Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Better Homes and Hauntings by Molly Harper

Title: Better Homes and Hauntings
Author: Molly Harper
My Rating: B 

Genre: Paranormal Romance 
Series: -
Main Characters: Nina and Deacon
Release Date: June 2014
Publisher: Pocket
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: mild

Story Overview:
Author of the beloved Half Moon Hollow series of vampire romances (Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs), Molly Harper has created a standalone paranormal romance in which a dilapidated haunted house could bring star-crossed lovers together—if it doesn’t kill them first!

When Nina Linden is hired to landscape a private island off the New England coast, she sees it as her chance to rebuild her failing business after being cheated by her unscrupulous ex. She never expects that her new client, software mogul Deacon Whitney, would see more in her than just a talented gardener. Deacon has paid top dollar to the crews he’s hired to renovate the desolate Whitney estate—he had to, because the bumps, thumps, and unexplained sightings of ghostly figures in nineteenth-century dress are driving workers away faster than he can say “Boo.”

But Nina shows no signs of being scared away, even as she experiences some unnerving apparitions herself. And as the two of them work closely together to restore the mansion’s faded glory, Deacon realizes that he’s found someone who doesn’t seem to like his fortune more than himself—while Nina may have finally found the one man she can trust with her bruised and battered heart.

But something on the island doesn’t believe in true love…and if Nina and Deacon can’t figure out how to put these angry spirits to rest, their own love doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance.

My Review:
In junior high, I devoured Victoria Holt's gothic romance books. This story reminded me so much of those books. Although it's a contemporary story, it definitely has that kind of feel to the book. 

This story features five characters who have come to this small island to remodel/refurbish Deacon's family estate which has fallen into disrepair and ruin because of the hauntings/ghosts which occupy it. There is rumors of a family curse along with the ghosts, but Deacon refuses to accept that. He's determined to fix the family reputation along with debunking the ghost myths and has his team living on the island to accomplish both those tasks.

The team:
*Deacon...owner and geeky billionaire. Deacon is a computer geek and I loved him. He developed a social network (think Facebook equivalent) and spends his days writing computer code and geeking out on action figures. He and Nina immediately connect with witty nerd-dom speak and fun. I loved it when they got going between them. They had great dialogue.
*Nina...landscape artist who's had a rash of her own bad luck after going into business with a jerk who won't let her go. Because of her unfortunate circumstances, she's lost a bit of herself lately, but the friendships she finds on the island help her overcome that.
*Cindy...professional cleaner and organizer. The house hasn't been lived in for several generations, but it has been ransacked. Cindy is working to organize and catalog all the family artifacts. She also has a history with Jake...that he doesn't remember.
*Jake...Deacon's childhood friend and confidant. He's also the architect on the renovations which has him working closely with Cindy to get the house functioning again.
*Dotty...Deacon's batty cousin. I couldn't help but fall in love with her and her enthusiasm for the project, the mystery of Catherine's death, and her need to have her own supernatural encounter.

I loved the entire team and the mix of personalities. I loved how they bonded over the course of the months through their supernatural encounters. It truly felt like they developed lasting friendships throughout the book and that really worked for me. 

It was an interesting book and story. It was fun to go into that gothic romantic style that I haven't read in years, especially with the modern twist. 

My one huge complaint was the point of view. Normally Molly Harper writes her books in a single pov. I'll be honest...that is NOT my favorite style because I like to know what everyone is thinking. BUT this book showed her inexperience with writing multiple pov's as the head-hopping was extremely distracting. I had to stop reading several times just to figure out who was supposed to be the POV vs. who was actually having the thought. Especially in the first half of the book, this was an issue where a single paragraph would go off from the correct POV. I read an ARC and am hoping that this was something that was fixed before the final copy, but I would be surprised that they sent out ARC's with that deep of edits still needed. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

1 comment:

Red Iza said...

Looks like a nice holiday read - hope it will get some more editing ;)