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Berkley Street: Supernatural Horror with Scary Ghosts & Haunted Houses (Berkley Street Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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"What a terrific ghost book ! Can't wait till I can get the next one!!!!!" - Reader
"Nothing like I expected. Full of twist and turns. Love that the characters are so well portrayed!" - Heaven R.
"Great read. Fast paced and super spooky. I loved it!" - Edna
"I stayed up all night to read this one!" - Patti B.
"A must read for those who like chilling, haunted house, twisted like the Shining" - Anthony M.
"Terrifically terrifying!" - Reader
"LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS BOOK!" - Heather C.
"Spooktacular story. A great read for anyone who enjoys a scary twist filled story!" - Brenda C.
"I could not put down this book once I had started. Great characters and horrible ghosts live on Berkley street. Gives you the heebie jeebies...and I just had to finish it. Highly recommended to readers that like a scary story!!" - Reader
"Terrifically terrifying. This tale of horror inside an extremely haunted house was a mind blower. I will go so far to say no writter since Koontz has had me waiting so anxiously for the next book to come!" - Reader
"This is a great page turning book. I loved the story and characters alive and dead. Keeps you on your toes and hard to put down. If you want a great terror book then this is the one for you." - Reader
"WOW. Talk about "everything but the kitchen sink", this book has it! Scares, thrills & chills, a mystery of why the house became what it is... You name it, this story pretty much contains it. And since it would seem this is only the first book in a series set on that accursed street, I eagerly await the next installment. Write faster, Ron Ripley!!" - Jaimee
"There are many very scary moments that will give you the chills. A very tense and spooky read. If you like ghost stories and haunted house stories, you will like "Berkley Street". If you never read any of Ripley's other works, read this and you will be hooked!" - Paul C.
From the Inside Flap
"Are you awake?"
Shane sat up and turned on his light. His heart beat quickly, and he looked around his large room. The curtains were drawn on the tall windows. His books were lined neatly on his shelves. Legos were scattered across the floor by the old fireplace.
"Are you awake?" the voice asked again.
Shane twisted around in his bed. Neither his mother nor his father was in his room.
He was alone.
He couldn't tell where the voice came from. His mouth was dry, so he swallowed, wet his lips with his tongue, and said in a low voice, "I'm awake."
"Good," the voice said.
It came from behind his dresser.
"Why? Why is it good?" Shane asked.
"Because they don't want you here," the voice said. "They don't want you. Here."
His heart thumped heavily, and he managed to ask, "Who?"
"Don't ask," the voice said. "I want you here. I'm lonely."
Shane tried to speak but couldn't. The sound of his blood as it rushed through him nearly drowned out his own thoughts. "Why are you lonely?" Shane whispered.
"I've been here a long time. Such a very long time."
The bureau started to move, inch by inch, into the room. It swung out slowly from the wall, and a dark shadow appeared.
It took Shane a moment to realize there was a passage in the wall.
A soft scrape slipped out of the darkness, and it was quickly followed by a sigh.
The speaker stepped into the room.
A girl. Perhaps eight or nine.
Dead, dead, dead.
She smelled like death, and her skin was shrunken, pulled tight across her bones. Her lips were stretched in a gruesome smile, and long teeth protruded from her yellow jawbone.
"I'm lonely," she said, stepping into the room. Bits of fabric fell from her ragged, gray dress. Her brown hair was tied back with a faded red bow, and the bones of her feet cracked as she walked. "I'm lonely. I want to play."
Shane closed his eyes, opened his mouth, and screamed.
Suddenly his bedroom door was thrown open and bounced against the wall, and Shane opened his eyes. His father and mother charged into the room, their faces puffy with sleep and their hair disheveled.
"Oh my God, Hank," his mother said, pointing to the bureau.
"What the hell?" his father asked. His father walked to the bureau as his mother hurried to Shane.
Shane sank into his mother's arms and shook as she held him tightly. From the protection of his mother's embrace, Shane watched his father.
"There's a passage," his father said, looking back at Shane and his mother. "Fiona, there's a passage here."
"What?" she asked. "Are you sure?"
"Positive. Looks like we put his bureau against a door of some sort. Couldn't even tell. You'd think it was part of the wainscoting. Hell, I did."
Shane's father leaned into the dark hole the dead girl had come from.
