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Ghost at Work

(Bailey Ruth #1)

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  2,419 ratings  ·  352 reviews
Bailey Ruth Raeburn has always been great at solving mysteries. Why should a little thing like her death change anything? In fact, being dead gives her more of an opportunity to be on top of events. Bailey Ruth is delighted that her unique position as a ghost makes it possible for her to lend a helping hand, sometimes seen and sometimes not. And if anybody needs a little h ...more
Hardcover, 290 pages
Published October 21st 2008 by William Morrow (first published October 1st 2008)
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Average rating 3.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,419 ratings  ·  352 reviews

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Nov 03, 2018 rated it did not like it
No, just no. Bible verses are not what I signed up for
Montzalee Wittmann
May 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Ghost at Work (Bailey Ruth #1) by Carolyn Hart is a cute story that is worth the read but I found it too cutesy for me. I liked it and will look for more of her books to see if they are all like that or not but I like the premise and the plot but the dialogue was just off. Worth the read. I got this from the library.
Lisa Kay
★★★★ I’ve been meaning to try one of Carolyn Hart’s books for a while now. Glad I picked this one to start. I love a cozy mystery and I needed a Halloween theme for a challenge; this one fit the bill perfectly.

Bailey Ruth is a ghost who is not stuck in the 60’s. Though enjoying Heaven in her afterlife, she decides to try her hand at the Department of Good Intentions and is sent back emergently to her hometown of Adelaide, Oklahoma, present day just as someone plants a dead body on the
Gary Sundell
Oct 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun mystery series start. A ghostly detective on her first case is sent in from heaven before she has mastered the rules of being back on earth. Other reviews have done a good job of recapping the the plot. Looking forward to reading more in the series.
Oct 09, 2016 rated it liked it
A cute paranormal mystery. The first book in a series, it took a little while for the pace to pick up. But once it did, the story got more interesting. The ending had alot of action, with a satisfying resolution. A fun read.
Oct 13, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers with low expectations who are easily entertained.
Recommended to Dorothy by: Mystery Book Club
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
This bit of Halloween fluff was October's reading selection for my Mystery Book Club. It was a quick and easy read - nothing to pause and ruminate over here.

Bailey Ruth Raeburn is long-dead and happily ensconced in Heaven with her beloved Bobby Mac. She and Bobby Mac had their tickets punched for the Pearly Gates when they went down with their boat in a storm on the Gulf. Now Bailey Ruth is hoping to make herself useful as an employee of Heaven's Department of Good Intentions. (But,
Marja McGraw
Feb 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
I won a copy of Carolyn Hart's Ghost in Trouble and enjoyed it so much I had to read Ghost at Work. This new series is different and quite entertaining.

Bailey Ruth Raeburn isn't exactly a ghost, but more of an emissary from heaven. When there's trouble in Adelaide, Oklahoma, beginning with a dead body appearing on the back porch of the rector's home, the heavenly boss (Wiggins) of the Department of Good Intentions sends her to help the rector's wife. Bailey just can't seem to get the rules righ
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
Eehhhh. I really could not, could Not, read this book. The premise is ridiculous, but hey, it's fiction. An Episcopalian ghost-lady is sent from Heaven to help a descendent who's found a corpse in the backyard of the rectory.

The author has seen too many episodes of Touched By an Angel and too many reruns of The Bishop's Wife. I hope I never go to the kind of heaven that is still obsessed with material things such as clothes and how you look, but aside from that her protagonist is so
Sep 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
EDITED by Book 3 she is oft quoting the OLD testament. Any more I could say about my thoughts on her frequent quoting and increasingly didactic views may offend. I have created a new shelf due to this series for christian-bible-thumping-righteous, wanted it to be christian-bible-thumping-only-we-are-right, but GR wouldn’t take that many words.
Jun 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2008
Bailey Ruth Raeburn has been dead for quite some time and while she is enjoying her time in Heaven, she wants to do more with her life (so to speak). She joins the Department of Good Intentions with the hope of helping someone on Earth who is in trouble. She is soon sent to her hometown of Adelaide, Oklahoma to help Kathleen Abbot, a pastor's wife who has found a dead body on her porch and is afraid her husband will be accused of murder. Soon Bailey Ruth is up to her pretty neck not only with mu ...more
Feb 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
Bailey Ruth has been in Heaven for a long time, and though it's a wonderful place, she feels it's time to give back and help those in the human world. She applies for a mission with the Department of Good Intentions. She told the Precepts that govern her behavior and sent back to help a woman in dire straits.

