A Happy Ghost

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A Happy Ghost by Karl Kristian Flores is a wonderful read for twenty somethings who feel lost in the world. Told from the perspective of hotel receptionist Andrei, the novel follows his journey of self-discovery and what the true meaning of life is. Andrei is sort of an angsty young man, emotional and full of melancholy. He does not find his profession fulfilling, nor see any true point of life in general. Beaten down by the affluent customers he caters to, although he financially is well off, he falters to find anything that truly fills the void within. In spite of his disdain for living this way, Andrei continues to brood in his own personal darkness, questioning love, friends, joy, and what it means to be happy.

Until one day, Andrei meets a new hotel guest. This striking woman is different. She is, as Andrei describes, “a precious gem,” beautiful, nurturing, and with a mind of her own. This woman guides Andrei to find the answers he is looking for, reminding him that to feel alive he must “live like a comet.”

And boy does Andrei take her advice! The story continues as the reader follows his journey to truly begin living a life of magnificence, one that he does not wake up dreading. He imparts much wisdom to his readers throughout this journey, reminding them that adventure truly can be around the corner, if one simply chooses to break through routine and into the extraordinary.

As a whole, I really enjoyed this novel. Flores is a fantastic writer, employing rich imagery, metaphors, similes, and other kinds of figurative language throughout the book. His attention to detail and emotion in Andrei’s character made him humorous and delightful to read about. I also appreciated the many detailed adventures we got to experience with Andrei. They were written in a way where it felt like I was seeing the scene with him, not just a sparse description.

My only complaint about this novel concerns two very uncomfortable sexual scenes that even Andrei’s character himself was repulsed by. Given Andrei’s reactions and embarrassment, I am not sure why they were necessary to be constructed this way, and I think Flores could have drawn to his bigger theme a lot more effectively in other ways. I ended up having to skim over small sections, simply because I was physically cringing at the discomfort. However, once you get past these scenes, the book is definitely worth diving into.

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Star Count 3.5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 190 pages
Publisher Independently Published
Publish Date 05-Jan-2023
ISBN 979836207278
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue February 2023
Category Modern Literature