BOOK CLUB: Ghosted

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Author: Rosie Walsh
ISBN: 978-1509886432
RRP: $29.99
Publication Date: 12 June 2018
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Copy: Courtesy of the Publisher

Part of me wants to sit back and think about this one for a while, digest and mull it over because I think I’m still sorting it all out in my head.

Ghosted is a book that I picked up expecting a romance. The premise tells us there’s other stuff going on that it takes time to unravel but I was not expecting the depth of mystery that unravelled.

There was a lot I wasn’t expecting about Ghosted actually. This first assumption I made has definitely made me think because I’m not sure why I jumped to this conclusion but it was certainly one that surprised me to have debunked and as such it took me a while to get my head around what was happening when. I think perhaps I was a little too scattered when I started reading. Our leads are older than I expected them to be, they are both on the far side of 35 and that allowed me to relate a little more I think because there’s a lot of other things going on around them and with the secondary cast that resonate more with me now.

The storytelling method used by Walsh was fantastic for feeding the mystery and keeping you guessing, it sure had me thinking I had it worked out only to realise I didn’t. It also means that writing a review is fraught with the danger of an unintentional spoiler that affects someone else’s enjoyment.

I really enjoyed Ghosted, it offered a lot more than I expected and was certainly a thought provoking read. Walsh created beautiful characters who are strong, flawed and complex.

Sarah Mackey has just come out of a long term marriage, it’s all very amicable and they will continue working together in the company they founded together. We meet her back in her childhood neighbourhood in England, far from her Californian home. She is out walking in a personally significant area when she unexpectedly meets a man deep in conversation with a loose sheep, and so begins a magical six days of togetherness.

Six days that brings Sarah to life in a way she didn’t completely know she was missing, feeling emotions she was sure were reciprocated.  Time in which they talk and share big parts of themselves but they never quite get to sharing all of themselves. On their last morning together they say an au revoir, planning to talk again within hours. Sarah leaves so he can head off on a pre-planned holiday and he promises to call from the airport.

But then he doesn’t call, so she thinks of all the reasons that might be. Always thinking that he will call, and then time drags out into days and then weeks and by then she’s sure that something terrible has happened. Everyone tells her it’s time to move on, time to forget him, but she knows it was real and can’t let go.

Ghosted holds some pretty dark secrets at its core and they are revealed slow and stealthily so the reveal knocked me over, it was not what I was expecting. After that the story continues, in turns both predictable and completely unexpected.

Walsh explores the dark side of the no callback now that we live in such a connected time. Back in my day, which doesn’t seem like that long ago but would have been a couple of years before Sarah’s adolescence, when you waited for someone to call it was just the landline home phone. Now if you are waiting on a call, or trying to see what someone is up to, you have their mobile number, their social media accounts because there’s generally multiple and then the landline. All of which is pretty much at the touch of a button at your fingertips ALL THE TIME. It’s easy to get unhinged and caught up and stalkery as you switch from one to the other trying to see if they’re online or they’ve seen your messages.

Ghosted asks how far you’ll go for love. What will you risk, what lengths will you go to? And who will you put ahead of your happiness.

Walsh explores loss, grief and forgiveness from different perspectives which is always good to illustrate that everyone grieves in their own way, no way is necessarily right or wrong, and in their own time. We all have our ways of moving forward and we need to do what we can to make sure we’re okay.

Ghosted has a colourful cast of secondary characters around to support Sarah and try to stop her going completely off the rails. They have their own host of issues to deal with that will resonate with a lot of people around this age. Issues of relationship breakdown, the fear of being alone, fertility issues when parenthood was always a dream and dealing with the fertility of your friends while you struggle so fiercely.

Ghosted is a well rounded story that kept me guessing, made me teary, made me laugh and made me wonder whether our leads were going to crack.

A fabulous book that was nothing like what I expected, and that turned out to be a really good thing. I would recommend this to those who like a bit of romantic mystery and I think it’s one I might like to revisit one day in the future and see if I experience it differently.

Rosie Walsh can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and her Website.

Ghosted is published by Pan Macmillan and is available now from Angus & Robertson Bookworld, Booktopia and where all good books are sold.

Thanks to Pan Macmillan 15 of our Beauty and Lace Club Members will be reading Ghosted so please be aware there may be spoilers in the comments below. I can not wait to hear what our readers think.

15 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: Ghosted

  1. Sarah’s marriage has fallen apart and although it was a mutual breakup she knows that she would be best to take some time to herself rather then tangle with another guy. Sarah meets Eddie quite by chance and instantly feels an attraction and even though she keeps telling herself that she really shouldnt be getting into a relationship with anyone at this point in her life she just cant stop her emotions advancing. She and Eddie spend an amazing week together where everything is so spot on perfect. They add each other on facebook, trade phone numbers, etc. Sarah leaves Eddie’s home with promises on both sides that they will be in touch as soon as Eddie arrives back from his previously planned week away. The week passes and Sarah sends texts that go unanswered, her calls unanswered. Eddie has fallen off the face of the earth and Sarah is not coping. She becomes obsessed with tracking him down and her friends start to worry over her obsessive behaviour. Even though she starts to tell herself that she is acting like a crazy person and needs to calm down she cant stop herself. Things slowly start to fall into place and Sarah works out why it is that the contact with Eddie stopped but even so she cant help how she feels and she is still crazy head over heels in love with this man. She cant just give up and move on.