His father backed out and looked at his mother. "It's a real passage, Fiona. I can't see much in there right now, but I thought I saw lights. It's just wide enough for someone to walk through."
"Servants' passage?" she asked.
"Must be," he answered.
Shane watched as his father pushed the bureau back into place.
"It wasn't in any of the forms, Hank," Shane's mother said. "There wasn't anything about servants' passages. Just their quarters."
"Yeah," his father said. "I know."
Shane's shakes slowly went away, and his father came and sat down on the bed beside him.
"Did you get scared, kid?" his father asked.
"Would have scared me too," his father said.
"There was a girl," Shane whispered.
"What?" his mother asked.
"A girl. A dead girl," Shane said.
"Shane," his father started, and Shane heard the 'now you're seven, so you need to be a big boy' voice, but his mother interrupted him.
"Hank," she said, her voice harsh. "Not now."
"Okay, Fiona. Okay," his father said with a sigh.
"Is there a way you can block the bureau so it won't pop open again?" his mother asked.
"I'll figure it out," Shane's father said, nodding.
"Good. Shane," his mother said. "Do you want me to lie down with you for a bit?"
Shane clung to his mother and nodded.
- ASIN : B01E33CSGI
- Publisher : Scare Street; 1st edition (April 22, 2016)
- Publication date : April 22, 2016
- Language : English
- File size : 979 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 213 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 1532759207
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,213 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
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First of all, the writing style is unemotional and matter-of-fact. The plain, bland prose adds no sense of spookiness or creepiness. Nor does it add any suspense or foreboding tension.
Then, the whole story is just a mess. There's at least a half dozen human spirits from different eras in the house. Then there's the Dark Ones in the root cellar and the Girl in the Pond, and disappearing rooms and floors that don't exist. The author tries to squeeze way too much into one book for it to make any kind of believable sense.
On top of that, there's Shane Ryan's miraculous "gift" of instantly becoming fluent in any language the minute he hears it spoken aloud. (eye roll). As well, Shane's character never changes. He's the same person at forty that he was at fourteen.
I could go on, but suffice it to say I didn't like the book, and I probably won't read any more of the series.
The characters have no depth and give readers no reason to like them or to care about them. The parents of the main character are incompetent morons, but the local police are even dumber because somehow people have been dying in and around the house for at least a hundred years and no one has bothered to investigate or do anything about it.
The main character's modus operandi seems to be to get drunk, moan about the house, then live there anyway because reasons. He has about as much personality as a cardboard cutout of a kumquat, which is somehow more personality than the love interest (whose only trait seems to be being attractive and French) has.
Can we talk about how the main character has the magical, unexplained ability to understand and speak any language he hears? And how he is able to punch the little ghost girl in the end because the house and ghosts love him so much it gives him power?
The hauntings are ridiculous and the book's structure is confusing. Also, the layout of the book is bad--sometimes there are paragraph errors and the headings change size.
The sound of my cat retching scares me more than this book ever did.
Since this is a series book I am sure book 2 will keep the readers on the edge
"Everything's impossible until it isn't . . . "
Ron Ripley has created a morbid "fun house" of sorts, filled with macabre spirits, hidden passages, and a house that likes to conveniently change its shape and form impossibly, from the inside.
". . . you can disappear into the walls. Places and rooms which shouldn't exist, but they do anyway."
Twenty years after the disappearance of his parents, a series of events leads Shane to move back to the house at 125 Berkley Street. On his first day, he meets a neighbor and former Marine, Gerald Beck--a man who has always believed the rumors of Shane's house to be truth.
". . . there are things which the Good Lord does not rein in. And some of those things are in the root cellar."
Along with the unique atmosphere of this house, Ripley brings us characters--both living and dead--that you'll come to care about as if they were real people. Each death that occurs there has it's own special kind of torture, and each spirit trapped there retains their individual personalities. Some, like Carl, are simply grateful to be remembered: ". . . My Oubliette . . . My little place of forgetting. I shall forget he existed, and so shall the world . . . ". Others, like the Lady of the Lake , are still as twisted and sadistic in death as they were in life--more than capable of causing the painful deaths of so many others.
