I’m convinced there is a mystery novel for everyone– for cat lovers, for tea lovers, for book club lovers, for Florida Keys lovers, for baking lovers. The list goes on! So, I’m not really sure why I was surprised to discover a mystery series that followed ghost hunters filming for a TV show. It wasn’t even a question whether or not I was going to pick a book from Victoria Laurie’s Ghost Hunter Myster series; I knew I had to have it. It was however, a question of which book do I choose? Unfortunately, my library didn’t have the complete series, so I started with the first book they had, which was number five, Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls.
It almost seems like a book sin to start a series from the middle. I would never, ever encourage someone to start with Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix without having read books one through four, but you can sort of get away with starting in the middle of the series with these mystery novels. Sure, I think I would appreciate the dynamics of the group more had I started from the beginning, but I didn’t have to read the first four books to understand what was going on in book five.
MJ and her ghost hunting crew find themselves in Ireland, which I’ve already told you is a place I dream of visiting one day, so right away I was smitten. The atmosphere was perfect for a ghost story– overcast, stormy, abandoned old castles, and a small town rich with history. But it was the fast-paced plot that had me eagerly turning the pages. As much as I’m discovering I enjoy mystery novels, many of the books I’ve chosen are slow for the first half of the book. That was not case with Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls. In the very first chapter, MJ and her crew hear a haunting call beyond the thick fog for someone name Alex. They report the incident to local authorities only to discover it was an apparition. This prompts them to investigate further and soon they are fighting for their lives, escaping the terror of the dark phantom, and searching desperately for a team member that has gone missing.
Unlike my previous experience with mystery novels, where I guessed who the crook was fairly early on, Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls, kept me guessing all the way through. By the end I was certain I knew who was to blame, but I was only half right. The revelation at the end took me by surprise, and it was wholly satisfying.
If the fifth book in the Ghost Hunter Mystery series is any indication of what the other books in the series are like, I need to read more. This book was so compelling that I started and finished the book in the same day. I cannot remember the last time I finished a book in one day.
Have you read any of the Ghost Hunter Mystery books? What did you think of them? If you know of any other spooky, “cozy” mystery novels, please let me know; I would love to check them out!
Released: December 2010
Publisher: Signet Book
Age Group: Adult
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Synopsis: When M.J. Holliday and the crew of her cable TV show, Ghoul Getters, venture to the haunted ruins of Dunlow Castle in Ireland, drawn by the legend of hidden treasure, they hope the road will rise up to meet them, that the wind will always be at their backs-and that the resident phantom won’t push them off a cliff. If they treasure their lives, M.J. and her ghost busters need to get the drop on the menacing phantom…