Book Review: Ghostoria: Vintage Romantic Tales of Fright by Tam Francis

Ghostoria: Vintage Romantic Tales of Fright by Tam Francis


Tam Francis writes “vintage romantic fiction” – a collector of anything vintage including patterns, clothing, swing dancing, cooking, sewing, and antiques. “She has published, contributed to and been Editor-in-chief for two indie magazines – From the Ashes (Arts & Literature in the Greater Phoenix area 1990-1994) and Swivel: Vintage Living (swing dancing and vintage lifestyle culture 1994-2000)”. Read more at her website.

Tam Francis is a two-time, National Poetry Slam city finalist, a blogger, short story writer and a first-time novelist. Her short story collection, Ghostoria: Vintage Romantic Tales of Fright is a wonderful collection of tales of ghosts during the early 19th century. Francis weaves her love of everything vintage into her stories – the early 19th century, where times were simpler and courting was an art form.

Mrs. Franklin’s Night Out the last story in the collection had won the “Scare the Dickens Out of Us Ghost Story” contest – a beautifully written story about a woman whose encounter with her husband’s ghost on Halloween evening during a period in history not so long ago.

It is Halloween evening; Mrs. Franklin has tucked her children into bed after an early evening of trick or tweeting. While she waits on a sitter, she preps for her late evening out.   She pines over her lost husband, “She misses him. She misses dancing. She misses dancing with him”. Her best friend wouldn’t be able to make the event and Mrs. Franklin is left alone to attend a Halloween masquerade party.


The scene is set, it’s a rainy night, “Rain streams down the car window. Lightning illuminates the dark avenue in time to see a black cat dart in front of her car”.

What more could we ask for?

Tam Francis’ collection brings a period long forgotten combined with ghostly encounters that makes for a delightful reading.

If you like scary stories “with a little romance and a vintage twist”, I highly recommend Tam Francis’ short story collection, Ghostoria: Vintage Romantic Tales of Fright.