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Ghost Gifts

(Ghost Gifts #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  12,609 ratings  ·  1,112 reviews

All Aubrey Ellis wants is a normal life, one that doesn’t include desperate pleas from the dead. Her remarkable gift may help others rest in peace, but it also made for an unsettling childhood and destroyed her marriage. Finally content as the real estate writer for a local newspaper, Aubrey keeps her extraordinary ability hidden—until she is unexpectedly assigned the stor

Kindle Edition, 386 pages
Published March 1st 2016 by Montlake Romance (first published February 23rd 2016)
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Rae Not really. More of a mystery, with some supernatural stuff, and a little romance.
Nancy Gibson If it seams like your missing pages back up about 5 pages and they will appear. I thought it was Worth it. Best book I have read so far this…moreIf it seams like your missing pages back up about 5 pages and they will appear. I thought it was Worth it. Best book I have read so far this year.(less)

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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  12,609 ratings  ·  1,112 reviews

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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Mar 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars rounded up to 4 on audio. I learned that this audiobook has been nominated for an Audie award, and I understand why because the narrator is talented. I enjoyed the paranormal aspects, and the storyline overall was a good one; however, something was missing for me that kept it from 4 or 5 stars. Part of me thinks it could have been because it was an audiobook, and my attention was lost at times, even though the narration was great. My plan is to read, rather than listen to, my next Laur ...more
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

My Kindle First Selection for January.

For the most part, I really enjoyed this book. So much so that I read until my "on-its-last-legs" Kindle's battery died, and I was forced to stop. But there were a couple of things that kept it from earning a full four stars. I will get to them in just a bit. But first, the things I did like:

The mystery: I felt it was really well done, and I changed my mind as to who I thought the actual killer was throughout, and I'm usually pretty
Feb 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am on the lookout for paranormal mysteries, with adult protagonists. “Ghost Gifts”, 2016, by Laura Spinella is a very recent release for me that should have provided a triumph to my checkboxes. When a niche is as rare as non-horror, adult ghostly fare; disappointment is higher if an author fumbles the delivery! Back I go, on the quest for riveting adult spirit mysteries. The last 30% was very good but took too long. This is an author who dwells on physicality. Readers need to be reached, not b ...more
Feb 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: may-16
Beautiful Disaster, by Laura Spinella, is on my list of all-time favourite novels. And with Ghost Gifts she doesn't disappoint. A paranormal mystery with romance had me turning the pages from start to finish.
Aubrey has been able to speak with the dead since she was a child. She works for a local newspaper where her "gift" aids her when she is assigned to report the story of Missy, a girl who disappeared 20 years ago and whose remains have been found in the basement of an old lady and her middle-
Farshana ❤️rainnbooks❤️
Feb 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle
Ha, what an exciting find!

Laura Spinella’s Ghost Gifts is one of those surpsring discovery that checked all the right boxes for me.

* Ghosts ✅
* Romance ✅
* Mystery ✅
* Cold case ✅

Sell me a book with a ghost, I will happily gobble it up within a day unconcerned about all the works that is waiting for me... Ghost Gifts has a lovely protagonist who has made peace with her extraordinary gift of being able to communicate with the dead, and found a job that serves her purpose. Aubrey Ellis does not to c
DJ Sakata
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Favorite Quotes:

She’d given up on calling it prayer years ago. Prayers were meant to be answered. So far, Missy’s had not been.

In five years he’d exhibited all the spontaneity of a wet match.

He’d watched his mother paint her whole face, kind of like a human paint-by-numbers. She could even do it with a cigarette in her hand, though she repeatedly insisted it was her last one.

He wore metal through so many pieces of flesh that Levi imagined unhooking them would cause the punk rocker to fall apart.
Susan Peterson
Sep 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ghost Gifts is a fantastic, heart-pounding story; full of suspense, romance, and ghosts! Aubrey Ellis is a reporter for the local newspaper in Surrey, content to write pieces about real estate, after years of carnival life with her grandmother. Besides being a writer, Aubrey also has a gift...since she was small she's been able to communicate with the deceased, and a lot of her encounters have been far from pleasant; some have even been dangerous. 20 years earlier, a young woman had been reporte ...more
Barbara White
Sep 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Laura Spinella skillfully weaves plot twists from the dead with secrets from the living and adds sparks when psychic, Aubrey Ellis, and reporter, Levi St John, are assigned to uncover the truth about a decades old New England murder. An adrenaline rush from the first page to the last, I devoured GHOST GIFTS.
Cassandra (Thebookishcrypt)
*Copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review*
Laura Spinella automatically become a favorite author of mine ever since I read Ruby Ink under her other name, L.J. Wilson, last year. The sequel to Ruby Ink, The Mission, only made me fall in love with her writing even more and the same thing happened this time around.
I was super excited when I found out that this was a paranormal romance. I absolutely love it when an author has series that are completely different genres from each other
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars rounded up.

