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The Good House: A Novel Hardcover – September 2, 2003

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Atria; First Edition edition (September 2, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743449002
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743449007
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.4 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,859,273 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

In The Good House, acclaimed novelist Tananarive Due enters classic Stephen King territory. Her novel, set in a small Northern town, centers on a haunted house under a deadly curse. But don't let the comparison scare you: This dark, imaginative, skillfully written page-turner is a novel only Tananarive Due could write.

Early in the Twentieth Century, a powerful voodoo priestess followed her guiding spirit from New Orleans to a small town in Washington State. But in pride and anger, Marie Toussaint unleashed a new--and very different--spirit. Now, ignorant of both her heritage and the curse, Angela Toussaint returns to her dead Grandmother Marie's house, seeking to heal her fractured relationships with her son and her husband. But the malicious spirit wishes only the destruction of the Toussaints; and as it did in her grandmother's day, it inflicts horrific death and destruction upon the isolated town. Soon Angela has lost almost everyone she loves; and she must somehow uncover the secrets of her unknown heritage if she is to have a prayer of saving her true love--and her own soul.

Tananarive Due has written the unconventional vampire novels My Soul to Keep and its sequel, The Living Blood; The Black Rose (a finalist for the NAACP Image Award); and The Between (a Bram Stoker Award nominee). With Dave Barry, Edna Buchanan, Carl Hiassen, Elmore Leonard, and eight others, Due is coauthor of Naked Came the Manatee. --Cynthia Ward

From Publishers Weekly

Using elements of the traditional haunted house story, Due (The Living Blood) constructs an ambitious supernatural thriller reinforced by themes of family ties, racial identity and moral responsibility. The Good House in Sacajawea, Wash., has belonged to four generations of the Toussaint family, but current scion Angela Toussaint hopes to sell it. Originally the home of her beloved grandmere Marie, who used vodou to heal the sick, the house has dispensed mostly pain to Angela, including the suicide of her mother when she was a child and the death of her son, Corey, who shot himself in the basement with a gun belonging to his father, Tariq. Angela's planned final visit dovetails with tragic incidents in town suggesting that a malignant force linked to the house is revving up. Then she discovers that Corey stumbled upon Marie's magic tools, and that, in a forgotten incident, Marie abused her healing powers to avenge an act of racism. Meanwhile, Tariq, who has become a demon incarnate under the house's influence, hastens to Washington for a showdown with his estranged wife. Due handles the potentially unwieldy elements of her novel with confidence, cross-cutting smoothly from past to present, introducing revelatory facts that alter the interpretation of earlier scenes and interjecting powerfully orchestrated moments of supernatural horror that sustain the tale's momentum. An ending that seems forced by an excess of sympathy for her characters is the only misstep in this haunting tale from a writer who grows better with each book.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

Characters are well written.
Julia A. Adams
THE GOOD HOUSE is one of those books that make you jump while reading.
The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers
Then there was just too much drivel.
Cheryl Gonzalez

