Death by Séance

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 14 Jun 2018

Member Reviews

This is a great book; this is the third book in the Ghost & Abby Mystery series written by Jo-Ann Carson. Abby Jenkins, a single mother with a complex life, sorts out the murder of Kumar, the day man for a vampire, in Sunset Cove, the small Pacific Northwest town famous for all things that go bump in the night. Abby is the night-janitor in the haunted teahouse and only private detective in town. She's also a reluctant witch with major man-trouble. Blackmailed into attending a séance, she expects to wrestle with a cranky ghost or two, but instead finds herself in the middle of a murder. This is a great book with a wonderful story and well developed characters. This book will keep you reading long into the night. If you are looking for a great book, then you need to read this book. I am looking forward to reading the next book by this great author.
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Death by Seance is the 3rd book in the 'A Ghost & Abby Mystery' series by Jo-Ann Carson. I have not read the first 2, but I really liked this one! It is a fun tale of murder and mystery in Seaside Cove. Oh, and vampires, witches, etc. And that is what makes this book so much fun! Abby, a private detective and a witch, is trying to solve the murder in this small town. It is a great book to read. I am going to read the first two in the series, but it seems like this one was fine on its own.
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Princess Fuzzypants here:  OMC!  Abby’s life is anything but normal.  In fact it is wildly paranormal.  To the outer world, she probably seems like an ordinary single mom trying to raise three kids, working at night while she tries to start up a detective agency in the attic of the tearoom where she works.  Just your average mom-right?  Wrong.
She is a witch (who only discovered this recently) and her familiar is a talking lynx.  Her town is such a hotbed of the supernatural that the local cops seem almost blasé about it all.  Her best friend’s boyfriend is a vampire and she is in love with a Viking ghost (and about to have his baby) while being pursued by a hot male witch.  Everything is fairly copacetic until the vampire’s assistant has his throat cut at a seance and the best friend disappears.  The vampire boyfriend wants Abby to find proof that a new vampire, who has moved into the neighbourhood, is behind the shenanigans.  That is when things really get weird.  *Tongue in cheek*
There is more than a touch of Harry Potter and Buffy in the book and somehow it all works.  I found myself engrossed in the story, wanting to know how it could possibly work out.
If you into fantasy and fun and touch of this and a dip of that, you will enjoy this book.  It is a fast and light read.
I give it four purrs and two paws up.
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Gets a little cliche. Characters don’t seem to be any different than other books. You don’t really care about them.
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I found this fun cozy to have a solid plot and well written characters. I want to spend some more time with them. I received a copy from NetGalley and the publisher and this is my honest opinion.
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A single mom of 3, Abby is just trying to make a life for her children.  She is a night janitor in a haunted teahouse in the Pacific Northwest town of Sunset Cove and runs a detective business on the side for the Supernatural. Her PI partner in crime is her dashingly good looking Viking boyfriend Erik.  Might I also mention, Erik is a ghost.  The story is about these two and their supernatural encounters, both friend and foe.  Now a witch, Abby is exploring her new powers and along with that comes a new handsome mentor, Dante.  

In this book, a seance goes horribly wrong leaving one member dead.  Abby is put to the test to investigate who and why.  She runs into quite a bit of trouble, physically and emotionally.  With Erik off on his quest to live and Dante ever present in her life, Abby is having a hard time focusing on the task at hand.  Will she find the killer? Will she pick a partner? Will their lives ever be the same after what happens? 

