Nearly Departed by Rook Hastings is a horror story set in the spooky town of Woodsville. Jay, Kelly, Hashim, Bethan and Emily are five students thrown together to complete an assignment. Coming from varied backgrounds, they are different from each other in their outlooks, attitudes, tastes and temperaments, making for a lot of sparky interaction between them.
Emily, least popular but most timid of the lot, claims to have seen a ghost, and the teenagers set about tracking it, putting aside their project work. They detect an eerie presence in her house and soon, a ghost hunt is on.
However, they don’t know what to make of Emily, because she discloses to them that her mother has been missing for some time. They are puzzled when Emily cannot remember anything about the day her mother disappeared. That she had kept all of this from every body makes them even more suspicious of her.
Amidst all the disparate reactions, the five decide to stick together and uncover the mysteries of their friend. The revelations of which are shocking and they are stalked by more than one ghost. This book is scary, especially so because its ghosts come in and calmly occupy space in rooms and under beds.
By Rook Hastings