Review: The Ghost of Gracie Flynn by Joanna Morrison


Title: The Ghost of Gracie Flynn

Author: Joanna Morrison

Published: 5th October 2022, Fremantle Press

Status: Read October 2022 courtesy Fremantle Press



My Thoughts:


“What do you care about these things, Isla? The light and the shadows of the human heart? Nothing yet, I know. But you will, one day. And that’s what this story is about—the light and the shadows”

After the shocking death of Gracie Flynn, her closest friends- Robyn, Sam, and boyfriend Cohen drifted apart. Eighteen years later they are reunited, and Gracie watches wistfully from the ether as they stumble around each other.

The narrative unfolds from the ghostly perspective of Gracie, who is speaking to the Sam’s infant daughter, Isla. Shifting between the past and present, Gracie reveals how the foursome was formed at university, and the dynamics of their relationships, as friends, lovers and something in between. Eighteen years later none of the three are where they once imagined they would be, and Gracie’s unsolved murder still haunts them all, though in different ways. Their reunion is uncomfortable, especially as each of them are at a crossroads in their own lives. And then Sam is killed and Robyn is determined that this time she’ll find answers.

The twin mysteries unravel slowly over the course of the novel. Morrison makes good use of red herrings and well timed revelations. My suspicions regarding Grace’s killer were confirmed, but the manner surprised me. Of the multiple suspects in Sam’s murder, I couldn’t decide who was more likely to be responsible.

Gracie’s omniscient viewpoint creates an intimacy that reveals the complexity of Morrison’s characters. All of them, major and minor, are portrayed with authenticity, as are the bonds between them.

There’s a dreamy, meditative quality to Morrison’s lyrical prose. The narrative tone is imbued with a mix of longing, sorrow, and inevitably. Though quite short at just over 200 pages, the novel is well paced and feels complete.

A poignant story about friendship, longing, love, loss, and betrayal, The Ghost of Gracie Flynn is an impressive debut from Joanna Morrison.


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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: It’s Monday! WhatAre You Reading? #SundaySalon #SundayPost | book'd out
  2. WendyW
    Nov 14, 2022 @ 09:12:55

    So impressive this is written by a debut author

    Liked by 1 person


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