I don't often read short stories. Not because I don't think they are good but because I prefer...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City. 7/10 on the blog.
I don't often read short stories. Not because I don't think they are good but because I prefer the longer story and character arc that a novel can give. But when I found that one of my all time favourite series had a companion volume of short stories, I had to read it.
I'm not sure if readers coming in as a completely new reader will find this small collection of short stories as riveting as I did. The first two stories are short and I think were written for readers already familiar with the 'As The World Dies' trilogy. Because I had read the first two novels in the series, I was able to read the short stories with a mind already full of the world and the characters and the groundwork and foundations had already been set so to speak. However, as a companion to the trilogy they are fab.
The Broken Heart ~ Lydia's Story
This was the story I was most looking forward to reading, as well as dreading. Katie, one of the main characters in the full length novels in the 'As The World Dies' trilogy is such a wonderful character. Her sorrow and pain she feels about the death of her beloved wife, Lydia, is really poignant and one of the reasons I love Katie so much, so to finally see how Lydia died is sad but a must read all the same.
It was lovely to see Katie and Lydia together in happier times, good to see Katie smiling and buoyant rather than fighting for her life and tormented by memories of Lydia as a zombie. But at the same time the ending to Lydia's story is inevitable, we know what happens, and it's this ending that is so sad and heartbreaking, but very fitting to the trilogy and Katie's ongoing story.
Dangerous Highways ~ Monica's Story
It was nice to see Monica's journey before she arrived at the Fort. Not a pleasant journey by any means having been threatened at gun point by a man who had lost his sanity with hungry zombies all around. After seeing his wife being bitten and turned into a zombie and then see her kill and turn their children into zombies, you can understand why he's gone a little bit loopy.
But this is a different world now and it boils down to survival. Monica has to do what she can to stay alive so she can get to her home town and her family in one piece. As with all of Frater's work, there's an abundance of tension and suspense that makes this story exciting and heard to put down. But because it's very short, you don't have to wait long before it's ended - far too short in my opinion, but a great little story.
Vacation of the Undead ~ Eric's Story
I didn't find Eric particularly charismatic in 'Fighting to Survive'. He was a bit weedy. But this short story, which is a much better length, changed all that. Eric is actually pretty cool.
This short story is Eric's journey to the Fort and what a journey it is. After a huge fight with his girlfriend, Brandy, Eric finds himself, and his little dog, Pepe, in a bed and breakfast with zombies shuffling outside the front door. Before he enters the Fort we see him fighting off hordes of zombies, saving lives and falling in love.
The first half of the story seems to have been influenced by the novel, 'I Am Legend' by Richard Matheson. Although Matheson's novel deals with vampires rather than zombies, there are many similarities; a male character, who thinks he's all alone in a post-apocalyptic world, barricades himself inside a house, drinks himself into a stupor on a daily basis in despair, who owns a dog...
However, despite these similarities, Frater puts her distinct stamp on Eric's Story. Her ability to draw you into the action, of which there is plenty, to captivate you with her descriptive prose, to capture your heart with endearing characters, is now a definitive Frater trait, and as with everything I've read by Frater so far I enjoyed it immensely.
I loved the duo of Eric and his dog, Pepe. The relationship between them is sweet, and a man who loves animals is a great man indeed in my opinion. However, the human facial expressions Frater continually plasters on Pepe does become a bit unrealistic. Whether it was intended to be how Eric interprets his dogs behaviour is unclear. However, the love Eric has for his little dog is one of the reasons I like him so much, and a love I can totally understand. I heart animals.
I was surprised at how strong, capable and dynamic Eric became throughout this short story. He grew in my estimations and transformed into a sort of unwitting hero. Now that I have a better understanding of who he is, I hope he has a larger role to play in, 'Siege', the third novel in the trilogy.