". . . when he fell asleep, he died. They call it dry drowning. A little water in the lungs is enough to kill . . . "
Shane is aware of the danger he faces in returning, but his character is so convincingly portrayed that the reader can easily accept that his homecoming was inevitable.
I found Berkley Street to be a unique and compelling supernatural horror novel. This was the first book that I'd read by Ron Ripley, and I've already purchased another.
Top reviews from other countries
At his Graduation he is waiting for his parents, but he get the message that his parents has been missing or better vanished.
Since then his uncle and aunt had fought him since his parents had initially disappeared, to take away the house. The day arrived as he is been told that the house is his. He wanted nothing more to find his parents, over twenty years has past, he is been waiting to have this chance.
But it will awaken his nightmares, his fear of the house. Well written storyline with lot's of great details. Truly haunting.
I liked Shane the main character, he is normal and still scared what he need to do. But still is able to make some new friends to help him.
Well I have enjoyed the first part of this book. I would have liked more information at the end about his parents and the conversation he might have with them. Because this is what we all waiting for....pity. But I was grateful that he found them at last.
Each ghost has a story to tell none of it pleasant but all of it gruesome.
I often found myself scratching my head in confusion. Let me clarify. It is a ghost story so already the realms of the possible are blurred. That isn’t really an issue to me, it’s not why I read haunted house stories. The issue that caused me the most confusion was how the ghosts would kill people in relation to their behaviour to Shane. His interactions with the ghosts were mostly positive and quite often friendly. The two just didn’t add up for me. Oh and another point – why the hell would you fight for a house that quite clearly scares the crap out of you!
The house on Berkley Streets back story is interesting. I particularly enjoyed reliving Shane’s childhood experiences with the house and its occupants. Shane befriends most of the ghosts apart from the dark ones in the basement and the little girl that lives in the lake. The little girl has everyone trapped in a reign of horror. She is responsible for most of the deaths. Shane begs his parents to believe him about their house guests. They are hesitant until an incident changes their minds. Okay, so for the killer blow – they never move out?! Oh, and the double-barrelled shot is that on occasion they are happy to leave their child alone in 125 Berkley Street.
Berkley Street is a horror novella that is told in dual timelines, Shanes childhood and the present day. Shane is back home after spending around twenty years in the US Marines. His aunt and uncle pursued having his parents declared dead too early and wanted the family home. A lengthy court battle has resulted in Shane regaining his home, if only to find out what happened to his parents. It’s a decent story and I will read more in time.
This might all sound improbable but the story often flits back to the past to pad out the truth of what lies within the walls at 125 Berkley Street, telling a chilling tale of how the house terrorised the occupants all those years ago when Shane was a boy, and still does to this day. There is more than one ghost in that house, thankfully some friendly; some even helpful and kindly, but there is one malevolent entity behind all the evil, and intertwined in the ghost story is the present-day investigation by the local police into the disappearance of Shane’s aunt and uncle who contested ownership of the house (and lost) and they think Shane has something to do with that, but the lead detective, Marie Lafontaine, ends up investigating something much more sinister.
This is not your run-of-the-mill ghost story – there are twists and turns you don’t expect.
This was a very enjoyable and satisfying read and you stay awake at night for all the right reasons – you want to know what’s happening and you can’t bare to put this book down (pardon the cliché) turning page after page as the intrigue deepens. I’m a new convert to ghost stories after reading this one, and really pleased to note there are sequels by this author so I can continue this ghostly adventure.
Great writing, empathetic characters and clear plotting make this a joy to read. There are so many awful ghost/horror stories around at the moment, it's wonderful to discover such a innovative, engaging writer.
I don't think it's the job of a reviewer to outline a book's plot, read it for yourself, you'll be glad you did.
In my opinion, the writing is simplistic, and there are a few technical issues, including: two characters speaking in the same paragraph; ‘shined’ instead of ‘shone’; and overuse of one-line paragraphs. The ‘scary ghosts’ required such a suspension of disbelief that they were rendered absurd. Their origins, and the reasons for their continued presence in the house, only revealed selectively. I was also puzzled by the ‘Bonus Scene’ chapters at the end of the book. If they contributed to the story, why not include them in their proper place?
For me to enjoy a ghost story, there have to be developed characters, a conviction that the events are feasible – however unlikely - and suspense. I found none of these elements in Berkley Street.