The Hungry Ghost by H.S. Norup

I was pleasantly surprised by this fantastic book. I was expecting it to be a typical ghost story, yet it’s not. It’s more the story of a journey of two girls, one living, one dead, finding themselves and family old and new. When Freja is sent to Singapore to live with her dad and step-mother, she is completely thrown off balance. Her mother is ill, she doesn’t really know her step-mother that well and she has twin brothers that she doesn’t know. She is sad, angry and apprehensive about the new chapter of her life that she is about to begin.

Upon arriving in Singapore, Freja encounters a ghostly figure in the garden late at night. It appears that a young girl, about her age, is beckoning to her and has some connection to her father. Freja follows her into a mysterious forest that turns out to be a cemetery. Freja has arrived at the time of the Hungry Ghost Festival. Freja continues to see the ghost girl on several occasions and slowly builds a unique relationship with her. She discovers that the girl just wants to be remembered. Once she is remembered , she can go peacefully back to the land of the dead and rest.

Thus begins a journey to discover who the girl is, what happened to her and along the way, Freja discovers secrets of her own and the importance of a family. She begins to grow closer to her step-mother and little brothers. Can Freja help the girl rest peacefully and heal the cracks that are in her own family?

This story is about family, love, traditions, secrets and trust. It is very engaging and I read it in one go. It is written in a way that leaves you wanting more and more. It stirs up a variety of emotions in the reader and draws you into Freja’s story. I highly recommend this book for just the pure enjoyment of reading it, as well as learning a bit about Chinese history.

I feel very lucky to have been part of this blog tour and look forward to reading more books by H.S. Norup. Check out the other stops on the tour to see more reviews.

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