Book Review: The Ghosts Between Us by Brigham Vaughn

Reviewed by Susan65

Title: The Ghosts Between Us
Author: Brigham Vaughn
Series: The West Hills #1
Heroes: Christopher & Elliot
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 372 pages
Publisher: Two Peninsulas Press
Release Date: March 1, 2019
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: Dr. Christopher Allen knows how to deal with death. He’s a psychiatrist who works with hospice patients and their families, helping them cope with grief and letting go. But Chris’s job doesn’t prepare him for the sudden death of his devil-may-care brother Cal.

At Cal’s funeral, Chris is completely thrown when he meets Elliot Rawlings, an artist Cal has been dating. Chris is hurt to discover that the brother he knew as straight was actually bisexual. Elliot is angry and resentful of having been kept hidden from Cal’s family.

After the funeral, a night of drinking at the bar with Cal’s friends leads to Chris and Elliot falling into bed together. The next morning, they’re overwhelmed by guilt and grief and agree to never speak of it again.

But Cal’s apartment needs to be packed up and Elliot reluctantly agrees to help Chris, as well as answer some questions about Cal’s life and their relationship. Despite their guilt and initial dislike for one another, they sort through the pieces of Cal’s life and begin to fall for each other.

Despite his best efforts to fix things, Chris’s family seems to be crumbling around him and he begins to question who he is and what his role with them is. As his feelings for Elliot grow, Chris must decide if they’re worth further damaging his fragile relationships with his friends and family.

Elliot’s rough upbringing has left him distrustful of getting close to anyone, much less another man who isn’t willing to acknowledge him in public. The odds seem stacked against Chris and Elliot, but if they can overcome them, they may be able to lay Cal’s ghost to rest, along with their own demons.

Reader Advisory: This story deals with themes related to alcoholism, death (of secondary characters), and past abuse/neglect.



Hurt-Comfort. Heart Wrenching. Heart breaking. Grief ridden. Guilt ridden. These are just some of the adjectives to describe this book. But never fear, there is also self -forgiveness, self-discovery, acceptance, and learning to love for one character, and learning to love again for another. This book made me cry, more than once, and it made me a bit uncomfortable, a lot, but I got past that and it settled into a story of new beginnings and hope. I doubt I will forget this story anytime soon.
I am not going to sugar coat it, parts of this story were really hard to read, and it did seem a lot longer than the page numbers indicated. I kept thinking it was almost over only to realize I had a ways to go. In a book full of grief, guilt and sorrow, that is a lot of pages to wade through. But, once our characters turned the corner, the suffocating weight is lifted from your shoulders and you realize that the storm was finally coming to an end. And not only was it coming to an end, it was ending with rainbows, kittens and unicorns. Yeah, it was a long, hard ride, but the destination was worth it.
And then I realize it’s a series…oh be still my heart. I will definitely continue reading, with caution, and my curiosity is killing me (no pun intended) who the next book is about. My guess is Dave.

Overall Impression: I Loved It

*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*

Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Published in 2019, Susan65's Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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