Kathleen is definitely in dire straits. When Bailey Ruth arrives, Kathleen is standing over a body in her home, the rectory of the church in Adelaide, OK. To help Kathleen, Baile
It doesn't have much substance to it but it is enjoyable nonetheless.
Bailey Ruth is in heaven and she decides to apply to the Department of Good Intentions to go help someone "in big trouble" back on earth. She is sent down and ends up in her hometown and the people she is helping are actually her relatives a few generations later. A murder has been committed and the body is on the porch of Kathleen Abbott, the rector's wife. Bailey Ruth has to try to figure out how to help Kathleen withou
Jul 11, 2009 rated it liked it
CArolyn Hart leaves Annie and Max et al in the dust and turns heavenward for inspiration.

Light, not too demanding of the gray matter type mystery. I wanted to slap Bailey Ruth upside the head a few times for making things way more complicated than she needed to, but it all worked out in the end and it looks like she may get a series out of it.
Apr 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed book one in this series. The premise was intriguing and the main character was quite enjoyable. Looking forward to book two!
Sep 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was the second book for July reading group that I finally finished a month behind. I have been behind with my books since June because I have been reading books for Net galley and two different Cozy Book Clubs. They have been very interesting and have held my interest.

Bailey Ruth Raeburn is trying to join the group of Good Intentions in Heaven because she is a ghost and she wants to go back to her home town of Adelaine, Oklahoma and help the paster's wife with a problem she
May 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Around the Year in 52 Books 2018 Reading Challenge. A ghost story.

Bailey Ruth and her husband died when their boat capsized in the Gulf of Mexico. She has been in Heaven for a time and now she wants to volunteer. She reports to the Department of Good Intentions where she meets Wiggins. He explains that before she can be sent to Earth to help someone, she must learn the "precepts" which are the rules for acceptable behavior by emissaries. Then, suddenly something happens and before Ba
Linda Rawlins
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paranormal, mystery
Ghost at Work is about Bailey Ruth who is an emissary from Heaven. She is allowed to return to Earth to help her Grand Niece who is framed for murder. Bailey Ruth is able to see and collect clues in the most ethereal way. She uses some of her powers to keep her family safe and out of suspicion for murder. However, Wiggins watches her from beyond and cautions her when she breaks the rules. Bailey Ruth realizes much time has passed since she left the earth and enjoys all the new things she encount ...more
Nov 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
I snuggled into this cozy mystery with an angelic ghost at the helm. The irrepressible heroine stole my heart as she solved the murder. Even though the book is set around Halloween, the soft energy of the writing provided a comfy entry into this holiday weekend.
Susan Moxley
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A good read that will keep you on the edge of your seat guessing what will happen next.
Colleen Scidmore
Ghost at Work is the first book in the Bailey Ruth Series. The synopsis sounded pretty good basically a ghost from another era helping solve mysteries during modern times and stirring up some commotion while doing it.
I love the idea and overall it was a decent read it was just a bit too corny at times. I'm all for cozy mysteries and will probably give the second book a try, just hope the cutesy bit is toned down some as the series progresses.
Dawn Betts-Green (Dinosaur in the Library)
a little slow in the middle, but mostly a fun read
Glenda Bixler
Nov 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone!
Recommended to Glenda by: Amazon Vine
Shelves: reviewed-books
Bailey Ruth Raeburnremember the name! She’s the main character being introduced in Carolyn Hart’s latest novel, Ghost at Work. And I just know that...she’ll be back!

I’ve enjoyed Carolyn Hart’s books in the past, but none were so delightful or fun to read as Ghost at Work. Act-u-ally, Bailey Ruth is an emissarythe proper title, according to Wiggins, the head of the Heavenly Department of Good Intentions, who is giving Bailey Ruth her first opportunity to return to earth to help somebo
Oct 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
While heaven is ,well, heavenly, Bailey Ruth Raeburn, late of Adelaide, OK, makes it known to
Wiggins, head of the Department of Good Intentions, that she wants to help someone on earth in “dire straits”. Wiggins tells her she may do so, although due to her rash, impulsive and “spirited” nature, she will be on probation and she must remember all the precepts of being a ghost among the living. With a copy of the rules firmly in hand, she is immediately dispatched right back to Adelaide to find he
Sep 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It is just about the time of year for a good Ghost Story; Ghost at Work is not only a great read but Fun, Funny, Entertaining, Endearing and is everything but scary!

