Series: Haunted Guesthouse Mystery #3.5
Narrator: James Patrick Cronin
Length: 2 hours 34 minutes
Genre: Cozy Paranormal Mystery
Ratings: Story: 4.5 Crowns Performance: 3 Crowns
Phantom PI Paul Harrison from the national best-selling Haunted Guesthouse mysteries returns with a tale of his own in a house full of ghosts, secrets, and spectacular oceanside views.…
Three years ago in a large Victorian house on the Jersey Shore in the town of Harbor Haven, fledgling private investigator Paul and his client, Maxie Malone, were murdered. Since then, recent divorcée and reluctant ghost whisperer Alison Kerby and her 10-year-old daughter, Melissa, have moved in and converted the place to a guesthouse, where Maxie and Paul are now checked in for an eternity and ready to solve any case that comes their way - or at least spook the guests (who love it). Alison’s got a lot on her plate at the moment, however, so when Paul discovers the 300-year-old ghost of a small boy in the house, he decides not to involve her in the case. The boy, named Eagle of the Sun, says he’s searching for his missing mother. Paul’s happy to help Eagle of the Sun find her, though something about the boy’s story doesn’t add up. But why would a lost little ghost lie?
Extra guests and bathroom renovations have taken over Alison Kerby’s time so when her daughter, Melissa, and her resident PI ghost, Paul, find a 300-year-old ghost boy playing in the guesthouse closet Paul decides that they’ll handle the situation on their own. With the help of Melissa, Maxie, and Loretta they soon discover the little boy calling himself ‘Eagle of the Sun’ is searching for his mother. Although through research they soon find out that this little ghost boy isn’t telling the truth, now they need to figure out why.
So, this one was super short, just a bit over two-and-a-half hours, yet the plot was well-rounded. I really felt that this was a nice addition to the series. For someone bingeing on the series, this was a nice breather before gearing up to tackle the next full-length book in the series.
I really liked the mystery in this one. I was kind of expecting it to be short and to the point but I’m happy to report that it was drawn out a bit. Things were reveled slowly allowing me to enjoy each discovery. I also liked that I wasn’t really sure what was going on with the little ghost boy. At first, I was convinced that he was telling the truth, that he was a Native American boy, then as the story progressed and more was revealed, I too started questioning the little boys story. When everything was finally revealed, I made sense and I wondered why I hadn’t picked up on it earlier on.
I was so excited when I realized that this was told from Paul’s POV. So far, the full-length books have been told from Alison’s POV, and while we get a good sense of the characters, I’ve always wanted to know more about Paul because he seems to be a bit of a mystery. While there wasn’t too much revealed about Paul that wasn’t already known, which was a bit disappointing, there were a few bits of information thrown in that made him even more interesting. Although we did learn a bit more about Paul’s PI business.
The attraction between Alison and Paul is finally brought up. Alison had briefly mentioned it in previous books, but we finally get to see Paul’s take on it. It’s slightly odd, seeing as he’s a ghost and she’s a living person, but it actually sort of made sense. It was also nice to see Paul acting as a father figure to Melissa. He’s definitely a protector and that shows in the way he acts towards Melissa, Alison, Maxie, and Loretta.
As this book was centered, basically, around the mystery there was no romance thrown in making it a nice change.
So, I wasn’t overly thrilled about James Patrick Cronin, the narrator. While I could listen to his narration, I felt that it fell a bit flat. His portrayal of Maxie came off as annoying and when he voiced Loretta, Alison’s mom, he made her sound like an old lady. There’s also a mistake where Maxie is called Molly.
Overall, while the narrator was lackluster the story made up for it. It was short but well written and worth it.