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Ghost Wood Song

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  1,123 ratings  ·  335 reviews
Sawkill Girls meets Beautiful Creatures in this lush and eerie debut, where the boundary between reality and nightmares is as thin as the veil between the living and the dead. 

If I could have a fiddle made of Daddy’s bones, I’d play it. I’d learn all the secrets he kept.

Shady Grove inherited her father’s ability to call ghosts from the grave with his fiddle, but she also k
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published July 14th 2020 by HarperTeen
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Erica Yes! Both Ghost Wood Song and my next book, The River Has Teeth, are standalones.
Erica The main character is bisexual. There are also two lesbian characters.

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Thank you Edelweiss and HarperTeen for this ARC. All thoughts and opinions are mine.

This is what evil is--not some unnatural force,
not demons or devils. It's this rigth here--
a man clinging so hard to hate it's worth dying for.
Worth risking the lives of his wife and his child.
Worth seeing a bullet fly into his brother's brain.
Worth everything.

I came across Ghost Wood Song and I was soon lost. I am absolutely and easily smitten by a pretty co
Candace Robinson
This one had a lot of atmosphere with real grit! The dialogue was wonderful and I seriously loved the adorable romance sprinkled in! It makes me want to go buy some cowboy boots right now! Oh and also have my own ghosty violin!
Nenia Campbell
Jun 01, 2020 marked it as to-read
I don't know about you but this book reminds me of THE BONE HOUSES, and I loved THE BONE HOUSES. Anything that gives me creepy, ghosty, Tim Burtony vibes is a YES I WANT for me ...more
Jenny Baker
Jul 19, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Ghost Wood Song is an entertaining magical realism novel that’s an easy read, ideal for a lazy Sunday afternoon. It's not scary ghost story, in case you're wondering. I highly recommend the audiobook.
Erin A. Craig
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Waters' debut is a true Southern Gothic, striking the perfect balance of atmospheric chills, dark familial secrets, and a yearning for the warm comforts of home. I could hear the cicadas' call and feel the smothering humidity, even as I shivered! ...more
Hannah Whitten
Jul 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this creepy, atmospheric, lyrical book. The characters jump off the page and the resolution is SO satisfying.
rachel ☾

◯ Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Jan 31, 2021 rated it it was ok
DNF 62%

I lost 8h of my life listening to the audiobook and it's one of those times when I REGRET IT.
I'm so glad I didn't buy the book. I was super excited for it when I've read the synopsis because it sounds really interesting.

Unfortunately it wasn't what I expected at all.
She has a mistery to solve, so she can get her brother out of trouble. She hopes she can do it by speaking with ghosts.
This girl has no experience dealing with ghosts, but she tries anyway and of course she gets in a lot of tr
Madison Mary
Jul 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
"I wait with the trees and the ghosts, trembling in the warm spring air, my body tuned to a frequency that only sounds like white noise, empty static to my mind. No matter how hard I listen, the silence never resolves into melody"

*ARC provided on Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review*

An eerie debut about a girl desperate to save her brother and a fiddle that raises ghosts.

Shady Grove grew up in a house full of ghosts, and when her father played his fiddle he could call forth t
Aug 22, 2020 rated it liked it

The story was good , i just didn't care much about the characters , or the writing itself .
Namera [The Literary Invertebrate]
ARC received in exchange for an honest review - thank you!

I usually begin new (especially debut) novels with high expectations, and then I’m almost inevitably disappointed (see The Nameless Queen, as one example among many). This time was sort of the opposite. I requested the ARC from Edelweiss on impulse, with no real belief it would be very good since the blurb is so vague, and it turned out to be AMAZING.

Seventeen-year-old Shady Grove Crawford lives in a trailer in Florida with her mo
Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard
Well I'm 100% buying that cover ...more
Aug 25, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020, lgbtq
An enjoyable and adequate ya gothic contemporary that had its ups and downs and couldn’t really settle on what it wanted to be.

Shady grove is still reeling from her father’s death years ago when another blow befalls the family. The only thing that can save her family? Her dad’s missing magic violin that can call ghosts.

This novel had more romance and very very typical ya love triangle that I wanted or expected, and which I ultimately didn’t really enjoy as its not my thing.

The characters howe
Ash Otterloo
Mar 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Ghost Wood Song manages to capture aching truths about bisexuality and growing up in a difficult family, and marries them to a sumptuous atmosphere, ghost-lore, and well-earned twists...the result is intoxicating and fabulously creepy. The author's characters are deep and complex in a way that never detracts from the pace, and I'll definitely be reaching for it to re-read in the future. All the stars. ...more
Liz Lawson
Dec 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful, atmospheric, with a complex mystery driving its central plot, GHOST WOOD SONG is a must read in 2020. An absolutely fantastic debut!
DNF : not the one for me

Was 3 hrs into the 9 hr audiobook and still don't care. I feel sad to let this one go because this has a very good writing style and has an amazing bisexual rep. But I don't want to waste my time with a book that is clearly not my cup of tea.
Ghost Wood Song is an example of magical realism at its finest! What I loved about this story was the bond of music that the central characters shared, and how they take their art out into nature and then the stage and just play together.