    I began reading this book and straight away I was so very engrossed and couldnt wait to see what would happen next. This book takes you along and you think you have it all worked out and then another twist in the road and you find you had it all wrong. I laughed, I cried and I really wanted everything to work out because I felt very attached to the characters. A brilliant story and one that is a perfect rainy weekend read.

  2. Eddie and Sarah spend 6 wonderful days together and fall hopelessly in love. Eddie then leaves to go on an overseas holiday and promises to call from the airport but the call never comes. Sarah is devastated and tries every platform she can to contact him as how could he just mysteriously vanish from her life. Her friends are cynical and tell Sarah to forget about him but she does not give up hope.

    There is a switch between past and present which gives a great pace to the story. The book keeps you guessing as you lose yourself in Sarah’s quest and desperation as she looks for answers not only in a love lost but also her past. The characters are very likeable and you will invest every bit of your reading time into them.

    It is a great read for a mystery romance novel dealing with pain and loss and very relatable in today’s dating world.

    To find out why Eddie didn’t call you will have to read the book which I highly recommend!

  3. Ahhhhh! What a story! Satisfied, so completely and utterly satisfied are the words that come to mind after having finished ‘Ghosted’ this morning. You know when you finish reading and you think, ‘but what happens next?’ And you never find out because there’s never a part two? Well, this book doesn’t need a part two. The answers are all there and the story ends in such a way that we are given all the information we need about the future of the characters and that’s it – we can reflect on the lovely story, instead of all the ‘what if?’ questions.

    At the beginning, you can tell that there’s a big secret or secrets, maybe held by one character, maybe both and I was initially a bit frustrated at having the secret alluded to, but not flat out stated. But I had to keep reading because I was desperate to know what the secret was. And then I found out through the biggest twist imaginable! It was not what I was expecting at all, but wow!

    I finished this story in two days and although I’m sad to leave the characters and not have more to read, the ending was just perfect.

    Thank you Beauty and Lace for one of the best stories I’ve ever read. I haven’t heard of Rosie Walsh before and I know this is her first book under this name, but I will be looking for her other books now >:o)

  4. No words! I have no words to describe this book because it floored me! I love the style of the writer, she carries you along with her so easily. It is so different from many other books Ive read and I did not see the twist coming. But how I loved it!

    So much congratulations go to Rosie Walsh, may she continue to write and share with us her story telling skills!

    My only criticism if it is one and a little one at that, is that the title (to me) did not gel to the story, it impressed upon me a different feel to the story ( meaning I thought it was about something else) but I have no other to give.

  5. Not what I expected but still a great book to read and one I thoroughly recommend!

    Ghosted is the story of Sarah Mackey who has come out of a mutual marriage breakup only to fall in love (this time for real!) with a man named Eddie. They spend a whole glorious week together but when he suddenly disappears without any contact with her, Sarah knows something is not right. He wouldn’t cut off all contact with her unless he had a very good reason.

    Although I felt the beginning of the book a little slow, the story quickly increased to a full mystery and I needed to keep reading to find out more. The characters were explored very well and were very relatable and the constant switch between past and present was well written and thought-provoking.

    I thoroughly enjoyed the twists in the story and am so happy to have had the pleasure of reading such a wonderful book. Well done Rosie Walsh and thank you Beauty and Lace for this wonderful opportunity.

  6. This is a story about Sarah and Eddie who meet accidently and the air crackles with their chemistry. They spend a glorious week together and then Eddie goes to Spain and promises to call when he returns. That call never comes.. Sarah can’t understand why and desperately needs to find out.. They both have secrets they have not shared .What are these secrets? And what do they have to do with Eddie and Sarah?

    This book is told in the first person so it can be difficult to follow when the storyline changes from one to the other, I found myself having to go back and reread sections.. It was like a slow hill climb to get into the book and was very descriptive so I found myself skimming over some parts.

    Personally, this book was not for me even though well written.

  7. I really enjoyed this book from beginning to end. What a emotional rollercoaster ride!

    It was a beautiful love story with enough twists and suspence to keep you turning the pages and wanting more. I read this in nearly one setting, only stopping to pick up the kids or get tea ready and even during those stops I kept thinking about the book! I just needed to get back to Sarah and Eddie!

    The characters got under your skin, you wanted to hug them, slap them, yell at them and cry with them! Their lives and stories completly capture you and draw you in, even the background characters.

    The author touches on a range of issues such as mental health, depression and grief and seemlessly interweaves them with the main storyline. I’m very impressed with her writing style.