I would have given this book 4 stars; however, I hate love triangles.
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I haven't read the first and second books in this series so I wasn't sure I would be able to connect with it, but after the first chapter I found myself really enjoying it. The characters were interesting with a solid plot line and plenty of paranormal and mystery. I am looking forward to reading the first two books to really get a better understanding of all the characters and then reading again the third while anxiously awaiting the fourth. If you like the paranormal mysteries genre I think you will enjoy this series. I received an e-book from NetGalley in return for an unbiased review.
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This is the 3rd installment in the Ghost and Abby series. Abby is single mom with a sense of purpose and the senses of a witch. She didn't start out as one but she is quickly mastering the skills. I enjoyed reading about Abby and her crazy Mom life that includes a ghost for a boyfriend, a male-witch for a mentor who is also a distraction, a medium for a friend, and a whole cast of zany characters. A town with ghosts, witches, vamps, and the like and Abby works as a janitor in a haunted tearoom at night and as a PI during the day. She leads a complicated life but handles it as simply as she can and puts her family first and friends next. Which is what lies at the crux of this mystery when she gets guilted by her friend Joy, to take part in a first time séance that ends up with a dead body but no ghost. Abby is hired by Joy's seductive vampire boyfriend to solve the mystery of the slit secretary. The book had a Charlene Harris feel to it and I was thinking that Abby was going to be like Sokie but instead she was more of an Aura which pleasantly surprised me. So glad I didn't prejudge and finished the book.
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This was a new to me author. Third book in the series and I'm not sure I missed much. You get the basics given to you like how she got her house and whatnot but you aren't given massive spoilers. There were a few typos, just enough to be noticable but not enough to aggravate you. Parts toward the end rubbed me wrong. I think the Erik storyline went a bit darkside. This book was an odd combination of light hearted and darkness with daily life thrown in. I guess who the baddie was early on and was right but the why was different than I had thought. Lots of Harry Potter, Charlaine Harris, and other pop culture references made for an authentic and believable world. It helped to give dimension to Abby's character and her kids had me laughing. In all, this was a satisfying read and I enjoyed it. 

Thank you to NetGalley, JRT Publications, and Jo-Ann Carson for allowing me the opportunity to read this book and share my honest opinion with others.
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Death by Seance by Jo Ann Carson is the 3rd  book in A Ghost & Abby Mystery series, and it is a lot of fun.  Abby Jenkins is a widowed mom of three children who can talk to both the living and the dead.  Abby's boyfriend just happens to be a ghost, and she is a janitor in a haunted house.   This book is a quick, crazy, and funny read, that I could not put down.  I am anxiously waiting the next book in the series.   

I received this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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I just could not get into this one. I liked the description and idea of the book.

Not being a Harry Potter fan, maybe I should have been tipped off by the chapter quotes.
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I started this book three times hoping I would like it.   I like the premise but was put off by the actual story.   This is a very specific genre and I know many will enjoy the series.
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I absolutely loved this paranormal mystery! This was cozy and cute. This was so much fun to read. You have a paranormal mystery love story lol. That's the best way I can describe it. I haven't read the previous books in this series but I really want to now. Thank you to netgalley for allowing me to review this.
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Paranormal Romance for single mothers

Spoiler-ific review

I was given this book for free for the purpose of review.

Let’s start with the goods parts of this book.

I liked Abby. She’s a single mother of three children, struggling to get by as a night janitor/Private Investigator while raising toddlers. Her interactions with her children were the beating heart and soul of this story. Doing everything from spoiling them with pancakes to reading them bedtime stories, Abby was a very motherly main character.

I also liked the idea the story was advertised as. The concept of a Cozy Mystery Urban Fantasy has so much potential. The murder itself was a prototypical closed-room mystery: at a Seance the lights go out, and when they come back on someone is dead.

I liked Spark, Abby’s angry spirit animal/lynx familiar. Constantly insulting Abby and providing color commentary for the situation at hand, Spark was a hoot to have around.

I liked the author’s casual prose. Carson used a very personable style to write her book, relying on informal speech in her narrative sections. I liked it as a breathe of fresh air.

I enjoyed how the author was unafraid to show her influences on her sleeve. With constant references to Harry Potter, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and TruBlood, the author shows she knows her audience.

Okay, now to discuss what I didn’t really like.

