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


4.07  ·  Rating details ·  13,568 ratings  ·  1,131 reviews
Nina Dean has arrived at her early thirties as a successful food writer with loving friends and family, plus a new home and neighbourhood. When she meets Max, a beguiling romantic hero who tells her on date one that he's going to marry her, it feels like all is going to plan.

A new relationship couldn't have come at a better time - her thirties have not been the liberating,
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published October 15th 2020 by Fig Tree (first published October 8th 2020)
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 Ghosts, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Ghosts

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,568 ratings  ·  1,131 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Ghosts
rory gilmore
Oct 16, 2020 rated it liked it
this would’ve been 100x better if nina and lola had realised that men sucked and then fell in love and had a happy lesbian life making cool recipes and living in london
Aug 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Let me introduce you to Nina George Dean - the middle name in honour of George Michael who was number one when she was born. She’s 31, single and a successful food writer. Using dating app ‘Linx Online’ she meets Max - sturdy, rumpled, he declares he’s going to marry her on their first date. Her dad is disappearing to dementia, her mum is rebranding herself, her best friends are Lola and Katherine, other friends are settling down, marrying, kids, the whole nine yards.

I thought I’d like this boo
Emily B
Sep 29, 2020 rated it liked it
Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for an advanced copy of this novel.

My opinion of the book is conflicted due to the conflicting feelings I felt when reading it. It was well written, modern and pretty relatable. I easily found myself in the main characters shoes, her annoying friends annoyed me.
However, overall I found it somewhat depressing . This could be because I am similar to the main character in terms of things such as age and being childless. Perhaps that meant that I took the con
Esther King
Aug 07, 2020 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this book a lot more than I did. It tries so hard to strike that good balance between serious commentary on relationships and ageing as well as humour and kitschy romance- but it just wasn't there for me. Especially the relationship development toward the end of the book (which I won't go into in full detail- but let's just say it was VERY out of the blue and VERY weird). The book deals with ghosting of many forms, from dementia to dating apps, and the story of Nina and her fami ...more
Sep 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
Nope. Not for me.

A vapid 2020 Bridget Jones with a great effort made to sound like Nora Ephron (Alderton wrote the foreword to the new edition of I Feel Bad About My Neck, she's a big Ephron fan.). The highlights of the book were Nina's changing relationship with her childhood best friend Katherine, and her response to her dad's illness.

Nina writes cookbooks, but in a whole year-in-the-life we didn't see her cook as much as an egg. I don't think pouring condensed milk over a banana counts.

Jan 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Nina Dean is 31, owns her own home and is a successful food writer. She joins a dating site Linx as all her friends are settling down. She meets Max who announces on their first date that he is going to marry her!! They are instantly attracted to one another. But is he ready for commitment?

Nina’s dad has been diagnosed with Dementia whilst her mother seems to be having a midlife crises, she even wants to change her name.

I must confess I met my husband on a dating site so I can relate to the biz
Oct 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I am convinced that Dolly Alderton could write a shopping list and I’d find it the most relatable, evocative and thoughtful thing I’ve ever read.

Bloody loved this-it’s everything I wanted her debut novel to be and more.
Dec 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Sometimes you just need some good (very British!) chick-lit, and ”Ghosts” was very much that.

Thirty-something year old Nina Dean has been single for two years and is now ready to start navigating her way through the online dating world, using a dating app called ”Linx”.
She soon discovers that as quickly as she can meet these men online and fall for them, they can quickly “ghost” her. This basically means they don’t reply to her text messages or answer her calls for seemingly no reason, complet
Oct 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites
I'm having trouble putting words together for this review, as I'm not sure I can quite summarise how strongly I love this book?? I had very high expectations, and she somehow surpassed them. How is this her first novel? I just need to know.

Our main character Nina, a successful food writer, is so fully and fantastically realised that I genuinely feel like I know her. I can see her, I can hear her, I can smell her? (Mm, bit weird) Her thoughts and observations throughout the book had me nodding ve
A solid debut novel about millennial struggling to navigate the shifting dating and friendship landscape of her early 30s: ageing parents, revised life expectations and loss of friendships when priorities and life trajectories no longer align. This struck this right balance between light, contemporary women's fiction and delicately handling the heavier theme of dementia. Ghosting features too (the clue is in the title), but I think this definition could be stretched beyond the traditional defini ...more
Dec 01, 2020 rated it liked it
I felt pretty conflicted reading this one. Nina is so relatable, it was easy to feel every emotion right along with her. However I found the plot slow moving and a little boring. This isn’t your run of mill romance as there are serious themes but it didn’t go as deep as I was expecting and felt a little clunky.
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020, arc
I really do love Dolly’s Writing, she is the the only person I’d even consider reading the Times for and I’ve directly quoted entire chunks of Everything I Know About Love at people. Ghosts however was disappointing and underwhelming.

