So, we start with Jonty successfully persuading the boss of the hotel chain to allow Jonty to organise a scare party for Halloween. With Devon at his mother’s bedside after she had a stroke. Jonty is left to his own devices, what could possibly happen??? Oh, and did I mention he has also been given a company credit card, so he can order items needed for the event, again What could possibly happen?
If you have followed Jonty through his books and the appearances of him in the other Unfinished series books. You will get my opening paragraph.
This is a treat of a mostly fun and happy Halloween story. Full of humour surprises, mishaps, a tv crew and even the real police, and a naughty Santa (yes only Barbara Elsborg could include a naughty Santa in a Halloween story.) Now that is all I am giving away. I just can not say anything else about the storyline that would not spoil the surprises and fun.
What I do want to talk about though is Barbara’s unique ability to weave all the different emotions together and yet come up with a fun and positive story.
We have been following Jonty for a year or two now, on and off. It is easy to forget how rough Jonty’s life was before he met his grumpy hotel guest. He grew up with his father in a unloving and uncared-for home. He never had parties of any kind. So, you can imagine his excitement about organising a Halloween party.
But when the reality of what he must achieve hits him, his insecurities from his past, threaten to cause a meltdown. And Barbara reminds us that behind Jonty’s larger than life and humour, there is still a healing boy. I think this is a well thought out reminder to us of how strong and brave Jonty Bloom really is.
As with all of Barbara’s books Jonty’s Halloween is a mix of happy and sad emotions woven seamlessly together, Characters that are so lifelike they almost walk off the page. A plot that takes you on a emotional rollercoaster ride.
I was just thinking the other day, after reading the book. Jonty should have his story told on tv or a movie. It would be a true positive message about gay love, and the story and characters are certainly strong enough for this to happen.