Thursday, 25 June 2009

Review – Hunter’s Dawn: Laying The Ghost – Meg Leigh

 

 

 

 

Back Of The Book

Jack Stephens is a skeptic who lectures in Parapsychology at a community college. In his spare time, he works hard to prove that things going bump in the night can be rationally explained. When Jack meets psychic, Casey Lambeth, he sees just another chance to debunk paranormal phenomena. But there is something about Casey that defies explanation. From their first meeting, Casey decides Jack is an arrogant know it all.


When the two are thrown together to investigate a haunting at the home of Edith Andrews, the sparks really begin to fly. As they work their way through the case, both Jack and Casey will be forced to face some issues from their respective pasts, and work their way towards a mutual understanding, respect, and could it be possible–something more?

 

Review

Characters

Jack Stephens  -  The doubting son, the steadfast partner and the man who has more issues and chips on his shoulder than any one man should. Determined to get  to the bottom of anything spooky – he’s gotten away with it, so far – but he had never met Casey, before now.

Casey Lambeth – The dutiful son, the very old - boy – who has made a life for himself, dispute it being hard going for him. Never having been steered wrong, by his guide – he meets Jack and a woman who is determined to make him her own.

 

The Plot

Jack Stephens is a de-bunker through and through and so far, nothing in his personal experience has lead him to believe any differently. So it is with this frame of mind he take a job, that should all things considered be a weekend of finding out who or what was spooking the little old lady.

Jack has not even had a seat to get the details of the hunt when it seems as if someone is muscling in on his job. Casey Lambeth has not only turned up without an invite – but he soon makes Jack start doubting himself and all this within the space of a few hours

Casey is being driven by a force that is not easily accepted by Jack, however when proof is laid out before him he starts doubting the very meaning of life and the the only stability that is left is what he has been running from all his life and Casey. 

 

The heavy bass line thrummed through the leather upholstered bucket seat and vibrated in Jack Stevens' chest as he rolled the Shelby Mustang out of the garage and onto the street. The deep throaty purr of the engine made a dark counterpoint to the opening bars of Genesis' "I Can't Dance."
Jack grinned and waved to an obviously disapproving neighbor as he cruised to the end of the street and took a left, headed for the interstate. It was a warm summer day, the early morning sunshine hinting at a hotter day to come.
"I can't dance..." Jack sang as he drove, glancing into the rearview mirror as he pulled to a stop at an intersection. He was headed for Elk Ridge, Wisconsin on an investigation. A little old lady was having problems with what she thought was a ghost haunting her home.
He was looking forward to the chance to let the Shelby out on the highway. Okay, the GT350 might not have been the fastest Mustang ever built, but she suited him. He'd spent a lot of time and money restoring her to her former glory, after finding her rusting and falling apart in a junkyard where he'd spent a week trying to prove to the owner that the things going bump in the yard had more to do with junkyard rats than spirits. In the end, he'd advised the guy to buy a couple of terriers to keep the resident Rottweiler company, then waived his usual fee and asked if he could take the old Mustang instead.
Jack drummed on the steering wheel in time to the music as he took off from the intersection. Over a couple of years, he'd lovingly worked on the car during weekends, buying parts as finances permitted. Jack had restored the rusting hulk to sleek, gleaming black with racing stripes over the hood and the classic GT350 decal along the sides of the car below the doors. He'd even managed to locate and buy an original blue dot spare wheel, which was proudly mounted in the trunk. The car was his pride and joy, even if it cost a small fortune in gas to run.
"I like a girl with expensive tastes, anyway," Jack said. He patted the wheel lovingly as he took the turnpike onto the interstate, letting the Mustang out with a roar of the engine and smoking tires. God, but he loved that car!

Hunter’s Dawn: Laying The Ghost © Meg Leigh

 

Surprise Element

Another new to me author and I was pleasantly surprise by how much I enjoyed this book. It was not a tie you up in circle sort of book. It was straight forward, to the point, with characters that were solid and from a wide cross section of opinion.

I will be following this author for a while to come.