There are some attempts at combining seriousness with levity, but the seriousness never really reaches any true depth. Whilst the characters, the lead character Nina Dean included, felt like pastiches of generic millennials. There were definitely parts that enjoyed,
Jul 22, 2020 rated it it was ok
Video review:

I received a copy of this novel via NetGalley.

I enjoyed the majority of this book, it told a wonderful tale of ghosting, letting people back in, and the woes of online dating. The storyline with the father was also wonderfully tied into the overall theme of ghosts and whilst I was quite annoyed at how the character treated their mother, I could tell it was because of how scared she was about her father's future. I thought the relationship bet
Nabilah Firdaus
Ghost (v): To end a personal relationship with someone by vanishing suddenly without any closure or explanation.

Funny, heartfelt and perceptive, Ghosts by Dolly Alderton is a sharp witted exploration of relationships, familial bond, modern dating and friendship between women. At the heart of the story was a successful food writer, Nina Dean who has just turned 32 years old and decided to explore the world of online dating. She then meets Max, a charming accountant who tells her on the first date
Pauline [paulineisreading]
Nov 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Ghosts is one of my most anticipated releases of the year and i’m so pleased to report that it met my high expectations. It’s everything i’d expect from a Dolly Alderton’s fiction and more.

In her debut novel, Dolly takes us through the life of Nina, a food writer in her early 30s who’s decided to embrace the world of online dating after ending a 7 year long relationship. As you could probably guess, she experiences being ‘ghosted’ along the way and other intricacies that come with modern dating.
Oct 12, 2020 rated it it was ok
This was one of my most anticipated books of 2020 and sadly it just did not work for me.

Nina is in her early thirties, a successful food writer who has broken up with her boyfriend of seven years and is entering into the world of online dating and coming to terms with her father's dementia diagnosis. Needless to say, she has a lot on her plate. I did like the way the book balanced all these elements and Nina's coping strategies for these things were believable and showed a lot of strength, whic
Sandrine Vaillancourt
Aug 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Dolly Alderton can do no wrong. This story is about so much more than just being ‘ghosted’ by a man. She explores themes like female friendship, dementia, growing up, and being one of the last ‘single’ friends in your thirties (and how there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that). It’s written in such a compassionate and poignant way and the descriptions are attentive, nostalgic and so vivid. I recognized Dolly in some of the passages: beautiful depiction of Hampstead Heath, references to food an ...more
Tanja Berg
Jan 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio
This book was like meeting a long lost friend. After five minutes it feels like all the time that’s passed since you last saw each other has disappeared. This is the kind of book that makes all the crappy ones on between worth it, just to find it.

We follow Nina between two birthdays, her 32nd and 33rd. Her father has dementia and her mother is set on a path to find herself. Most of Nina’s friends are getting married and having babies, including her ex boyfriend. All except Lola, who is on an en
Dec 08, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star
⭐⭐⭐⭐ - Somewhere between 3/5 and 4 stars. This first fiction book from Dolly Alderton was quite an enjoyable read. Her first book was one of my favourite's I read that year and so I was excited to sink my teeth into this one. I would have to describe this as a comical/romantic fiction book, although there isn't much romance as I first anticipated. Based on the blurb, I would have thought it centred around Nina's relationship and her work. However, I felt two-thirds of this book focused more on t ...more
Oct 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't want this to end. Pitch perfect, so entertaining, and with just enough to get your teeth into about nostalgia and memory and identity. Nobody could have read the audiobook better than Holliday Grainger, and although I recommend the listening experience I now really want to read a physical copy too. This rating, however, is based on my personal expurgated version of this book in which the part where Katherine flippantly tells of the time her infant daughter Olive DRANK out of the TOILET ...more
Sep 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*I got an ecopy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

This was such an incredible book - it was hilarious (I laughed out loud so much I think my mum probably thought I’d gone mad) & heartbreaking (cue me sobbing in a corner)

It’s the first strongly feminist book I’ve actually liked. Mainly because it shows a balance of everything, it had the strongest friendships but also showed when they went wrong, it had the ups & downs of both married life & single life, etc...

I loved the set up of
Margarida Lopes
Jan 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I know I could point out a lot of not-so-good things about this book, but it is exactly what I needed to read right now to feel understood. It hit close to home in the two main topics, so that's the reason for the 5 stars. ...more
Caroline O'Donoghue
Aug 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
It might be tempting to look at what Alderton does and call it easy – romance, friendship, and contemporary observations about millennial women's lives are so common in the fiction marketplace that we are all too quick to throw one thing in with another, and before you know it, we're using lazy comparative qualifiers - 'the new Ephron' 'the next Rooney' 'the next Keyes' - to describe everything a woman writer does. Alderton's voice, however, is singular.

