web site hit counter Spooky Little Girl - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

Spooky Little Girl

Availability: Ready to download

Death is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.   Coming home from a Hawaiian vacation with her best girlfriends, Lucy Fisher is stunned to find everything she owns tossed out on her front lawn, the locks changed, and her fiancé’s phone disconnected—plus she’s just lost her job. With her world spinning wildly out of her control, Lucy decides to make a new start a Death is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.   Coming home from a Hawaiian vacation with her best girlfriends, Lucy Fisher is stunned to find everything she owns tossed out on her front lawn, the locks changed, and her fiancé’s phone disconnected—plus she’s just lost her job. With her world spinning wildly out of her control, Lucy decides to make a new start and moves upstate to live with her sister and nephew. But then things take an even more dramatic turn: A fatal encounter with public transportation lands Lucy not in the hereafter but in the nearly hereafter. She’s back in school, learning the parameters of spooking and how to become a successful spirit in order to complete a ghostly assignment. If Lucy succeeds, she’s guaranteed a spot in the next level of the afterlife—but until then, she’s stuck as a ghost in the last place she would ever want to be. Trying to avoid being trapped on earth for all eternity, Lucy crosses the line between life and death and back again when she returns home. Navigating the perilous channels of the paranormal, she’s determined to find out why her life crumbled and why, despite her ghastly death, no one seems to have noticed she’s gone. But urgency on the spectral plane—in the departed person of her feisty grandmother, who is risking both their eternal lives—requires attention, and Lucy realizes that you get only one chance to be spectacular in death.


Compare

Death is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.   Coming home from a Hawaiian vacation with her best girlfriends, Lucy Fisher is stunned to find everything she owns tossed out on her front lawn, the locks changed, and her fiancé’s phone disconnected—plus she’s just lost her job. With her world spinning wildly out of her control, Lucy decides to make a new start a Death is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.   Coming home from a Hawaiian vacation with her best girlfriends, Lucy Fisher is stunned to find everything she owns tossed out on her front lawn, the locks changed, and her fiancé’s phone disconnected—plus she’s just lost her job. With her world spinning wildly out of her control, Lucy decides to make a new start and moves upstate to live with her sister and nephew. But then things take an even more dramatic turn: A fatal encounter with public transportation lands Lucy not in the hereafter but in the nearly hereafter. She’s back in school, learning the parameters of spooking and how to become a successful spirit in order to complete a ghostly assignment. If Lucy succeeds, she’s guaranteed a spot in the next level of the afterlife—but until then, she’s stuck as a ghost in the last place she would ever want to be. Trying to avoid being trapped on earth for all eternity, Lucy crosses the line between life and death and back again when she returns home. Navigating the perilous channels of the paranormal, she’s determined to find out why her life crumbled and why, despite her ghastly death, no one seems to have noticed she’s gone. But urgency on the spectral plane—in the departed person of her feisty grandmother, who is risking both their eternal lives—requires attention, and Lucy realizes that you get only one chance to be spectacular in death.

30 review for Spooky Little Girl

  1. 4 out of 5

    jv poore

    Sometimes I feel like the proverbial square peg.....a short, squat, square peg in a world of tall, lithe, gorgeous, country-club super-moms. Those are the times I reach for a Laurie Notaro book. Reading her short-essay books is almost as good as having drinks with your very best girl-friend....you know the one that will say anything, do anything and is always having a blast....Laurie must be that person. While this is a novel, rather than the hilarious, yet often sweetly sentimental, essays of h Sometimes I feel like the proverbial square peg.....a short, squat, square peg in a world of tall, lithe, gorgeous, country-club super-moms. Those are the times I reach for a Laurie Notaro book. Reading her short-essay books is almost as good as having drinks with your very best girl-friend....you know the one that will say anything, do anything and is always having a blast....Laurie must be that person. While this is a novel, rather than the hilarious, yet often sweetly sentimental, essays of her life; it is 100% the Laurie I adore. This was a phenomenal curl-up-on-the-couch, dog at your feet, rainy day read. The remarkably quirky take on life-after-death is refreshing, sweet and hilarious. The chain of misunderstandings that create the story-line are comical, and a bit sad. Realistic characters, dealing with real-life situations had me immediately feeling a kinship, which led me to laugh out loud at some points, and to cry at others. This is a book I will buy for my girlfriends, and they will thank me.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Trin

