Top critical review
Creepy, but a bit too long-winded for my taste...
Reviewed in the United States on October 25, 2018
I have no idea how I feel about this book, so it's getting 2.5 stars...average in every sense of the word.
So, let me begin by saying...if you're reading this book and find the first few chapters uninspiring and confusing...keep pushing through. The story does eventually come together and the reader starts getting a much clearer sense of where it's going, and what it all means. Actually, it was fairly easy to figure out the plot, which I found disappointing. Surprises are limited.
The style of writing is overly wordy and a bit old-fashioned. I have an extensive vocabulary, but there were several words I was forced to double click on, in order to research their definitions. The story, easily, could have been cut in half. At times, it felt never-ending.
One peculiar thing I noticed at various points throughout the novel was that Ghost Story reminded me a bit of Stephen King's Needful Things. I assumed Mr. Straub was inspired by his future co-author. Then I realized this book was actually published in the late 70s, long before Needful Things. It appears to me that Mr. King may, in fact, have been inspired by Peter Straub. Both stories cover an entire town full of characters, and their lives (or lack thereof) during a paranormal event.
Is this book worth reading? If you enjoy vintage horror, then yes, I'd say you'd enjoy this novel. For me, personally, it was a bit too long-winded, with not enough action, and some intensely unlikable characters. Having said that, the story is, indeed, creepy. I can understand it's appeal.