The Demons of Ghent MOBI î The Demons MOBI :í

The Demons of Ghent MOBI î The Demons  MOBI :í Grant continues on her theme of Forbidden Spaces in the second instalment of the trilogy Although Veerle reprises as the lead character there is some cross over from the previous book This could be read as a standalone, particularly as we are treated to several increasingly detailed recaps I haven t encountered recaps in Helen Grant s books before and if I m honest, after the initial cross reference I did find them irritating The book may have worked better with a new set of characters Susp Grant continues on her theme of Forbidden Spaces in the second instalment of the trilogy Although Veerle reprises as the lead character there is some cross over from the previous book This could be read as a standalone, particularly as we are treated to several increasingly detailed recaps I haven t encountered recaps in Helen Grant s books before and if I m honest, after the initial cross reference I did find them irritating The book may have worked better with a new set of characters Suspending disbelief for Veerle s antics in book 1 was credible but in this book I just wasn t as convinced Having gone through a difficult situation in book one, you would have thought she would have spotted danger a mile off and ran in the opposite direction Unfortunately she walks straight back into itagain Hmmm I m a bit torn now as to whether to pick up book 3.Having said that, Grant is a strong writer she knows how to tell a tale OKwell, I don t know the whole story It s kind of old you know, the stuff your grandma tells you Years and years ago, I mean hundreds of years ago, there was this rich guy who lived in Ghent and he s supposed to have summoned these demons up to protect him and his family, so nobody could kill them Anyway, I guess they were easier to call up than to get rid of, because supposedly they re still here, up on the rooftops, watching the city every nightVeerle De Keyser returns in The DeOKwell, I don t know the whole story It s kind of old you know, the stuff your grandma tells you Years and years ago, I mean hundreds of years ago, there was this rich guy who lived in Ghent and he s supposed to have summoned these demons up to protect him and his family, so nobody could kill them Anyway, I guess they were easier to call up than to get rid of, because supposedly they re still here, up on the rooftops, watching the city every nightVeerle De Keyser returns in The Demons of Ghent Helen Grant s second novel in the Forbidden Spaces Trilogy She now lives with her father and his girlfriend in the city of Ghent in Flemish Belgium Life isn t easy her father is cold, his girlfriend is unsympathetic and she misses Kris And Hommel, who everybody presumed was dead, is back in the world of the living After meeting local enthusiastic university student Bram, Veerle finds out new hidden things about the city and things get a lot stranger A very enjoyable and creepy book Deftly plotted and with a broad vocabulary, the novel offers some great escapism As a young adult novel, Grant s work stands head and shoulders above most of the genre The sequel to SILENT SATURDAY, and second book in the FORBIDDEN SPACES trilogy set in Flanders, Belgium I love Helen Grant s brand of YA mystery I ve read all of them so far and enjoyed them all They re always tightly plotted and very well paced, with a psychological and or paranormal element added in the mix With the first book in the Forbidden Spaces trilogy, Silent Saturday , Grant moved away from standalone stories and started a trilogy While the ending of that book was a bit of a cliffhanger and left me wanting Demons of Ghent immediately, I found that Grant s abilities to pace a story I love Helen Grant s brand of YA mystery I ve read all of them so far and enjoyed them all They re always tightly plotted and very well paced, with a psychological and or paranormal element added in the mix With the first book in the Forbidden Spaces trilogy, Silent Saturday , Grant moved away from standalone stories and started a trilogy While the ending of that book was a bit of a cliffhanger and left me wanting Demons of Ghent immediately, I found that Grant s abilities to pace a story worked just as well in a series setting as it did in a standalone story Starting Demons of Ghent though was a bit disorienting it was a continuation of Veerle s story, but not a direct one and Veerle s life and situation has completely changed.After the ending of the previous book Veerle has undergone a long period of recovery and has moved to Ghent to live with her father and his new partner Anneke To say that this situation is less than ideal is an understatement They are living in a two bedroom apartment and Anneke is very, very pregnant with Veerle s half brother and isn t too pleased at Veerle s having taken over what was supposed to be the baby s room Of course, it goes deeper than that, as Anneke is severely displeased at suddenly having a live in step daughter who she never counted on having to care for and doesn t much like anyway And if I wanted to be really ungenerous here, I d say she s jealous of the fact that Geert does obviously love his daughter and she s afraid that he ll choose Veerle over his new family In any case, Anneke turns into the step mother from hell, basically telling Veerle she has to move out and preferably never come back when she becomes eighteen or Anneke will ruin her relationship with her dad For a girl trying to come to grips with the traumatic experiences of not just being confronted by the Hunter, but losing her mother as well, this is a less than happy and healthy environment to regain her footing.The one pillar you d expect Veerle to be able to lean on, her boyfriend Kris, has done a disappearing act, dropping out of contact a week before the start of the book This has left Veerle hurt and confused and when she runs into the previously thought dead Hommel, Kris ex girlfriend, Veerle soon puts two and to together to make four and a half By this point Grant had me going What the hell, Kris out loud, as I really, really hadn t expected this for the boy we met in Silent Saturday Meanwhile, when she tries