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Ghost on Black Mountain Paperback – September 13, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"Pull up a rocker and gaze into the hills at sundown. Old-time front porch storytelling unfolds in this dark, twisted tale where hardscrabble lives, murderous secrets, and ghosts intersect on a mysterious mountain." —Beth Hoffman, New York Times bestselling author of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt

"An eerie page-turner told in authentic mountain voices that stick with the reader long after the story ends." –Amy Greene, author of Bloodroot

"Haunting, dark and unnerving, Hite's brilliant modern gothic casts an unbreakable spell."—Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author of Pictures of You

"The authentic voice of Nellie Pritchard, who comes to Black Mountain as a new bride, wraps around you and pulls you deep into this haunted story. Ann Hite delivers an eerie page-turner that I couldn’t put down." -- Joshilyn Jackson, New York Times bestselling author of Gods in Alabama and Backseat Saints

"The inhabitants of Black Mountain live side-by-side with the spirits of the dead, throw spells and dig for treasure, solve their problems with careful alliances and the occasional murder. This is a story where the spookiness of a mountain village comes to life through gritty characters whose feelings and motivations seem all too similar to our own. Ann Hite captures their voices so well, you'd swear they're whispering into your ear. Ghost on Black Mountain is captivating."—Rebecca Coleman, author of The Kingdom of Childhood

"Will intrigue readers eager for a Southern Gothic tale, and suggests a promising future for the Black Mountain novels to come."Publisher's Weekly

"Multiple female narrators add dimension and perspective to Hite's first novel, and the sightings and visits from the spirits are often appropriately eerie . . . [An] artfully woven tale." --Library Journal

"[Ann Hite] twists folklore with the genres of Southern Gothic, paranormal and literary fiction like a fine, fat pretzel, a guilty pleasure after midnight . . . A richly layered tale of haints, hoodoo and heebie-jeebies, mayhem and murder, love and betrayal."Alabama Mobile Register

“Hite paints a loving portrait of rural mountain life in the early twentieth century, and characters are nuanced and true”--Atlanta Magazine

"A haunting Southern gothic tale . . . wonderfully crafted"San Francisco Book Review

About the Author

Ann Hite lives with her family in Atlanta.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Gallery Books; Original edition (September 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451606427
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451606423
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #523,633 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By TChris TOP 500 REVIEWER on September 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
Part One of Ghost on Black Mountain combines a ghost story with that of an abused woman who must decide whether and how to confront her abuser. The tale is told in the first person by Nellie Clay. Nellie's mother warns her not to marry Hobbs Pritchard, but Nellie is seventeen, innocent, and certain she will lose her chance at love if she doesn't accept Hobbs' proposal. After a one day courtship, Nellie marries Hobbs and moves into his house on Black Mountain. She quickly realizes that Hobbs is a hard, ill-tempered, unloving man. Nellie's problems are compounded when a young girl named Shelly, dispatched by Hobbs' aunt to help Nellie clean the house, tells Nellie that a ghost is roaming its rooms. Nellie soon encounters not just the ghost in the house, but another who lurks in the woods. Nellie eventually puzzles out the connection between the two ghosts.

Part One is written in a convincing first person Southern Appalachian voice, although it occasionally betrays an eloquence that is inconsistent with Nellie's unsophisticated grammar. The story plods a bit when Nellie starts to keep a diary, filling pages with "how could God let this happen to me?" musings. Several well executed scenes let us see that Nellie is unhappy; reading her hand-wringing diary entries adds nothing new. I was also unconvinced by Nellie's reaction to the haunting; for a person who claims not to believe in ghosts, Nellie seems surprisingly unperturbed when they show up and start chatting with her.

Part Two is told in the first person by Nellie's mother, Josie Clay. Josie tells us that we need to know her story to understand how Nellie "got herself into the mess she did," but Josie's story actually gives us little insight into Nellie's life beyond showing us Nellie's early exposure to yet another ghost.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Beth Hoffman on September 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Steeped in the tradition of Southern backwoods lore, Ann Hite has crafted a strange and deliciously dark mountain tale, replete with secrets and ghosts and eerie twists that kept me guessing. This is the kind of old-time storytelling one would hope for while sitting on a warped front porch on a starless night.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By GrannyS on December 4, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Growing up in Georgia, I heard a lot of ghost stories. They usually involved hands that weren't attached to bodies, dark shadows in moonlight, or the lone hitchhiker that turned out to be Jesus.
Ann Hite does not tell those kind of ghost stories. She is a masterful writer and storyteller. In Hite's hands, the Ghosts on Black Mountain become characters readers will want to linger with, head or no head, full moon or no moon. Hite's story has more twists and turns than Bloody Highway 11. Settle back for a ride that you won't soon forget.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Laura Kay on December 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
Sitting around the campfire when I was a little girl hearing ghost stories, I remember the feeling of dread as I reached the bedroom and would jump into bed and hope nothing scary would reach from underneath my bed and grab hold of me! I'll be honest, the first night I started reading Ghost on Black Mountain made me take off to bed feeling like that little girl again!

Ann Hite spins the web of Nellie Pritchard's life. The story begins during the depression-era in North Carolina. Nellie is just a young girl serving food in a food line at the local church when she meets the handsome Hobbs Pritchard who changes the course of her life. Everyone around Nellie told her to get away far away from Hobbs, but Nellie was in love and believed he was a good man. Shortly after arriving on Black Mountain the ghosts began to show up, one wanted her to leave and one had other plans for her. Life on Black Mountain wasn't what Nellie thought it would be. She begins digging around the attic and learns more about who Hobbs really is and then the beatings start. Nellie soon realizes she may not be able to escape him.

A moment in time takes hold of Nellie--the mountain ghosts take their revenge! A past refusing to be forgotten like a noose around her neck. Submerge yourself into Ghost on Black Mountain, but remember, "Once a person leaves the mountain, they never come back, not really. They're lost forever" (Back Cover).
The book is broken up into six parts; each part is about five different women. Each story is an extension of Black Mountain giving us greater insight into who Nellie was.

I absolutely loved Ghost on Black Mountain. It wasn't really scary, but has a dark eerie vibe during the whole book. I was completely engrossed the more I read the more captivated I became.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Raven DeLajour on March 7, 2012
Format: Paperback
You know how you read such a good book sometimes that you're left speechless? That's how I felt with this debut novel by the extremely talented Ann Hite. She pulled me into the world of Black Mountain and seduced me with her gorgeous and gothic style writing. The characters were so real I could visualize them and the landscapes were so vivid and fresh in my mind.

The story is told by different characters, all of them being women. I think this is extremely powerful because throughout time women have been denied the power of sharing their story. We have been denied the ability to use our voice without feeling shame and guilt. In many ways, Nellie finds the ability to heal when she revisits the past. Even though it is painful and difficult, she works through her feelings of shame and regret. By doing this, she finally finds peace within herself.

The spirits in the story act as a reminder to the living: that the past can't be buried and forgotten. And you can't live a life if you're constantly running away from the past.

And I loved Nellie! I thought she was so strong and resilient. She changed so much from beginning to end. I felt like I witnessed the transformation of a young woman into a mature one. No one is perfect, and this novel shows how every person has demons and dreams, flaws and positive traits.

I believe this book has something for everyone. Whether you like romance, suspense, a good gothic tale, or just plain great story-telling, then Ghost On Black Mountain is the novel for you. I highly recommend it.
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