Tuesday, October 25, 2011

REVIEW: Deception by Lee Nichols

Title: Deception by Lee Nichols
Pages: 336
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Publication Date: September 5th, 2011
Series: Haunting Emma #1
Format: Paperback
Source: Bloomsbury Publishing

Summary (Goodreads):

When Emma Vaile’s parents go missing while away on a mysterious business trip, she’s left all alone in her creepy old house. But her brother’s very cute best friend, Bennett Stern—Emma’s knight in J. Crew armor—arrives unexpectedly to whisk her away to New England. There, Emma settles into his family’s museum-like mansion and enrolls at an old-fashioned private school. She quickly finds friends in the popular legacy crowd at Thatcher and spends her free time crushing on Bennett.

But the eerie visions she’s been hiding from everyone have gotten worse. Emma has memories of Thatcher that she can’t explain—it’s as if she’s returning home to a place she’s never been. Finally, Emma confides in Bennett and learns she is a ghostkeeper, a person who can communicate with ghosts. Bennett brought Emma to Thatcher to protect her, but now he needs her help tracking an other-worldly murderer.

Deception is the fabulous debut from Lee Nichols, and the first book in the Haunting Emma trilogy. I enjoyed everything in it - the atmospheric setting and the fascinating mystery in particular - it's being highly-recommended by me, especially seeing that it's so close to Halloween!

I was on holiday when this arrived in the post, and I'd seen the cover around Goodreads before, but never got round to adding it to my to-read list. Similar situation to when I got Tempest Rising (another Bloomsbury book! Go Bloomsbury!). I asked around on Twitter, and the general consensus seemed to say that it was AWESOME, and I should read it ASAP!

I love ghost stories, LOVE them, so the concept of the novel gave me that little bit extra excitement I needed to start reading. A few chapters in and I couldn't put it down!

I could really relate to Emma, and I felt really bad for her throughout most of the novel. She has to deal with the fact that her parents, brother AND best friend have all abandoned her. Then there's the new school she's trying to fit into... and the people she keeps seeing. The ghosts. She has nobody to talk to, with her new guardian Bennett (who used to be a close friend of her brother and who she has a crush on!)  hardly ever around, and I just wanted to grab her and squeeze her tight. When we (and Emma) finally find out that she's a ghostkeeper, somebody who can communicate with ghosts, it's not a total surprise. Emma's been experiencing the weirdest, well, flashbacks I guess you could say they were, for a while now as well as having the ability to see people in the strangest places. 

My favourite thing had to be the cast of characters. From the ghosts, Anatole, Celeste, Nicholas, and the Rake, who came to be like a family for Emma; to her new friends, Harry, Coby and Sara; to lovely Bennett who Emma has been in love with for ages. They were all so well-developed and the kind of people you would love to know in real life. Would've loved to have seen more about Emma's real family though, and the ghostkeeping side of them. 

Oh, and I have to mention the ending. Because it was so, so awesome. AND OMG CAN'T WAIT TO READ BETRAYAL!*

*I've read Betrayal now - wrote this as soon as I finished the book, which is a first for me! *likes to procrastinate*



  1. Great review Iffath! I loved Deception too... I didn't quite expect it to be that good. Bennet is something too ;)

  2. I've had this on my wishlist for awhile, I like ghost stories but a lot of people said it was scaryyy!

  3. Great review - this book has me intrigued. Definetly one to add to the wishlist :)


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