    Oh, this is bad. Familiar, old-fashioned, college creative writing course bad. The plot makes no sense, the characterization is thin or muddled, and the prose ranges from workmanlike to borderline incompetent. For example, here is one page (p. 239) of dialogue attributions: Isis explained Nola gave in Nola said sharply Isis investigated (this one’s totally my favorite!) Isis continued Nola confirmed the psychic requested Nola replied Isis queried “I think someone needed a more thorough editor,” Trin said. Oh, this is bad. Familiar, old-fashioned, college creative writing course bad. The plot makes no sense, the characterization is thin or muddled, and the prose ranges from workmanlike to borderline incompetent. For example, here is one page (p. 239) of dialogue attributions: Isis explained Nola gave in Nola said sharply Isis investigated (this one’s totally my favorite!) Isis continued Nola confirmed the psychic requested Nola replied Isis queried “I think someone needed a more thorough editor,” Trin said. But anyway, the plot! Our heroine is Lucy Fisher—supposedly a free spirit, although when we meet her she’s living in a dull split level, engaged to a dull man, and working as a dental hygienist. (What a wild woman!) The book opens with Lucy coming back from a Hawaiian vacation on which she’s spent her entire inheritance and had a mostly miserable time to discover that her fiancé has kicked her out of the house with no explanation. The next morning, she is fired from her job for stealing and for failing a drug test. Then when she goes to stay with her sister to get away from it all, she is immediately hit by a bus and dies. I don’t think I am out of line in suggesting that this is, perhaps, a little much? Especially considering that the plot of the book does not involve the gods being angry at Lucy and taking their vengeance upon her. No, instead she has to go to ghost school, where many chapters are required for Lucy and her fellow students to learn a bunch of skills that Patrick Swayze figured out over the course of a fun montage. Lucy picks up all the stereotypical haunting tricks, and is even given the option of getting kitted out in whatever ghost gear might suit her fancy (woman in white? old-timey hooker? the choice is yours!). However, she is also instructed that she’s not supposed to frighten whoever she’s sent to haunt, she’s supposed to help them. If she scares them too much, she could get sucked into the white light, which is actually a portal to eternal torment. Then why is she being taught how to scare people, one might ask? Beats me! Wait, no it doesn’t: it’s because without this sequence, the book would have no middle. We’d have to rush right on to the final third, wherein Lucy mildly torments and is mildly tormented by her personality-free ex-fiancé’s cartoonishly awful new girlfriend, who is also the woman who got Lucy fired (...right). Then the book ends and Lucy finally gets to move on to The State, which sounds just like Earth only you’re dead and get to eat as much brownie batter as you want. (This is the same State, by the way, that was frequently claimed to be “indescribable” to anyone who asked.) Was Lucy supposed to learn anything from this? Isn’t she supposed to be some sort of higher being now? I’m sorry, but I can’t trust any “higher being” whose idea of paradise involves raw brownie batter. Cookie dough maybe, but I’ve dipped many the wooden spoon and trust me, raw brownie batter is not worth dying for. Sorry, this is probably a much more scathing review than this book truly deserves: it’s bad, but it’s not offensive—or at least no more offensive than any other bad published book. However, I read it as a favor to a friend, and he’s going to ask me about it, and I am going to have to equivocate so much. Best get the brutal honesty out of my system now, then, before I have to start practicing all the phrases I used in my actual college creative writing class, where we weren’t allowed to say anything mean. Ahem. “Gosh, Notaro sure was trying for something interesting with this!”

  3. 5 out of 5

    graveyardgremlin

    Poor Lucy Fisher. Just when she thinks she can go home and relax from a crummy vacation, she finds all her belongings tossed out onto the lawn of the house she shares with her fiance, and to top that off, she then loses her job. The last thing she needs is to be hit by a bus and left to be scraped up by an over-sized spatula (I don't envy whoever has to do that!). After a slow build-up, the book finally came alive (so to speak) for me at the half-way point, along with the help of her grandmother, Poor Lucy Fisher. Just when she thinks she can go home and relax from a crummy vacation, she finds all her belongings tossed out onto the lawn of the house she shares with her fiance, and to top that off, she then loses her job. The last thing she needs is to be hit by a bus and left to be scraped up by an over-sized spatula (I don't envy whoever has to do that!). After a slow build-up, the book finally came alive (so to speak) for me at the half-way point, along with the help of her grandmother, Naunie. Told in third-person, Lucy is a slightly flaky, but completely sympathetic character who goes through many moods as she deals with her death and how to become a proper ghost. Along with other clever touches, the idea of having untimely deaths go to a ghost school before arriving in "The State" is utterly fantastic. I wouldn't mind seeing that more fleshed out for another book, although I don't know how that would work. Lucy is helped in her haunting assignment by Naunie, whose exploits in "The State" are hilarious and she really livens up the book and provides many laughs. All the other characters add to the book without either being unnecessary or overused. Also, I would be remiss if I didn't mention Tulip, Lucy's dog before her death, who is the most adorable and sweetest thing ever. No, there aren't really any surprises plot-wise, but it's the journey that matters, and I enjoyed it. So, even though it started slow, SPOOKY LITTLE GIRL picked up pace and ended up being a cute, funny, charming, thoughtful, and heartwarming little book. I'm glad I got a chance to read this and learn about how this book came to be in the author's note at the end.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Colin

    I really like Laurie Notaro's writing. Sure, I am the completely wrong target audience and when I went to her reading at Powells recently, I may have been one of the only few guys in the audience. But Laurie's writing is funny regardless of your gender. One of the perks of writing fiction as opposed to non-fiction/memoir like Laurie's previous books is that she is allowed to exaggerate the characters she uses in the story. This helps make them more memorable like Nola who is obsessed with gross I really like Laurie Notaro's writing. Sure, I am the completely wrong target audience and when I went to her reading at Powells recently, I may have been one of the only few guys in the audience. But Laurie's writing is funny regardless of your gender. One of the perks of writing fiction as opposed to non-fiction/memoir like Laurie's previous books is that she is allowed to exaggerate the characters she uses in the story. This helps make them more memorable like Nola who is obsessed with gross reality TV shows or Martin, the fiance, who is obsessed with his job in at the produce department. Each character stands out on their own and help SLG have a great cast to follow. Anybody who read Laurie's first fiction novel, There's a (Slight) Chance I Might Be Going To Hell, should recognize the character of Ruby Spicer who met an unfortunate demise by spontaneous combustion at the end of the first novel. She is back in SLG as a ghost teacher who serves as a mentor to ghost Lucy. Ruby seems a lot more mellow in this book. Maybe death does that to people. While I de prefer Laurie's memoir books to her fiction, her second fiction novel has shown real improvement of her first attempt at fiction. Spooky Little Girl is as a well-rounded, light-hearted ghost story about getting closure and haunting people you hate by deleting their TiVo.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Punk

