Kate Mosse – “The Winter Ghosts”

As a child I loved ghost stories – at least until I realized my imagination was a bit too vivid. But that didn’t stopped me from buying this book on a rainy afternoon four years ago. Afterwards it stood long on the shelf and made it on my TBR last summer.

The story told by the protagonist Freddie to an old man, whom he asked to translate a letter for him, isn’t really alike to those stories I read when I was younger. Of course it’s mysterious, but not in the “I’m to frightened to sleep” kind of way. The action takes place in December 1928. Freddie travels in his car through the Pyrenees, engaged to see some friends, when he has a car accident in the midst of a storm. Somehow he manages to get to a small village and finds a place to sleep. The landlady tells him about a festivity, that is celebrated every year and writes the way to the place, where all village people met, down for him. But when he arrives there, he can’t find her and admires the historic clothing everyone wears. He spends the whole evening with Fabrissa, also after a riot under the guests, and she tells him how life was for her and how the village had to evacuate  in caves in the mountains for a long time once. On the next day, while some men help to fix his car, he is eager to see those caves and really finds them – with all villagers he met the night before inside, rotten to bones. Even Fabrissa.

It’s an archaeological surprise for those people died hundreds of years before persecuted for their religion. Nevertheless – though it might be a shock to know, that the girl one fell in love with was only a ghost – Freddie tries to make the best out of it and gains new will to live which he hadn’t since his older brother died in WW I.

This book was pleasant to read, not really long and good for reading it while on my way to university. It was different from what I expected, though, but made it also possible to check what I’ve learned so far in my French course.

Started: 8.4.15    Finished: 23.4.15

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