Ian King - The Girl Who Was Buried in Her Ball Gown
The Girl Who Was Buried in Her Ball Gown
On the evening of the junior high school ball, a young girl experiences her first kiss. During the amazing, yet awkward moment, something goes horribly wrong and her life is turned upside down completely. She soon realises that her new existence has been severed from the usual humdrum of a typical teenage girl, and that she has been hurled into the dark and frightening world of the supernatural.
REVIEW **** (Chris J)
I read this in just under a day, two sittings, and thoroughly enjoyed it.
While it holds elements of the Ghost (movie), the book stands on its own due to its location and inclusion of the New Zealand culture.
Emma, a thirteen-year-old, dies on the night of the school ball mere minutes after her first and last kiss. Her death was accidental, and carries a ripple effect across the lives of her family, the boy she was with at the time (also injured), and the driver of the car that killed her, and others. Now a ghost, Emma learns to adjust to her new existence, encounters new enemies, and has to protect herself and everyone else related to her. She even adds to this by helping a few others.
It's a simple story with hardly any confusing complications, but there is enough conflict between Emma, her family, and the other spirits to keep the story moving.
REVIEW **** (Richard M)
Now this book is a bit different. Once you get over 'The Book Thief' narrator being dead or death, you can get your head around 'Ball Gown'. It's a hard book to review without giving away its secrets, but here goes.
Teenager Emma was having a pretty good evening snogging with her boyfriend, until pissed-as-a-fart Patrick cleans her up in his car. So now Emma's in limbo with a bunch of bad-arse demons whose sole (maybe that should be soul) purpose is to put evil thoughts into those living predisposed to doing bad stuff.
I'm not going into the whole ghost world between living and dead (or un-dead), because that'll spoil it for you.
I thought it was going to be a bunch of teenage angst, but the tale turned out to be a damned good (although dark) read and I'll let you decide on the ending, which wasn't what I expected.
REVIEW ***** (Kathy)
Very creative and a real 'feel good' story in the end.
Such a courageous way to write a story; where most books are just ending, this one starts. The author then goes on to create an entire world beyond our knowing. The main character, Emma, is thrust into this world and slowly learns how to deal with it. In so doing she resolves questions, and helps protect those she loves whilst understanding herself and her own place and heart.
On one level, the story was a teenager's view of how things are - direct, and black and white. However, on another level the author, Ian King, makes us consider not only our own way of looking at life and interacting with others, but also how others may be different than us and view life differently. Nevertheless, we can always choose to abide together harmoniously with just a little bit of effort.
I would recommend reading this book for both teenagers and adults. It's a fast read, but well fleshed out.
REVIEW ***** (Kevin C)
Excellent book, a real page-turner, hit a few emotion buttons, follows the path of a new "life" as a ghost caught between death and the future. introduces humour and carry over behaviour.
REVIEW ***** (Linda S)
I could not put this book down. The author obviously has a fantastic grasp of how to influence perceptions of others through his clever story telling abilities.