    Dippy Paranormal Chicklit. Dental hygienist Lucy Fisher dies suddenly, gets sent to ghost school, and then is returned to earth as a ghost to complete an assignment no one bothers to explain to her. Or us. I am holding my head here. I don't know where to start. Laurie Notaro writes snappy, sharp humor essays and, apparently, slow, unfunny novels. This is a mess. The writing's repetitious and contradictory. Halfway through, the POV snaps an axle and starts weaving all over the road and sidewalk. T Dippy Paranormal Chicklit. Dental hygienist Lucy Fisher dies suddenly, gets sent to ghost school, and then is returned to earth as a ghost to complete an assignment no one bothers to explain to her. Or us. I am holding my head here. I don't know where to start. Laurie Notaro writes snappy, sharp humor essays and, apparently, slow, unfunny novels. This is a mess. The writing's repetitious and contradictory. Halfway through, the POV snaps an axle and starts weaving all over the road and sidewalk. The humor is mainly cheap shots at fat people, poor people, unattractive people; you get the picture. There are some interesting ideas here, but they're in the minority. I enjoyed Notaro's description of purgatory and the ghost school, and I liked the ghost mythology she built, even though it falls apart under closer inspection. Toasters do not store energy. But then this is coming from an author who killed one of her characters by having her breast implants freeze and then explode. The vagaries of science are obviously not her concern. One star. The main character is a self-involved twit who doesn't change at all over the course of the novel yet is still rewarded with the perfect afterlife. I only cared because it meant the book was over.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Karen Germain

    I love Laurie Notaro and have read all of her books. “Spooky Little Girl” is the first Notaro book that I really disliked. I felt like it was riddled with problems. None of the characters, with the exception of the Dog, Tulip, were likeable. Not only where they impossible to like, but I couldn’t even understand why most of them would be friends. It just didn’t work. The story centers around Lucy Fischer, a self absorbed dental hygienist, whose Fiancé mysteriously kicks her out of the house when s I love Laurie Notaro and have read all of her books. “Spooky Little Girl” is the first Notaro book that I really disliked. I felt like it was riddled with problems. None of the characters, with the exception of the Dog, Tulip, were likeable. Not only where they impossible to like, but I couldn’t even understand why most of them would be friends. It just didn’t work. The story centers around Lucy Fischer, a self absorbed dental hygienist, whose Fiancé mysteriously kicks her out of the house when she returns from a girls only trip to Hawaii. She doesn’t have time to figure out why she has been dumped, before being hit by a bus and turning into a ghost. As a ghost, she must attend “Ghost School” and learn scare tactics, prior to getting an assignment back on earth, where she must intervene in the lives of her friends, family and former fiancé. The whole Ghost set up is kind of clever, but it wears thin. It also isn’t consistent. It seems like Notaro set up the rules of being a ghost, only to break or bend them when it is convenient in the story. Example- Ghosts are not strong enough to pick up a pen and write a note…however, they can move chairs, throw picture frames and write on a steamed mirror. It just seems silly. The mystery of why her Fiancé dumped her is just not interesting enough to carry the story. The motivations of the characters are weak and uninteresting. Also, the story has too many implausible coincidences. The biggest thing that irked me was no one noticing that she was missing. Why wouldn’t the sister take greater action to inform Lucy’s friends that she was dead? Her death was supposedly all over the news, yet none of her friends figured it out. I’m glad my friends are smarter than that! Finally, the title of the book doesn’t really make sense.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Alice Bola

    I love Laurie Notaro. I do. Even before I knew who Jen Lancaster was, I was getting splitting stitches in my side from laughing at her misadventures since The Idiot Girls’ Action-Adventure Club. Also, I am totally addicted to the TV show Ghost Adventures; so if Laurie Notaro and Ghost Adventures had a love child, it would be Spooky Little Girl. This is by far the funniest book I have read so far this year. I chose this novel because I needed one with a size in the title for the What’s in a Name? I love Laurie Notaro. I do. Even before I knew who Jen Lancaster was, I was getting splitting stitches in my side from laughing at her misadventures since The Idiot Girls’ Action-Adventure Club. Also, I am totally addicted to the TV show Ghost Adventures; so if Laurie Notaro and Ghost Adventures had a love child, it would be Spooky Little Girl. This is by far the funniest book I have read so far this year. I chose this novel because I needed one with a size in the title for the What’s in a Name? Challenge. The truth is I really wasn’t looking forward to reading it. Although I love her true-life comedy books, I tried to read Ms. Notaro’s first attempt at fiction and sadly couldn’t make it past page 10. I’m glad I gave this one a try because it was quite a pleasant surprise. After returning from a bad vacation in Hawaii – I didn’t think that was possible – Lucy returns to have her stuff thrown all across the lawn of the home she shares with her fiancé Martin. Then she is fired from her job. With a broken heart, unemployed Lucy moves in with her sister Alice (great name). And if things aren’t terrible enough for her, on her way to the unemployment office she accidentally steps in front of a bus and meets an unexpected and early demise. What happens next is one of the best ghost stories (okay, this only ghost story) I have ever read. Lucy endures weeks of “spook” training before heading back to earth to complete an assignment before she heads to the “State,” her final destination. Lucy hopes to return to Alice’s house, to help her sister, but things never happen as planned, even in death. Lucy heads right back to Martin’s house to complete her mission. What ensues is a very humorous adventure to solve the mysterious mission. I loved the characters in this novel. Naunie, Lucy’s grandmother was fantastic. She reminded me a bit of Grandma Mazur from Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. She had plenty of moxie. I love how Ms. Notaro explains the many Lady in White ghosts. You know whom I am talking about, no matter where you are there is always a legend of a Lady in White ghost. (Annie from Annie’s Road in Totowa, NJ is our local Lady in White.) I also enjoyed being party of Lucy’s relationship with Tulip, her rescued dog. And the ghost hunt/séance scene still makes me crack up just thinking of it. Overall, this is a great book that will appeal to lovers of the paranormal or to anyone who believes in a second chance to get it right. And even if you don’t believe in second chances, there is always laughter. And who doesn’t like to laugh?