Carolyn Hart introduces this lovable, gorgeous redhead, Bailey Ruth Raeburn; a Lucy if their ever was another one. She is bored in the heavens and decides it is time to be an adventurous crime solving ghost. She request to become part of a program in heaven, so to speak, with chosen ones who want to be helpful with problems on Earth. It is her fi
I'm doing a project that's taking up most of my time, and I can't read physical books because I'd rather be done with my project first. So, I'm stuck borrowing audiobooks. Most of the time, I end up with something that I'm at least remotely interested in, regardless of whether I actually liked the end product or not. However, Ghost at Work wasn't something on my radar at all. But, it was available at short notice and I have heard of Carolyn Hart's body of work, so I chose to read it.

Oh m
Apr 01, 2009 rated it did not like it
I'm sorry to have to assign one star to this book. I searched and searched and there was no option of half a star or no star at all. I admire Carolyn Hart's body of work. I mean, for goodness sake, I devour her Death on Demand series set on one of the sea islands near Hilton Head. I love the Henrie O series featuring the retired journalist who gets herself into unusual situations. Carolyn Hart is one of the founding members of Sisters in Crime and has won numerous Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity a ...more
Dec 06, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
The author creates a new protagonist with series possibilities in her latest work. Only this protagonist is dead. As a ghost, Bailey Ruth is sent by Heaven's Department of Good Intentions to help a pastor's wife with the pesky problem of a dead body on her back porch. Bailey has a tendency to break rules to get the job done, much to the consternation of her supervisor.

If you have set ideas of what heaven is like, it would be best to suspend them while reading this book, or skip it al
Oct 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: cozy readers
This is the first in a new series from the prolific Hart. Bailey Ruth Raeburn has been enjoying heaven, but she decides that she wants to go back to Earth to help people. She's accepted as a probationer in the Department of Good Intentions, and sent to her home town of Adelaide, OK, where the minister's wife is struggling with a corpse on her back porch. It turns out that Bailey Ruth has a family reason for wanting to help Katherine, especially when she meets Katherine's adorable daughter, who w ...more
Addison Public Library
Even though Bailey Ruth is technically dead, she still loves solving a good mystery. When she’s given an opportunity to work for the Heavenly Department of Good Intentions, she jumps at the chance to return to Earth to help people in difficulties as a messenger (aka ghost). Unfortunately, her first case is an emergency so she doesn’t get to read The Manual so she’s unsure of what she is supposed to do, or more importantly what she’s NOT supposed to do!
KD 2-17

Even though Bailey Ruth is technically dead, she still loves solving a good mystery. When she’s given an opportunity to work for the Heavenly Department of Good Intentions, she jumps at the chance to return to Earth to help people in difficulties as a messenger (aka ghost). Unfortunately, her first case is an emergency so she doesn’t get to read The Manual so she’s unsure of what she is supposed to do, or more importantly what she’s NOT supposed to do!
KD 2-17

Check out this book today!
Jul 21, 2015 rated it did not like it
Uuuuuug!! I'm sorry to say I didn't enjoy this book at all. I cannot help but wonder where the editor was when the author contradicted herself on several facts, made outlandish statements about "blue northers" blowing into Oklahoma at Halloween, left gaping holes in the plot, and took 20% of the book before starting the story. Maybe I would have liked the book more if I had read it instead of listening to it as an audio book, because I also didn't enjoy the reader, but I'm kind of a stickler for ...more
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Cozy Mystery Corner : Bailey Ruth (Ghost at Work) by Carolyn Hart 4 36 Oct 15, 2017 05:25AM  

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Also writing as Carolyn Hart.

An accomplished master of mystery with 46 published books, Carolyn Hart is the creator of the highly acclaimed Henrie O,Death on Demand, and Bailey Ruth Raeburn series. Her books have won multiple Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity Awards. Letter from Home (2003), her standalone mystery set in Oklahoma, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Her latest book is De

Other books in the series

Bailey Ruth (8 books)
  • Merry, Merry Ghost (Bailey Ruth, #2)
  • Ghost in Trouble (Bailey Ruth, #3)
  • Ghost Gone Wild (Bailey Ruth, #4)
  • Ghost Wanted (Bailey Ruth #5)
  • Ghost to the Rescue (Bailey Ruth #6)
  • Ghost Times Two (Bailey Ruth #7)
  • Ghost on the Case (Bailey Ruth #8)
“Heaven doesn't need dusting. The only tidying that remains is to continue growing in goodness, and goodness knows, for most of us there is always room for improvement.
- Bailey Ruth”
More quotes…