The mystery wasn’t very… mysterious. I grew up reading Sherlock Holmes, Nero Wolfe, Hercule Poirot, Amelia Peabody, Jim Qwilleran and Goldie Han. I’ve read a lot of mystery books, so when I say the mystery was lacking I come from the perspective of someone who’s sampled the breadth of the genre. The main character solved the mystery via intuition, by following her gut. And you know what? That’s awful to read about. I like ‘fair play mysteries,’ mysteries which the audience can puzzle out for themselves. There was no way for me the reader to puzzle out the villain, because the main piece of evidence Abby used to solve the crime was the main character’s intuition.

Second, I need to make an admission: I don’t like Paranormal Romances. I’ve been burned in the past, when two of my favorite Urban Fantasy series transitioned  into Paranormal Romances and the protagonists suddenly got a lot less interesting. Far be it from me to tell authors how to write, but after a certain point I get fed up reading about main characters who are stuck in love polyhedrons. This book contained a lot of emotional torment for Abby trying to decide between two perspective lovers. If you like Paranormal Romances, then you would view this as a positive and not a negative.

Finally I did not like the protagonist’s miscarried pregnancy which occurred halfway through this book. Up until this point I was mostly enjoying the story as a slightly fun, slightly silly story about a woman trying to solve a murder at a freaking Seance. So when the miscarriage happened it ruined what was promising to be a cheerful and innocent story with a woman’s horrible trauma. It was at this point I really stopped innocently enjoying reading this.

Are you a mystery reader? Than this book probably won’t be for you. But if you like Paranormal Romances, then chances are you would like this book.

Stay Sunny!
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This book is definitely a wonderful read I can't wait to read more from jo-ann Carson. I stared this book and after a few pages I was hooked i am so honored I was given a chance to read this book. You will not be disappointed when you read it for yourself. I hope this review is helpful to you. I tend not to give spoilers I feel it ruins the book. I will say that the main will are very exciting and will pull you in and you won't be able to put this book down.
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Ebook/ARC/Paranormal Mystery:  I read this book in two sittings as it is short and I would like to thank NetGalley for a copy in lieu of an honest review.  I really, really liked the first half of the book.  While it was cute and snarky, a body hits the floor early on.  I liked that it was quick and to the point right away and that I didn't need to read the first two books to understand her love life and family life.  I really didn't understand her job because she never really ever did it.  She mostly did the sleuthing, which is okay.  She is a mom of three with one on the way, which happened in the last book.  I guess I skipped over it, but I didn't understand how pregnant she is.  

 In the second sitting, the book went from cozy to way too serious.  Abby has two life-altering events and the consequences that go with it.  This book is too short to go into such a heavy topic.  She has "Anita Blake" syndrome where everyone wants her for sex and she is almost raped.  The ending solution didn't make sense as far as the murderer's identity and motive.  Without giving anything away, it was like Abby just forgot about her life-altering event just ran out without thinking, at all.  

I went from a book that I wanted to go and find the first two books and join Abby's world to a book that was average and decided to skip this world.   If I come across any of these books, I probably will read them, but I'm not going to seek them out.  Maybe, I was really mad about the end.
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In this third book in the series, private detective - and witch - Abby Jenkins investigates a murder at a séance. The book can be read as a standalone. 

*****

Abby Jenkins, a widow with three young children, lives in the Northwest Canadian town of Sunset Cove - which is chock full of witches, vampires, ghosts, and other supernatural beings. 👻 Abby, who recently became a witch herself, works as a private detective AND a night janitor at the haunted 'Sunset Cove Teahouse' - which often smells like blackberry scones. 

Abby has two hot men in her life: her boyfriend Eric, a handsome Viking ghost; and her mentor Dante, a sexy, flirtatious man-witch. Abby also has a familiar - a smart aleck lynx named Spark who accompanies her everywhere. 😼

As the story opens, Abby is disgruntled because her friend Joy is making her attend a midnight séance at the Sunset Cove Teahouse, which is owned by Joy's aunt Azalea. Joy, who can communicate with the dead, plans to open a séance business - and she's holding a session tonight. 

