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Picking Up the Ghost

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ISBN13: 9781926851358
ISBN10: 1926851358
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Living in St. Jude, a 110-year-old dying city on the edge of the Mississippi, is tough. But when a letter informs fourteen-year-old Cinque Williams of the passing of the father he never met, he is faced with an incomplete past and an uncertain future. A curse meant for his father condemns Cinque to a slow death even as it opens his eyes to the strange otherworld around him. With help from the ghost Willy T, an enigmatic White Woman named Iku, an African Loa, and a devious shape-shifter, Cinque gathers the tools to confront the ghost of his dead father. But he will learn that sometimes too much knowledge can be dangerous - and the people he trusts most are those poised to betray him

Review:

"African magic and folklore color this unusual coming-of-age story. The night after learning of the death of the father he never knew, 14-year-old Cinque Williams is visited in dreams by an eerie wire hand that snatches away his heart. This proves just the first of a cascade of weird experiences for the boy as he sneaks his way to Chicago to pick up his father's effects. Along the way he encounters monsters, ghosts, shape-shifters, and a Sin Catcher, who hopes to burden Cinque with his father's sins. Aided by a shamanic African pastor who visits him in dreams, Cinque overcomes these and other fantastic challenges to accept his heritage and forge a mature identity. Though its events seem chaotic and random in spots, this debut entertains with an original approach and mix of breezy humor and dark fantasy. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

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emmejo, July 5, 2013 (view all comments by emmejo)
Cinque has lived with his mother, grandmother and cousin in St. Jude all his fairly normal life. But when he gets a letter informing him that his absentee father has died, his life changes. His father used magic, a lot of it and for some evil purposes. A deadly curse, aimed at him but unable to harm a dead man, instead lands on Cinque. Now Cinque needs to figure out how to undo the curse by learning fragments of magic from the strange beings he has been revealed to and making up enough of a spell to fill in the gaps.

I first read this book from the library, picking it up because I've enjoyed other books put out by ChiZine and the fact that there is very little urban fantasy written about black characters. I liked it so much that when I saw a used copy of it I snatched it up to Bookcross.

It is the author's first novel, and it has a few typical stumbling blocks; the plot wavers a few times, sometimes the story hits a brooding rut and struggles to get moving again and a couple of the characters could have been better introduced and crafted. Yet the strong voice of the story, Cinque's earnest intensity and loyalty and the puzzle-like world keep you turning pages.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781926851358
Author:
Milazzo, Tone
Publisher:
Chizine Publications
Subject:
Science Fiction and Fantasy-Fantasy
Publication Date:
20110731
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Art Business Guides
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Illustration
Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
Fiction and Poetry » Horror » General
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » General
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » Urban Life

Picking Up the Ghost Used Trade Paper
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Product details pages Chizine Publications - English 9781926851358 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "African magic and folklore color this unusual coming-of-age story. The night after learning of the death of the father he never knew, 14-year-old Cinque Williams is visited in dreams by an eerie wire hand that snatches away his heart. This proves just the first of a cascade of weird experiences for the boy as he sneaks his way to Chicago to pick up his father's effects. Along the way he encounters monsters, ghosts, shape-shifters, and a Sin Catcher, who hopes to burden Cinque with his father's sins. Aided by a shamanic African pastor who visits him in dreams, Cinque overcomes these and other fantastic challenges to accept his heritage and forge a mature identity. Though its events seem chaotic and random in spots, this debut entertains with an original approach and mix of breezy humor and dark fantasy. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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