Garvey's Ghost

Garvey's Ghost

Level: Secondary

Series Title: Expressions

Subject: Literature

ISBN: 978 976 638 166 0

Pages: 256

Age Group: 15 - 18 years

Published: 2016

Kathryn Bailey is a single Jamaican woman of East Indian descent living in Miami. When her teenage daughter, Jasmine, disappears, Kathryn pursues every available clue to find her. Her search takes her to Jacob Virgo, a professor of Black History at a local college, who is one of Jasmine’s teachers.  Besides being a black Jamaican man, Jacob is a devoted Garveyite and a Rastafarian. Apart from being Jamaican, Kathryn and Jacob seem to have little in common, but they reluctantly join forces to find Jasmine … before it is too late.


Geoffrey Philp
has published one novel, five volumes of poetry, two short-story collections and three children's books. A graduate of the University of Miami where he earned an MA in English, Philp teaches creative writing at Miami Dade College.

Key Features

  • The author employs the first person perspective to tell the story but, interestingly, he allows a different character to speak in each chapter – mainly Kathryn and Jacob.
  • Teachings of Marcus Garvey play an important role in the story.
  • Spanish phrases sprinkled throughout give the reader a real sense of the multi-cultural environment in which both Spanish and English speakers strive to co-exist. A few Haitian creole phrases are also thrown into the mix.
  • To ensure a full understanding of the text, translations of the main non-English phrases have been inserted on the back pages of the book.
  • Music also plays a subtle but major role in the story.
  • The role of religion in human endeavours also features prominently throughout the story.

Look out For:

  • A compelling plot
  • True to life characters
  • Complex, compelling relationships
  • Dramatic situations
  • Beautiful descriptive language