The séance attendees include: Abby - the witch; Joy - the dead-person-whisperer; Elif - the vampire; Kumar - Elif's day butler; Ophelia Maserati - the fashionable would-be singer; and Ming Chan - the gorgeous woman who's dating Kumar. Joy's client is café owner Margaret Gallagher, who wants to contact her former lover Nelson. 

Shortly after the séance begins, a breeze blows through the room; darkness descends; and Abby feels an icy coldness sweep through her body. When the lights are turned back on, Kumar is dead.....stabbed in the neck. 

Abby quickly calls the local cop, Zane Reynolds, who's savvy about the otherworldly residents in Sunset Cove. While Zane is on his way over, Abby swipes a locket from Kumar's body, which may be a clue to the killer. Of course, Abby doesn't report this evidence to the police. 

Hired by Elif to find his butler's killer, Abby conducts her own investigation. Abby interviews everyone who was at the séance, but she's aware that a ghost or soul from 'the other side' - or some other powerful creature - may have committed the crime. Thus Abby has a tough job ahead of her.

Meanwhile, ghostly Eric is struggling with his conscience. Eric's mästere, Guiden, has offered to make the ethereal Viking a 'breather' (corporeal being) if Eric agrees to becomes his assassin. Eric would like a solid body so he can have sex with Abby.....but the price is very high. 

The seductive man-witch Dante also has things on his mind. He wants Abby to join him in a naked dance under the full moon - which is something witches do. Unfortunately, Eric's mother Sofia isn't happy with the woman who (she thinks) is 'beguiling' her son, and leaves Abby with a bad case of hiccups....and threats to 'melt her insides.' 😳 

I suspect Abby is destined for her share of 'man trouble' in this series. She says she's in love with Eric, but finds Dante very appealing.....and is even attracted to the sensuous vampire Elif. 

In addition to all her other activities, Abby takes care of her three kids, with help from her cousin Jill. The children are: 7-year-old Jonathan - a rambunctious skateboarder who spends a lot of time in the Emergency Room; 5-year-old Jinx - who loves her Barbies; and 2-year-old Jane - who's still mama's 'baby.' The family also has a chocolate lab named Shreddie. The domestic scenes of Abby with her family - often eating pancakes - are very endearing. 

The book has a lot of humor since Abby - and her familiar Spark - are very witty and quick with the wisecracks. Abby also proves to be a skilled detective, and I look forward to her further adventures. 🙂 

This novel is a quick read and an enjoyable paranormal cozy mystery, recommended to fans of the genre. 

Thanks to Netgalley, the author (Jo-Ann Carson) and the publisher (JRT Publications) for a copy of the book.
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I picked this book as a fun read.  It was not as enjoyable as I thought it would be.  There were to many witch's ,vampires, and ghosts,  Just about everyone in town. I liked Abby as a character, but the book just wasn't that great to me.  Thanks netgalley for giving me the opportunity to check out this author.
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I'm not a big fan of paranormal cozy mystery with witches with some exceptions like Juliet Blackwell and Morgana Best so I had no high expectations even if the plot sounded good.
I was wrong because this book is a lot of fun to read, with a cast of unusual and funny characters.
The heroine is so human and her familiar could become a favourite of mine.
I will get the other instalments in this series because I really enjoyed this one
Many thanks to JRT Publications and Netgalley for this ARC
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Abby is a witch just coming into her powers. She has started a business as a private detective. She has a lover, Eric, who is a Viking ghost. Her witch mentor, Dante, also has his eyes on her. Abby is likeable and she is a devoted friend. She works to solve a murder and later, the kidnapping of her friend. This book is a fun read with relationships you want to watch grow. Abby is quirky, Eric is brooding and Dante is funny. The characters feel like friends you want to visit.
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