster who is a bit down on her luck. She is dealing with serious chronic pain from a previous car accident and the heartbreak of losing her best friend and one time love, Audrey, in a very public falling out. One day she receives a mysterious text message from an untraceable sender. As she and her friend Zack investigate they get get pulled into a mystery involving missing people and a band whose lyrics have a meaning no one could guess. It may even give Osgood the chance to reconcile with Audrey again.
I really enjoyed reading a story like this with a female lead. It took me a little bit to warm up to Osgood but by the end of the book I just wanted more. Though not front and center, the relationship between her and Audrey was one of my favorite things about the book. It really allowed Osgood to evolve as the story went on.
I don’t want to say too much about the overall mystery in the book as to not to give it away. I will say though, that it kept me guessing and I really enjoyed the twists and turns.
I am excited to see where these characters go next!
You should check out this book if you... — enjoy creepy, scary stories or spooky mysteries — like a strong, queer, female protagonist — are a fan of podcasts like Tanis or The Black Tapes
Osgood As Gone by Cooper S. Beckett is a witty first book in The Spectral Inspector series. Osgood is an intriguing character filled with dark humor, vices, and a complex background. She is an imperfect heroine, which makes the book all the more interesting to delve into. The quick banter, gritty plot, and development between the characters all weave together to create an adventure lurking with darkness. The book is pretty dialogue-heavy, so if you rely more on exposition as a reader, the adventure may take longer to get going for you, but once things pick up after we meet Audrey, the story really hits its stride.
A tense mystery laced with urban fantasy vibes -- you'll want to pick up this first book in what appears to be a very promising series.