A Gift Of Ghosts (Tassamara Book 1) by Sarah Wynde (book review).

May 3, 2015 | By | Reply More

This is book one in the ‘Tassamara’ series currently containing three books and one short story. Book two is ‘A Gift Of Thought’ and book three is ‘A Gift of Time’. Each book follows the same people in the same town, but they each focus on a different character and their unique abilities. The short story is called ‘The Spirits Of Christmas’ and as the title suggest it is a Christmas story following Akira after ‘A Gift Of Ghosts’ has finished.

AGiftOfGhosts

Akira is a physics professor who definitely does not believe in ghosts. Unfortunately for her, she can both see and hear ghosts and does so regularly. Recently, she wrote a paper on various different types of energy and how to prove their existence and just happened to include a paragraph about a theory of hers to do with the energy that spirits may give off. This, unfortunately, has made her a bit of a pariah in professional physics teacher circles meaning that she finding it pretty tricky to find a job. Luckily for her, the paragraph actually leads to her being offered an interview and, subject to some odd tests, which she aces, much to her embarrassment, is offered a two year contract working for a decidedly weird company in and even odder town. Along with this amazing new job, she also gains a lovely new house and car, both of which are haunted but by the good kind of ghost who entertains rather than terrifies.

Sarah Wynde has created a wonderful selection of characters in this book, both human and spectral, and I loved finding out about them all as they all have their own interesting back stories. I loved finding out about the connection between the ghosts of Rose and Henry who haunt Akira’s new house along with the mysterious boys in the backyard. I want to find out more about Dillon as we only really touched on his past which plays a massive part in this story. I also liked how Sarah created a mythology behind the ghosts with there being different types such as the stable ghost who is able to interact, the faders who just repeat the same thing over and over and are slightly see-through, then there are the red-edged highly dangerous ghosts who will tear other ghost to pieces. Overall, it was all easily understandable and I never felt confused or left in the dark about anything.

I really enjoyed this different spin on the urban fantasy trope of people being able to interact with ghosts. Akira, being a physics professor and also not keen on the existence of ghosts, tries to explain away her abilities and the abilities of those around her using physics theories. Now I don’t know a lot about physics, so I did have to check the background of some with my other half who managed to make them understandable to me and, having done so, we agreed that the physics in this book does have a good basis. Akira tries to explain her ghost abilities by saying that some people have the ability to perceive perfect pitch so she just happens to be able to perceive a different wavelength of light and sound that makes her able to see and hear ghosts. She also tries to explain the ability to be psychic and predict the future using Einstein’s theory that the past, present and future all exist at the same time. It’s just that normally we can only perceive one at a time, so psychics must therefore be able to see the future element as well.

As a heads up, there are some sex scenes in this book. Now I usually find these uncomfortable to read as there are words to describe body parts that are frankly embarrassing and ridiculous and every sexual encounter ends with magical fireworks. In this book, the scenes are written in a way that made them easier and less uncomfortable to read, possibly it was to do with the use of physics theories and terms to describe all that goes on. Oh and there is no ridiculous love triangle as so often happens in these books. It’s all nice and simple no insta-love, just very tasteful and it was easy to understand the motivations behind the budding relationship.

I found this book to be really well written. It felt effortless to read and all the characters each had their own very strong but understandable personalities and this along with the interesting story line really pulled me in. Unfortunately, this is a very short novel, possibly it could even be called a novella as it stands at less than 200 pages which meant that I whizzed through the book in a couple of reading sessions. I wish the book had been a little longer, but then again I’m glad that things weren’t drawn out too much. There were times when the story jumped forward in time and I felt I’d missed out on things, like the romantic relationship between Akira and Zane. Luckily, as I’ve previously said, there are further books in this series along with a short story.

Overall, I would recommend this book to people who like urban fantasy as a quick and easy read, it might even be good for people who are unsure about the genre as it is so short. I will be reading the others in the series and hoping for more from this author.

Sarah Bruch

May 2015

Follow me @shelbycat

(pub: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2012. 190 page paperback. Price: $10.99 (US), £ 6.50 (UK)  ISBN: 978-1-47013-027-5)

check out website: http://sarahwynde.com/

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Category: Books, Fantasy

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