A Head Full of Ghosts

A Head Full of Ghosts

A Novel

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
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The lives of the Barretts, a normal suburban New England family, are torn apart when fourteen-year-old Marjorie begins to display signs of what at first seems to be acute schizophrenia, but worsens until they believe it is actually demonic possession, as they become the center of a reality TV show.
Publisher: New York : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2016, c2015
Edition: 1st William Morrow paperback ed
ISBN: 9780062363244
Characteristics: 286 p. ; 24 cm

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CRRL_MegRaymond Jan 25, 2018

Is fourteen year Marjorie schizophrenic? Or possessed by a demon? Either way, a reality TV show wants film rights.

n
nidus
Jan 03, 2018

Enjoyed this book. The handling of the point-of-view of an eight-year-old girl was the most skilled part and leads me to say that it was quite readable without being extraordinary. Three stars.

p
Petruccellius_Rex
Oct 27, 2017

The most intriguing aspect of this story is the question of what the truth is and what actually happened. The "possession"/possession is filmed for TV with all the exaggerations, suggestions and nuances that come with it, which affects Merry's recollection years later as she tells the story to the reporter and works through it in her pseudonymous blog. Incorporating the unreliability of memory was clever and mirrors our own conflicting opinions on what's happening. I really enjoyed the blog posts discussing each episode spliced between the retelling of actual events. And yeah, there's a twist, but overall it fell flat for me. I didn't feel any atmospheric buildup, characters were pretty banal (kid-Merry was insanely annoying for me, but that's beside the point), and I would've liked some introspective passages for each character at various points - for example, give us an insight into the confessional bits. Also, the cover is creepier than the book. Ultimately: meh.

c
Cedowns2
Mar 26, 2017

Was a bit put off with the blog writing and the slow build-up to the story. I was even thinking about returning it without having finished reading the story. However, the writer is good as far as invoking imagery that can really put you in the settings. And the wrap-up was so good that I went back and read all of the parts I'd skipped.

k
Kmum1
Mar 11, 2017

Sometimes book covers just don't live up to the book. Came across this book by chance, read the cover and was totally intrigued. I started this book but literally had to force myself to sit down and read it, skipping ahead and reading little blurbs I kept thinking that it was going to get better (and maybe it does judging from the other reviews) but for me I just couldn't get there. Only made it about a third of the way through.

o
okayokayokay
Jan 31, 2017

Head Full of Ghosts is a great book for those looking for a fresh read in the world of horror. It combines pop culture, and horror in away that takes some getting used to, but the end pays off in a big way. Don't let the blog post style chapters ruin it for you, like they almost did for me. It's worth it!

b
bayougal
Jan 02, 2017

Just a truly excellent book, start to finish.

c
claireswazey
Dec 27, 2016

Wow! Excellent horror fiction. Plot is young girl (Marjorie) exhibits eerie and frightening behaviorisms; family hires exorcist and allows the exorcism to be filmed by a reality show because they are in deep financial trouble. Fast forward to 15 years later where her now adult little sister is being interviewed.

The characters (including Marjorie herself) repeatedly question whether or not she's truly possessed or is faking it. However, there are several things Marjorie does that are not physically and humanly possible. So I know what my guess is!

Very creepy, very chilling and oh so satisfying to read!!

Amy_MarkhamPL Dec 15, 2016

Terrifying, devastating, and just so, so smart. This is a book that haunted me for months after finishing it.

VaughanPLKasey Dec 02, 2016

This book is about as close to perfect as it is possible to be. Quietly chilling, and devastatingly real-feeling.

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VV12
Nov 11, 2015

VV12 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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