I LOVED 'The First Days' and 'Fighting to Survive' - they will both go down as two of my all time favourite zombie horror novels *I can't wait to read 'Siege'. When I began reading this volume of short stories I was instantly pulled back into the zombie infested world Frater had created in her full length novels and I didn't want it to end. As this is a self-published work there are a few editing issues and some repetition, but Frater's writing talent shines through and these small issues soon became insignificant.
'As The World Dies Untold Tales' is a great insight into some of the lesser known characters, but Lydia and Monica's stories were not long enough for my liking, but that's probably just because I love this world so much. A wonderful companion to the 'As The World Dies' trilogy. I hope there's a volume two. (less)
How interesting does this anthology sound!? I loved the idea of reading from the view point of the monster. I'm a...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City.
How interesting does this anthology sound!? I loved the idea of reading from the view point of the monster. I'm also getting more and more into reading short stories. They really are great for when you're short on time, or going through a rough reading slump. And that's exactly what was happening to me when "The Monster's Corner" dropped through my letter box.
I decided I would read four of the stories in "The Monster's Corner" and write mini reviews of each. I thought this would be enough to give you an idea of the different styles you would find from the many different authors who contributed to this anthology and hope they will give a little taster if you will of what is on offer from this awesome looking book - the cover is fab don't you think? So here are my four choices from this bumper selection of supernatural shorties.
Succumb by John Mcllveen
This was a very visual, slightly dark but also tongue-in-cheek story with a huge amount of sexuality. The story is literally about a sexual act that has you guessing who, or what, is the entity doing the act. It's very difficult to explain without giving anything away, but let's just say I changed my mind about three times before the story ended. I liked the authors writing style a lot and even though this was a very short story there was a lot of information about the two characters involved. It had my complete undivided attention while reading.
Rakshasi by Kelley Armstrong
This is an excellent story. I really enjoyed it and I was disappointed when it ended. It's from the view point of a Rakshasi demon, who are cursed to walk the earth as a monster but are offered a way to repent and redeem their sins by a member of an isha family. If they accept, the member of the isha family becomes their master. When the Rakshasi has repaid their debt they will be set free. However, this hasn't happened for this particular demon who calls herself Amrita. Her 'family' have kept her for two hundred years as her job, with her master's help, is to seek out evil and eliminate it. When this is done the isha family can keep the wealth of their victim and because of this Amrita has become too valuable to set free, and she is not happy about it...
The ending is satisfying, although I must admit I was expecting something a little more dramatic, but over all this story is fab. I think Ms Armstrong should write a full length novel with Amrita as the heroine - I think this would make a very original type of urban fantasy.
Less of a Girl by Chelsea Cain
Sophie is in her bedroom with the bloody, dead body of, what I assume is her friend, Charlotte, on the floor. The narrator watches as Sophie scoops out an eyeball and offers it to her to eat, which she does and then continues to eat until there is no more trace of Charlotte, except for a blood stain on the carpet.
I do have my own thoughts as to who or what the narrater is, the clue for me is in the ending when the narrater slips under Sophie's bed, but I won't say any more as I don't want to influence you if you choose to read this anthology. However, it was a little too ambiguous for my taste and felt as though the author was relying on the reader to make their own assumptions as to who the narrater was. I'm not a huge fan of this style, but this story still had me instantly engrossed and is a great piece of descriptive writing.
Jesus and Satan Go Jogging in the Desert by Simon R. Green
This was my favourite story out of the four I selected to review. It is just so clever and funny, I loved it. It's exactly as the title suggests. Satan comes up from Hell to talk to Jesus who has been walking through the desert for forty days and forty nights. He's there to tempt Jesus, to test him at the instruction of their Father, God. It's quite poignant in places, and so funny in others. This story definitely makes me want to pick up a novel by this author.
Last year I read and reviewed a selection of stories from "Zombie: An Anthology of the Undead" (also edited by Christopher Golden), and thought it was excellent. From what I have read so far of "The Monster's Corner," it looks as though this is another fantastic collection of short stories from a great list of authors. I will definitely read more from this anthology, so look out for the review!(less)
I have been a big fan of Magrs’ writing ever since I read his ‘Brenda & Effie’ paranormal mystery series. Ma...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City.