  8. 4 out of 5

    Traci

    I've read a lot of Notaro's essay collections, and I always love them. I've also read her previous novel, which was pretty darn good, albeit obviously autobiographical to an extent. I had no qualms picking up this second novel, but I was a bit surprised. Lucy is an obvious Notaro-type character. Everything is all about her: her job, her friends, her fiance. She's one of those people that's always talking about themselves and not often listening to what's going on with someone else. But she does h I've read a lot of Notaro's essay collections, and I always love them. I've also read her previous novel, which was pretty darn good, albeit obviously autobiographical to an extent. I had no qualms picking up this second novel, but I was a bit surprised. Lucy is an obvious Notaro-type character. Everything is all about her: her job, her friends, her fiance. She's one of those people that's always talking about themselves and not often listening to what's going on with someone else. But she does have a good heart, which is what gets her into all this trouble to start with. While in Hawaii on her girls' vacation, Lucy insists on hanging out with one of her friends when said friend meets a guy in the bar. Unfortunately, said friend "forgets" something and leaves the hotel room briefly. Lucy has to run into the bathroom to become violently ill, and thus, her fate is sealed. It was a bit heartbreaking watch this girl's life implode, especially as she had no idea why. And let's face it, whenever anything bad happens to us, isn't that our first question? Why, oh why, is this happening to ME? Once Lucy has shuffled off this mortal coil, she starts her investigation into where things went so incredibly wrong. I was impressed with this second novel. Yes, it's still light and fun, but there's some definite insight here, too. I love Notaro's take on mediums, and whatever you do, do not let them drag you "into the light" (that was really neat, her vision of what happens if you follow the psychic's commands). I thought Lucy's friends were fairly well-developed, and I like seeing the transition of my opinion of Martin, her maybe-ex-fiance. The only thing that I wish I'd gotten a better feel for was Lucy's relationship with her sister. We see sis briefly when Lucy goes to live with her and the nephew (she's got nowhere else to go), and again near the end of the book. Being a sister myself, I wish Notaro hadn't killed Lucy quite so quickly, as I would have liked to read more about these two women (especially since the little interaction we do get reminded me a lot of me and my baby sister). Overall, a big thumbs up. Cute, fun, quick read with something a little bit deeper hidden inside it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Lolly's Library

    Lucy Fisher is having a very bad day. She's just returned from her dream vacation in Hawai'i (which was actually more like the vacation from hell) and finds her dog locked in the house and the locks to the house changed. Her fiancé isn't answering his phone and, oh yeah, the front lawn of her house is littered with every single one of her possessions. Including her wedding dress, which Lucy has to wrestle out of the grubby hands of a passing bag lady. Finding a temporary refuge at the home of he Lucy Fisher is having a very bad day. She's just returned from her dream vacation in Hawai'i (which was actually more like the vacation from hell) and finds her dog locked in the house and the locks to the house changed. Her fiancé isn't answering his phone and, oh yeah, the front lawn of her house is littered with every single one of her possessions. Including her wedding dress, which Lucy has to wrestle out of the grubby hands of a passing bag lady. Finding a temporary refuge at the home of her friend, Lucy turns to the only other constant in her life, her job as a dental hygienist, only to be fired, accused of stealing money and drugs from her employer. Confused, angry and despondent, Lucy moves in with her sister and nephew with hopes of starting her life over. Too bad for Lucy, she soon finds her life just plain over thanks to a fatal encounter with a bus, as in peel-off-the-pavement fatal. When Lucy "wakes," she finds herself back in school, ghost school, learning the lessons of proper 'ghosting' so that when Lucy returns to Earth, she can complete her mission and move on to "The State," a place of eternal bliss. With the help of her wickedly mischievous grandmother, Naunie, Lucy finally figures out how to have the time of her life, er, death. Although I can't say I laughed out loud, I did get several chuckles out of the book, which I found quite enjoyable. The characters were well-drawn and the story proceeded at a nice pace. Several concepts about the afterlife were cleverly explored, mostly revolving around the "white light" phenomenon and how haunting really works, putting a new spin on classic ghost lore. Most surprising of all, I actually liked the main character, Lucy. Ninety-nine percent of chick-lit heroines I can't stand; I usually spend most of my time alternately cursing, hating and wanting to throttle/slap/punch the bimbo. With Lucy, however, apart from a couple of head-shaking moments, I spent my time actually enjoying the story and Lucy's role in it. For that fact alone I mark Spooky Little Girl as a worthwhile read.

