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REVIEW: The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick

The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick
Published by Orion Books on 2nd October 2014
Pages: 424
Source: *Received from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review* Thank you!

The spiral has existed as long as time has existed.

It's there when a girl walks through the forest, the moist green air clinging to her skin. There centuries later in a pleasant greendale, hiding the treacherous waters of Golden Beck that take Anna, who they call a witch. There on the other side of the world as a mad poet watches the waves and knows the horrors the hide, and far into the future as Keir Bowman realises his destiny.

Each takes their next step in life. None will ever go back to the same place. And so, their journeys begin...
Though spellbinding and dark, I certainly found it difficult to finish this novel. The cover is glittery and magical, instantaneously drawing you in!

This novel is built of four stories (quarters). They begin in the past and end in the future, essentially the development of mankind. From what I can understand, the purpose of the novel is highlighting how spirals are everywhere and are essential to everything, but also how the smallest of actions in the past can make a unanimous difference in the future.

The quarters consisted of:

Whispers in the Dark: 3/5
This first story is written in verse. I have never read a story in verse before however I flew through it, though sometimes it became a little confusing to identify who the narrator was. This story, from what I understood, is of the first humans on earth; cavemen. It gave an insight into traditions and the tight community they are in, but also illustrates the danger and struggle they went through. I did enjoy this story however I was not always sure as to what was exactly going on.

The Witch in the Winter: 5/5
This was my favourite story out of the four. It is of a young woman and her brother, who help to treat and cure others with their mother. When things begin to go wrong, they are accused of being witches and using witchcraft. This is an aspect in history I have always been interested in, the idea of witches and how you could identify one. This was a moving and poignant story that truly made you think, but was also saddening.

The Easiest Room in Hell: 2/5
I really struggled with this peculiar story. It is set in a home for those with mental illnesses, where a doctor moves to this small town with his daughter from New York to help. However, this novel felt as though the most random of aspects and actions occurred. The idea was dark and saddening however sadly I did not feel it was pulled off to the best of its ability; it had the potential to be something truly astonishing.

The Song of Destiny: 3.5/5
I did enjoy this story as it is set in the future on a ship with around five hundred sleeping people moving to a new earth. The concept was fascinating and realistic however the whole time I was reading it I felt there was something missing; there was just no spark. There was also quite a few moments where info-dumps occurred which made the story feel slow-paced.

This, overall, is a magical and dark novel that will leave you thinking. Beautifully written, the imagery will take over your mind and leave you breathless.

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