I have been a big fan of Magrs’ writing ever since I read his ‘Brenda & Effie’ paranormal mystery series. Magrs writing style is quirky, with an old fashioned touch, articulate and descriptive. “666 Charing Cross Road” has all of these qualities.
New Yorker, Elizabeth Bathory, loves books, especially the supernatural kind and when her friend, Jack, gives her the address of a book shop in London who specialises in old out of print books in her favourite genres, she begins to write to the owner and order herself a selection of paranormal romances and vampire fiction.
One day she unexpectedly receives an ancient book, which is cursed with a demon. Having dealt with many vamps and other supernatural creatures in her past, Liza instantly knows that there’s something decidedly evil about the book and wants to be rid of it.
Shelley, Liza’s niece, is a curator for an unconventional art gallery and is dating her boss Daniel. When Daniel sets his eyes on the grimoire he wants it and asks to examine it in more details, so reluctantly, as Liza dislikes this man intensely and thinks her niece can do so much better, allows him to take it. Unfortunately, the demon possesses Daniel after he invites the demon in and all hell breaks loose.
Unfortunately, “666 Charing Cross Road” started off very slowly, which made it difficult to get into. It also has many plot twists and turns that made my head spin a little, as well as numerous characters, but due to the clever writing I knew exactly what was going on and who was who. There isn’t much depth to the characters either and I felt as though I was watching their lives from afar. I much prefer to be immersed in my characters lives so I did feel slightly detached from them.
There are lots of supernatural creatures such as vampires, zombies, demons, and in particular, Betsy, an effigy of a woman who comes to life after many years to find that she’s been brought back to life by the very grimoire everyone wants to destroy.
I found Betsy fun and different, I enjoyed that she was quite prepared to beat Daniel to a pulp if he hurt Shelley. There was one specific scene that had me giggling. But because she has been 'dead' for a long time her voice was taking time to return. The way Magrs used this in Betsy's dialogue was funny at first, but when she didn't get any better it became irritating and started to grate on my nerves. I just wanted her to talk normally!
I was also hoping for something more from Elizabeth Bathory, with such a name I thought that there would be a big reveal at the end. Unfortunately there wasn’t – although she casts a few spells and implies that she has had dealings with vampires in her past, no other details were given, which was a little disappointing.
Although “666 Charing Cross Road” isn't the strongest novel I've read by Magrs asI found the pace to be too slow, which made the story drag, it's still another wonderfully written story, with clever prose, fabulously idiosyncratic characters and intriguing, original plot.(less)
What a brilliant debut novel. I loved it. The characters, the story, the world... There's lots of action too, wh...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City .
What a brilliant debut novel. I loved it. The characters, the story, the world... There's lots of action too, which is suspenseful and engaging. I couldn't put this book down and read it in one sitting.
Charley is fantastic – I love her character. She’s sassy, brave and keeps getting herself into trouble. She’s smart, funny, witty, and I love her snark. Charley is a grim reaper who can see and talk to the dead. She’s also the light, the portal to the other side and helps them cross over.
But as being a grim reaper doesn't pay the bills, Charley also works as a private investigator and helps her uncle and the police with certain cases, using her ability to talk to ghosts. Of course most of the police thinks she's nuts, but her uncle believes in her and she's been right too many times for it to be fake.
I loved all the characters in this book, especially Charley’s best friend, Cookie, she is such a hoot. She’s also fun and loyal and I loved her to bits. It’s great to see an urban fantasy heroine have a loyal friend who she can talk to about anything. It’s refreshing since so many of our urban fantasy gals are loners. Don’t get me wrong, I love the loner heroine who’s gritty with a dark past etc, but I must admit it was a breath of fresh air to meet Charley.
