The Realm of the Hungry Ghosts Paperback – 31 Mar 2012
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"A book that refuses to be comfortably straight-jacketed into one genre, The Realm of the Hungry Ghosts takes the reader into a complex supernatural thriller that, at its heart, reveals a satisfying, thoughtful literary novel. Murning is a storyteller from the old school, where language and character are paramount, and the cast of characters take us from past to present, through love, suspicion and finally to resolution. Lyrical and thought-provoking, this is a novel to be savoured."
--Ruth Dugdall - author of The Woman Before Me and The Sacrificial Man.
"A book that refuses to be comfortably straight-jacketed into one genre, The Realm of the Hungry Ghosts takes the reader into a complex supernatural thriller that, at its heart, reveals a satisfying, thoughtful literary novel. Murning is a storyteller from the old school, where language and character are paramount, and the cast of characters take us from past to present, through love, suspicion and finally to resolution. Lyrical and thought-provoking, this is a novel to be savoured." --Ruth Dugdall - author of The Woman Before Me and The Sacrificial Man.
About the Author
Gary is a writer from the north-east of England, he is an active blogger and tweeter within the writing community.
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Top Customer Reviews
Gary Murning always seems to come up with original and highly enjoyable books. This is no exception -- even though it is not for the faint-hearted at times!
His characterisation is as ever masterful, with a depth that begs the question, what were his cast of characters doing before the events of the current novel, surely there must be some tales to tell of the times before Sonny & Ashley got married? What about Oliver & Don? Not only that, what will they do now?
The whole story/journal/diary within a story would make an interesting tale in itself, though I will admit Sonny as author writing a story within the story with its later 'wall-breaking' did cause me to lose my connectedness for a few seconds, if only for its lack of subtlety.
The nose-tweaking nod to the Hollywood obsession with sequels to successful films, the whole franchising effort to which all modern films appear to succumb was a beautiful touch, but may well only have been in my own head as I read the last few pages.
If you're of a sensitive disposition then tissues might well be necessary, do make sure if required, that the lights work. Get yourself a coffee/tea/cocoa and find a comfortable seat within which to sit.
Sit back and relax.
Ahead of you are 412 pages of thought-provoking, mind-engrossing prose from an expert.
I don't want to give too much away - but this book is a psychological rollercoaster that I would thoroughly recommend to any reader. Just make sure you read it with the lights on!!
At the beginning of the story, we meet Sonny Moore, his wife and daughter along with their friends and neighbours. The rich, and sometimes humorous, dialogue between the characters explains the various relationships beautifully, and as the story gathers pace and intensity, so does your level of anxiety at what might happen next. I really don't want to elaborate on the story, because I want you to experience every laugh, gasp and tear that I did on my first reading. Suffice to say you will not be disappointed - but don't blame me if you have to sleep with the lights on...
Briefly, it's a great book. For those (like myself) who've been a bit disenchanted with the whole "Haunted House" genre, this is like a breath of fresh air. A superb, chilling plot with excellent characterization, rather than the usual "young family move to an evil house" template with cut 'n' paste characters.
I read the book in only a few sittings and, believe me, this is rare for me. I did make the mistake of reading into the early hours, but I'd advise against this. Such a chilling novel.
The ending is satisfying and moving, rather than the usual cop-out in this genre. I can't recommend it highly enough.
An excellent read.
"Throw out all the literary stuff," said Colette, his editor and mentor.
Murning HAS written a literary book but , quite unselfconsciously, HAS managed to bin all the literary stuff. He's gentle on the adjectives and adverbs and all the rest of the prinked-up sesquipedalian nonsense . When you read, you can hear and feel Murning's no-nonsense Northern grit. In some passages, you will hear hear Sillitoe and Barstow, in others you can hear Murning the poet. He has delivered a story - a literary story but crafted by someone whose progress has been breathtaking.
You don't need to know where the story is set - you KNOW. You allow yourself to sink and wallow in the complexity of the idea, the relationships and the subtly sketched characters.
If you want to allow yourself to sink into an exceptional piece or work, delivered by a master storyteller - this one is for you.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed this well-written, deep and intelligent ghost story with its three parallel storylines and will certainly be reading other books by this author.Published 21 months ago by Cari Percy
The first Gary William Murning book I have read and I will definitely be reading other books by this author. Read morePublished on 23 Oct. 2012 by Mrs Alexandra Latimer
If you expect to get a horror novel when reading this book, you won't be disappointed. It is haunting, disturbing and creepy. But in my opinion, you get much more than that. Read morePublished on 22 Oct. 2012 by Veronika
It is not often I do not finish a book but 60% into this particular read there was a scene I found so disturbing and ugly that I did not wish to read on. Read morePublished on 3 Aug. 2012 by R T Twinem
I had read the authors 2 previous books which I thoroughly enjoyed, I like his writing style. This book however spooked me, I read it whilst my husband was away on business and a... Read morePublished on 18 Jun. 2012 by Mulled Red
It's been quite a long time since I've read a book where I don't know what direction it's going in. This story took the ground from underneath my feet, it's a story that happens... Read morePublished on 28 May 2012 by Linda Sgoluppi
I have enjoyed every one of Gary Murning's novels, whether in print or on the Kindle. They all have very different subject matters, plots, situations, and are all equally... Read morePublished on 14 May 2012 by Eckythump