In this sensitive tale, adult Jake looks back on his childhood in Niagara Falls, Canada, in the 1980s. As a 12-year old he is quite the odd man out, just like his half-native boyfriend Billy and sister Dove. Jake has an uncle who runs a shop in occult paraphernalia. Every Saturday uncle Cal takes them to special places and tells them ghost stories. Unknowingly Cal tries to banish his own spirits with them. Brilliant coming-of-age story.
The dial on the See 'N Say spun and spun and spun.... I heard things. Screams in a dense sonic mist, wind sawing across rusted metal, something bubbling, rainfall like ten-penny nails. I would have slammed the lid of the Psycho-Phone, crumpling the horn between the lips of the case, but I couldn't move, was paralyzed, the sounds ebbing into whale-songs as something else built behind them—a sinister presence running behind those melancholy arias. Soon all I could hear was horrid stifled breathing, breaths built out of whispers, realizing too late that the cadence of those breaths matched the rapid beat of my own heart.
Something's coming, I thought. Something horrible.