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4.1 out of 5 stars16
4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 24 June 2014
What an excellent book! It's atmospheric, scary in parts and a great story that really pulls you in.
I couldn't put it down and was up till 5 in the morning reading it from beginning to end.
It's a thriller, an adventure and an excellent ghost story. Extremely well written and every word moves the story on.
I've bought a lot of books that are apparently ghost stories and just end up being downright stupid, boring and empty or the author resorts to blood and gore in an attempt to scare you.
It's very rare to find a good ghost story full of atmosphere and skilled writing, 'Company of Ghosts' is one of the very few that achieves that.
I would recommend it highly! xx
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on 1 December 2013
Though an adult I read a lot of YA, for enjoyment and because I write it myself. Berlie Doherty's latest novel for teenagers is written in one of my favourite genres, the ghost story. This one happens though on the aptly named Wild Island, where 16 year old Ellie, escaping from family troubles, goes to stay there for a holiday. Events happen over which she has no control, and she spends several days (and increasingly disturbed and disturbing nights) alone on the Island. She doesn't lack for food, or water or a dry roof to sleep under but she is has no internet, mobile, tv, radio, or human company. She is completely alone. Except she isn't. This book works as both a ghost story haunting thriller and as a coming of age novel wherein Ellie has to cope with the isolation, fend for herself, keep the loneliness at bay, deal with her emotions and understand what the island and its ghost want from her. It is beautifully written, some passages describing the sea are almost elegaic. The ending is pretty exciting too. I won't give that bit away. A lovely, dare I say almost old fashioned style of story from Doherty.
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on 25 December 2013
Although aimed at Young Adults, I enjoyed this book very much at the age of 67! I thought I should check it out before passing it onto my granddaughters, but once I'd started reading I couldn't put the book down. There were parts that sent shivers running up and down my spine, but I should have known that you can always trust Berlie Doherty to produce a positive and hopeful ending. The story of a rather troubled, but resourceful teenage girl - who accidently becomes isolated on an Scottish island - contains wonderfully vivid descriptions and evokes a powerful sense of place. But A COMPANY OF GHOSTS is also a very modern story and it made me reflect once again on the true priorities in life.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 28 October 2013
16 year old Ellie's parents have divorced. Her mother remarries on the morning Ellie decides to run away from home with little more than a rucksack, no money and nowhere to go. She is upset, distressed and perplexed at her parents split as no-one has explained the reasons to her. She meets a friend, Morag, whose family take Ellie with them on their annual holiday to a remote uninhabited Scottish island. On the way, Morag becomes unwell. Dad takes her home. Her brother George and Ellie proceed to 'Wild Island' in fisherman Guthrie's boat. He once was lighthouse keeper there. He feels Ellie should not go using oddly ominous words. The cottage they stay in has basic facilities; no running water, electricity or communication. There is a stock of tinned food. On the wall is a picture of a boat forebodingly named 'Spectre'. George shows Ellie the beauty and the dangers of the island. He leaves in a sailing boat to get fresh supplies from the mainland until his parents arrive with Morag. Ellie decides to stay on the island until he returns on the next high tide but he does not.

Ellie is left alone, or so she believes, occupying her time and motivating herself with painting, reminiscing, exploring the island and admiring it's wildlife and landscapes with 'last streaks of sunset...as if the sun is bleeding into the water'. Disturbingly, Ellie begins to hear strange noises and see fleeting shadows and apparitions. Real, or is her mind in imaginative turmoil? Events take Ellie through a dramatic sequence of experiences that author Berlie Doherty relates using beautiful prose without any wasted words, enabling the reader to graphically see and feel Ellie's predicament as the story unfolds.

This is a truly magnificent atmospheric ghost story that is genuinely chilling and eerie. The narrative and the construction of the plot are skilfully crafted, haunting and touching with a tragic and tender love story involved. A wonderful novel that is a delightful and enjoyable experience to read. Highly recommended.
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on 2 March 2014
I love Berlie Doherty's books, and this new story is one of her best - a mix of ghost story and disturbed families. Teenager Ellie finds herself left alone on a deserted island without fresh food, bedding, a phone, or any means of getting help from the mainland - which is tantalisingly near, yet inaccessible. Most of the story is taken up with her gradual realisation of her plight, her increasing fear, and her growing feeling that the island is haunted. It's a truly scary story and I had no idea what was going to happen or whether Ellie would ever escape. It's compulsively readable, even though for much of the time almost nothing is happening - at least on the surface. The writing is lyrical and beautiful, creating a slow, hypnotic build-up of tension.
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on 1 November 2013
Brilliant. Thank you so much Berlin Doherty for writing such a beautifully brilliant novel. This is probably my favourite book, I would recommend it to anyone. Please keep writing and I will keep reading...hoping to find another read as enjoyable as this.
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on 29 January 2014
Loved the book I couldn't put it down, well written with a good gripping story I would recommend to anyone.
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on 6 February 2014
The book was for my granddaughter. She said it was a good story and ending and she enjoyed reading it.
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on 17 May 2015
this book was just Ok. I found the narratives just too flowery and prolonged, felt like I wanted to prod the author and say get on with it. Not a book I would bother reading again
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on 13 December 2013
I really enjoyed this book and the beautiful descriptions, I could almost smell
the sea myself. Will pass this on to my daughter to read
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