  10. 5 out of 5

    D

    I found Spooky Little Girl frustrating. It’s not that it’s bad, exactly, but I feel like there’s a much stronger and sharper book stuck inside it. It offers a nifty reversal on a traditional ghost story plot driver: instead of the living figuring out why they are being haunted, Lucy has to figure out why she’s haunting the living. Unfortunately the story is bogged down by dense masses of unneeded exposition and trite imagery (the milieu of the afterlife à la Notaro seems to owe a lot to films li I found Spooky Little Girl frustrating. It’s not that it’s bad, exactly, but I feel like there’s a much stronger and sharper book stuck inside it. It offers a nifty reversal on a traditional ghost story plot driver: instead of the living figuring out why they are being haunted, Lucy has to figure out why she’s haunting the living. Unfortunately the story is bogged down by dense masses of unneeded exposition and trite imagery (the milieu of the afterlife à la Notaro seems to owe a lot to films like Defending Your Life and Heaven Can Wait). And when Notaro does throw new elements into the mythology, the results are mixed. It’s one thing to ask me to suspend disbelief in ghosts. Swallowing the notion that Saturns’s rings are composed of frozen chunks of souls that “went into the light” is something else again. But my biggest problem was Lucy’s thickness — it was difficult to patient with the pace at which she worked out amply telegraphed plot points. (This may be partly the collision of my expectations as a speculative fiction genre reader and Notaro’s perception of her (predominantly non-genre, I presume) audience — as an sf reader I place a premium on internal consistency, and generally expect (and prefer) quick-on-the-uptake characters. If those aren’t issues for you, you might like Spooky Little Girl better than I did. But on the other hand, I also found the characters a bit thin, and the prose a bit flat, which has nothing to do with genre.) On the positive side, it did make me chuckle a few times, and it was kind of refreshing to read a mainstream novel with supernatural elements that didn’t go through all the pro forma paranormal romance moves.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Melki

    Though I'm a big fan of Laurie Notaro's comic essays, this book, her second novel, was disappointing. I'm thinking she fell asleep watching "Beetlejuice", and dreamed up this plot. Like the Tim Burton movie, Notaro's book features bureaucracy after death, classes in "how to be a ghost" led by a sassy old broad and disgruntled spirits with their knickers in a twist due to the atrocious redecorating schemes perpetrated on their beloved homes by the thoughtless "living". And a-haunting we will go! T Though I'm a big fan of Laurie Notaro's comic essays, this book, her second novel, was disappointing. I'm thinking she fell asleep watching "Beetlejuice", and dreamed up this plot. Like the Tim Burton movie, Notaro's book features bureaucracy after death, classes in "how to be a ghost" led by a sassy old broad and disgruntled spirits with their knickers in a twist due to the atrocious redecorating schemes perpetrated on their beloved homes by the thoughtless "living". And a-haunting we will go! The book is not awful and not a total waste of time. It is a mostly fun bit of fluff. Notaro is a master at making us root for the underdog, and when the main character's really bad day turns into a really bad eternity, you can't help but hope that something good will happen to her soon. If you've ever uttered the phrase "you'll be sorry when I'm dead", wanted to attend your own funeral, or longed for the chance to come back and scare the crap out of a deserving nemesis - you'll probably get a kick out of it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lara

    It took a little while for this book to hook me; I wasn't sure how much I liked Lucy, the main character, at first, and I didn't feel like the afterlife stuff was all that original. But by the end of the story, I found I cared about Lucy, and wanted to know why things had turned out the way they had for her. I found I even cared about what happened with her ex-fiancee Martin, and her best friend Jilly, and her sister Alice, and her dog Tulip. And even if the afterlife stuff wasn't all that origi It took a little while for this book to hook me; I wasn't sure how much I liked Lucy, the main character, at first, and I didn't feel like the afterlife stuff was all that original. But by the end of the story, I found I cared about Lucy, and wanted to know why things had turned out the way they had for her. I found I even cared about what happened with her ex-fiancee Martin, and her best friend Jilly, and her sister Alice, and her dog Tulip. And even if the afterlife stuff wasn't all that original, in the end I don't think that was the point. I liked the way Notaro pulled the pieces of the story together in the end--I found it to be very well constructed and it all made sense without being TOO over-the-top ridiculous. And I also liked that it was based on a real person (there's an author's note at the end where she talks about this). There were a few typos, yes, but honestly, I was pretty impressed, considering this ARC had FAR fewer than most of the already released books I've read lately. All in all, I enjoyed this book, more than I thought I might! Received this book through First Reads.

