ghosts (4)

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Deader Homes and Gardens - Review by Martha A. Cheves

 

I tried to make light of the gossip, hoping that with time I wouldn't care, but deep down it hurt that my greatest fear had come true.  I was the town oddball, the flake, and nobody understood that I was really just a good Southern girl aught up with a 1920s gangster ghost.  It wasn't like I wanted to be this way.  it had happened when I'd accidentally tampered with the funeral urn of a cranky prohibition-era whiskey runner named Frankie.  His urn looked a lot like a vase, and his ashes like dirt.  So I'd dumped him out over my favorite rosebush and rinsed him in good.  Not knowing the dirt was...him.  It hadn't helped that I'd filled his final resting place with water from the hose and inserted a fat red rose.  But that was before I realized my error.  Or what rinsing his ashes into the ground would do.  My actions trapped Frankie on my property.  He couldn't leave unless I brought his urn with me.

 

My name is Verity Long.  I moved back to my home time with the plans of marrying.  That didn't quite work out but I did find myself spending much of my time chasing ghosts and in the arms of my ex-finance's brother Ellis who is also a deputy sheriff with the Sugarland Police Department.  Breaking off my engagement found me not only broke but I also had to sell off everything but the house my grandmother had left me just to make ends meet.  Now I've just been offered my first paying job.   With Frankie's help the task should be profitable and a breeze.  I simply have to rid an 1886 estate called Rock Fall of it's ghosts.  An easy task.  Yeah right.  No one really explained to me how evil these ghosts could be nor that there was also a curse attached to the house.  After all the whole family had died within days of each other.  How dangerous could this curse be?

 

Deader Homes and Gardens is Book 4 in the Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries.  I've read the three before this one and have had a hard time putting them down.  They hold my attention with a combination of humor as well as my mystery and suspense.  It is a fun series of books and I'm now looking forward to reading Book 5 - Sweet Tea and Spirits.  Each book stands alone but I don't think you'll want to miss reading them in order to keep you up-to-par on who is who.

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Soul Food Spirits (Southern Ghost Wranglers Book 1) - Review by Martha A. Cheves

 

"Blissful, you're suspended."

My heart popped out of my chest and hit the floor with a thud.  "I'm sorry, what did you say?"
Then Anita, the woman who had bested me for my dad's job by sleeping with his superior, who spoke to me like I was three years old, who had the audacity to put a picture of her with my father on her desk, slowly opened her mouth and enunciated every single syllable.
"Blissful.  You.  Are.  Suspended."  Her eyelids popped open.  "I've got the paperwork already filled out.  You are now officially not a member of the Ghost Team.  You have been suspended."

 

My dad's death a few months ago left an oozing wound in the establishment he helped create - The Ghost Team.  With the help of secret funding from the government, my dad, Vince Breneaux, created a crew of highly capable, clairvoyant agents whose single mission was to seek out rouge spirits, those hellbent on attacking and plaguing the living, and sent them on to the other side - the light, as we call it.  Naturally, since my father had been director of said team, when it came to promotion time, I was a shoo-in.  But, as I said, Anita got the job instead of me and she has had it out for me from day one.  Now she has decided to suspend me.  And the only way I can hopefully prove my worth is to the beautiful town of Haunted Hollow and bring in one of the most feared spirits ever - Lucky Strike.  Even my father couldn't bring him in and send him to the light.

 

Blissful's first day there turns out to be a disaster when she decides to have lunch at the Soul Food.  It seems that one of the spirits in the establishment takes a liking to her and starts up a conversation.  Since Bliss can see her but the other customers can't she decides to carry on a very 'light' conversation with her. But as it turns out, the more they talk the more visible the spirit becomes.  This causes everyone in the restaurant to see her with most of them taking pictures of both Bliss and the spirit with many being posted to the internet.  So much for trying to stay in town without being noticed.

 

This book was a joy to read.  It's filled with humor as well as tons of ghosts - both good and bad, or so they appear.  And the same can be said for some of the living residents too.  I enjoyed Book 1 so much that I can't wait to read book 2.

 

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Haunt the Haunt, Walk the Walk - Review by Martha A. Cheves

 

Devil's Moon was one of the most haunted places I'd ever known.  It had more than its share of ghosts.  There were plenty of scary stories to keep everyone intrigued and an abundance of ghosts to be spotted everywhere in town.  I'd quickly figured that out when they kept popping up all around me.  Sometimes the spirits even followed me during the tours.  Of course that freaked a lot of people out, and I was a little scared of them myself.  Especially since I didn't know what they wanted or why they were following me.  There was also a new development in my paranormal adventures - ghosts were now sending me text messages.  I know that sounds crazy, but it's true.

 

Oh yeah.  I'm Ripley Van Raden or Rip to my friends.  I moved back to my hometown to take the position of head librarian, but also used the opportunity to start my tour around town.  My tours always start in the cemetery where the ghosts are plentiful.

 

Not long after moving to Devil's Moon we had a murder in town.  That's when I met the hunk of a policeman, Brannon.  We hit it off from the beginning.  You see, he is into the paranormal too.  I also met the library ghost Annie who was the librarian many years before me.  She is the one who first started texting me.  But lately, I've started receiving text messages from someone else.  I've also being followed by someone that I've never seen before.  Could they be one and the same?

 

Oh yeah again.  I forgot to tell you that there was another murder in town and this one really has me scared for my own life.

 

Haunt the Haunt, Walk the Walk is Book 3 in the Haunted Tour Guide Mystery.  I've read all of the books in this series so far and can tell you that Rose Pressey has me wanting more.  She keeps you guessing as to who the murderer really is but keeps the story 'light' along the way.  I personally can't wait to read Book #4 - Walk this Way, Haunt this Way.

 

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Silent Voices - Fran Lewis, Author

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Silent Voices - Review by Martha A. Cheves

 

All my life I had to struggle and work hard for everything that I ever needed. So, why not take advantage of a situation?  My grandmother, Gertie, was frail and much older, needing constant care at home. Her mind was sharp, but her legs were weak. She could no longer shop for herself  and going to the bank to deposit her disability checks had become a real chore. Each one of us had a different father, and not one of us had all of the conveniences that life should have given us. So, we joined forces to get what we deserved from our grandmother. My sisters and I had decided to take on the responsibility of her daily care. Of course, I felt, as they did, that we deserved something for our efforts. Moving into her huge house was not a problem, as she had six bedrooms, three baths, and enough closet space for everyone. The house was amazing, and the kitchen was state of the art. Taking some of what she had was not a problem until she began to realize that something was wrong.

 

The four granddaughters pool their ideas and resources to take over what their grandmother has worked her whole life to have.  BUT… the situation takes a turn when Gertie turns the tables on them.

Each of the stories within this book are voices beneath the tombstones.  How they got there and why.  These voices make you wonder just how many other voices are out there, never to be heard and never to be avenged for their demise.

 

 

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