Picking Up the Ghost

ISBN: 9781926851358
eISBN: 9781926851990

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Living in St. Jude, a 110-year-old dying city on the edge of the Mississippi, is tough. But when a letter informs fourteen-year-old Cinque Williams of the passing of the father he never met, he is faced with an incomplete past and an uncertain future. A curse meant for his father condemns Cinque to a slow death even as it opens his eyes to the strange otherworld around him. With help from the ghost Willy T, an enigmatic White Woman named Iku, an African Loa, and a devious shape-shifter, Cinque gathers the tools to confront the ghost of his dead father. But he will learn that sometimes too much knowledge can be dangerous—and the people he trusts most are those poised to betray him.

Reviews of Picking Up the Ghost:

African magic and folklore color this unusual coming-of-age story . . . . [T]his debut entertains with an original approach and mix of breezy humor and dark fantasy.
If Salvador Dali were an author, his work might resemble Tone Milazzo's Picking Up the Ghost. Okay, maybe Milazzo's book has a little more structure than Dali's melting pocket watches. But there is no doubt that Milazzo can paint a world with words, and the surreal setting he created for this coming-of-age adventure is both dazzling and terrifying. . . . [E]ven if you're not an urban fantasy fan, I definitely recommend this book. Milazzo has unique style that is downright weird, but has a literary quality to it. I think we can expect more great stories from him.
[Picking Up the Ghost] is a clear analogy for the inner journey everyone must go through at some point in order to know themselves—the challenge of adolescence. As such, it is not just a great story, but also a deeply meaningful book.
Milazzo weaves a well written story.

Other Reviews

goodreads 3.70/5 stars more...

Author Info

Tone Milazzo has been a marine, a cab driver, a bartender, and a computer guy. And hopes that all this experience lends a flair of authenticity to his fiction instead of being years he wasted when he should have been writing instead.

Picking Up the Ghost (ChiZine Publications) started as a list of tropes he was tired of seeing in fantasy; An orphan, raised in seclusion in a fake Europe, discovers his destiny to take up the magical something or other and destroy the big evil guy. Turning his jadedness into inspiration he inverted all of these, got a novel out of it and had a lot of fun doing it.