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Pretty Brown Girl VINE VOICE on September 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Tananarive Due gets better and better with each release! Her latest novel, The Good House, examines the consequences of misusing magic and the power of heritage and family.
The story is set in the remote town of Sacajawea, Washington where in the early 1900's, Marie Touissant relocates from Louisiana guided by her inner voice to a place that can be described in modern terms as the "epicenter of the sprit world". Marie is a trained, experienced, favored vodou priestess and often uses her powers to help and heal others. Through a series of events, Marie (in anger) misuses her talents, is abandoned by the "good" spirits for her actions, and unleashes a vengeful, unrelenting evil spirit that is determined to destroy her and her progeny. Marie watches helplessly as her daughter is possessed and tormented by the spirit. She patiently waits for the opportunity to redeem herself but time is not her friend and she passes before she can banish the spirit.
Fast forward to present day. Marie's granddaughter, Angela, is clueless about her grandmother's secrets; but when tragedy strikes at the family home (The Good House) and a destructive pattern emerges at the expense of her loved ones, she begins to suspect and believe that there is no such thing as coincidence. She must quickly discover the cause of these bizarre fatalities, her dead grandmother's role in it, and a method of containing or eradicating the evil before it consumes her and all her loved ones.
This book is a suspenseful page-turner from beginning to end. It is wonderfully conceived and superbly written!!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on January 5, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Angela Toussaint has mixed feelings about the offer to buy her family home in Sacajawea, Washington. The property has been in her family for decades (her grandmother, Marie Touissaint, is a local legend). It's also the place where her teenaged son, Corey, died two years earlier under suspicious circumstances (though his death was officially declared a suicide). Although she fled the house after the tragedy, she decides she must return to the home, known by the locals as "The Goode House," before making her final decision.
On her return to Sacajawea, Angela slowly comes to realize that something strange and lethal is going on there, and that the Goode House is at the epicenter of the mystery. She investigates, hoping to uncover the source of misery that has plagued her family and the citizens of Sacajawea since her grandmother's time. Doing so, she stirs up vengeful ancient forces that seek her destruction.
As in previous novels, Due focuses intensely on family dynamics. Angela and her husband, Tariq, were having problems even before Corey's death. Negatively influenced by the entity that seeks retribution on Angela, Tariq later becomes a warped symbol of their failed marriage. Here, however, the focus is not so much on spouses as it is on the bonds between a mother and her child. Despite the intimacy inherent in that bond, mothers and children are often strangers to each other--Due seems to suggest that complete understanding is beyond either party. Acceptance, however, can lead to greater affinity.
Due takes her time with her narrative, allowing for extensive development of her characters and painstaking stage setting. As in previous works, her characters stand out--she cares about the people who populate her novels, and is eager to explore their frailties and hidden strengths.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Dianne L. Davidson on November 6, 2003
Format: Hardcover
You read "My Soul to Keep," and you enjoyed the sequel, "The Living Blood," but nothing in either of those two earlier Tananarive Due books could have prepared her dedicated fans for this one!
Angela Toussaint returns to her late gramma Marie's house for the summer hoping for some healing powers that would bring her own family closer together. She's separated from her husband Tariq, and her teenage son, Corey, splits his time between both parents. While gramma Marie has been trying to communicate or reach out to Angie, Angie has not been receptive so gramma reached the only other blood relative, Corey. Things pick up and start spinning wildly and unworldly out of control on the evening of Angie's 4th of July party. WARNING: if you're a big scradie-cat don't read this book at night just before going to bed.
Gramma Marie was a well-respected voodoo priestess and before her death, in a fit of anger, she enlisted the help of the evil "baka" to punish her enemies. The baka, once called upon never wants to return and is bent on destroying anything and everything that attempts to send it back -- particularly anyone from the Troussaint bloodline.
Get ready, prepare yourself for this wild ride. "House on a Haunted Hill," "The Blair Witch Project," and "The Exorcist," all in one -- and then some. Ms. Due, you've outdone yourself.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Adrian Cole on September 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Tananarive Due has done it again!! The Good House is a super-natural thriller that captures its reader from the very first line. The heroin of this book, Angela Toussaint, has returned to the home in which she was raised in Sacajawea, WA. The home that locals have named the Goode House in part because of its original owner, Elijah Goode, but mainly because of Mr. Goode's "companion," Marie Toussaint, Angela's deceased grandmother. Here at the Goode House, Angela hopes to mend her soul from a tragic loss she suffered two years ago. But as Angela embarks on the road to recovery, she soon realizes that the Goode house might not be as "good" as everyone thinks.
Upon her return, Angela discovers that she isn't the only one who has suffered tragedy in the past two years. She will soon realize that something evil was unleashed in the Goode House - something so old and sinister that it invades the very souls of neighbors, friends, and loved ones. Through a well thought out plot, Ms. Due takes her heroin and the reader on a paranormal thrill ride that does not end until the very last page.
The Goode House is sure to find new fans and assures the old fans that Tananarive Due is definately here to stay! Excellent read!
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