The Things We Can’t See: When Ghosts Come Home by Wiley Cash

Short review: I stayed up way late to finish this book because I had to know what happens.

Even shorter review: Oh man. What happened.

One of my favorite underrated reads in the last 10 years or so is a book called “This Dark Road to Mercy” by Wiley Cash. The author’s ability to craft such a tender tale about bad men and their daughters put him on my “Read everything this person writes” list and I jumped at the opportunity to read his latest, “When Ghosts Come Home,” out this September.

I just wish you all didn’t have to wait that long.

Ghosts are a subtle thing when you think about it. Whispers, really. Ethereal reminders of people and places that haunt the soul. The things you wish you could hold on to, and the things you wish you could forget. For Winston Barnes, a small town sheriff in a coastal North Carolina town in 1984, his wife’s battle with cancer and his election opponent are just two of the things he’d like to shake off. Until, of course, a place crash lands in the middle of the night.

With an abandoned plane and a dead Black man a week before Election Day, Winston’s got just a few days to solve a crime before Bradley Frye consolidates his power base and is able to finally destroy the black community he’s been trying to run out of town.

With the FBI breathing down his neck, friendships falling to the wayside, racial tensions bubbling over and a grieving daughter on his doorstep, can Winston pull it together in time? The life-changing choices he makes throughout the novel test his conscience as a man of the law, and really, his humanity. But his last choice —his very last choice. It’s been less than a day and I miss these people already.

A fantastic, engrossing, gets-inside-your-heart kind of read that you’ll find incredibly easy to sink right into and not come up for air until you’ve turned the last page. Put it on your list now and don’t forget it in September — especially if you like authors that take care of their characters and don’t leave readers to hang at the end of a book. Then go hug your partner, your kids, and let peace and gratitude wash over you and let those ghosts float away on their tide.

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