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Thursday, October 24, 2013

If Walls Could Talk (A Haunted Home Renovation Mystery, #1) by Juliet Blackwell BOOK REVIEW

If Walls Could Talk (A Haunted Home Renovation Mystery #1)If Walls Could Talk by Juliet Blackwell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Another cozy mystery in my list of books that I have read, is that surprising anyone at this point. So I like them, I like to get into them and the way characters develop. So this was a new one, the first in a series and a new author to me at that.

This is the first in the Haunted Home Renovation Mystery Series, and it is a little different from the other cozy mysteries in that the police aren't actually investigating this murder, in fact the only person who seems to be concerned with the murder at all is Mel Turner, our female lead. After a divorce, the unexpected death of her mother has her taking over her fathers construction business, instead of hiding in Paris licking her wounds. The business is good, they specialize in restoring old homes to their former glory, and believe it or not Mel is really good at what she does, which probably is one reason she didn't do so well in her marriage to a professor.

A friend, Matt Addax, and aging rock start at that, buys an old house to flip, and although she agrees to do a walk through for him on the house before he buys it, that was all that her involvement was suppose to be. Until Matt's teenage son calls and wants her to check on him, they had a do-it-yourself demo party that included drinks, not the best combination with power tools. She stops by to find a passed out Matt, empty beer and wine bottles, and alot of damage, then as they are walking through the house, Matt's business partner and friend Kenneth walks up too them with a nail gun, nail shots into his abdomen and his hand sawed off. Kenneth passes away at the hospital and what seems to be almost no investigate ensues.

During the brief, one day search of the place, she finds out that her business name has been forged on the permits, and Matt has asked her to help finish the remodel because he needs to recoup the money. And thus begins the twisted a sorrid tell that ends up involving ghosts and spirts from at least three generations before any work ever gets done on the house!

It took me alot to actually get into the book. I read one chapter, then pushed myself to read the next, then pushed on, it was only about a third of the way in did I finally find myself enjoying the story and looking for some closure. I'm not sure about the series yet. I kinda liked Mel, I really like Graham, old family friend come back into her life, and the teenage boys, Caleb and Dylan, Matt's son and her ex=stepson whom she still has a good relationship with and is in her life more than you would think an ex would be. Her Dad and his best friend, Stan are there, and although they started the business, they have stepped out and let Mel take over. The original reasoning that Mel gives was that her father was just unable to handle it after her mother's death, but late in this story we find out that his wife was a big part of the business, and I think he stepped aside on purpose, I think he had it in his mind to bring Mel in, give her a purpose after the divorce and to settle her down and make her deal with life. She thinks this is temporary and that her Dad will take back over soon, but I don't think he has any plans of taking it back over. So there is part of me that is ready for the next book to see how that sub-plot matures.

Overall, it was a good book, and I defintely think I will read the second book in the series, and I think I will reserve judgement on it until then. Not sure if it will be a favorite or not, but looking forward to learning more about the characters.

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