Lyle Hall, Bridgehampton's greediest lawyer, becomes the Hamptons' most unlikely historic-home preservationist when he launches himself into the paranormal world to save an abandoned Victorian mansion marked for demolition. Following a tragic car accident, it seems Lyle now has strange psychic power. Late one night he encounters the apparition of a Victorian-era girl who seems to be asking him to save her house, rumored to have been a brothel long ago. As if returning the favor, the girl shows Lyle a shocking vision: a headstone with the name of his daughter, a police detective, freshly inscribed. If this is to be believed, Georgie has four days to live.
Lyle, who's been recovering from the car crash and is currently in a wheelchair, decides he must save “Old Vic,” the town's last Victorian mansion and reputed "haunted whorehouse," from the wrecking ball. At the same time he must rekindle a relationship with his daughter. Georgie, a police detective working a case involving a dangerous drugs and prostitution gang, has no time for her batty father. And she harbors issues with him dating back 15 years to her mother's (Lyle's first wife) death. Convinced Georgie, like everyone else in town, won't believe his story of haunting, let alone a predictive headstone, Lyle starts to crumble under the pressure.
When his story of a ghost girl in an abandoned whorehouse gets out to the media, Lyle becomes a controversial cause celeb and attracts a tent city of strange paranormal enthusiasts who set up camp around his house. Into this scene strides Silk, a popular paranormal news reporter looking to exploit Lyle to gain national prominence on TV. Silk's beauty and desirability work to hook the smitten Lyle. His awkward TV interviews (he's visibly drunk on camera) make him infamous and draw fire from his daughter. Lyle meanwhile forges some new friends from the paranormal world, including a mysterious young priest visiting from Malta, but Lyle’s fragile psyche comes crashing in as one by one they die suspiciously.
The townsfolk are united against him and cheer his failures. Georgie will not speak to him. It becomes clear that Silk would never want him. Growing desperate as his daughter berates him for the mess he's caused, Lyle believes her time is almost up. His solution is one that can never work--he gets very drunk and takes his car service back to Old Vic. And he brings with him a Molotov cocktail and a gun.
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Imagine it. A successful but not very well liked lawyer gets a conscience. Well, kind of. After he’s injured in an accident, Lyle Hall, a taciturn lawyer, comes out of it with an infinity for other people’s pain. A long dead ghost in the guise of a young girl shows him a vision of his own daughter’s grave marker and wants his help. Georgie has four days to live and Lyle is on the clock to save her before her time is up. There are complications. Lyle and Georgie aren’t on the best of terms. His case to save the old Victorian mansion, Old Vic, where Jewel, the young ghost resides, spreads like fire over the internet as its said have once been a brothel and is now haunted. Paranormal investigators come out of the word work and descend on the town, along with a sexy, feisty TV reporter, Silk, after the next big scoop. Torn between his old selfish desires and the word of a ghost that his daughter will die, will Lyle make the right choice? This book has a lot to offer. And you can tell the author knows his stuff. He gives you laughter, suspense, and a bit of the sexy stuff, along with the paranormal creepiness. And his characters are a modge podge of personalities so genuine, you think you recognize some of them. I got a whole lot of everything in this story and that, along with the easy flow of the writing, made the enjoyment double fun.
Ken McGorry is an inveterate purveyor of wry humor and, with his latest effort, Ghost Hampton, he has expanded his sophisticated vision into, appropriately enough, the netherworld of the chic Hamptons. This is a horror story you will read with a smile. It is full of memorable characters, is suspenseful, with enjoyable sub-plots, and is funny, clever, sometimes poignant, and always intelligent.