Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Ghost and Mrs McClure - Alice Kimberly

This spirit is willing--to catch a killer. Young widow Penelope
Thornton-McClure and her old Aunt Sadie are making ends meet by managing a mystery bookshop--a quaint Rhode Island landmark rumored to be haunted. Pen may not believe in ghosts, but she does believe in good publicity--like nabbing Timothy Brennan for a book signing. But soon after the bestselling thriller writer reveals a secret about the store's link to a 1940s murder, he keels over dead--and right in the middle of the store's new Community Events space. Who gives Mrs. McClure the first clue that it was murder? The bookstore's full-time ghost--a PI murdered on the very spot more than fifty years ago. Is he a figment of Pen's overactive imagination? Or is the oddly likable fedora-wearing specter the only hope Pen has to solve the crime? You can bet your everlasting life on it .. .

As the title indicates this is a ghost story with the particularity of being a cosy mystery too. Young widow Penelope Thornton-McClure has moved in with her aunt Sadie to a small town intending to raise her son as she sees fit while helping her aunt running an old bookstore.

They renovate the shop and Penelope has great plans for it so she decides to start having autograph sessions with famous authors. The first one is crime writer Timothy Brennan, author of the Jack Shields’ mysteries.

However, just when Brennan is speaking about his books and their connection to a murder in the 40s and Penelope’s bookstore he falls dead. And Penelope starts hearing voices in her head. The voice belongs to Jack Shepard, now a ghost, but also the man who was murdered in the 40s and in which Brennan based his famous character.

Brennan wasn’t exactly an easy person to live with and family and friends seem mostly relieved that his dead. And when the police starts investigating his death and the clues seem to point towards murder Penelope and Jack, the ghost, join forces to find out who did it.

While I do like Cosy mysteries I had some trouble getting into this one. Penelope just didn’t seem all that interesting and while Jack was very interesting - I kept imagining someone like Humphrey Bogart - that just wasn’t enough to keep me entertained. I wanted to know more about what had happened to Jack and less about Brennan.

While it’s not bad, in the end it seemed a very light and forgettable story and it didn’t interest me enough to continue the series.
Grade: 3.5/5


  1. This seems to be one of those series that you kinda like but don't love. I read it awhile ago and know I liked it enough to read more in the series but it wasn't a must read for me.

  2. Did you enjoy the others in the series?


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