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Esperanza (The Hungry Ghosts) Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Length: 336 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Set in Ecuador, this so-so supernatural thriller from MacGregor (Kill Time) mixes time travel with a centuries' long struggle between good and evil. When two strangers--Tess Livingston, an FBI agent, and Ian Ritter, a Minneapolis journalism professor who looks like George Clooney--are marooned at a remote bus station high in the Andes, they wind up taking a detour to the town of Esperanza, where they attract the unwelcome attention of Dominica, a shape-shifting spirit who can inhabit human bodies. Dominica is stunned to realize that both Tess and Ian are "transitionals," souls of people "nearly dead in the physical world" who pose a threat to her kind, brujos, ghosts unable to move into the afterlife. In a flashback to Minnesota in 1968, Ian emerges from a coma with memories from his future existence and embarks on a half-hearted attempt to prevent some of history's tragedies like Martin Luther King's assassination. Action that often drags and characters few will care about don't help a half-baked premise.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


"Escapist fantasy as its best...bone chilling."
--Romantic Times Book Review, Top Pick 41/2 stars

Product Details

  • File Size: 989 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books (September 14, 2010)
  • Publication Date: September 14, 2010
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003P2WJ3Q
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #615,157 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

As T.J. MacGregor and Trish J MacGregor, Trish is the author of 35 novels - mysteries, suspense, thrillers, and science fiction. She sold her first novel, In Shadow, to Ballantine Books in 1984. In 2003, she won the coveted Edgar Allan Poe Award for Out of Sight. Her most recent novel, Ghost Key, was published by TOR Books in August 2012.

As Trish MacGregor, she has written dozens of non-fiction books on astrology, the tarot, dreams, and synchronicity. She started out as a freelance magazine writer and eventually became a regular contributor to OMNI Magazine's anti-matter section, which covered UFOs and all aspects of the paranormal. Through those assignments, she met famed abductee Betty Hill, UFO researcher Budd Hopkins, and others.

She has been married to novelist/writer Rob MacGregor for 30 years. They've co-authored numerous self-help books on astrology, dreams, the tarot yoga, and synchronicity. Their most recent book is UFOs in Aliens in the Backyard: UFO Encounters, Abductions & Synchronicities. Their daughter, Megan, is an aspiring writer, and they live in South Florida with three cats and a noble golden retriever.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
At 336 pages, this is a compact story - oh, wait. It's not a complete story. It is a story "to be continued."

The ending of this partial-story doesn't justify the buildup of the book, and then we're left with a to-be-continued. So many of the plot lines are left dangling that it feels like the publisher took the original manuscript, tore it in into sections, and said, "Let's publish this part now, charge $25, and then release the rest next year and get $25 more for that. Or maybe even break it into three or four parts."

At this rate, we'd end up paying $100 for one story.

This trend of serializing novels and charging full price for each installment has to stop somewhere. For me, it ends here.

If you have a 1000-page story to tell, sell me a 1000-page book. I can take it.

This mediocre story, I'll leave it. Don't waste your time until the whole thing comes out as one big novel.

Oh, and all of the swearing is totally gratuitous.

And one more thing - it's JESSE Jackson, not Jessie. Hire a decent proofreader.

In case you can't tell, I'm feeling totally ripped off right now.
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Format: Hardcover
I find that often books that claim to be scary or something really new, simply aren't. ESPERANZA is, for me, completely original. This is a ghost story but not your normal fare of ghosts. Here you find brujos or witches though these are unlike any you have seen before. If the story simply involved them with no other twists it would still be an interesting book but what makes it all work is the characterizations. You meet Tess and Ian and you think you know what is going to happen with them and what they are all about but even early on you realize that there is something different about them. That difference will surprise the reader and make this tale of mystery, love and hope a truly wonderful adventure. Perhaps you will even take sides and not necessarily on Tess or Ian's. This is a tale interwoven in time past, present and future. That future is not necessarily set in stone either.

I am a big fan of T.J. Macgregor and was delighted to find a new book by her and then amazed at how enjoyable this new tale turned out. There are more to come and I can't wait for the next book in this series.
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Format: Kindle Edition
"Esperanza" defies an easy fit into one genre. It's a romance, a mystery, and a fantasy that taps some big historical events. From the first page, this combination and a fresh take on the supernatural had the makings of an exceptional read. How Tess and Ian end up in Esperanza, their seemingly chance meeting, and their immediate chemistry is a strong setup. And, the inexorable Dominica, with a parallel love story of her own, steals every scene. Yet, except for these three major characters, few of the other players stand out. They, like the magnificent Ecuadorian scenery, appear as backdrops to the drama. The circumstances that led to Tess' and Ian's arrival in the brujo-dominated town are cleverly wrought. But even Ian's George Clooney-good looks and Tess' resilient FBI-trained survival instincts don't rescue them from drifting through their roles like a brujo in fog. Dominica is the only player with a complicated, nuanced personality - she carries the drama. Still, until the book's half-way point, I was ready to give it a 5-star rating based on how well MacGregor melded genres and set up the action scenes. Then, the weight of too many secondary characters with tangled back stories and too much staccato-presented social commentary sapped the energy from the narrative. These structural annoyances aside, recognizing the underlying leitmotifs makes "Esperanza" a worthwhile read, so I was reaching for four stars until the disappointing ending.
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Format: Hardcover
I love a good ghost story, I always have. There's something about the idea of another world full of spirits and souls watching and wanting to interact with the living that always appeals. The ghosts in ESPERANZA fill the void.

Tess Livingston is an FBI agent tracking a counterfeiting ring in Ecuador. Unfortunately, she can't remember details about the case or how she came to be on a bus to the town of Esperanza high in the Andes Mountains. She arrives at a roadside stop to find out that her bus ticket won't get her to Esperanza. In the midst of confusion, she takes a walk outside to gather her thoughts and is attacked by a local who tells her she doesn't belong there. Soon after, her attacker ends up dead and Tess starts to wonder what is happening to her. Ian Ritter, another traveler who is also having trouble remembering his time in Ecuador, meets up with Tess, and the two commiserate about the iffy bus service, the strange locals and their odd trip. Finally, Tess and Ian are rescued by a man named Manuel, who gladly takes their bus tickets and tells them he will be happy to take them to Esperanza.

After arriving in town, they are taken to a hotel and their trip gets even stranger from there. Not only do both Tess and Ian feel they are being watched, but they find the locals' behavior intimidating and slightly inhospitable. They have many questions that no one is willing to answer. And they can find no one who will talk about the dense fog that descends on the town that everyone seems to be terrified of. They eventually find someone willing to tell them the truth --- Tess and Ian are transitionals, individuals who are comatose in their own time periods, their spirits have traveled to Esperanza, and they are existing on a spiritual plane.
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