Monday, October 30, 2017

New Beginnings by Marlo Berliner

My series, THE GHOST CHRONICLES, is a YA paranormal with adult crossover appeal, and is all about new beginnings and second chances. In this case, the end of my main character’s life becomes the beginning of a new ghostly adventure as he finds himself navigating a new ‘life’, and even finds a new love in the afterlife.

I knew from the very beginning when I wrote the story that I wanted it to be a story of great hope for anyone who has lost someone tragically, particularly someone young. Michael, my main character, dies tragically through no fault of his own. The death of someone young has always seemed to be the most unfair to me. So what could be more hopeful than a story of how life ‘goes on’ after death, and how one might even be able to find love in the afterlife.
This quote from the first book in the series touches upon this theme of second chances, as Sarah tries to convince Michael to not waste what they’ve been given:

She stared at him intently for several moments, as if trying to see directly into his soul. “Let me ask you something,” she said slowly. “If you could tell your living friends one thing, what would it be?”
He thought for a mere second and said, “Cherish life, it’s absolutely precious.”
“Exactly,” she responded emphatically. “I loved my life…it was just getting started. And I know you loved yours too…but our lives were taken away from us,” she said with a glint of anger and urgency in her eyes. “Now that we’ve been given another chance at happiness, shouldn’t we take it?”

In fact, the original subtitle of THE GHOST CHRONICLES was going to be Beginning at the End. The subtitle was later deleted in favor of the simpler title. My logline for the book is: Can Michael get to heaven before the devil gets him first, and if it means leaving Sarah is he sure he still wants to go?
THE GHOST CHRONICLES 2 has just been released and is the second book in my award-winning Ghost Chronicles series. The first book won the 2016 NJRW Golden Leaf Award for Best First Book, was named FINALIST in the National Indie Excellence Awards for Young Adult Fiction, received the Literary Classics Seal of Approval, was awarded a B.R.A.G. Medallion, and was named one of the “best indie YA books we have seen in the past year, from both self-publishers and small presses” by IPPY Magazine. The second book continues Michael’s ghostly adventures in the afterlife, now with Sarah by his side. Here’s the blurb for the book:

What’s there to fear if you’re already dead?

Michael and Sarah now know for certain, there is a destination after death.
They also know they better find their way out of the afterlife fast, before the devil claims Michael’s soul.
What they don’t know?
Before they can get to heaven…
they may just have to go through hell.

One of the inspirations for THE GHOST CHRONICLES 2 was the song Stand By You by Rachel Platten. The lyrics fit my story and my characters so perfectly, that the minute I heard it, I knew it would help me write the second book. Basically, as Michael and Sarah are facing their new beginning and navigating the afterlife, they are going to stand by each other and do it together, no matter what comes their way...even if they can't find heaven. You can listen to it here: Stand By You - Rachel Platten


  1. Congrats on releasing book 2 in The Ghost Chronicles series! Hope this new journey is as successful as the first.