    This book was a surprise to me and a good one! Thanks to Beauty and Lace and Pan MacMillan for the chance to read and review this great story.

  8. After reading the above positive reviews of this book I am determined to go back and start over again…

    I personally could not get into the story and found the style of the author very hard to read… to me there was too much mindless chatter between the main character and her family members that lost me from the beginning. It could have been that I was having a tough week in my life and probably had my mind focused on other things….

    I will definitely give this book another go when I’m holidayinh and lounging in Port Douglas at the end of the month. I want to know why Eddie disappeared!

  9. This book was a page turner that grabbed me from the first few pages. I completely fell in love with the story and was 100% on the emotional ride with Sarah. The love story that was built in just five days between Eddie and Sarah was both raw and emotional. Sarah and Eddie only parted ways due to both having commitments that saw them both fly to different cities. The heartbreaking moment though was when they were supposed to be back together but that day didn’t arrive.
    I was taken by the grief and longing Sarah had, and her perseverance to never give up. I was taken by the commitment that she had to a man that she had know just for five days.
    The secret Sarah held close to her heart, laid the underlying current for this story, and as that unravels so does both Eddie and her stories.
    A must read. Thank you Beauty and Lace for providing this book to me. Well done Rosie Walsh, I will be looking for more stories by you.

  10. Thank you Beauty and Lace and Pan Macmillan for the opportunity to review Ghosted.
    From the moment I opened the first page I was constantly searching for moments I could steal to read more.
    The main character Sarah had recently separated from her husband and still ran a very successful charity with him.
    During a walk she took each year she ran into a man called Eddie and then ended up spending a week together, an unforgettable week.
    After that it was like Eddie fell off the face of the earth but Sarah couldn’t believe that he would just ditch her after everything they shared.
    I can’t share many more details or I will give it away but bit by bit everything fell into place and I felt like the complex story was told in exactly the right way:
    I highly recommend this book and will definitely be keeping an eye out for this author. Thanks again for such an amazing book.

  11. Upon initially getting the book Id have assumed it was in regard to something completely different then what was delivered lol.

    Ghosted can and has several different meanings. This one is perfect in its delivery of it – after the story has been read.

    Boy meets girl – the first half of the story was Sarah’s obsession with Eddie acting more like a teenage girl at times – but after being delivered a twist in the story line , the story picked up its pace and the intrigue had the better of me. Eddie and Sarahs love story was not epic, i felt his friends harsh.

    Not the best delivered romance, it has lots of potential but felt a bit flat for me. I did finish it but found many moments where the pace slowed but others where it had me invested.

    I didn’t connect with the love story, I didn’t feel the butterflies or hearts and roses .. I felt this needed a better delivery. But then we all do like our romances different. It certainly does contain romance, but I think the infactuation that Sarah had with Eddie kinda got on my goat.

    But as the story progresses we see some mystery, intrigue and more falls into place.

    Overall, If your looking for a book with the feels this isn’t it. If your after a plot twist it definitely has it ! Did really enjoy a scene towards the end. 😀

  12. This story tugs at the heart strings right from the beginning. You get that awful feeling in the pit of your stomach as you read along to Sarah’s story.
    A third into the story I thought I worked out what the twist was going to be, I was actually being a bit smug about it! But that didn’t stop me, I really wanted to see it through to the end.
    And then BAM!!! The actual twist, what on earth!!! I was so surprised that I had to stop reading and start from the beginning!!!
    This book does not disappoint, I would recommend this to anyone and everyone!!!

  13. Ghosted follows Sarah a 39 women who falls deeply in love with Eddie, a local craftsman she stumbles upon in a sheep padock near her parents house in england. They form a deep emotional and physical connection after spending 6 beautiful days wrapped in each others arms and revealing flashes of their past. After he leaves for a holiday but doesn’t call sarah on his return, she begins to try and find out the reason for his silence, what has happened to Eddie the love of her life.

    The story starts off slow focussing on Eddie and Sarah’s 6 days together and the bond they share, I found it hard to get into at first as it was a little slow and I found sarahs behavior slightly unnerving as she “salks” Eddie on social media, text messages and letters. Chapters move between the past and present slowly revealing elements of their connection, then the story completely twists. This was an interesting book which i enjoyed reading although the ending was very predictable I would definitely recommend giving Ghosted a read.

  14. I read Ghosted after reading the reviews on Beauty and Lace.

    Overall I have to say – what a great story! I was entranced from page 1 and the twists and turns kept coming…..including a big one I didn’t see. Loved loved loved this book – I had to read the last half in one evening as I couldn’t put it down.

    Highly recomended!

  15. This is possibly my favourite read of the year. I was intrigued from the first few chapters and found it a tough one to put down. The writer has a nice flow and easy to read feel which captures the characters perfectly. I love it when a book takes you by surprise and this one definitely does. I feel like I need to reread it to get a different perspective now that I know where it’s headed. Would highly recommend this one.

    Thank you for the opportunity to participate and apologies for the late contribution.

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