Melancholy despite the romance. The central mystery of the murdered girl was just painfully tragic. Trigger warning for child sex abuse. . The murdered girl was portrayed believably, given her history, and it made me cry in that "damn, life can be horribly cruel and hopeless" sort of way.

The feeling that there is no way to "fix things" was a theme throughout. The heroine, Aubrey, has suffered a lot due to her ability to see ghosts. Rarely she is able to provide perfect clo
Barbara (The Bibliophage)
Ghost Gifts from author Laura Spinella was a good balance for my recent more serious reads. But it wasn’t much more than a fluff piece. Main character Aubrey Ellis is a journalist, working on real estate features at a small town paper. She’s also a medium, willingly or unwillingly channeling messages from ghosts.

Aubrey gets involved in reporting recent developments of a decades-old murder. And she’s rightly concerned that her gifts will get out of control working on a story like this. Plus, she’
Debbie "Buried in Her TBR Pile"
3.5 rounded stars

I liked this one. I was in the mood for "I see dead people" and this book delivered. Aubrey, and some in her family, have this "gift". Her father had been troubled and disturbed by it. When her parents died, Aubrey lived with her grandmother, Charley, who owned a traveling carnival. Charley has been supportive of Aubrey and tried to help her learn/grow/deal with her gift.

Aubrey marries but hides her talent from her husband, Owen. They settle in a small town. Aubrey's husband tra
Jun 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Lost souls, a woman with a gift, a mysterious death, and a new bond between coworkers, come together in this unique story with a surprising twist.

I don't read a lot of paranormal books, but for some reason, this one got my attention right away. Like so many others, I was memorized by Sixth Sense, and this story has that same feel, but with a fresh approach. Aubrey Ellis has a special gift, or curse, depending on how you look at it. She has the ability to interact with specters, or souls of the
Darcia Helle
Unique, realistic characters are a strong selling point for me, and this book excels in that respect. I loved Aubrey. The book opens with her as a child, and I immediately connected with her; not because of any similarities with my own childhood, but because I truly felt what she was going through. We soon jump ahead to Aubrey in adulthood, and the emotional connection stays strong throughout the remainder of the book.

I loved Aubrey's ghost visits. Each ghost has a different personality and agen
Linda Zagon
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing

OMG!  KUDOS to author Laura Spinella "Ghosts Gifts" for her breathtaking, awe-inspiring  descriptive novel. I loved everything about this book! The genres of this story are Para-normal, Mystery, Thriller and Suspense, and Fiction.  I could easily see this story adapted as a screenplay for a movie or TV series.  There are twists and turns, suspense, some chilling moments where the hairs on my neck were standing up. How would you feel if you had the ab
Mar 12, 2016 rated it liked it
I wasn't expecting this book to be this good. Good writing, interesting story. The characters were likeable but a bit predictable in their reactions and they could use a bit more depth, especially the side characters that were mostly decorating. For example, the grandma seemed like a really cool person but we never got to really know her. There were a few cliches in the story, but all in all, it is an entertaining, easy to read book that is ideal for a holiday. ...more
Feb 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I got this book on Kindle First. Though the book didn't seem promising at first with the "I speak to dead people" theme, I decided to give it a try anyway. I must admit the book surprised me and though I can't call it a masterpiece, I did find the book worthawile and rather interesting. It is well written and really pulls you into the story. ...more
Trish R.
Aug 21, 2016 rated it liked it
An OK read..