to find Hommel again, Veerle meets Bram, a student at Ghent University Bram is kind of dreamy and has a good heart and a good head on his shoulders, but that s what I thought about Kris as well and look how that turned out, so I found myself being a bit apprehensive of the guy, though he won me over completely by the end of the book It ll be interesting to see where Grant takes this relationship in the next book, because of course there are complications throughout the book, not least Veerle s lingering feelings for Kris.The murder mystery at the heart of the plot is completely creepy and also marks a return to the supernatural gloss that marked much of Grant s previous work Like the mystery of the stained glass in The Glass Demon, the murders seem to have a connection to a local legend, in this case the titular Demons of Ghent, who are connected to the Ghent Altarpiece, one of the master pieces of Northern European art and one of Belgium s national treasures Its role in the mystery is fascinating and horrific and one of several SHE DID WHAT evoking revelations Grant works into the novel I really enjoyed Grant s return to a hint of the supernatural, because it s something she does very well while the supernatural element is never presented as something that should be accepted without question, she also makes it plausible enough that it isn t easily dismissed I also have to note that Veerle has the worst luck After what happened with the Hunter to be drawn into another such case speaks to a real talent at attracting trouble.It s hard to discuss too much of the novel without giving the game away, but suffice it to say I found the book compelling The scenes set in the Gravensteen, Ghent s medieval castle, were fascinating, especially since I ve visited the place and I could picture the setting really vividly But Grant makes Ghent shine throughout the book It s clear that she loves the city, understandably so because it is a lovely place, and she uses its attractions in the fullest measures possible to tell her tale But while Ghent is almost a character in its own right, Veerle remains the heart of the narrative If Silent Saturday was the story of Veerle breaking free of her mother s smothering embrace and discovering she was a person of her own, Demons of Ghent is the tale of Veerle trying to piece together her life as her own person, to find out who she wants to be It ll be interesting to see whether by the end of Urban Legends, the concluding book in the trilogy, Veerle will have a clearer picture of who Veerle de Keyser truly is and what she wants to do with her life In any case I fully intend to be there to find out, as she is an irresistible protagonist and Grant definitely knows how to tell an intriguing story.This book was provided for review by the publisher Following on from Silent Saturday, the first in the series, Demons of Ghent packs a littlepunch and you feel that the writer has really got into her stride The evocation of the city and it s ancient landscape is really good and using the famous Ghent altarpiece look it up as a key part of the story is really inspired Grant centres the plot around a local legend and once again, like in the first novel, treads the line between fantasy and reality with success. This is the second in a series of books, and while it s probably better to have read the first book first, this one worked for me, new to the series, as a standalone, recapping as necessary on needed back plot From the opening chapter it s a gripping thriller, wonderfully evoking the feeling of Ghent and its history and old buildings The plot twists and turns unexpectedly and is gripping to the very end The characters are also well fleshed out and seem always to act true to character Best of This is the second in a series of books, and while it s probably better to have read the first book first, this one worked for me, new to the series, as a standalone, recapping as necessary on needed back plot From the opening chapter it s a gripping thriller, wonderfully evoking the feeling of Ghent and its history and old buildings The plot twists and turns unexpectedly and is gripping to the very end The characters are also well fleshed out and seem always to act true to character Best of all the book is extremely well written, with marvellous descriptive passages balanced against exciting drama sequences, and narrative sections, never feeling either padded or underwritten I also like the use of art history in places Thoroughly recommend this book to anyone who likes a good thriller, especially with an added generous dash of history thrown in And don t be put off by it being marketed as a young adult book I reckon this book could appeal to many age groups Every bit as thrilling as Silent Saturday, but if anything even darker andatmospheric There are the same tense family relations as before, but this time the urban exploration angle moves to the rooftops, and the art history aspect keeps things fresh Grant has a talent for striking imagery and similes which makes the prose a pleasure to read, but it s the plot which keeps the pages turning, all the way up to the unexpected ending Roll on volume three. I love this series So tense and emotional. Demons of Ghent is the second book in Helen Grant s fabulous Forbidden Spaces trilogy and one I knew I had to read as soon as possible after finishing the first, Silent Saturday There s always a worry with the second book in a series that it may suffer from second book syndrome, where it does not live up to the glory of the previous novel I m happy to say, this was most definitely not the case with Demons of Ghent in fact, I think I enjoyed it evenThere s something very comforting c Demons of Ghent is the second book in Helen Grant s fabulous Forbidden Spaces trilogy and one I knew I had to read as soon as possible after finishing the first, Silent Saturday There s always a worry with the second book in a series that it may suffer from second book syndrome, where it does not live up to the glory of the previous novel I m happy to say, this was most definitely not the case with Demons of Ghent in fact, I think I enjoyed it evenThere s something very comforting coming