There's also Angel, a cheeky boy-ghost who acts as her informant and Mr Wong, a chinese ghost who hovers in the corner of her living room and hasn't moved for years.
Although her uncle knows she can talk to the dead, he doesn't know the full extent of what Charley is. Charley hasn't told anyone about her Grim Reaper status, but she decides it's time to have a least one person in her life that knows. There is a great scene with Charley and Cookie when she reveals who and what she is, and why she keeps disappearing at short notice. I really enjoyed the fact that Charley was opening up to her best friend, but Cookie's acceptance of the whole scenario was a little bit quick. However, now that Cookie know's I'm wondering if she will get mixed up in Charley's world a lot more.
With such a sexy, funny and interesting character as Charley, there undoubtedly had to be a little romance involved. And there is, but not too much which is just how I like it. There are two love interests who are both totally hot but very different in their own way.
Reyes is a dark, sexy, mysterious entity who keeps entering Charley's dreams to seduce her, and materialising when she's in danger to protect her. He's a great character and there's so much we don't know about him - I'm very intrigued.
Then there's Garrett, a handsome policeman who's skeptical about her abilities and who doesn't believe in the supernatural. I didn't particularly like Garrett at first but he definitely grew on me. Their banter is great and I started to feel chemistry between them. He's as stubborn as hell, but a complete match for Charley's sarcastic nature. I'm looking forward to seeing how their relationship evolves.
A fresh new voice in the urban fantasy genre and a must read for any urban fantasy fan. I can’t wait for the next book in this series! (less)
“Fighting To Survive” is absolutely brilliant! It's the second instalment of the 'As the World...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City. 9/10 on the blog.
“Fighting To Survive” is absolutely brilliant! It's the second instalment of the 'As the World Dies' trilogy by horror writer, Rhiannon Frater. I loved the first book, 'The First Days' but this was even better. It was just so good I couldn't bear to put it down. I read it in two sittings and the story remained with me long after I finished the last page. The action came thick and fast and didn’t let go, but was so wonderfully paced I didn’t feel as though I was constantly trying to keep up.
The characterisation is just amazing, I love Katie and Jenni; they are such great protagonists and all the secondary characters are just as well rounded and all have a part to play in this zombie horror. It’s these characters that make this particular horror novel touching, moving, as well as it being gruesome, suspenseful and horrifying.
There are multiple plots in "Fighting to Survive" but Frater manages to keep everything straight and not allow it all to become a jumbled mess. If fact, I really felt as though I was following Jenni and Katie's lives in almost real time and as each obstacle was presented to them I found myself trying to work out how to fix it with them. It gave the book authenticity, which I loved.
The relationships between some of the characters are deepened. There's also lots of drama, emotional turmoil, for me as well as the characters, and lots of fantastic action. The scenes where the characters enter the hotel to clear it of zombies is honestly one of the most tense scenes I've read. My stomach was in knots for the entire time I was reading it. I was so worried about the characters and Frater does a superb job at keeping the suspense nice and tight and not let it drift, which made the whole thing nerve-racking.
Jenni slips from reality a little further and sees the ghost of her husband, who was actually zombified in the first book. She's losing it but tries to keep it together. Jenni and Katie's friendship is stronger than ever. They are still the main characters, but we do get to know a little more about the other characters especially Travis and Juan.
Katie's sexual attack was pretty horrific, my heart went out to her, but it was warming to see her friends rally around and support her. It was interesting to see how the residents of the fort reacted to this, most were supportive of Katie, but a few sided with the attacker. This frustrated me no end, but I suppose it's the same as in real life. Luckily, the horrid little man got his comeuppance!
With hordes of zombies moaning and shuffling outside the fort's perimeters, there's a lot more to think about than romance. However, there is an element of romance throughout the novel for Katie and Jenni, which was a continuation from 'The First Days'.
