Review: Southern Ghost Hunter Series 5th Anniversary Special Edition by Angie Fox

Posted February 8, 2020 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 26 Comments

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I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Southern Ghost Hunter Series 5th Anniversary Special Edition by Angie Fox
Southern Ghost Hunter Series 5th Anniversary Special Edition

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Genres: Mystery Romance, Paranormal Romance
Published by Moose Island Books
Released on January 16, 2020
Pages: 582
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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The Delight

I’m a huge fan of the series and I leaped at the chance to get the anniversary special edition when I saw the special features added to the first three stories- two novels and a between novella. I’ve never felt this engaged with a cozy mystery series before, but it’s the combo of sassy fun characters, small town, clever mysteries on both the ghostly and human plane bringing a strong dose of history and romance with all the rest.


Review

Southern Spirits is book one and introduces the Southern Ghost Hunter World.

Verity Long is the town pariah after dumping the scion of the wealthiest family at the altar. Only Verity knows that Beau Wydell is not as golden as everyone thinks and his mother won a lawsuit over the expense of the wedding reception that cleaned Verity out and has her on the brink of losing her old family home to pay the debt.
While despondently cleaning out the house she inherited from her grandmother and wondering if she’ll be homeless soon, Verity mistakes a funeral urn and ashes for a ‘dirty’ vase so she dumps the contents out over her rose bushes. This lands her with a gangster’s ghost who is now tied to her house. Frankie agrees to help her find the money to keep her house (which is now his, too) if she’ll do what it takes to free his ashes from the dirt and thus, free him from being stuck either at the house or wherever she took his urn.
Verity and Frankie are hired by Beau Wydell’s older brother, Ellis, to help him with an angry ghost that is tearing up all the renovations he’s making on the property he bought. In the process, Verity sees that Ellis is nothing like his brother and Ellis learns the truth of what happened between Verity and his brother. Ellis is also a cop so he manages to accept the truth about Verity’s ghost gift and ghosts even while they work to solve what is shaping up to be a dangerous hunt for the truth that someone wants to keep unknown.

The novella, A Ghostly Gift, continues with Verity determined not to do any more ghost hunting, but still needing to make ends meet so she does a design job for her sister Melanie’s friend who owns an antique shop. Julie can’t pay, but agrees to trade Verity for household goods Verity needs from her store. Julie knows her store in the old part of town is haunted and doesn’t mind until one of the ghosts gets aggressive and begins breaking her pieces. Verity agrees to help and tows a reluctant Frankie along to help her figure out what has the ghost riled up.

Skeleton in the Closet sees Verity and the rest of Sugarland gearing up for the big celebration and festival. The town’s claim to fame was a Civil War battle fought on its doorstep and the town repelled the invaders. Founding families, the Wydells and the Jacksons are feuding over the historical displays. Verity is distracted when her ex tries wooing her again. But then the historical society volunteer’s body is found murdered just after she shares with Melanie that she found something important among the historical display items. This call puts Melanie and Verity under suspicion straining her relationship with Ellis so now she has to drag Frankie and the ghosts at the library into helping her solve the case.

Included in this edition is: how the first book came about, graphic sketches of Verity’s old family home, character sketches, the development of the covers and graphics of the ones not chosen, and deleted scenes. These extras make up about the last ten percent of the book so they are interesting for the fan and I enjoyed paging through it all. I’m not sure I would purchase this set specifically to get them if one already has the series books, but then again, it’s a fabulous limited edition that’s way more than affordable for what you get and the e-book edition graphics are crystal clear.

I love the light and humor mixed with a moderately hair-raising ghostly mystery adventures. Verity is an engaging lead character and narrator. I love that she has a pet skunk, Lucy, her bright researcher librarian sister, Melanie, southern manners and this second chance at something special with the stolid and handsome Ellis. Frankie is a fun and sparkling character in the series and he feels authentic the way he raises Cain and makes his deals with Verity before agreeing to help. The mystery and all the ghostly activities is a neat world the author created. It was fabulous revisiting the earliest stories in the series that withstood the test of a reread and also getting the extra special edition gems to please a fan. I can recommend this boxed set for fan and newbie alike.


