by Darynda Jones
A smokin’ hot love interest, the quip-tastic protagonist, and a multitude of mysteries kept me glued to this book…in fact, I finished this book in one day. Addicted much? Yes.
Charley Davidson (yes, that is her name) is a private investigator by day and grim reaper by night…well, actually all the time. It’s not like she can really avoid the ghosts scattered around her apartment and the city. Special shoutout to Mr. Wong, the dead man who hangs out in the corner of her living room ever since she moved in.
Lovely detailed nuggets, like Mr. Wong, and the humorous approach to such a sordid topic (death, destruction, and all that fun stuff) are sprinkled throughout and color Charley’s world in a reflection of her own amazing sense of humor. While, I’ll admit, one or two jokes flew right over my head (or maybe I was reading too quickly) but I really enjoyed Charley’s steady stream of quips and witticisms. In fact, each chapter starts with a wisecracking phrase stolen from fictional t-shirts, bumper stickers, or Charley herself.
Anywho, back to the book. As a PI and deeply entrenched with the official police department, Charley helps those in need and solves crime on the regular. It helps that she can talk to the dearly departed and ask how they were murdered too. As she investigates a triple homicide, she works hand-in-[ghost]-hand with the three murdered lawyers, helping to find justice for the crimes against them. I’m usually not one for crime novels but I loved that Charley could interact with the victims and all the humor that ensued from talking to thin air.
What I loved even more (to an unhealthy degree…)? Reyes, the amazingly smokin’ hot mystery man appearing in Charley’s dreams and shower. Yet, something about him isn’t entirely ghost and Charley sets out on a mission to learn more about the mysteries behind Reyes. The contrast between her personal investigation into Reyes and the murdered lawyers complement each other and left me on the edge of my seat.
I loved everything about this book and got hooked quickly – whether from the steamy sex dreams or the layered crime investigation, I can’t be sure. This is such an easy, fun, quick read and I highly recommend! Plus, there are 8 other books…you’ll find me eating chips on the couch for the next few days as I devour these books.
Romance: off the charts! Reyes’ sexiness is not only in his raw, carnal persona or his chiseled abs but part of the allure is his obscure past. Yet, even as Charley unravels some of his secrets, his true identity is even sexier than the mystery.
World Building: A paranormal world at its best! Each ghost is a new personality, so widely varied yet supported with complex pasts and present motivations. Not only did I love the dead, but the living characters interacting with Charley complemented her charming, disarming, humorous personality. Finally, the investigative elements in this novel were well thought and kept me on the edge of my couch.
Writing: I enjoyed Charley immensely and all the witty remarks that came with her. I did feel that sometimes her thoughts read as jumbled and I didn’t connect with her as emotionally as I connect with other protagonists, but maybe that was the point. She uses humor as a defense mechanism and her personality is somewhat jumbled so it only makes sense that perhaps the writing should mirror that. Overall, this is a very quick, easy read.
Overall: LOVE LOVE LOVE! Read now! If the Paranormal Romance genre is your thing, this is the ultimate in the category.