by Heather Graham
Series: Krewe of Hunters #8
Published by: Harlequin
Genres: Paranormal, Romantic Suspense
>1777: In the throes of the Revolutionary War, Landon Mansion is commandeered by British Lord "Butcher" Bedford. He stabs Lucy Tarleton—who spurned his king and his love—leaving her to die in her father's arms. NOW: After the day's final tour, docent Allison Leigh makes her rounds while locking up and finds a colleague slumped over Bedford's desk, impaled on his own replica bayonet. Resident ghosts may be the stock-in-trade of stately Philadelphia homes, but Allison—a noted historian—is indignant at the prospect of "ghost hunters" investigating this apparent murder. Agent Tyler Montague knows his hauntings and his history. But while Allison is skeptical of the newcomer, a second mysterious murder occurs. Has "Butcher" Bedford resurfaced? Or is there another malevolent force at work in Landon Mansion? Wary, yet deeply attracted, Allison has to trust in Tyler and work with him to discover just what uninvited guest—dead or alive—has taken over the house. Or their lives could become history!
If you follow my reviews you are probably aware that I love romantic suspense wrapped in a little paranormal woo-woo. Heather Graham is one of my favorite authors for when the mood strikes. Each of the novels can be read as standalone, as each book deals with one member of the special FBI unit and their romance. I love that each case brings us a mystery to solve and a swoon-worthy guy. The Uninvited tells Agent Tyler Montague’s story as he works to solve a murder investigation.
The case is set in Philadelphia and involves the historic Tarleton House. Allison Leigh is a history professor and spends her summers working as a guide at the Tarleton House. Dressed in colonial attire, she is locking up after a busy day of tours when she discovers the body of a co-worker impaled by his own replica bayonet. While resident ghosts are good for drawing in visitors, the board is concerned because this isn’t the first bizarre accident to occur. They call Adam the head of the special FBI unit and Taylor Montague is dispatched from Virginia to investigate. Allison isn’t happy about this crew of “ghost hunters” invading the historic home, but when she begins seeing and hearing the voice of her dead colleague ..she might just change her mind. The tale that unfolds is suspenseful as they race to stop a killer.
We previously meet Agent Taylor and I was delighted to finally get his story. He is ex-military and was a Texas Ranger who helped find a missing girl with the help of a ghost. Taylor is tall and lean and looks like a linebacker. I really liked this soft-spoken man. He feels like people are intimidated by his size and are quick to make a judgment about him. He finds himself attracted to the sexy, refined, intelligent dark haired raven, Allison. Allison isn’t ready to deal with the murder, let alone all this ghost woo-woo, but Taylor is so patient with her. *sigh* These two were obviously attracted to each other, but the discovery and dance were paced throughout the book allowing the romance to slowly unfold. The rest of the Krewe of Hunters arrived, but as is Graham’s style they worked the case mostly in the background. Hints were dropped about whose story we will get next and I hope I am right. The list of suspects was colorful and the secondary characters including the ghosts added to the suspense and mystery.
The world building in Graham’s novels is always fun. I love the investigation aspect and piecing together the clues. Having ghosts provide clues and unlock lost mysteries is always intriguing. In this type of tale, the storylines follow a predictable recipe; murder, boy meets girl, search for clues, fall in love, solve the case. Graham takes this recipe and mixing up a delightful new batch each time and I always find myself completely immersed in the tale. I love that the romance is just a side dish to the mystery. She knows how to serve it and this one was spicy. I enjoyed watching it develop, the awkwardness, tension, that first kiss..eep! While there is sexual content it is all implied and should not offend. I loved the dead colleague and fans of the Ghost Bartholomew should be delighted by him. While I had my suspicions about whom the murderer was, Graham surprised me with a twist at the end.
I recommend The Uninvited to fans who like paranormal suspense, crime, mystery and a side of romance. There is no news on the next book in this series, but I will be sure and update you. Below you will find links to reviews of the previous Krewe of Hunter novels.
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