Author: Garth Stein
Challenges: I Love Libraries
Description: In the summer of 1990, fourteen-year-old Trevor Riddell gets his first glimpse of Riddell House. Built from the spoils of a massive timber fortune, the legendary family mansion is constructed of giant, whole trees, and is set on a huge estate overlooking Puget Sound. Trevor’s bankrupt parents have begun a trial separation, and his father, Jones Riddell, has brought Trevor to Riddell House with a goal: to join forces with his sister, Serena, dispatch Grandpa Samuel—who is flickering in and out of dementia—to a graduated living facility, sell off the house and property for development into “tract housing for millionaires,” divide up the profits, and live happily ever after.
But Trevor soon discovers there’s someone else living in Riddell House: a ghost with an agenda of his own. For while the land holds tremendous value, it is also burdened by the final wishes of the family patriarch, Elijah, who mandated it be allowed to return to untamed forestland as a penance for the millions of trees harvested over the decades by the Riddell Timber company. The ghost will not rest until Elijah’s wish is fulfilled, and Trevor’s willingness to face the past holds the key to his family’s future. (via Goodreads)
Thoughts: When I started the book during this past fall's 24-hour Dewey's Readathon, I was hopeful that I would be able to get through the book in fairly short order. But through a number of circumstances, it took me a bit longer than anticipated. There were times that the book outright creeped me out, but there were also times in which I felt that book got a little too longwinded and dragged as a result. It also felt that in some places that the book went off in tangents that didn't seem to make sense to me. And as a result, I never got a sense of what the book was about.
Bottom line: While I had hoped to like the this book, it fell a little short for me. Now if you are a fan of paranormal fiction with a little bit of a mystery thrown in, you probably would enjoy this book. Recommended.
Pages for 2014: 27,615