  13. 4 out of 5

    dixie

    I picked this up on a whim at the book store, thinking it looked interesting. I put off starting it, for one reason or another, but once I finally started it, I couldn't set it down. This book amazed me in a couple of different ways. It's rare for me to review a book with a complete lack of reservation, but I feel almost as if Laurie Notaro climbed into my brain and started writing down everything I feel. Lucy does not dwell on the idea of death, but is focusing on putting her life back together I picked this up on a whim at the book store, thinking it looked interesting. I put off starting it, for one reason or another, but once I finally started it, I couldn't set it down. This book amazed me in a couple of different ways. It's rare for me to review a book with a complete lack of reservation, but I feel almost as if Laurie Notaro climbed into my brain and started writing down everything I feel. Lucy does not dwell on the idea of death, but is focusing on putting her life back together when she is tragically killed. her first disappointment in death comes at her poorly attended funeral, which broke my heart. As you follow her throughout the book, and learn what made her life unravel in the first place, her struggles are so real it felt like a knife in my heart. I don't know that I have ever identified with a character as strongly as I do with Lucy, and this book is an absolute must read. It's both funny and touching, tickling the funny bone and melting the heart at the same time - and it really makes you appreciate what's important in life.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ryandake

    right at the point where the main character Lucy comes home, finds her belongings on the lawn, and the locks rekeyed, she ends up talking to her dog, who is locked in the house that Lucy is locked out of. and she's talking just like people talk to their dogs, full of slobbery endearments and rhetorical questions. and i laughed so much. but that was just about the last time. there are some good moments in this book, don't get me wrong. Lucy is a fairly well-realized character (for a comedy), the pl right at the point where the main character Lucy comes home, finds her belongings on the lawn, and the locks rekeyed, she ends up talking to her dog, who is locked in the house that Lucy is locked out of. and she's talking just like people talk to their dogs, full of slobbery endearments and rhetorical questions. and i laughed so much. but that was just about the last time. there are some good moments in this book, don't get me wrong. Lucy is a fairly well-realized character (for a comedy), the plotting is not horrible although it drags in some places, and the initial setup is pretty well done. it's just the rest of the book, after that setup, that lacks energy. i don't want to say a whole lot--no spoilers--if you're looking for a side-of-the-pool read, it's not bad. if you're looking for something with that great comic bite, this is not the book you should be reading. it's not bad. but it pretty much just skims the surface. i can guarantee that six months from now, you'll have forgotten you read it.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    Laurie has always had the magic touch when it comes to storytelling. This is her best effort yet. It is themed around death, the afterlife, ghosts and unfinished business. But this isn't your usual haunted story - it is presented "Laurie-style" - which means plenty of laughs and clever, unpredictable action. But what I loved the most is that it has so much heart in it. Anyone who has ever lost a loved parent, grandparent, sibling, friend, even a pet will feel comfort and lightness after reading Laurie has always had the magic touch when it comes to storytelling. This is her best effort yet. It is themed around death, the afterlife, ghosts and unfinished business. But this isn't your usual haunted story - it is presented "Laurie-style" - which means plenty of laughs and clever, unpredictable action. But what I loved the most is that it has so much heart in it. Anyone who has ever lost a loved parent, grandparent, sibling, friend, even a pet will feel comfort and lightness after reading Laurie's take on the afterlife. It's meaningful on many different levels. The message is universal and uplifting without being mushy or corny. Seriously, you'll want to buy a copy for each of your friends and family members. Thank you, Laurie, for another great book!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chana

    It is so nice to read something light-hearted and sweet for a change. I thoroughly enjoyed this book; I wanted to give it a hug and say thanks for making me smile instead of cry. Everything starts going wrong for Lucy; her fiancé throws her out without explanation, she is accused of embezzling and stealing drugs at work and consequently loses her job, she gets flattened by a city bus on the way to the unemployment office and ends up as a "surprise demise" in ghost school. I recommend this book i It is so nice to read something light-hearted and sweet for a change. I thoroughly enjoyed this book; I wanted to give it a hug and say thanks for making me smile instead of cry. Everything starts going wrong for Lucy; her fiancé throws her out without explanation, she is accused of embezzling and stealing drugs at work and consequently loses her job, she gets flattened by a city bus on the way to the unemployment office and ends up as a "surprise demise" in ghost school. I recommend this book if you want to read a feel-good fluff of a book. Honestly, I am giving this book a hug.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Karla

    I've always liked Notaro's non-fiction (I laughed so hard that I cried reading "The Idiot Girls' Action Adventure Club"), so I picked this up. It reminded me a lot of Christopher Moore, with less of the fifth-grade-boy humor (which, incidentally, I do find funny in some of his books), but the same sort of outlandishness/goofy characters/etc. It was entertaining and quick. Would be a good beach read. I've always liked Notaro's non-fiction (I laughed so hard that I cried reading "The Idiot Girls' Action Adventure Club"), so I picked this up. It reminded me a lot of Christopher Moore, with less of the fifth-grade-boy humor (which, incidentally, I do find funny in some of his books), but the same sort of outlandishness/goofy characters/etc. It was entertaining and quick. Would be a good beach read.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    Another awesome book by Laurie Notaro. I loved the characters, loved the story. Lucy Fisher returns home from a vacation with friends to find her fiance has tossed all of her belongings onto the lawn and changed the locks on their house. Lucy's life, and death, take an incredible journey. Loved Ghost School! Another awesome book by Laurie Notaro. I loved the characters, loved the story. Lucy Fisher returns home from a vacation with friends to find her fiance has tossed all of her belongings onto the lawn and changed the locks on their house. Lucy's life, and death, take an incredible journey. Loved Ghost School!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lauri

