Ghost Slayer — Majanka Verstraete (ARC Review)

March 26, 2018

Ghost Slayer (Ghost Slayer, #1)

TITLE: Ghost Slayer
AUTHOR: Majanka Verstraete
RELEASES: April 14th, 2018; Fire Quill Publishing
GENRE: Urban/Paranormal Fantasy
AGE RANGE: New Adult
SYNOPSIS: Twenty-one-year-old Kaelyn has spent half her life hunting ghosts and killing them. But she’s not like the other ghost hunters who have to rely on spells and curses to banish ghosts back to where they came from, hoping that they don’t come back. When Kaelyn kills a ghost, they stay dead.
But in Mortimer Hall, a behemoth of a house, Kaelyn is about to face the most powerful and life-threatening ghost she ever met, and what she doesn’t know is that the ghost has been waiting just for her…


I try not to give books genuinely harsh reviews unless they’re downright offensive. If you look at my 1-star reviews, almost all of them are because the book was incredibly problematic, and that’s not an issue with this book (there are a few issues, but nothing blaring). I made a concerted effort to round this up to 2 stars, but while jotting down the outline of this review, I realized it didn’t stand a chance. I actually tried to write a comprehensive, full review for this book, but after it reached several paragraphs of ranting, I decided to just make a list of all the reasons why I hate this book.


  • The dialogue is incredibly stilted and has no natural flow. It’s honestly downright awkward to read.
  • Kaelyn, the narrator, repeats and contradicts herself constantly.
  • The MC makes herself out as a lonely old woman recovering from an abusive relationship or something, when we find out she’s 21, her only relationship was when she was 16, the whole thing was a bizarre misunderstanding, and, oh, right, they never stopped loving each other. Of course.
  • There’s a side character at the beginning of the book who we are told Kaelyn hardly knows, and has barely spoken to, but two chapters later, she begins referring to the character as her “best friend”. And that character proceeds to almost never be called by name, she’s just “my best friend” or “my BFF”. Despite, you know… the girls hardly knowing each other. Oh, and Kaelyn slut-shames the “BFF” at the beginning of the book.
  • Hoooooooly Mary Sues, Batman! This MC is completely inept, but considers herself a gift to the world of ghost slaying, and we are constantly reminded of how powerful she is, how strong her “senses” are, etc.—despite the fact that she literally fails at 99% of the tasks she sets out to do in this story.
  • Plot twists! Everywhere! And none of them make any sense or get any explanations!
  • We’re expected to believe that Kaelyn’s mother has been dead for, like, a decade, and CPS never took this little girl in? Also, ghosts can’t touch things and non-slayer people, except her mom makes her pancakes every morning?
  • Characters constantly start to say terrible, foreboding things before being cut off and then it never gets brought up again. WHY DID YOU START THE SENTENCE, THEN?
  • Every single side character is horrible, one-dimensional, boring, plain, and overly simplified. There is literally no exception to this statement.
  • So many things happen that just aren’t realistic, but not even in a paranormal way. Like, Kaelyn says she’s never had alcohol, but then downs half a tumbler of whiskey and says, “Mm, tastes good!” … what? Have you ever had whiskey? Nobody likes cheap whiskey on their first try. (Most people don’t like cheap whiskey on their hundredth try.) (I’m going to stop being so petty now.)

The only thing I liked about this book was that it was an incredibly quick read, but even that was a double-edged sword, because I have a hard time DNFing short books (“it’s only gonna take me another 30 minutes!”) and then I finish the book and think, “Okay, but, every minute I spent on that book was still a waste.”

Like… I honestly wanted to like this book. I was pumped for it. I loved the cover, I loved the idea of it, and I was like, “Yeah! Finally gonna start reading some new adult ARCs! Finally gonna get some good ghost hunting stories started!” And then this book just fell flat in literally every single possible way I could ever have imagined, and I am so sad that I ever read it at all.



More about Destiny @ Howling Libraries

Just a horror aficionado/geek girl trying to juggle motherhood, reading, blogging, gaming, and everyday life.

Leave a comment
    1. Wow what a bummer. I received this one from netgalley too, mostly because of that ‘new adult’ tag in the fantasy version. This unfortunately seems to be a trend with the new adult books I read from Netgalley: I get excited and it falls flat.

    1. Oh too bad. That’s why I rarely read self published books (or vanity published), they rarely work for me.

      1. Right, same. :/ This one was from an indie press in South Africa, I think? I didn’t look at more of their releases until writing this review, but if I had, I think I would’ve stayed away, lol.

    1. Hoooo that sounds really rough. It sounds (from the description) that it could have been so good, too!!!

    1. I’m honestly yelling at your bullet about the whiskey, because even if it’s high high shelf whiskey.. you’re not going to like it your first time. But the rest of this also sounds legitimate and like stuff I would hate… It’s a no from me!

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