 

Predictability

Yes –there is no two ways about it, there is predictability. However, Ms. Leigh quickly steered us away from the heavily trodden path with a solid plot. The edge of mystery along with the multiply relationship issues makes LAYING THE GHOST, one of those gems I was pleased to have read.

 

Smut/Ick Element

I love these sort of sweet “coming into their own” sort of smut. Casey was not only the sweet innocent lad about to get tousled by the more experienced troubled guy, he was so shy and uncomfortable in his skin that I wanted to protect him at every turn.

Jack made the difference to the relationship – while he had issues of his own, one thing he was sure of – he wanted Casey and after they got a working relationship together, there was no stopping him getting together with him..

I love their scenes together, the hesitation and the doubt, but more over the make up and the setting the record straight.   

 

Positive

Right off from the blurb I knew it was an opposite attraction book and I was loving that already.

I liked the characters very much as well. Casey was so loveable with naivety pouring out of him – he is a unique person in that he has a wealth of experience in the supernatural that gave him an insight that the average person and even people in the business does not get. Casey also comes with a handle with care sign, as never having done, but wanting to do, he is a show piece of someone who will get hurt and hurt badly if not handled with extreme care.

Jack Stephen – When I meet him, he comes across as “The Man”, the job, the car, the stead lifestyle – however scratch just a little below the surface and  there is a mystery and a deep longing that he has avoided dealing with up to now. Meeting Casey has stirred him up and have him on the defence, but not enough to leave Casey’s side.

Ms. Leigh kept the spook real, I loved how the mystery started – the unfolding and even the conclusion.

There was a good balance between the sceptic and the believers in this book – so at the end, I was left with my own opinion to make of what happened in this book.

I am glad Ms. Leigh, did not fluff about with the smut aspect of this book, as this story was so much more than Casey and Jack finding each other.

The support cast- MADE THIS STORY – They were strong, their personality was dynamic and I was caught up in what they offered to the book

Very, very good character development – we knew their story, each and every one of these people we meet in LAYING THE GHOSTS.

The emotional aspect of this book cannot be underplayed, I laugh, I sighed and my heart broke during this read. I really loved this aspect of Ms. Leigh’s writing, and I will be watching for more of the same from her in future books.

Bottom Line

A spook book with a sweet romance that ticked all my boxes. LAYING THE GHOSTS is definately a book for people who enjoy hunting ghost and paranormal stories, it is fill with characters and little side stories that highlight the strength of Ms. Leigh writing. She kept up a story line that should have gone flat somewhere about mid way but with sarcastic comebacks, a solid mystery and a finish worthy of a steeple chase, she made me love this book.

 

Negative

My two little niggle with this book was probably the pace. Don’t get me wrong i like the book alot – however the pace was off in certain scenes and for no reason that could be identified.

In my readings I have found that some things I really love about a book, might turn out to be the thing that niggle me as well in a book. As is the case with LAYING THE GHOSTS – the support cast were so strong and in their own way carved their place in this story – I was left wondering what happened to them.

I do hope Ms. Leigh revisit Jack and Casey and close this open door.

 

Cover

Very much i like – Probably because I am a huge Tarot fan. The fact that the author uses the reference in the actual book is also a big plus.

 

6 Speak To Me:

Blodeuedd on 25 June 2009 at 14:32 said...

A spook book with a sweet romance that ticked all my boxes.

Sounds good enough for me :D
What else do I need to know

Mandi on 25 June 2009 at 15:48 said...

This looks great..love the premise.

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) on 25 June 2009 at 16:40 said...

Hi EH!

I love the cover, has ghosts and romance!

I'll be looking for it!

Dottie :)

Erotic Horizon on 25 June 2009 at 17:32 said...

Blodeuedd...

That is all I am going to give you... It's a sweet read..

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 June 2009 at 17:33 said...

Mandi...

that the predictable bit of it... once you get over the intro - it turns out really good.

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 June 2009 at 17:34 said...

Dottie...

Me too, so some authors are auto buy... when you say Ghost and romance...

E.H>