The main character, Shady, is a fiddle player and she lost her father four years ago in a car accident. Now his fiddle, which has the magic to summon ghosts, is needed to clear her brother's name of a murder, and put the family's secrets to rest once and for al
Lacey D-Bell
Oct 18, 2020 rated it it was ok
A bit disappointing, but alas, mystery isn't my favorite genre. This really needed more ghosts. That would've saved it quite a bit! ...more
Sage Knightly
Apr 06, 2020 rated it really liked it

Huge thanks to the publisher via Edelweiss+
for the eARC! This in no way affects my review

Ghost Wood Song is a story about love and loss, the stages of grief, music and ghosts, secrets, and family. It is a sibling bond so strong that old secrets are dug up and put to rest in order to save each other. It is a father and daughter relationship so pure that regardless of any misdeeds or secrets, they still care for and support each other. It is a boy wrongly accused of murder and a girl who wou
Sep 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, queer, fantasy
In the top ten of 2020? HELL YEAH ~ frickin' loved this ...more
Oct 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was very atmospheric and had very creepy, ghosty vibes. I really struggled to put it down. The characters seem to jump off the page. I absolutely loved this story and will definitely read it over and over again. I would definitely recommend this one.
Celia McMahon
Jun 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you Edelweiss and the publisher for the chance to review this title.

GHOST WOOD SONG is the hauntingly gay murder mystery with a fiddle that calls ghosts from the afterworld that you want to read. Like now.

I requested GHOST WOOD SONG purely on the cover. It offered an atmospheric jaunt through one girl's life of love and loss. Shady lives in a trailer in Florida with her mom, older brother, step-sister, and step-dad. Life for Shady hasn't been easy since the tragic death of her father and t
May 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Series Info/Source: This is a stand alone book that I got through NetGalley to review.

Story (4/5): When Shady’s brother is accused of killing her stepfather, Shady is determined to prove her brother’s innocence. To do this she decides to track down her father’s missing fiddle and see if she can call her stepfather’s ghost to her. This was an engaging story with a well done murder mystery as the main driver. Shady’s ability to use her father’s cursed fiddle to call ghosts to her adds a supernatur
Jul 26, 2020 rated it it was ok
2.0 this had the potential to be something entirely beautiful but it fell flat on its face. It needed wayyyy less filler and way more back story content. This could have stood as an excellent short story if you pull out all the filler.
A book continued to open up story plots with immense story backdrops and then provided little to no content about it. Which ended up being the only thing I cared about since the characters were completely dry and typical teenagers to the exception of attempting to
Lizz DiCesare
Jul 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
“I’ve lived with ghosts my whole life, but this is the first time I’ve ever felt haunted.”

Every time I read a creepy book set in the woods, I think to myself, “this is it, this is the last time I read a book set in the woods!” And yet, as soon as I see another story with an eerie forest setting, I toss everything aside and run straight for it. That’s exactly what happened with Ghost Wood Song by Erica Waters, and while my sleep schedule might regret it, the rest of me does not.

Ghost Wood Song fo
Oct 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
"all this family ever does is bury it's secrets, and yet they keep climbing out of the dirt and sneaking up on us."

What a gorgeous, atmospheric and beautiful read. This story wraps itself around you in its melancholy melody, ringing with dark family secrets, supportive friendships and much needed acceptance/understanding.
A perfect Autumn read.
Sep 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a gripping novel about a girl that can see ghosts, and is trying to uncover old family secrets to help save her brother from a murder charge.

Music plays a very heavy role in this story, so much so that when I was reading it I kept on having to stop so that I could have a bluegrass binge on spotify. Being a musician I think that this aspect drew me deeply into the book, and the characters were great to get to know.
Jul 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

If I could sum up what I enjoyed in Ghost Wood Song in two elements it's got to be the spookiness and all the queerness. We love a bisexual MC with a love triangle that was crafted well. Shady begins the book griefstricken and wondering if she could change the chaos around her and get answers. But we all know sometimes answers don't bring the closure we're looking for and only more qu
Riya Queen
Jul 16, 2020 rated it liked it

When I was going into this book, I certainly wasn't expecting what I was given. Ghost Wood song is marketed as this creepy, atmospheric book, where this girl, Shady Grove can bring back people's ghosts with a tune from her fiddle, and that's the least we got from the plot.

It was more of family drama, secrets kept buried and less of the creepiness and the atmospheric vibes I was expecting. Don't get me wrong- there were a lot of dark and important issues this book dealt with; grief, anger an
Sep 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars.

Less agreeable aspects with this reviewer:

- As someone who is not very into contemporary settings due to them focusing heavily on moments of ordinary life, sometimes my attention wandered off during the quieter, mundane moments of this book;
- It focused more on romance, and the mcs doubts between her love interests, than I expected. Not my thing, but amazing bi rep here and perfect if you love delving into a character's romantic struggles.

Noteworthy aspects:

- Amazingly atmospheric, e
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Erica Waters writes YA contemporary fantasy with a Southern Gothic feel. She's originally from the pine woods of rural Florida but has made her home in Nashville, TN, where she's learned to love bluegrass and has even starting learning banjo. Her best friends are two scruffy little rescue dogs named Nutmeg and Luna. GHOST WOOD SONG is her debut novel. ...more

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