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Reviewed by Joel R. Dennstedt for Readers' Favorite
The premise of The Ghost Chronicles 2, a between-life fiction adventure by Marlo Berliner, is so strong that one knows very well a great story is sure to follow. As explained immediately at the beginning by one between-life soul, Tom (as told to him by our greatest-ever President) delineates for the newly-spirited Michael the five roles of after-life souls: Messengers, Navigators, Protectors, Seers, and Warriors. Tom is a protector. His ward’s classification is not yet known. Both are learning what their roles might eventually entail. And this process for maneuvering as a purposeful spirit in a world between the earthly and the presumed-heavenly makes for a most fascinating and adventurous journey, especially when you factor in the demons and other evildoers. With wonderfully competent writing and a powerfully concise style, Ms. Berliner easily holds her readers enthralled throughout this high octane, thrilling ride.
Young adult fiction, as The Ghost Chronicles series is conveniently labelled, is often interest-constrained to that particular demographic. The quality of Berliner's writing, however, ensures that curious guests to Marlo Berliner’s exquisitely formulated world may easily include many self-indulgent, guilty-pleasure seeking adults such as myself. The plotting is fast and furious, the dialogue is pitch-perfect, and the human interest is ignited often with true love, mystery, and crisis. In other words, this literary adventure is filled with fun, action, and intrigue of a highly believable, supernatural sort. That Ms. Berliner also conveys a thoroughly adult understanding of the devastating grief survivors feel over their deceased loved ones only adds to the veracity and completeness of her book. It would be a shame to waste all this talented fun solely on the kids.