“Fighting To Survive” is a horror novel with heart. It’s funny and endearing in places and sickening and gory in others, but always perfectly balanced between the two. This series is a fantastic addition to the zombie genre and I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy of ‘Siege’ the final book in this phenomenal trilogy.(less)
I really enjoyed the first book in the series, ‘Married with Zombies’ and thought it was...moreOriginally posted on www.BookChickCity.com - 7/10 on the blog.
I really enjoyed the first book in the series, ‘Married with Zombies’ and thought it was a unique take on the genre’s leading characters. Dave and Sarah are married you see, and just before the zombie apocalypse they were on the verge of divorce. But nothing brings you together more than the world around going to shit and Sarah and Dave found their love for one another growing again, and surprisingly they made a pretty good team.
However, with the second book ‘Flip the Zombie’ the humour was missing for me which made the book a little darker. Normally I love dark and gritty urban fantasies but since I fell in love with the snark and Dave and Sarah’s lighthearted married couple banter I was disappointed when I found it lacking.
Unfortunately, "Eat Slay Love" has gone the other way. There is way too much snark, innuendo and jokes that I felt saturated by it. Nearly every paragraph Sarah is making some quip or smart alek comment and after a while it just had my eyes rolling and started to get on my nerves.
But despite this irritation of Sarah’s I still liked her, she is kinda funny and sometimes the comedic moments were spot on and brought a smile to my lips. There’s also plenty of action and suspense, and with the addition of two other characters, Nicole, a reporter and McKray, a washed out rock star, there are lots of great interactions and the dynamics between these four was great to read.
After being bitten by a zombie at the end of book two, David is finding that he isn’t quite the same – he’s slightly different. Sarah is noticing all sorts of things such as his increased hunger, increased strength and the fact that the zombies don’t seem to want to eat him. While dealing with these disturbing revelations, their small group is also taken by another cult, which of course they have to escape from as well as avoiding the zombies who want to munch on their brains.
“Eat Slay Love” is fun reading and great for a quick entertaining read. It’s not quite up to par with the first book, but definitely better than the second. I’m sad to hear that Orbit have now dropped the series, I think Sarah and Dave still had quite a few stories to tell - at least the series ended on a high note. (less)
'Spell Bound' took a little while to get going with the first few chapter...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City. Reviewed by by Laura. 7/10 on the blog.
'Spell Bound' took a little while to get going with the first few chapters feeling more like they were pulling together threads from the previous book, than the beginning of a new book. You most definitely need to have read 'Waking the Witch' before you pick it up. There are also lots of references to previous books in the series, but you probably still could pick these two books up as standalone if you wished to.
After the first few chapters, it felt like the story finally started to get going and it takes off exactly where 'Waking the Witch' left us, with Savannah still having a witch hunter on her tail. But there's one very large problem, at the end of the last book Savannah offered to give up her powers in exchange for helping a young girl we met in 'Waking the Witch' and it seems like someone has taken her up on her offer. But as Savannah begins to research into the witch hunter and how to stop her, she uncovers a much more sinister supernatural plot that affects all of her friends.
I've followed Savannah throughout the entire series from the rescued child to reaching adulthood. But, as much as I have anticipated her stories I find her quite a hard character to get on with as she's quite immature and a little bit selfish. But as the book progresses she does begin to realise this and slowly grows up, until at the end of the book I found myself being quite proud of her.
Savannah has loads of potential as a character, but I don't think she's quite reached there yet. However, I find I want to watch her fulfil that promise. The most exciting thing is that 'Spell Bound' is setting the story up for Savannah's third book and it looks like there may potentially be a supernatural war just about to begin and I'm seriously looking forward to it! Because I think the next book is going to be a complete roller coaster ride. But I do think that it made 'Spell Bound' felt like the middle of a trilogy.
If you're a passionate follower of Armstrong's Otherworld series like me, you will be pleased to enjoy lots of guest appearances from previous characters. I actually don't think there is any character that doesn't pop in at one point or another.
