Review: Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries by Angie Fox, narrated by Tavia Gilbert

Review: Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries by Angie Fox, narrated by Tavia GilbertSouthern Ghost Hunter Mysteries by Angie Fox

Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Published by Audible Studios on January 18, 2015
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
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I first picked up book four, Deader Homes and Gardens, and loved the mixture of cozy mystery meets paranormal meets Southern small town romance.  It was a good balance of light and fun with moderately dark and spooky.  I fell in love with Verity Long and her ghostly partner Frankie right away.

Naturally, I was enthusiastic about racing back to get the series from the beginning.  And there it was when I went to Amazon… the embarrassing notation that I already owned book one.  This happens more than I’d like to admit as I side-eye the monster TBR pile.  However, having enjoyed my first encounter with an audio edition, I took advantage of adding the audio version for an extra dollar and off I went.  I binged the earlier books in the series including the novellas to get caught up.  They were all as fabulous as my first encounters.

Southern Spirits, Book One (and currently free in ebook, I believe) Introduced Verity Long, Southern gal and town pariah living on a prayer and hoping for a miracle to save her family home.  Her miracle comes in the form of an irascible ghost of a gangster when she accidentally ties him to her and her home.  Frankie and Verity are stuck together and end up working a job for her ex-fiancé’s brother.  Ellis Wydell is not only Beau’s skeptical brother, but also the police officer who finds Verity in the wrong spot under suspicious circumstances more than once.  Lucky for Verity, Ellis is nothing like the rest of his family and especially different from his brother when he chooses to believe her about ghosts and partners her in solving the crime.

Next, a tweeny novella, A Ghostly Gift has Verity and Frankie working a job for a second hand shop with a ghost problem.

In Skeleton in the Closet, the town’s big Civil War reenactment exposes a founding family’s secrets and a person willing to murder to protect it.  Verity and Frankie are on the job discovering that angry ghosts and a determined murderer might be too much for them to tangle with.

A Ghostly Gift was a sweet tweeny holiday novella telling how Verity and Frankie reunite a lonesome ghost with his family at Christmas.

Haunted Heist has Verity tangled up with Frankie’s old gang and a dangerous murder where the motive and method are obscure and a dead gangster is the chief suspect.

And finally, Deader Homes and Gardens takes Verity and Frankie into a spooky haunted house where a family curse can only be lifted when long-dead family secrets are revealed.

I love how the series introduces a new ghostly mystery with each book, but also forwards several plot threads including Verity and Frankie’s efforts to free his ties to her, Verity and Ellis’ complicated romance, and Verity’s interactions in her small town.  Verity’s sister Melanie, her best friend, and her pet skunk as well as occasional run-ins with Ellis’ mother keep things more than entertaining.

But the real fun for me is Verity and Frankie’s tug o’ war style partnership and acrimonious banter as they go about fixing things in the ghost world and among the living.  Soft hearted helper-type Verity and a ‘what’s in it for me’ gangster Frankie make an interesting team to say the least.

And I will forever have Tavia Gilbert’s talented voice and storytelling in my head when I think of all these characters and their adventures.  She nails Verity’s warm-hearted nice girl persona, but also Frankie’s gangsta shtick without overdoing it.  Her male and female voices are well done and her grasp of the style and emotion of the series is right on.

So, all in all, this was a binge worth doing and I can’t wait for future releases.  I think even those who aren’t cozy mystery fans will get a kick out of these with all the other elements involved.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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  • I really want to try this series. I listen to Angie Fox’s Demon Slayer series, also read by Tavia Gilbert. I love it. So glad to see that this one is a good one too. I’ll have to start it after I get caught up on the Demon Slayer series.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • Oh, good to know that she does the audio for both series. I plan to start the Demon Slayer series when I get the chance. I thought I was all caught up here and discovered there’s another novel and novella out this year. More fun. 🙂

  • I haven’t read this series but this does sound like a good book. I’ve done that too where I already have one of the books and didn’t even know it.

    • I’ve had a great time with these, Mary.

      Oh man, its a little embarrassing to discover I already have the book, but I get over that real fast and dive right in. LOL

  • I read an arc of the first book in the series but haven’t went any further for some reason. I like Tavia Gilbert and I think she would be a fantastic choice for narrator of this series. I am glad you enjoyed all of these! Thanks for bringing this series back to my attention.

    • My pleasure, Carole!

      Glad to put these back on your radar. I’ve got a few series that I let slip by, too, I imagine.

  • This looks like a fun series to read. I’d have to get the ebooks as I think I’ve reached my audio quota for the year. I just can’t really focus right now on someone reading to me, as I’ve been falling to sleep on the ones I’m listening to and having to keep going back is annoying. I like all the elements that this series has to offer, so I think I’ll check out this first book. Awesome review! P.S. I’ve missed you guys. I am trying to get back to visiting my favorite blogs, even if I can’t get a few posts up myself. I have resorted to drinking energy drinks. I know, bad bad bad. LOL!

    • Hey, lady! So good to have you dropping by for a visit. I know things get crazy busy so it’s tough to keep up with that.

      Oh yes, this was definitely a fun one. And no sweat about the audios. I know what you mean about your quota. I mix it up a lot between paper copy, electronic, and audio.

      Book one is free in ebook so hope you get the chance. 🙂

  • lol – A yes, I’ve been there. Went to get a book only to find out I already own it. This seriously loos like a fun series.

    • Yes, I’m pretty sure any book loving person with a Kindle has made that mistake at some point. Thank goodness Amazon has that little message thing or lord knows how many duplicates I’d have. LOL

      Load of fun, Christy! Hope you get the chance!

  • oops think I have book 4 in the series, so I will have to see about getting my hands on book one, southern? paranormal? mystery? romance? oh I need this in my life

    • Yes, Lily!!! I think book one is free. You’d probably do alright skipping about to book four after that if you wanted.

      Oh yep, lots of goodies in this series to enjoy.

  • Oh that looks super fun, Sophia. Love when you can get those audio deals, too. I’ll have to check these out 🙂

    • It really was. I am definitely pressing onward with this series and her Demon Slayer series.
      Yeah, that buy the ebook and add audio has scored me some real gems. 🙂

  • What a cute sounding series! I love the idea of the ghostly mystery and Verity and Frankie sound adorably feisty together! I’ll have to keep this in mind! Glad you enjoyed this, lovely review Sophia Rose!

    • It has been a fun one. They are a hilarious pair. Hope you get the chance, Cyn. 🙂

  • I have the first book in this series already, as it was free :). This one does sound really good with the ghostly focus and the mystery aspect. I always like that how in cozy mysteries you have a new mystery each book, but also side plot lines that progress throughout the series. It sounds like the narration was done really well too.

    • Yes, I love that she made this one and the first one of her Demon Slayers series free. These are mostly light and fun though it can get a little creepy when they’re doing the ghost hunting part. I liked having each new mystery when I picked up a new book, but I still got the familiar characters, setting and ongoing plot. Hope you like it when you get the chance to read it, Lola. 🙂