Friday, January 20, 2017

#Saturday Review - A Ghostly Reunion by Tonya Kappes #Cozy #Mystery @tonyakappes11 @HarperCollins

Series: Ghostly Southern Mysteries # 5
Format: E-Galley, 352 pages
Release Date: December 27th 2016
Publisher: Witness
Source: Edelweiss
Genre: Cozy, Mystery

Emma Lee Raines sees dead people
Proprietor of the Eternal Slumber Funeral Home, Emma Lee can see, hear, and talk to ghosts of murdered folks. And when her high school nemesis is found dead, Jade Lee Peel is the same old mean girl—trying to come between Emma Lee and her hot boyfriend, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, all over again.
There’s only one way for Emma Lee to be free of the trash-talking ghost—solve the murder so the former prom queen can cross over.
But the last thing Jade Lee wants is to leave the town where she had her glory days. And the more Emma Lee investigates on her own, the more complicated Miss Popularity turns out to be. Now Emma Lee will have to work extra closely with her hunky lawman to get to the twisty truth.

A Ghostly Reunion is the Fifth installment in author Tonya Kappes' Ghostly Southern Mysteries. Protagonist Emma Lee Raines is an Betweener. She sees, talks to, and hears dead people who have been murdered. Outside of her job at Eternal Slumber Funeral Home, which she now runs solo after her sister Charlotte left for greener pastures, it is her job to solve the mystery of what happened to them so that they can move on to the next phase of existence. 

But, that doesn't compare to having her 10th High School Reunion in Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky which she has organized. Especially when her nemesis Jade Lee Peel comes to town and upsets the balance by getting herself killed in Grandmother Zula Fae Raines' Inn. Jade is the bad girl who did all she could do to make Emma Lee's life miserable. From all outwards appearances, nothing has changed. Jade is either very insecure about her popularity, or she is really that awful. There might be those who think that Jade needs a bit of comeuppance. 

But, who would have thought that it would be Emma Lee who has to work with Jade to find out who cancelled her contract? As Emma Lee and Jade work together, as Emma Lee goes through a very long list of possible suspects, including almost all of her friends, she realizes that things aren't necessarily always as they appear. Especially when it comes to Jade and her obviously high maintenance lifestyle. But, who would hold such a grudge against Jade to want to "fire" her?

I started this series not that long ago, and find myself intrigued by where it is going from here. Especially with the way the author blindsides us at the end of the book. I, unfortunately, have missed out on books 2, & 3, but have just purchased A Ghostly Murder a short time ago, and have A Ghostly Mortality in Que to read. I never quite understood the relationship between Emma Lee and her sister Charlotte, and in this book, the relationship kind of over-shadows Emma Lee's investigation. I dare say that I do have to go back to the previous installments so I can get caught up before finishing book # 6. 

Ever since a plastic Santa hit Emma Lee in the head, folks in Sleepy Hollow have called her condition Funeral Trauma which gives Emma plenty of opportunity to act any way she wants.  Let's get to the other reasons I love this series. I love Emma Lee's hometown. It is everything I enjoy about southern small towns. I love Emma's quirky grandmother who is the one of the towns gossip queens. I love her relationship with Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, especially since he knows that she can see things and hear things that he can't. He has never judged her. I love Emma's friends who are wonderfully lovable and fun to follow along with.