    I loved this book. Well written with a very unique story line you just never know whats coming next, and because of that you just CAN NOT put it down. One really late night was all it took to read it,and then laying awake afterwords thinking about it.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    Perfect summer read, litter than expected. Once I got into her character, I wanted to know what happened. It should be an interesting book club discussion.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bree T

    Lucy Fisher has just returned home from what was supposed to be a dream vacation to Hawaii with her two workmates. It didn’t turn out that way at all and she’s just looking forward to getting home – however when she gets there, she finds all her belongings outside the house, stacked up in her truck and on the lawn. She has to fight a homeless person to get her wedding dress back. Confused, she tries her key in the lock and discovers that it doesn’t work. Her fiance Martin is no where to be found Lucy Fisher has just returned home from what was supposed to be a dream vacation to Hawaii with her two workmates. It didn’t turn out that way at all and she’s just looking forward to getting home – however when she gets there, she finds all her belongings outside the house, stacked up in her truck and on the lawn. She has to fight a homeless person to get her wedding dress back. Confused, she tries her key in the lock and discovers that it doesn’t work. Her fiance Martin is no where to be found. In her truck, Lucy finds a note from Martin telling her simply that he’ll look after her dog Tulip until his day off on Thursday when Lucy can come and pick her up. Lucy is then fired from her job over a malicious misunderstanding and decides to go and visit her sister upstate, Alice. Allowing Alice to borrow her truck when Alice is running late for her performance review at work, Lucy takes the bus to the local unemployment agency. Unfortunately for her, that bus trip Lucy takes is the last one she’ll ever take. She wakes up in what is kind of the almost afterlife – ghost school if you like. Lucy didn’t fulfill her potential during her life so she doesn’t get to move straight to The State (kind of like a non-religious Heaven I suppose) so she ends up in a class known as Sudden Demise, learning to use all her ghostly powers before being “assigned”. She is assigned to Martin, her ex-fiance’s house but her assignment is not spelled out for her – she has to wait until it presents itself. To her horror Martin is now living with someone else – and it’s someone that she knows. Bored and lonely back on Earth waiting for her assignment to become obvious to her, Lucy will be given the chance to examine how her life went wrong and what she couldn’t find out in life. I read a fairly decent review of this book on a review blog and thought it sounded like a pretty cute, breezy little read. It was a bit different to what I expected and it was mostly enjoyable. The first quarter of the book was a bit slow and I didn’t really find Lucy’s attitude in ‘ghost school’ all that amusing – there were times when I didn’t particularly like Lucy much at all. I can understand that she wasn’t exactly thrilled with having died being hit by a bus and she did suffer quite a blow when taken to see her funeral and it wasn’t as she had expected, but there were times when she was acting pretty childish and it was irritating. Same goes for when she was ‘haunting’ Martin’s house with her grandmother’s ghost and they did a few silly things. Some of it was funny/silly and some of it wasn’t. To be honest I don’t really know what more to say about this book. I didn’t particularly enjoy it but I didn’t dislike it enough not to bother finishing it. The thing in its favour was that it was quite a quick read – 300 pages that didn’t feel that long at all. It was a very easy book to read while my attention was also being required elsewhere. It’s not going to be the sort of book to stick with me and I’m very glad I borrowed it from the library. I think that for me, it doesn’t have re-readability factor. This is the hardest review I’ve done in a while – it’s not often I’m at a loss for words to say about a book, normally I have to keep an eye on my word count and make sure my reviews aren’t getting too lengthy. But really this book was just okay for me. Not good, not bad.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    If you are looking for something deep and serious, you should probably pass over this. Further, if you have to really like and care about your characters from start to finish, you should probably pass over this book. If you are willing to suspend your critical system for a few hours and wonder what it would be like to be a dental hygenist who thought her worst problem was coming home from Hawaii to find herself locked out by her fiance, only to find herself becoming a ghost with a ghostly task t If you are looking for something deep and serious, you should probably pass over this. Further, if you have to really like and care about your characters from start to finish, you should probably pass over this book. If you are willing to suspend your critical system for a few hours and wonder what it would be like to be a dental hygenist who thought her worst problem was coming home from Hawaii to find herself locked out by her fiance, only to find herself becoming a ghost with a ghostly task to complete, then you will be okay with this book. I read a LOT of books, most of them much better written than this, but something about this story captured my attention. I suspect it's that deep down, most of us are not particularly likeable, so if I'm going to spend time in the afterlife with a character, it makes sense that I will not see her as a paragon of virtue and truth. Lucy Fisher is rather shallow. She likes her fiance mainly because he makes her feel safe. Until he doesn't. Until he throws her belongings out on the front lawn because he jumps to a conclusion based on a missed phone call while Lucy is in Hawaii with her girlfriends. Yeah, life can be like that. Laurie Notaro has the knack of facing up to life's unsafeness and ugliness while still letting us laugh. Worth the time it took for this quick read.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Librariann

