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Saturday, January 3, 2015

152) Seeing the Dead by Sheila Connolly

The Blurb :

Ever since her first ghostly sighting, Abby Kimball has been trying to unravel the mystery of her newly discovered ability. So when she sees the apparition of a Revolutionary War soldier in the middle of the town green—just days before the annual Patriot’s Day celebration, no less—she’s determined to figure out her connection to the man.

The ethereal soldier is not the only mystery in Abby’s life. She’s also trying to sort out her connection to Ned Newhall, the man who shares her ability and is playing a more serious romantic role in her life every day. But with plans for the celebration ramping up and her job becoming more chaotic by the minute, Abby’s finding it hard to catch her breath, much less come to grips with all the new turns her life has taken.

And when another eerie episode is followed by the appearance of a very curious young girl who seems wise beyond her years, Abby discovers she and Ned may have only scratched the surface of their special ability, and that Ned may hold the biggest surprise yet.

My Thoughts :

When I read the blurb for this book I was eager to give it a try.  Ghostly sightings are enough to get me interested and I admit that I have been dying to try something written by this author for a long time.  However I realised that this book was actually part of a series and I really wanted to read the first book before picking up this sequel.  Of course that meant that this book got a lower place in the 'to be read' pile for a while longer than expected.

In retrospect I am happy that I read the first installment before this second book.  There was so much that happened in the first book that had a lot of impact on the story in this second part.  There are also things that happen in this second book that only made sense because I read the first installment.  So anyone wanting to check this series out really needs to get both books.  Then it is totally worth it.

I will admit that I had trouble with this one.  Not because it was bad but because there was so much depth to it.  With so many historical details and lots of interesting bits and bobs about everything to do with Abby's research and job it was hard to read this at my normal pace.  I had to slow myself down and really read every detail in case I missed something important.  In fact the majority of the content was important and extremely interesting.  However for a non American who has little knowledge of the areas of history this book relates to it was, sometimes, like I was being taught a lesson.  Which was ok because the author taught it well and made it worth learning.

Hopefully there won't be a test about the historical content of the book.  The on-going story would be worth testing me about because I made sure I paid close attention to the relationship ups and downs that Abby and Ned have in this sequel.  There are some amazing revelations about Ned which made the story even more compelling to read and a new younger character made things more interesting.

The writing style is wonderful and the author has obviously done a lot of research to make this book happen.  I wouldn't be surprised if she actually worked in this kind of area because she really seems to know her stuff.  I am not sure if this series is really a cozy mystery.  There isn't any crime to be solved but more a historical mystery related to the paranormal abilities Abby and Ned have.  It makes for great reading though and even though it slowed me down and I found it hard going sometimes I loved it.

I can't wait to meet up with these characters again and see how things progress.  I really like Abby and even though I am still a little wary of Ned, I do like him.  It will be interesting to see what ghosts get found next time and how the younger character fits into things in the long run.  This series has a great concept and definitely has some original angles.  Well worth checking out!

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