to a book where we are familiar with the characters back story, personality etc but are still very keen to discover new secrets and the author comes up with some real treasures in this second offering.I was slightly surprised to discover that the story does not pick up directly where Silent Saturday ended but in a way, it made itintriguing as a reader to think about exactly what may have occurred I m not going to give anything away for anyone who hasn t read the first book in the series but to say Veerle De Keyser s life has changed dramatically would be an understatement She has been through hell and back again and when the story opens, she has moved to Ghent to live with her father and his pregnant girlfriend, Anneke As you may be able to guess, Anneke isn t exactly thrilled that she is having to play step mother to her boyfriend s daughter, especially when she is trying to cement her own new family and she views Veerle as a typical teenage delinquent who has put her father under enough strain already with her antics in the last novel Never mind the trauma that Veerle has gone through, eh Veerle is feeling isolated enough as it is, coming to a new town and having to make new friends and when she is told that she categorically cannot see her boyfriend, Kris again she feels evenalone It doesn t seem to matter however, as Kris appears to have dropped off the radar completely and isn t even answering her calls, adding to her misery Things get stranger still when she appears to spot a girl called Hommel who also happens to be Kris s ex girlfriend by the way alive and apparently well in Ghent The fact is, she s supposed to be dead All of this combined means Veerle is in desperate need of a friend Enter Bram, a student at Ghent University and a breath of fresh air for our heroine He is funny, kind, sensitive, a great shoulder to cry on and introduces Veerle to something connected to one of her great passions, climbing More specifically, he clambers around the roof tops of Ghent at night and reminds Veerle that life can be fun again, something she seriously needs.But, you guessed it the fun can only last so long until Death once again rears his ugly head There is an ancient legend in Ghent that involves demons on the rooftops and in this narrative is connected to The Ghent Altarpiece, a large piece of 15th century art that depicts the Annunciation of Mary, portraits of Christ, John the Baptist and Adam and Eve amongst others , with the central panel showing the adoration of The Lamb of God overseen by The Holy Spirit Veerle and Bram stumble upon the horror of people apparently being thrown off the rooftops of Ghent but is it the work of a demonic entity or just a demonic individual I don t want to say anyabout the plot but I just loved the direction in which Helen Grant took this story There are so many exciting and quite honestly, jaw dropping moments that I could hardly keep still until I had finished the entire book and even then, she leaves us with such a beauty of a cliffhanger that it immediately had me eagerly anticipating the final book in the trilogy, Urban Legends The perfect combination of the supernatural with authentic art history made this narrative so thrilling and educational I might add that I immediately had to go and research The Ghent Altarpiece after I had finished the novel Although I needn t have bothered, the author s descriptive prose is so vivid, you could almost imagine you were standing in front of the piece without any previous knowledge of it.The characterisation once again is superb, we see a different,mature Veerle from Silent Saturday as she struggles to overcome her previous traumas while still dealing with a number of personal family issues I did enjoy the lighter side that Bram brought to the narrative and thought he was a fantastic antidote for what Veerle had gone through and a means for her to smile again For those missing the intensity of Mr Kris Verstraeten however, never fear readers, he does return but things are slightly different for him and Veerle Say noI finished The Demons of Ghent completely in love with this series and hugely excited for the final chapter in the trilogy Does it HAVE to end though For my full review, please see my blog at This is the second in the Forbidden Spaces trilogy and I enjoyed it eventhan the first, Silent Saturday.At first I was bothered, because the book leaves quite a lot of questions unanswered from Silent Saturday, but after a while I decided that the fault lay in Silent Saturday itself those questions should have been wrapped up at the end of the first book Also there is a sense that we are repeating the same plot as the first book, but again, I think that the first book is the weak link i This is the second in the Forbidden Spaces trilogy and I enjoyed it eventhan the first, Silent Saturday.At first I was bothered, because the book leaves quite a lot of questions unanswered from Silent Saturday, but after a while I decided that the fault lay in Silent Saturday itself those questions should have been wrapped up at the end of the first book Also there is a sense that we are repeating the same plot as the first book, but again, I think that the first book is the weak link in the chain.Demons of Ghent is a much richer story than Silent Saturday, with the Ghent altarpiece as its bedrock, and someinteresting, well rounded characters Veerle s life is developed muchfully in this book, without any of the holes that I felt were present in the first.The setting really shines through, and the prose is rich and layered There are plenty of exciting moments and some rewarding character interactions, with Veerle s complicated love life driving a lot of these.The ending is absolutely jaw dropping, and is a textbook example of how to write a gripping, convincing thriller ending with twists and turns and a stunning surprise Helen Grant is a master The final few chapters bring us nicely back down to earth literally and answer all our urgent questions, leaving us with just one nagging doubt about who the killer really was and that doubt is good I ll definitely be moving straight on to Urban Legends

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