There is lots of action and the plot is fast paced, although perhaps a bit of a lack of magic with Savannah's missing powers. I enjoyed this book more than 'Waking the Witch' and I very much enjoy Armstrong's writing style. However, as this series progresses it has lost a little bit of its sparkle and does not compare to the likes of 'Bitten' or 'Industrial Magic'.
I can't finish this review without of course talking about the romance, I desperately wanted it to happen in 'Waking the Witch' and morosely watched as it didn't. Does it happen in 'Spell Bound'? Hard to say without spoiling things, let me just say I wanted more.
This is a fun book, written in a great pacy writing style I've come to enjoy and love from Armstrong. Is it the best book in the series? No.... But fans will definitely still enjoy it.(less)
“Hungry Hearts” looked and sounded like a fun zombie read – I love zombies, *as if you didn't...moreOriginally posted on Book Chick City. 5/10 on the blog.
“Hungry Hearts” looked and sounded like a fun zombie read – I love zombies, *as if you didn't know* ;)
Looking at the cover I thought this would be about Rick and Sally, their relationship and how her being a zombie would change all that. In a way it was, but not in they way I imagined it. Plus there was the additional plot line with the serial killer, which didn’t add anything to the story really, other than as filler.
Plainly speaking, the writing is good but the pace is a little too slow, the book a bit too long, and there's a plot too many.
There are two main plot lines which run alongside each other. One is Rick and the other is Daryl, the serial killer.
Rick is a policeman, who finds his wife murdered in their home, not by zombies but by human hands. Unfortunately, she returns as a zombie. Not being able to deal with her death and zombieness, Rick decides to try and find a cure.
Rick sedates her with morphine so she wouldn’t bite, he discovers that by injecting the drug through her eye seems to work, and bandages her up so to others she just looks injured rather than a zombie. I could understood this reaction and could get on board with it as Rick was filled with grief. However, the author takes the reader down a route which I really didn’t like. There were little hints that it was coming and I kept thinking please don’t go down that route. Unfortunately the author did.
Rick decides to have sex with his wife! Sex with his wife who’s decaying, bloated and dead. Why the author had to go down this path I don’t know but it was absolutely disgusting and made me see Rick in a completely different light. Up until that point I had been sympathetic to his plight and understood his actions, but after that I just couldn’t see him any other way than a complete sicko! Honestly, what normal man, even in grief would have sex with a dead person, and not just dead, but decaying and heaving with maggots?? *shudders*
The reason for the zombie outbreak is a little vague. Throughout the story people believe it's in the bite, but it seems that with some people they come back from dying without a bite, old corpses in graveyards rise up, Sally who was murdered by a human comes back as a zombie. There are suggestions the outbreak was due to human involvement, which is why Rick decides to go and look for the 'scientists' who may be able to cure his wife, but no real explanation was given.
Daryl is on the cusp of becoming a serial killer. He’s been stalking Sally and targets her as his first victim. We don’t get to see him in action with Sally, but he does give us glimpses to his actions when he uses his memories to turn himself on. This character is vile and completely evil. His thoughts and actions are repulsive. Even when it's revealed that he was a victim of incest with his mother and bullying I felt no sympathy towards him whatsoever.
The ending was a little ambiguous too - the last paragraph (not the epilogue) we see the world through Sally's eyes as a zombie, as well as her 'thoughts' and it ends on a note that suggests she is aware, but it doesn't go into any detail and just ends, which was unsatisfying.
I really believe the story of Rick, his zombie wife, Sally, and their journey together could have been enough to keep me interested if the author had fleshed it out a bit, without having to include the serial killer aspect *or the vomit inducing sex scene*. It was just too much and I felt it was unnecessary.
