Monday, September 22, 2014

Romance/Suspense Review: Haunted (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit #15) by Kay Hooper

How do you make peace with the dead if the dead aren’t ready to forgive? In New York Times bestselling author Kay Hooper’s new novel, the answer lies in the twisting shadows of a small town, and its secrets yet unearthed...

When Deacon James’s younger sister Melanie calls him, terrified, he goes to her aid in the small Georgia town of Sociable. What he finds is a scared young woman in the grip of what she insists is a paranormal nightmare—and murder. Two local men have been killed under mysterious circumstances. And Melanie is the prime suspect.

Trinity Nichols left a high-stress job for quiet, small-town life. But news of the murders has left her—and the town—on edge, especially when there is nothing remotely ordinary about how the men died. And her investigation is yielding more than she bargained for, including a group of strangers who have descended on Sociable, some with abilities Trinity finds hard to believe, and agendas she refuses to trust. For some reason, they know a lot more than they should about what’s happening in town. And what’s happening is growing stranger by the minute.

Now Trinity, Deacon, and this odd band of FBI agents must work together to solve a series of disturbances so incredible that Trinity, and the town of Sociable, will be changed forever. She just isn’t certain who—or what—will be left standing when it’s all over.

Kay Hooper was born in California, in an air force base hospital since her father was stationed there at the time. The family moved back to North Carolina shortly afterward, so she was raised and went to school there. 

The oldest of three children, Kay has a brother two years younger and a sister seven years younger. Her father and brother are builders who own a highly respected construction company, and her mother worked for many years in personnel management before becoming Kay's personal assistant, a position she held until her untimely death in March 2002. Kay's sister Linda works as her Business Manager, Events Coordinator, and is playing a major role in the creation and operation of The Kay Hooper Foundation.

Kay graduated from East Rutherford High School and attended Isothermal Community College — where she quickly discovered that business classes did not in any way enthrall her. Switching to more involving courses such as history and literature, she also began to concentrate on writing, which had been a longtime interest. Very quickly hooked, she asked for a Christmas typewriter and began seriously working on her first novel. That book, a Regency romance titled Lady Thief, sold to Dell Publishing in 1980. She has since published more than 60 novels and four novellas.

Kay is single and lives in a very small town in North Carolina, not far from her father and siblings. Deigning to live with her are a flock of cats — Bonnie, Ginger, Oscar, Tuffy, Felix, Renny, and Isabel — of various personalities who all like sleeping on manuscripts and whatever research happens to be spread across Kay's desk. And living amongst the many felines are two cheerfully tolerant dogs, a shelter rescue, Bandit, who looks rather like a small sheepdog, and a Sheltie named Lizzie.

Kay Robbins is a pseudonym used by her.

This book is extremely unique.  It's a mash up of several different ideas rolled in to one, and it works very well.  At the beginning of the book, we're introduced to a team of investigators who all have their own... paranormal quirks.  Each one uses their skills to help solve crimes.  Sounds fascinating, right?  Trust me, it is.  

The characters are each given sufficient time in the story for development, and once all of this has been done, the book really takes off and you're caught up in a whirlwind of paranormal activity, suspense and a sprinkling of romance.  It's an intense book that leaves you flipping through pages quickly until you've read the very last word.  

For being the 15th book in a series, it keeps things interesting, and you'd never know that the writer has been creating this world for such an extended period of time.  It's an exciting read that fans of the romantic suspense/paranormal genres will praise.  

Rating:  4.5 stars 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All conclusions reached are my own.   


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