    Adult (teen interest? Maybe, but not a first pick) A scant eight weeks before her wedding, slightly-flaky dental hygienist Lucy Fisher comes home from a horrible Hawaiian vacation and discovers a homeless lady on her front lawn, trying to stuff Lucy's wedding dress into a garbage bag. In fact, all of her belongings are outside of the house that she shares with her bland fiance, Martin. The next day, Lucy's Umbridge-esque coworker Nola gets her fired. With nowhere else to turn, Lucy leaves her st Adult (teen interest? Maybe, but not a first pick) A scant eight weeks before her wedding, slightly-flaky dental hygienist Lucy Fisher comes home from a horrible Hawaiian vacation and discovers a homeless lady on her front lawn, trying to stuff Lucy's wedding dress into a garbage bag. In fact, all of her belongings are outside of the house that she shares with her bland fiance, Martin. The next day, Lucy's Umbridge-esque coworker Nola gets her fired. With nowhere else to turn, Lucy leaves her stuff with her bff Jilly and goes out of town to stay with her sister, Alice. On her way to the unemployment office, she is pancaked by a bus, only to find herself in school in the not-quite-final afterlife. GHOST SCHOOL. Boo. Started out annoying, like the Shopaholic books, but tipped the scales from tolerable to enjoyable when Lucy left ghost school and started haunting. Totally fluffy and ridiculous, but would be a good supernatural spring break beach read.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alissa

    Laurie Notaro is sarcastic, loud, and really, really funny. Her first fiction book kinda, well, it wasn't that great. It was kind of dull and lacked her very strong voice. But this work of fiction? Freakin' hilarious. I laughed out loud a number of times and screwed up my work schedule today by bringing it to work (you know, to read "during lunch," which apparently was two hours long). Very entertaining and light but not stupid. Les--I'm sending it to you asap. Diana, Les can send it to you after Laurie Notaro is sarcastic, loud, and really, really funny. Her first fiction book kinda, well, it wasn't that great. It was kind of dull and lacked her very strong voice. But this work of fiction? Freakin' hilarious. I laughed out loud a number of times and screwed up my work schedule today by bringing it to work (you know, to read "during lunch," which apparently was two hours long). Very entertaining and light but not stupid. Les--I'm sending it to you asap. Diana, Les can send it to you after, if you want.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Megan Dittrich-Reed

    This is really a 2.5. I picked up this book because another of Notaro's books was recommended by a Booktuber I follow (hell if I can remember which one). It was...fine. It had genuinely clever and funny points and I enjoyed the premise, but ultimately it didn't rise above the level of mediocre, forgettable chick lit, which is disappointing considering the fun premise and Notaro's obvious talent. It relied heavily on cliches and obvious outdated character tropes like the fat, ugly or odd = bad, t This is really a 2.5. I picked up this book because another of Notaro's books was recommended by a Booktuber I follow (hell if I can remember which one). It was...fine. It had genuinely clever and funny points and I enjoyed the premise, but ultimately it didn't rise above the level of mediocre, forgettable chick lit, which is disappointing considering the fun premise and Notaro's obvious talent. It relied heavily on cliches and obvious outdated character tropes like the fat, ugly or odd = bad, the pretty, young and "normal" = good. Overall, I couldn't recommend it, but it wasn't awful.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Stacey

    I became a Laurie Notaro fan years ago. Her observations and articulations are brilliant. As a humorist she's awesome. In the fiction category, she still needs work. This is her second fiction novel. It does show improvement over her first, which leaves me optimistic for her next, but I just can't say she's great at it yet. Maybe the problem is that the bar is so high from her other work. If you are going to read a Laurie Notaro book, start with any of her non-fiction humor. I became a Laurie Notaro fan years ago. Her observations and articulations are brilliant. As a humorist she's awesome. In the fiction category, she still needs work. This is her second fiction novel. It does show improvement over her first, which leaves me optimistic for her next, but I just can't say she's great at it yet. Maybe the problem is that the bar is so high from her other work. If you are going to read a Laurie Notaro book, start with any of her non-fiction humor.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

    I didn't really enjoy this book. There were a few funny parts and a few sad parts but overall it just didn't do it for me. I almost feel like each new event that unfolded had great potential to turn into an amazing adventure but then fell short. Overall it was ok. Oh my other big issue was the main character, she was so unlikable to me. Most of the time I found her very annoying or shockingly stupid. I didn't really enjoy this book. There were a few funny parts and a few sad parts but overall it just didn't do it for me. I almost feel like each new event that unfolded had great potential to turn into an amazing adventure but then fell short. Overall it was ok. Oh my other big issue was the main character, she was so unlikable to me. Most of the time I found her very annoying or shockingly stupid.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Patricia

    There were clunky parts to this story and details that didn't quite match up. For instance my drug counselor boyfriend pointed out that drug tests are not like pregenancy tests. They come about in a different manner. However, I greatly enjoy reading people's imaginings of the afterlife and Notaro's was sparkly and interesting. It's a fun book that one shouldn't think too deeply about. There were clunky parts to this story and details that didn't quite match up. For instance my drug counselor boyfriend pointed out that drug tests are not like pregenancy tests. They come about in a different manner. However, I greatly enjoy reading people's imaginings of the afterlife and Notaro's was sparkly and interesting. It's a fun book that one shouldn't think too deeply about.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    I enjoyed the plot and it was an interesting comment but everything was left SO undeveloped, from the plot to characters, to concepts. Tell me more about ghost school! Tell me about the ghost rules! The writing is somewhat atrocious as well. To be honest, the idea of ghosts existing is far more believable than any of the characters being actual people.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I love Laurie's non fiction. I can't for the life of me read her fiction. The simple fact is that when reading it I keep seeing her already told non fiction voice popping in my head and reading...Urgghhhh. I love Laurie's non fiction. I can't for the life of me read her fiction. The simple fact is that when reading it I keep seeing her already told non fiction voice popping in my head and reading...Urgghhhh.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.