Gangs and Ghosts by Katie May – Book Review

Posted January 10, 2019 by Booksandblurbs in Dark, Horror, Reverse Harem, Reviews, YA/NA / 3 Comments

Gangs and Ghosts by Katie May - Book Review #Horror #Urban Fantasy #YA/NA #RH #Slowburn #FirstInSeries

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Gangs And Ghosts (Beyond the Shadows Series – Book 1)

by Katie May
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

slow burn YA, RH, Horror

Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Down and Dirty

Read it – just be prepared to go… “what the what??”

What is it about?

Camilla was found alone and almost feral in the woods when she was just 3 years old. Though the authorities believe she had been alone for only a few days, Camilla knew better. She had been alone her entire life. How did she survive? The Shadow Man.

Now a senior in High School, Camilla has left those feral days behind her.. or so she thinks. When her loving family moves from the icy streets of Chicago to the heart of small town America, Camilla finds herself neck deep in cliches, gangs and a haunted house that brings her past rushing back to life.

The Shadow Man is here.. and he wants her back.


What did I just read? Seriously… what the what? Oh, don’t get me wrong, I loved it! But the ending… the ending! Why would she do that to us without the next book out??! Fair warning, cliff hanger city awaits – and it’s a doozy.

The entire book is a series of build ups and allusions, softly teasing the horror throughout the narrative while dropping hints and clues as to the house Camilla and her family now live in, as well as the town that stews in secrets. There is the neighbor, Dorian, who is far more than he seems, the twins who intrude and charm, Ian, the handsome older gang member who seems far too nice for the role he appears to play, Kieran, the football jock with shadows of his own and finally Ty, the brother of the only female friend Camilla begrudgingly makes in this strange new world… oh, and he also happens to be a Gang Member too.

It’s a messed up, mixed up situation, with Gangs that feel almost like a 50’s rat pack, though their danger is all modern LA and a house that has known more death than even the most bloody horror noir out there.


Written in First Person POV

Ending type



  • Build up. Tension, both of the horrific and the romantic kind is slowly crafted.
  • Well written. 1st person POV done right.
  • Anxiety. This author is someone who knows how confusing, and crippling, anxiety can be.
  • Well edited.
  • FMC Growth. From the first page to the last page, you actually see, and experience, Camilla’s inner strength grow. She’s not there just yet, but you get the sense that someday, she will be a force to be reckoned with.



  • Cliffhanger
  • MC is a touch dense at times, but what teenager isn’t?
  • I don’t know when Book 2 is coming out!


4 out of 5 Stars

You are left with FAR more questions than answers at the end of this novel, but it is definitely worth reading. This is not the kind of horror that will keep you up at night, listening for the bumps and monsters, but it IS the kind that seeps into your pores and makes you think just a bit too hard.

Published: November 10th, 2018

268 pages

Please note that this is a YA Reverse Harem Novel, which means that she had multiple love interests and in the end, she will not have to choose between them. Sexual Content is suited to YA genre.


If you enjoyed this article, please be sure to check out a few of my other reviews!


Your Turn

What are you reading now? Have any great recommendations for me? Doesn’t really matter what genre – my Kindle needs the love! Drop a comment below, I would love to hear from you!


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3 responses to “Gangs and Ghosts by Katie May – Book Review

    • Katie May

      I literally stumbled upon this trying to copy and paste a link! Thank you so much for reading my book 😊😍 I’m glad you enjoyed it! The second book is all planned out and ready to be written. It’s going to be longer than the first and will start giving answers. I squealed when I saw this hahha

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