Book Review: Ghost Friends Forever: My Heart Lies in the 90's by Monica Gallagher, Kata Kane

Ghost Friends Forever: My Heart Lies in the 90's is the first installment in a graphic novel series for teens and tweens written by Monica Gallagher and with artwork by Kata Kane. Sophia Campos is only just getting used to her new life with her divorced dad and managing their business of helping ghosts, when she meets a ghost girl who changes everything. Not because she’s a ghost - but because of what it brings out in Sophia. Soon her brother, her best friend (who is also her old crush) Jake, and her parents are all entangled together on solving the case of the dead girl. Because she’s not just any average ghost girl. She also holds a piece of the puzzle to something Sophia cares about very much -what was the paranormal event that caused her parents to split up in the first place?

Ghost Friends Forever is a graphic novel that combines family drama, school conflicts, and the supernatural. I like that while many pieces of the story (crushes, divorce,school) are universal, I found that those universal feels carried over the the mystery and ghostly aspects of the story as well, making even the most fantastic moments feel real. Part of that was the deep character work with Sophia, and to a lesser extent the others. Family and relationship drama is something every tween and teen will face (not necessarily in the same degrees) and it just brings the emotional struggles Sophia faces more powerful. I liked the development of her brother as well, even though he does not always make the wisest choice, and the goodness of Jake just made me smile when the way their lives were interconnected was made clear. The art work added the detail and emotion needed to keep readers turning pages and enthralled in the story. I look forward to the chance to keep reading.

Ghost Friends Forever is a wonderful start to a new series. I liked the characters, their relationships, the underlying premise, and the artwork. I am eager to see what comes next. 

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