Title: The Haunted Pub
Author Name & Publisher: Melanie Tushmore (Less Than Three)
Publication Date & Length: May 10th, 2016 – 364 Pages
Suffering from depression, and going through a rough time because of it, Fizz’s misery culminates in his parents throwing him out, leaving him with two bags, twenty pounds, and nowhere to go. Desperate, he calls his brother, who takes him to The Queen Anne’s Revenge, where Fizz winds up living in a room that hasn’t had a human inhabitant for more years than anyone can actually count—a room that seems to already have an occupant…
The Haunted Pub is a charming, fun story about a mischievous ghost tormenting a motley group of earnest, gay characters who run a run-down pub in England. There’s an ensemble rather than one pairing, which was a nice surprise, narrated mostly by Ryan, an even-keeled fellow at odds with the weirdness around him.
The story aspires to scary but remains a farce. There are hi-jinks and a bit of camp, and everyone gets a happy ending. It’s even quite sexy.
The story also aspires to some depth, but doesn’t quite get there. Fizz, our introductory character, suffers from clinical depression and suicidal tendencies. His portrayal is realistic enough, but gets too pat a conclusion. There’s also a harrowing account of rape that has meaning but lacks…accountability, somehow.
That makes The Haunted Pub a somewhat guilty pleasure, but a pleasure indeed. Action, drama, scrappy humor, and British accents make a splendid escape for an afternoon’s read.
C. E. Case
Barnes & Noble
Writer of fiction including themes
Alternative subcultures: goths, punk rockers, rebels and outcasts
and very British Humour
Author’s GoodReads Page