Found footage, or rather found manuscript, is the style of Catie Disabato’s The Ghost Network. Disabato herself is our narrator, using footnotes to communicate with the reader as she pieces together the manuscript which was left to her after the world’s biggest pop star (like Taylor Swift big) vanishes without a trace. What follows is a mystery that unravels at a good pace and leaves no stone left unturned. The premise of the story is incredibly layered and well written and only gets muddy on a couple occasions.
While Molly Metropolis is a fictional pop star, the story is interspersed with references to real events and people like the MTV Awards and Britney Spears (Tay is not mentioned). Additionally, the New Situationists (the Illuminati like group at the heart of the novel) are also a real entity. The story is steeped with the sects history and infused with mystery when it is discovered that Molly herself was obsessed with the super secret organization. The question is, is her disappearance related to the group? Disabato races to track down the sources used in the manuscript to do interviews of her own and as she does so, we as readers are taken along for the ride.
The basis of the New Situationists beliefs is, essentially, that all art has already been created and the only way to make something new is to improve upon something that already exists. Molly’s goal, in keeping with the NS’s beliefs, is to become the world’s biggest pop star (ambitious little tyke) and in so doing she shape the current track of pop culture (think Lady Gaga with all her little Monsters).
As the mystery of what happens to Molly is unraveled we learn that maybe things aren’t as clear as they could be, providing us not with an unreliable narrator but with unreliable sources and witnesses who twist information to suite their needs. This element heightens the mystery as we as readers truly do not know whom to trust as true.
There are many twists and turns in this book and they make for a really good story with many facets. The use of footnotes to incorporate the narrators thoughts was well done. There were no gaping holes in the plot of the mystery however everything is not neatly tied in a bow at the close of the story which is what I was hoping would be the case…because who wants a neat bow?
I award four out of five books to The Ghost Network for a job well done on unraveling a mystery that could have been much more rambling.
The Ghost Network can be purchased on Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Network-Novel-Catie-Disabato/dp/1612194346/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1443558849&sr=1-1&keywords=the+ghost+network