This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Intermix
Released on February 16, 2016
The last book in the series ended on an exciting high note both with Claire and Zach and Enzo the ghost dog barely escaping with their lives, but also that big declaration between the two. I’ve always been a bit off balance with this series, but find it engaging with its unique world, quirky characters, and interesting new psychic mystery cases for the team to solve.
This is book four in a series and the series is an ongoing story so the books have to be read in order.
Claire and Zach just want to rest after nearly being killed by an evil ghost, but two days after they are back, they get the call. There is a poltergeist being troublesome at Buffalo Bill Cody’s grave. The wealthy man who lives nearby is a believer in the paranormal and he is excited at the prospect of the ghost and seeing Claire in action.
This new connection drags Claire further into the spotlight and into the Denver paranormal community including a jealous rival who wants to use the ghost as his big step up in fame and fortune. Claire has accepted her gift and new vocation more and more, but this is a big step going toe to toe with a fake and joining the paranormal society. She finds it easier with Zach by her side. Zach is still in the closet about his own pre-cog gift, but he is at least accepting it. He is also growing past being resigned to being content over his new role as a private investigator and his limitations from his disability. They have drawn close and now ponder stepping up their relationship to the commitment of living together.
Alongside the issue of the new poltergeist, Claire has another ghost to help. Buffalo Bill’s friend is stuck in the gray and Claire must help him and then there is the troublesome issue of the tear to her own spirit that isn’t healing. Time is of essence so Claire, Zach, and Enzo work hard to solve their cases and settle into their new roles.
Alright, this was a more gentle-paced and less intense book than the last one. I also liked that the focus is off Claire denying and ignoring stuff about her gift and her feelings. Whew, her issues were really getting old. This book was a relief for me and I settled in to enjoy the new ghost cases and the romance and the characters as a result.
Claire is still her quirky neurotic self about things having to balance and rules needing to be established and followed, but because she is coming into her own and accepting the family gypsy ghost seer gift and not running scared from romance with Zach, she’s not annoying. I loved seeing her confront the fake medium and it was fun to see her pondering how to talk Zach into moving in with her. And she is so funny the way she bristles up around Zach’s boss and embraces the man’s cunning wife that brings out the opposite in Zach.
And Zach, he’s much further along in accepting things and adjusting, too. I find his pre-cog gifts with the crows a creative gift and I like that the author wrote a damaged hero who has a physical disability and is learning new skills like cane fighting. But most of all, I enjoy that Zach can appreciate a woman like Claire and support her even while he worries for her safety. Oh boy can he appreciate her. These two were quite scorchy and I loved Zach’s sweet need to court Claire even while they had some spicy passionate times.
Oh, and let’s not forget Enzo the ghost dog. He’s been my favorite character. Love the way he enthusiastically helps Claire and Zach with their cases.
The story has a meandering pace to it, but there was enough going on with the cases, the conflict with the other psychic, the romance, and personal development that I was content until the build up and climax at the end. The author took the time to do some reveals, like Tony’s mysterious psychic gift, while shoring up the ongoing plot threads before moving on in the series with too many things left dangling and unanswered. Claire and Zach’s relationship and their personal growth were the big highlights of the story though I have to say that the ghost of Texas Jack and his part in the story nearly topped the other story threads. I fell in love with Texas Jack. Soft spot for those good-hearted rugged cowboys.
I’ve said in past reviews that I was on the fence about this series and that there were elements that I loved and elements that annoyed me. With this story, I finally slid off the fence and am firmly on the side of enjoyment. I look forward to the next installment with excitement.
So, in summary, this was my favorite book of the series and a turning point for me so that I can recommend this quirky Urban Fantasy series with ghosts and psychic gifts as the backdrop and a unique pair of partners and lovers.
My thanks to Penguin Group for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #58 UF
Literary Pickers #57 ceiling fan