Jumat, 17 Februari 2017

Review: Better Homes and Hauntings by Molly Harper

Title: Better Homes and Hauntings
Author: Molly Harper
Languange : English
Publisher : Pocket Books

Length : 318 halaman
First Published : Juni 2014

Format : Paperback
Age Restriction : Dewasa

Genre : Paranormal Romance
Web: Molly Harper
Link to Buy: Bookdepository 

Sinopsis :

Author of the beloved Half Moon Hollow series of vampire romances (Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs), Molly Harper has created a standalone paranormal romance in which a dilapidated haunted house could bring star-crossed lovers together—if it doesn’t kill them first!

When Nina Linden is hired to landscape a private island off the New England coast, she sees it as her chance to rebuild her failing business after being cheated by her unscrupulous ex. She never expects that her new client, software mogul Deacon Whitney, would see more in her than just a talented gardener. Deacon has paid top dollar to the crews he’s hired to renovate the desolate Whitney estate—he had to, because the bumps, thumps, and unexplained sightings of ghostly figures in nineteenth-century dress are driving workers away faster than he can say “Boo.”

But Nina shows no signs of being scared away, even as she experiences some unnerving apparitions herself. And as the two of them work closely together to restore the mansion’s faded glory, Deacon realizes that he’s found someone who doesn’t seem to like his fortune more than himself—while Nina may have finally found the one man she can trust with her bruised and battered heart.

But something on the island doesn’t believe in true love…and if Nina and Deacon can’t figure out how to put these angry spirits to rest, their own love doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance.


"Of all the things she just said, skipping to the end of a book is what bothers you most?" Jake asked.

Cindy crossed her arms and set her chin. "I hate spoilers."

Not your ordinary Scoby Dooby Doo gang!

It's not the first time I read Harper's book. I had read her Nice Girl series (just book 1, Nice Girls Don't Have Fangs :P) and already like her quirky and nerdy humor. I pick Better Home and Hauntings since this one is just a stand alone and perfect for a quick read. Actually, I read this book in 2 days because of my hectic schedule, but I'm glad that in the end, the story left me with warm fuzzy feeling! :D

I don't like ghost. Pronto. From all paranormal and supernatural creature, ghost is what I hate the most. Zombies are second *shudders* . It's just I easily scared and since right now I live alone in my cramped apartment unit (hubby is work long long away), my wild imagination sometimes is running amok, especially in the night. So I brave myself to read Better Homes and Hauntings. The ghost part actually not too much, but still give me heebies-jeebies. Some ghost part that Harper wrote will freak me out! Like the scene when there was ghost in one of character's bed!! >.<

The story itself is pretty simple tho. Nina Linden is a gardener, she come to Crane's Nest to restore the building to its former glory. Nina herself kinda try to rebuild her self-esteem, after her business partner screw her company, Demeter Design. But, Crane's Nest have its own curse, and the current owner, the tech-billionaire Deacon Whitney who happen to hire Nina, didn't believe it. His cousin, Dotty Whitney, think otherwise though. She had been curious to solved the mystery behind the Whitney family curse, began with the death of her great-great grandmother, Catherine Whitney. Rumors have it that Catherine murdered by her jealous husband, Gerald, for having affair with her old flame, Jack Donovan. Nina not alone tho, she had company, Cindy Ellis who run cleaning service and Jake Rumson, Deacon's friend that Cindy seems to love to hate because "a past incident".

At first, Nina and co. didn't believe the ghost, nor the hauntings that they feel. But day by day, the appearance getting stronger. Nina also got a vision, like Catherine's spirit want to tell her something. The gang, together with skeptical Deacon, try to revealed the mystery behind Catherine's death. Because you know, when ghosts try to tell you something, something fishy must be going on. What lay behind Catherine's grave? Reader must find out what truly happen to her and is it really Gerald murder his own wife in cold blood.

Better Homes and Hauntings have multiple POVs, therefore the story didn't focus to just Nina. The romance also not always between Nina and Deacon. Harper also wrote about Jake and Cindy. Even the main focus of course still to Nina and Deacon, the other characters also have their part as well. In the end they are bonded and become a new family. I usually rolling my eyes when reading about billionaire hero (with FSoG that I hate the most come out, the wave of billionaire heroes is....make me not amused). Deacon is a tech-billionaire, kinda like Mark Zuckenberg with his FB, he invented a social media called EyeDee. But, I feel grateful because even Deacon is a billionaire per se, he's a beta hero! A nerd to the core! My heart is so delighted to read about mythology banter between Nina and Deacon. You have me at the mythology, Harper! Even its Greek one *grumble. Reading about Deacon make me remember Roarke. Sigh...I can't believe I haven't read In Death for long. Might try to do some revisit.

If Nina and Deacon romance is blossoming slow but sure, Cindy and Jake's is about reconciliation. They used to date, but Jake forgot it, so Cindy always act hostile to him from the start. It's nice to see how they work their differences. While Cindy at first look like blonde bimbo, she's not one. Cindy is so independent and provide a strong friendship bond to Nina. Alas, no hero for Dotty, but I like her quirky personification! She is the most open minded of them all, but strangely, the phenomenon didn't happen to her, make she quite irritated. I like reading the friendship between Nina, Cindy and Dotty. Sure there some skanky bitchy character, you must use the trope after all, but Harper wrote it so smoothly. So many nerd references, and if you are nerd, you will looooove it. Back to Nina and Deacon, I really love how unusual their relationship. My favorite part is when he proposed to her using...cell phone. Yep, you read it right. Cellphone. Is it not romantic? I just go..awwww XD.

Despite the slow start and maybe some plot hole regarding the ghost and family history, this book still make me smile and feel happy. In the other side, this book kinda make me scared a little bit, I sleep with the light on! I must remember to not read anything ghostly when it's Thursday night, (It's the local superstition) phew! I will recommend Better Homes and Hauntings to anyone who want to read a light paranormal romance, with unusual relationship, many nerd references and a great friendship between the female characters (which.. I don't know, it's seems so rare!)

"I can't bring you flowers," he said, gesturing to the garden. "You seem to be afraid of expensive jewelry. So making your life a little easier is going to be how I show you I love you, all day, every day, for the rest of our lives."

"You're proposing to me with a cell phone? " she said, her eyebrows raised.

"If you think about it, they're both long-term contracts."

"Well, how could a girl resist an offer like that?" she asked, taking the phone out of the box. She turned it on and sighed. " You put a Master Gardener app on here."

"The 'all day, every day' speech didn't get her, but a gardening app did?" Jake whispered as Nina threw her arms around Deacon's neck and kissed him, whispering "Yes, yes" against his lips.

"Everybody has their thing, " Cindy told him.

Story  Rate


Definitely not vanilla!

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