Better Homes and Hauntings
Grade : A

Who doesn't love a good book about creepy houses, beautiful men, Greek mythology, and a witty heroine? I know it was hard for me to resist from page one. The book totally grabbed me purely from a character standpoint. All the creepy-crawly stuff afterward was a major bonus.

Off the coast of Rhode Island is a private island owned by the infamous Whitney family, and on this island lives a giant mansion called the Crane's Nest. Abandoned for three generations, the youngest Whitney, Deacon, creator of the social media site EyeDee, is determined to fix it up to its former glory. Every revamp has failed as workers got spooked by the paranormal activity and history regarding the house. Deacon employs his best friend Jake, an organizational guru Cindy, and a landscaper named Nina to fix up the house and to live on the island for a summer. What begins as a summer of good work and company soon turns into a scary ghost story and murder mystery for all who are on the island.

Nina Lindon owns Demeter Designs; she's a classy and wonderfully geeky landscaper who signs on to the Crane's Nest operation in hopes of escaping her own demons and launching her business. From their meeting Deacon and Nina have a strong connection forged by obscure geeky references and a passion for Greek mythology. Everyone on the island becomes closer friends (and lovers) as the house begins to reveal its sordid past to those working on it and all of them begin to try to solve the mysterious murder of Catherine Whitney, the house's original mistress.

I love love loved this book so much. The writing was easy and it flowed without lacking substance. The characters were distinctive and fun. The dialogue was quirky and witty. All the perfect combination for me. The characters had great chemistry and each brought something unique to the back story.

Deacon and Nina are precious together; their quick-witted dialogue and chemistry bring their flirtation and relationship to life. Deacon is the attractive nerd who is more into Flash Gordon than social events but he is incredibly appealing. Their development is natural and fun, and I loved it. Secondary characters shine bright as well and they don't take away from the story at all.

As far as the paranormal aspect, the book isn't very scary at all, but it is very intriguing. I appreciated the paranormal elements a lot and thought they really flowed well throughout the book. The conflict was believable and the house was the perfect eerie setting.

I strongly recommend this book. I thought it was easy and engaging, and more than that - it's really fun. Add in the memorable characters, and you have a book you'll enjoy through and through.

Reviewed by Allie Jackson
Grade : A

Sensuality: Warm

Review Date : July 7, 2014

Publication Date: 2014/07

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