This series is by the same author of the Coffeehouse Mysteries Cleo Coyle.
I say this book should have been better because it is obvious to me that the author has talent. I've never read any other work by Alice Kimberly or her books written as Cleo Coyle. I really liked the premise of the book and expected to sit back and enjoy watching the story unfold. I'm sorry, the unfolding didn't work very well for me.
I enjoy the ghost, Jack Shepard. I quickly tired of the overuse of the words "doll" and "gam" in his vocabulary. I can only hope that the more time Jack spends with Penelope, the less need for the gangster-style words.
I will think hard about going on to the next book in the series. The first is such a trial and gets all the mistakes and errors. Usually the author learns from these and the series gets better. I put this author in my reminder list to check back at a later date.
This was a fun cozy paranormal, a bit sketchy in places dialogue-wise, but once it got the ball rolling the story moved along nicely. Young widow Penelope Thornton-McClure has gone into a partnership with her Aunt Sadie running a bookshop in Rhode Island. For their first publicity promotion they have booked mystery writer Timothy Brennan for a book signing. The audience is surprised when he reveals that the bookstore is the site of the unsolved 1940s murder of PI Jack Shepard, on whom his thriller character is based, and who is rumored to haunt the place. They are even more shocked when the obnoxious author suddenly drops dead in the middle of his speech. Though it appears to be a natural death at first, the police suspect poisoning and there are many suspects - including Penelope herself, whose book sales have taken off with the sensational publicity. It will take some investigating of her own to clear her name, but Penny has some unexpected help in the ethereal form of the ghost of Jack Shepard, who it seems can only communicate with her.
It took some getting used to the noir-type language of the ghost, and the premise seemed a little corny in places at first, but once I settled into the story I found myself enjoying it. I will be looking for the second book, where Penny is determined to solve Jack's murder herself. It's a good start to a series which I hope will get better.
1st in series, good, characters fun, especially the ghostly P.I. Enjoyed. I've just re-read this book and enjoyed it very much, even better frankly after many years between readings. Fun and a great cozy.