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Ghost Talkers by Mary Robinette Kowal

Ghost Talkers (edition 2017)

by Mary Robinette Kowal (Author)

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2742261,492 (4.04)12
Title:Ghost Talkers
Authors:Mary Robinette Kowal (Author)
Info:Tor Books (2017), Edition: Reprint, 304 pages
Collections:To read

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Ghost Talkers by Mary Robinette Kowal



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Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
Ghost Talkers starts off with a really cool premise: mediums who work as spies during WWI. I admired Kowal's dedication to the perspective of a medium. It takes a lot of focus and attention to detail to filter an entire story through such an unusual ability.

If you enjoy fantasy with a historical twist, then you may want to give this one a go!
  TM_White | Jan 6, 2019 |
This was a wonderful historical fantasy set during World War I. Ginger Stuyvesant is an American heiress who is engaged to Captain Ben Harford, an English intelligence officer. Ginger is also a medium and one of the women who take reports from soldiers who die in battle and then watch them go into the light. Their skills and their location is a secret from the Germans since the intelligence they gather helps in the war effort.

She and Ben are harassed by a drunken soldier one evening when they are out together and Ben fights him off. Imagine Ginger's surprise when the same soldier's ghost comes to her the next day to tell her that he was murdered after overhearing threats to the Spirit Corps. When Ginger brings this news to her commanding officer, he is quick to dismiss her information. However, Ben has also been picking up rumors of a traitor in the ranks. When he is murdered, he comes to give his final report but refuses to go on to the light until he finds the one who killed him and the traitor who endangers Ginger and the rest of the Spirit Corps.

She and Ben are in a time crunch. The longer he stays, the worse his memory gets as his personality fragments. And Ginger is torn between her loss and broken heart, and the best good for Ben. They need to retrace his steps and track down the clues that he found to the traitor when he doesn't remember any of it.

I thought the setting and time period with its endemic chauvinism and racism was well done. One of Ginger's colleagues is West Indian. She's the one who developed the technique that has the dead coming to them to report. However, her skin color makes it easy for the commanding officer to ignore her contributions. Another key character is an Indian truck driver who hides the fact that he is also a medium.

The romance between Ben and Ginger was wonderfully realized. I was heartbroken knowing that the relationship had to end. This was a great story filled with memorable characters. ( )
  kmartin802 | Dec 8, 2018 |
I heard Mary read from Ghost Talkers at KGB Fantastic Fiction and it was mesmerizing. I cannot wait to read this book.
  sussura | Sep 29, 2018 |
Three and a half stars. The writing itself was masterful, but the story couldn't always hold my interest. ( )
  whatsmacksaid | Sep 21, 2018 |
The stairway off my grandmother's bedroom was lined with bookshelves and when I was staying with her I'd raid them for stories. I particularly liked the WWII ghost story romances. As an adult I am always tempted by stories about WWII witches fighting in the war. This book very much reminds me of both of those story types. I enjoyed it very much.

You know you're reading a Mary Robinette Kowal novel when there's a soldier named Lethbridge-Stewart and "a doctor in his midforties, with absurdly curly hair and a long scarf that" says, when asked where he's from "Oh, all over. I move from time to time..."

[I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.] ( )
  tldegray | Sep 21, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mary Robinette Kowalprimary authorall editionscalculated
McGrath, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The War Sonnets: The Soldier

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.

—Rubert Brooke
For my niece, Katherine Harrison
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"The Germans were flanking us at Delville Wood when I died."
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Ginger Stuyvesant, an American heiress living in London during World War I, is engaged to Captain Benjamin Harford, an intelligence officer. Ginger is a medium for the Spirit Corps, a special Spiritualist force. Each soldier heading for the front is conditioned to report to the mediums of the Spirit Corps when they die so the Corps can pass instant information about troop movements to military intelligence. Ginger and her fellow mediums contribute a great deal to the war efforts, so long as they pass the information through appropriate channels. While Ben is away at the front, Ginger discovers the presence of a traitor. Without the presence of her fiance to validate her findings, the top brass thinks she's just imagining things. Even worse, it is clear that the Spirit Corps is now being directly targeted by the German war effort. Left to her own devices, Ginger has to find out how the Germans are targeting the Spirit Corps and stop them. This is a difficult and dangerous task for a woman of that era, but this time both the spirit and the flesh are willing.--Publisher description.… (more)

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Mary Robinette Kowal is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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Mary Robinette Kowal chatted with LibraryThing members from Sep 13, 2010 to Sep 26, 2010. Read the chat.

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