“Hungry Hearts” definitely sits within the ‘horror’ genre as it is pretty horrific. There are scenes which, if you are not used to reading this kind of novel, maybe shocking to you, so you have been warned! For me there were moments which I really enjoyed and others that I really didn’t – would I recommend it? Only to diehard horror fans I think.(less)
“Secondhand Spirits” is a cosy paranormal mystery. It’s warm, inviting and cute. I had fun readin...moreOriginally post on Book Chick City. 7/10 on the blog
“Secondhand Spirits” is a cosy paranormal mystery. It’s warm, inviting and cute. I had fun reading this book, the first in the ‘Witchcraft Mystery’ series by Juliet Blackwell.
Lily Ivory is a witch who has settled down in San Francisco after moving around for many years. She owns a vintage clothes shop and is enjoying putting down some roots and has even begun to make friends, especially with her two co-workers, Maya and Bronwyn.
One day, while meeting with a client, Frances Potts, who wishes to sell her vintage clothes, a young girl is snatched from outside her home. The rumour is La Llorona has taken her.
Legend has it that La Llorona (The Weeping Woman) abandoned by her husband, took her children down to the river and drowned them one by one, finally joining them in their watery grave. Now she haunts the banks of rivers crying for her lost children and abducts children by taking their souls.
The next day, Lily finds out that her sweet elderly client has been murdered and there seems to be a connection between the two with La Llorona right in the middle.
Lily does a bit of sleuthing on her own, by good old-fashioned foot work as well as casting a few spells and boiling a few brews. All while the local police are keeping tracks on her, suspicious she is involved somehow after they learn she was with Frances Potts the night she was murdered, and subsequently, after only meeting once, the recipient of her entire estate, which of course means the police think she now has a motive.
Along the way, Lily meets handsome Max Carmichael, a cynic who doesn’t believe in anything supernatural, and Aidan Rhodes a powerful male witch, who Lily knows she will have to call on for help of if she is to go up against La Llorona and recover the young girl.
The characterisation is great and I really liked all the characters, especially Oscar, Lily’s familiar. He’s a goblin but most of the time he transforms into a cute pig. I also love the descriptions of San Francisco, I really got a feel for this great city.
“Secondhand Spirits” is lighthearted and entertaining. If you love cosy mysteries and enjoy the paranormal, then this book is for you. Great witchy fun! (less)
I’ve had this series on my shelf for a long time, and as it was All Hallow's Eve and I fancied a...moreOriginally post on Book Chick City. 7/10 on the blog.
I’ve had this series on my shelf for a long time, and as it was All Hallow's Eve and I fancied a mystery I thought it was a good time to start Victoria Laurie’s ‘Ghost Hunter Mystery’ series.
I really enjoyed Laurie’s writing. It’s a nice easy writing style and the pages flew by pretty quickly. The characters are fun, especially MJ’s African Grey parrot who sits on her shoulder and chats away – sometimes saying very inappropriate but funny things.
M. J. herself is a lovely character and I connected with her straight away. She is a medium who can talk to the dead, but she’s created a business with her friend and partner, Gilley, by ghostbusting – sending spirits over to the other side. Sometimes this kind of job can be dangerous, which is what they found out when hired by sexy doctor and millionaire, Steven Sable.
M. J. and Gilley are hired by Steven to find out how his grandfather died, even though the police put it down as a suicide. But Steven doesn’t believe it and wants M. J. to talk to his grandfather’s ghost in the hope of finding out the truth. But things go a lot deeper than that and there are many twists and turns. I really didn’t know where this story would end up and enjoyed the fact that I really didn’t know ‘who dunnit’.
I did find that although I enjoyed M. J. and all the other characters, I would have liked a lot more ‘ghostbusting’. There just wasn’t enough of it in my opinion, which was disappointing. Much of the book is researching the mystery and following living people, rather than interacting with the ghosts.
Overall, “What’s A Ghoul To Do?” is an entertaining read with fun and quirky characters. A really good start to a series and one that I will be continuing, with the next book in the series, ‘Demon’s Are A Ghoul’s Best Friend’. (less)