There's a bite, a sharpness, and an inten
Nov 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this novel of Nina dean entering the world of online dating and going through the process of ghosting and disappointment . felt though the ending was a bit too neatly tied up but overall like the wit and humour of dating in the 21st century. the secondary story did like the how the author treated her father slowly getting worse with dementia.
“Being a heterosexual woman who loved men meant being a translator for their emotions, a palliative nurse for their pride and a hostage negotiator for their egos.”

I am in between with my feelings towards this book.
I enjoyed it and like it but it feels very detached to me.

I like the concept of how the word Ghosts is connected to everything.
From the loss of friendship, the silence of a relationship and losing a family member through dementia.
It kind of a way is the same but different.

I enjoyed rea
Dec 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
So refreshingly relatable and I enjoyed it from start to finish! I absolutely love Dolly and her writing! A great first novel (she’s the author of Everything I know About Love). She expresses how Nina, our beloved main character, thinks and feels so well and with such candor. I found myself so involved and in tune with the side characters too.

Ghosts filled me with so much love and understanding towards growing up and not feeling alone about it. Plenty of laughs throughout the story and I found m
Anastasiya Mozgovaya
Nov 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
i had bought this book out of pure curiosity without any major expectations, but i have loved it!!! a perfect modern novel. it is sharp and witty, and so good at portraying the odd reality we exist in. Dolly Alderton is a brilliant writer!
Lily McGahern
Oct 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I have been waiting for this novels arrival since the very last page of Dolly’s first book Everything I Know About Love, which I would class as my bible. Ghosts has definitely lived up to all expectations, proving just as fulfilling and easy to devour, with me once again wishing Alderton’s writing wouldn’t end.

For our generation of online dating, Dolly perfectly encapsulates the scariness of putting yourself out there. Ghosts perfectly highlights the horrors of rejection, but true to Alderton, a
Evie Braithwaite
In Ghosts, we meet Nina, a successful food writer, on her 32nd birthday and the start of “the strangest” year of her life. What follows is 365 days of ghosts in every metaphorical sense: the online ghosts who profess their love and then vanish; the ghost of her father as he succumbs to dementia; the ghost of her twenties; and the ghosts of past female friendships as those around her fall into motherhood and marriage.

Ghosts is a timely novel that taps into the zeitgeist of modern dating. Until a
Lara Glantz
Oct 19, 2020 rated it it was ok
Returned to this review because I don’t think my initial review was fair. This book contains some really astute social analysis and a few incredibly moving moments. But where Everything I Know About Love painted these incredibly intimate and relatable friendships, and nuanced and complex (real life) characters, Ghosts paints one dimensional and largely unlikeable characters. The plot was also poorly paced, and the unlikely twist at the end felt almost misogynistic? Anyway that’s my updated revie ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
ADHD & Allies &#x...: January read: Ghosts 1 5 Jan 09, 2021 05:32AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • How Do We Know We're Doing It Right: & Other Essays on Modern Life
  • Olive
  • The Searcher
  • The Weekend
  • Frying Plantain
  • The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales
  • I'm Only In It for the Parking: Life and laughter from the priority seats
  • The Monster I Loved: The true story of a young girl and her father's betrayal.
  • 47 Things (47 Things #1)
  • The Lies You Told
  • In the Land of Men: A Memoir
  • Modern Love: True Stories of Love, Loss, and Redemption
  • F is for Fashion, Darling
  • Parakeet
  • In Five Years
  • All My Loving (Butler, Vermont, #5)
  • A Bestiary
  • Perfect Little Children
See similar books…
Dolly Alderton is an award-winning author and journalist. She is a columnist for The Sunday Times Style and has also written for GQ, Red, Marie Claire and Grazia. She co-hosts the weekly pop-culture and current affairs podcast The High Low alongside journalist Pandora Sykes.

Her first book Everything I Know About Love became a top five Sunday Times bestseller in its first week of publication and w

News & Interviews

Readers have a lot to look forward to this year! Just feast your eyes upon all of these debut books to check out and emerging authors to...
131 likes · 39 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Being a heterosexual woman who loved men meant being a translator for their emotions, a palliative nurse for their pride and a hostage negotiator for their egos.” 5 likes
“Jethro's flat was in a warehouse that, even from the outside, looked very pleased with its own conversion.” 1 likes
More quotes…