What Haunts Me by Margaret A. Millmore

HAUTNS
What Haunts Me by Margaret A. Millmore
Ghost Killer – Book 1
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Full Length (271 pages)
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

You can’t kill something that’s already dead. Unless of course you’re
George. There are ghosts and demons that wander among the living; they do not haunt in the traditional sense. Instead, they plague the living with diseases and physical deformities, and once a ghost finds its victim it will haunt them for a lifetime.

A mild illness brings on the dreams, which trigger the suppressed memories, which in turn allows George to see ghosts. Along with this new sight into a realm unknown to most, George instinctually knows that he must kill the ghosts. Of course none of this makes sense, but he cannot control the urge to kill when he encounters them, because deep inside, he knows this is what he must do. Another thing he knows; if he kills a ghost, a person nearby is suddenly healed.

His acceptance of this newfound ability to see and kill ghosts becomes his obsession, but it is also destroying his life and threatening his sanity. George seeks the help of Phil, a known paranormal expert, who briefly explains his new ability, but also warns him about a dangerous man who is looking for a powerful ghost killer, and insinuates that George is that powerful ghost killer. Soon after, George meets Billy, a young woman with a brazen and unlikable personality. However, she is another ghost killer, and that makes her someone he needs to know. With the help of Billy and Phil, George looks for answers as to how and why he’s become what he is and who and what the dangerous man wants. His quest for knowledge leads him to new friends and allies, but also to enemies he could never have imagined, enemies that killed his mother and grandparents and now want him.

Sometimes the smallest reminder can unleash a flood long-forgotten memories. What George does with his memories after they come back up to him.

Figuring George out was a lot of fun. He’s not the kind of character who reveals the most interesting parts of himself right away, but I did stumble across enough hints early on to keep me interested in uncovering the rest. What was even more intriguing to me was how his personality flaws – of which there were several – interacted with the plot in ways that I didn’t always see coming. Tying everything together like this was a fantastic choice given the dark, quirky premise. My anticipation for the sequel is building already.

The backstories of George and the other characters were well done, but they occasionally bogged down the plot. This happened most often during the first several chapters, although it continued to sporadically occur later on. Everything that was shared was relevant to their personalities. I was glad to learn so much about their histories, but everything would have flowed more smoothly if some of those flashbacks could have been delayed until the most important characters were introduced. Had this happened, this book would have easily earned a much higher rating.

Small details make a big difference for this type of tale. What fascinated me the most about Ms. Millimore’s writing style is the way she seems to haphazardly toss odd tidbits into her scenes without explaining why she found it necessary to share them. Piecing it all together was a real treat for me. I’m not ashamed to admit that I didn’t figure it all out right away because I had such a good time going through the process of learning why those details were so meaningful.

What Haunts Me was a mesmerizing introduction to George’s world. I’d strongly recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys the dark of paranormal fiction.

Comments

  1. “The backstories of George and the other characters were well done, but they occasionally bogged down the plot. This happened most often during the first several chapters, although it continued to sporadically occur later on.”

    That’s what kept me from getting into it. Every time it seemed like the story was going to take off, there was yet another detour into backstory. As I’m currently reading Odd Thomas, it resembled the start of that novel. However, Koontz snapped out of backstory mode quick enough to keep me reading.

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