Practical Melanie Middleton hates to admit she can see ghosts. But she’s going to have to accept it. An old man she recently met has died, leaving her his historic Tradd Street home, complete with housekeeper, dog—and a family of ghosts anxious to tell her their secrets.
Enter Jack Trenholm, a gorgeous writer obsessed with unsolved mysteries. He has reason to believe that diamonds from the Confederate Treasury are hidden in the house. So he turns the charm on with Melanie, only to discover he’s the smitten one…
It turns out Jack’s search has caught the attention of a malevolent ghost. Now, Jack and Melanie must unravel a mystery of passion, heartbreak—and even murder.
It took me a while to get into this book — I didn’t realize how different Southern fiction is from other genres, but there really is a slower pace and a greater emphasis on setting and descriptions, but not in an “I want to show off my knowledge” sort of way. It really fits the book and the characters, but I’m not used to the slow, meandering intro. I was close to putting the book down but decided to press on.
It took several chapters, but before I realized it I was hooked. Melanie is a vibrant character with some interesting quirks and an emotional backstory, and the author reveals it in a natural, intriguing way. Even though I’m nothing like her, I could relate to her and started understanding her motivations and reactions. I loved seeing her relationships develop.
The mystery also really captured my attention. It was borderline creepy without going over the top. There’s a hint of romance in the book, but not much — I would like to see more of that, but the lack of it didn’t ruin the experience for me.
Overall, I was thrilled to find a fun, creepy story that’s also a clean read. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the series.
*Rated PG/PG-13 for thematic elements and minimal swearing.