Challenges Met
New Release #5
Literary Pickers #15

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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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Lover of Romance
8 months ago

Great review. I have heard of this author but haven’t picked her up yet. I think its so cool that this book has graphics in it!!! I have never seen that in a romance before.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

Her stuff is fun. You can get the first book free if you want to try her out.

Yes, it was fun to get those graphics in the back and see the floor plans and extras for this edition.

Berls
8 months ago

I really enjoy cozy mysteries and this one sounds right up my alley. I love ghost companions / annoyances and how she ended up with hers tells me this is a series that will make me laugh. Adding to my TBR. Great reviews!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Berls

Glad to point you toward a tempting one, Berls. You can get the first book free and I recommend adding the audio b/c she’s a great narrator.

Mary Kirkland
8 months ago

This sounds pretty good. I love that she has a pet skunk. It’s nice when the characters have unusual pets.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Mary Kirkland

Yes, Lucy steals the show now and then and its hilarious the way she reacts to Frankie the ghost. 🙂

Anne - Books of My Heart

I’ve read the first one and I really liked it. I will have to try to get to more of them. Fantastic review!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

I love some more than others, but I enjoy this series a lot. Hope you get the chance, Anne!

Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

What a fun series! I love sassy fun characters, humor, and small town romance! It’s great that you’re getting such phenomenal cozy mysteries too! It sounds like you get a little bit of everything in these books! I love that this limited anniversary addition includes so many neat sketches and deleted scenes!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

Oh yes, a lot of bang for my buck, Limdy! It was neat to page through all the delightful extras.

Angie Elle
8 months ago

I read the Christmas story that was on Netgalley at the end of last year, and it was such a fun read! I do want to go back and read this series. I bought the first book in audio. I’m glad you enjoyed this limited edition. Thanks for the honesty about the ‘extras.’

Great review!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Angie Elle

Wasn’t that story great? I loved the Christmas one, too. She has done several and they all are heartwarming.

Lola
8 months ago

I think I have book 1 in this series. It sure sounds like a fun one. That’s neat this anniversary box set includes the first two books and a novella. That bonus content sounds like a great addition to this set. That’s great that graphics are so clear too. I don’t think I’ve seen many books that do that with ebooks.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Lola

I really enjoyed that first book and it was fun getting it again with the extras at the end of the book. Hopefully you enjoy it when you get the chance.

Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer

Ooo.. I think I’d like this series Sophia.. and as per usual I’ve been living under a rock. Adding to my wishlist.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

Yahoo! First book is a freebie. 😉

Sarah @ All The Book Blog Names Are Taken

I really enjoy some of these cozies, and I think this a series I would enjoy. Great review!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

I don’t read a ton of cozies, but I did get hooked on this series. Just love and hope you enjoy it if you get the chance, Sarah. First one’s free! 🙂

Sarah @ All The Book Blog Names Are Taken
Reply to  Sophia Rose

I started it last night after I saw you mentioned to someone else that it is free. I am already at like 26% or something, I like it! I found some fun cozies, but do not read them often either. A series I really like is the Mercy Watts mysteries, there’s nine books and four or five novellas, but A.W. Hartoin. The first one is usually free for that series, and the boxed set of the first 3 plus a novella was something like $4.99 or $3.99 when I got them. Thanks for the heads-up on this one, I think… Read more »

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

That is super, Sarah! I love that you are having a good time so far. I’ll have to check out the Hartoin series. I need to find more in the genre.

Carole Rae
8 months ago

The light humor sounds like a joy. I need one after the book I’m reading now.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

Uh uh, dreary one, huh? Frankie and Verity can cheer you up, Carole. Grab their first story freebie. 🙂

Jen
Jen
8 months ago

This sounds totally cute. I’ve seen the author’s name here and there, but now that I’m in paranormal cozies, I should give it a try! Thanks.

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Jen

For sure, Jen! I think you’d have a good time with these on audio. The first book is free for Kindle and the audio add on is cheap. 🙂

Nadene
8 months ago

A pet skunk, interesting. This sounds like a fun read

Sophia Rose
8 months ago
Reply to  Nadene

They are very fun and Lucy is scared of Frankie the ghost. 🙂