Victoria Laurie’s charming and entertaining Ghost Hunter Mystery series continues in the seventh and latest installment, What A Ghoul Wants. Ever since I picked up the first novel in Laurie’s delightful series I’ve been hooked. With quirky characters, and the most intriguing backdrops, Laurie’s writing continues to enthrall. The thrilling mysteries of M.J Holliday have twists and turns in a witty package, making the series and What A Ghoul Wants a great story to settle down in your seat and enjoy your escape.
M. J. Holliday has the unusual ability to talk to the dead. But when it comes to a vengeful ghost and a mysterious drowning, this time she may be in over her head….
THAT SINKING FEELING
Kidwella Castle in northern Wales is rumored to be haunted by a deadly ghost—the Grim Widow, who allegedly drowns unsuspecting guests in the castle’s moat. Not long after M. J. and her crew arrive at the castle to film their ghost-hunting cable TV show, Ghoul Getters, two new victims are added to the Widow’s grisly roster.
Fear ripples through the castle, especially when it’s discovered that the victims may have had help into their watery graves from the land of the living. The local inspector suspects father-son serial killers, but M. J. thinks that theory is all wet. To catch the true culprit she will need to dive deep into the castle’s past and bring some long buried secrets to the surface..
There are many reasons why I am a fan of Laurie’s work but the perhaps the most important is that her writing leaves me feeling satisfied at the end of each book. Though my initial impression was of a Ghost Whisperer knock off, a show I couldn’t stand I might add, Laurie proved me wrong and I’m so glad she did. The world of the Ghost Hunter Mysteries is much like our own and sucks one in a way that urban fantasy does at its best. Laurie’s style is no-nonsense and to the point while effortlessly layering detail. With mysteries that are fascinating, Laurie is an expert at giving us characters and circumstances which we instantly become invested in.
As with any good series there are several established characters in What A Ghoul Wants. A great stand alone book, Laurie lets newcomers and veterans alike feel at home with her cast of charming ghost busters. While the leading lady isn’t entirely dull I’d be lying if I said I didn’t find her two male sidekicks much more interesting. In fact, Laurie’s interesting characters , or at least my favorites, are always almost exclusively male. This is a somewhat interesting twist as not all of the male characters fall in love with the protagonist M.J as is common but fill their roles nonetheless. What A Ghoul Wants brought back two of my favorite series staples and an entirely new character which captured my interest. The first of these may seem like the stereotypical boyfriend figure, since that is the role he plays in M.J’s life but Laurie has skillfully made him so much more. Heath Whitefeather may be a gorgeous specimen of manhood but he is also a medium himself, having a different way to contact the spirit world than M.J. Much of this is from his Native American roots and training by his grandfather is further explored in other books. Though Heath takes a backdrop in What A Ghoul Wants, I still love his mix of silent protectiveness while still knowing M.J is just the sort to take charge. Heath is very much the supporter and I absolutely love him for this. The second male in my trio of awesomeness is Gilley, also known as M.J’s best friend. He is the perfect comedic relief during the entire series and What A Ghoul Wants showed a whole new side to Gil. This funny and flirty change was brought on by a keen yet helpful photographer. I most enjoy how Laurie manages to have Gil be flamboyant yet a tried and true techie without being a stereotype– a balance which is hard for many. The final male is one who is unique to What A Ghoul Wants and is an Inspector with the local Welsh police department. The plotline dances around this character and it was amazing to see his development.
Victoria Laurie is truly a master at engaging a reader into her story and world through charm and personality. The mysteries are nothing to be snuffed at and have become more complex as Laurie has developed as an author, What A Ghoul Wants being one of my favorites yet. Mystery fans may find them simplistic but like me, are still likely to be entertained by the cast of characters and the spectral aspects of the Ghost Hunter Mysteries. Whether you’re an Urban Fantasy or Mystery fan, you should give this series a look. I for one can’t wait for the next installment!