Sixteen-year-old Luke has no idea what he’s in for when he inherits his dad’s Host of malevolent ghosts.
Luke hasn’t seen his dad, host of a TV show about the paranormal, for years. As the book opens, he learns about his father’s death and his inheritance of some £4 million. In order to receive the money, he must sign a strange agreement written in Latin on vellum. He also receives his dad’s chaotic papers and an ancient green book that he can’t open. Soon Luke meets the Vassal and the Judge, two of the eight-strong Host of ghosts that his father enslaved as a powerful necromancer. Luke wants simply to free them but learns that’s not an option. Enter the Shepherd, bound as one of the Host but an ancient necromancer himself, who knows how to use the green book and aims to trick Luke into giving up what little power he has. Luke teams up with Elza, a bookish local girl with second sight, and together they do their best to decipher the notes and use the green book before Halloween, when the Host ghosts will become powerful enough to kill Luke. Hunt keeps tension high but balances it with humor, including a wonderful short episode written from a dog’s point of view. The northern English setting adds atmosphere, and Luke’s narration is both disarming and amusing.
A sprightly, original story with good twists. (Paranormal suspense. 12-18)