This book is labeled as romantic suspense. That is absolutely NOT true. Levi (Hate that name), the hero, and Aubrey, the heroine, have been together since almost the beginning of the book and there is absolutely no chemistry whatsoever, no thoughts or feeling, no nothing. Hell, they didn’t even kiss until 75% and there still weren’t any feelings involved. So, here we have another author whose publisher tells her “sex sells” so she drops a sex scene in here and there and calls it roma
Jan 19, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Something was lacking in this story for me. We have a modern day journalist who also has the ability to speak with the dead and a mystery surrounding a death that occurred in the same town 20 years earlier. I'm not sure if the author tried to take on too much, but I felt the back story mystery was lacking, as she heavily focused on the present. The way the scenes were laid out via the writing was also choppy. It's classified as a romance, and there wasn't a lot of that either. I felt like it was ...more
Nov 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5★ This one took a little while for me to get really engaged, but then I thought it was pretty good. I think it was well done for the genre, though some of the storyline was a bit generic. I knew the who-done-it before the end, but still thought it was a good mystery, not too easy and there were other possible options. Overall, a good read.
Mar 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: romance genre readers
Shelves: fiction, suspense
Imagine a netherworld, a place for dead people unable to move on — riveted by unfinished business or unresolved emotions. Aubrey Ellis has a special susceptibility for accessing that world. From early childhood, the opening of that portal was presaged by unsettling symptoms: intense heat, dizziness, extreme nausea, disturbing smells and tastes. Sometimes she intuited a special significance in some mundane object and collected it. She called such objects “ghost gifts.” As she grew older, she lear ...more
Andrea Guy
Jun 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Ghost Gifts is one of those books that's just about perfect. Its a mystery and it involves a woman that has an ability to speak to the dead. Think of it as Ghost Whisperer but with a little more grit.

Aubrey works for a small newspaper writing a realty column. She also has a gift of talking to the dead. When this mystery she's now working on with reporter Levis St. John, I expected there to be some communication between Missy and Aubrey, but there wasn't, at least not in the way I expected.

I love
Feb 11, 2016 rated it it was ok
I have nothing much to add on plot/setting review, aka they fine if a bit choppy in split past/present narrations and a bit predictable on the ghost end. But please tell me why the characters were so 2D. Charley is the grandmother who is very grandmother-ly, with her quirks and insightful life analysis. Aubrey is the ghost whisperer that struggles with her powers, and her life is obviously very struggle-some. Why does a mature woman feel the need to randomly and repeatedly tell her new writer pa ...more
I'm going to DNF this one, but avoid a rating since I feel like that would be unfair if I can't finish it. I don't hate it. But every time I settle down to read, I stare at this one for a while and then try to force myself through a little bit of it and since this year is "bad book year" in my buddy reads, I just can't justify forcing myself through another one that I feel nothing about.

It just feels flat, and I feel like I'm missing something. It started out well enough that I wanted to read it
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was ok

The summary of this book sounded interesting, I read thirty percent before I skimmed to the end. The first chapter was good, a thirteen year old dealing with communicating with the dead. Then we have an adult Aubrey still talking to the dead while trying to hide her ability from everyone else. My problem with the book is the main character. I didn't like or dislike her, she just seemed rather bland. I also thought the book was a little too wordy.
I realize I am at odds with all of the
Karin Gillespie
Oct 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bewitching and brilliant, GHOST GIFTS will stir your emotions, spook the bejesus out of you, and keep you furiously turning pages until the cows deign to come home. Clear your calendar, stock up on the candy and caffeine, and prepare to get lost in Laura’s Spinella’s intricate and layered narrative. A singular and wickedly satisfying storytelling experience.
Jun 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Aubrey Ellis has a "gift" of being able to speak with spirits/ghosts that have messages that they need to tell the living before they can pass on. Because her gift can sometimes put her in contact with ghosts that aren't nice, she is very careful about what she does in her life, including the kind of stories she pursues as a newspaper reporter. So when she is assigned to work on a 20 year old murder case, she is not enthusiastic. Her partner, Levi, is a no-nonsense type of guy who doesn't believ ...more
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Interesting/haunting read

What a story! This author is so wonderful! She sucks you into the story and won’t let go till the end!

Very interesting topic of communicating with the dead. Aubrey’s resiliency to take hold of her gift instead of it taking hold of her, paints her as such a powerful woman. She faces head on and goes the distance.

The murder case keeps you guessing and for once I didn’t put it together until Aubrey figured it out. Levi was a wonderful foil to Aubrey as a character.

I star
Dianna (SavingsInSeconds blog)
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018
This one has been on my wishlist for a while. So glad I finally broke down and bought it. Ghost Gifts was exactly the kind of ghost story I enjoy. It has down-to-earth characters, a mystery to solve, and a ghost story without other paranormal creatures (not a fan of vampires, werewolves, etc.) My only complaint is that the romantic scenes were so very out of place. The graphic bedroom details were completely out of touch with the rest of the book. To be honest, Ghost Gifts would have been just a ...more
Elise Cripe
Jan 23, 2020 rated it liked it
listened to this one and enjoyed it for sure. 3.5 stars
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