Ghostly Echoes by William Ritter
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Publishing Date: August 23
Genre: young adult, fantasy, historical fiction, gothic
Jenny Cavanaugh, the ghostly lady of 926 Augur Lane, has enlisted the investigative services of her fellow residents to solve a decade-old murder—her own. Abigail Rook and her eccentric employer, Detective R. F. Jackaby, dive into the cold case, starting with a search for Jenny’s fiancé, who went missing the night she died. But when a new, gruesome murder closely mirrors the events of ten years prior, Abigail and Jackaby realize that Jenny’s case isn’t so cold after all, and her killer may be far more dangerous than they suspected.
Fantasy and folklore mix with mad science as Abigail’s race to unravel the mystery leads her across the cold cobblestones of nineteenth-century New England, down to the mythical underworld, and deep into her colleagues’ grim histories to battle the most deadly foe she has ever faced.
Jenny and Abigail are working on a decade-old murder case that, after recent events, is more urgent than ever to solve. The hitch? It’s Jenny’s case on her death, and she is having trouble accessing her memories. Just as Jackaby is about to call off their efforts, another gruesome, eerily familiar murder hits New Fiddleham. Abigail, Jenny, and Jackaby race against time, science, and mythology to solve the two seemingly-intertwined cases before it’s too late.
This is quite possibly the most heart-pounding book in the series yet. Jenny takes the center stage in this novel, just as Abigail did the last. Her case connects to multiple murders thanks to the Moriarty figure from the previous books. And, since she’s ghost and has not passed on to the other side, the characters are thrust into a different kind of mythology: the after life (complete with Charon and everything!).
My favorite part about this book is that it also relies heavily on science, revolution, and the industrial age. When Jenny was alive, her fiance was an inventor, a creator, a fascinated scientist eager to thrust New Fiddleham into the new age. He was recruited and befriended by like-minded individuals, all who met their untimely deaths as well. Fantasy and science collide, and a touch of insanity drives Abigail, Jackaby, and Jenny to the brink.
I’m eager for the fourth book, which will no doubt cover Jackaby’s personal and mysterious history. Once again, Ritter delivers an excellent installment to a series, one that links the previous mysteries to the current one, with the current mystery adding a whole new layer to what will be a promising and explosive conclusion. I am so happy I fell in love with this Whovian, Sherlockian, genre-bending series! It’s so unique and thrilling to read.
Thank you, Algonquin, for providing this book at BEA for review!