Romance Suspense with a hint of paranormal
When Cassie Taylor talks, ghosts listen. She wants to heal their souls so they can leave earth. Brooding songwriter Luke Rivers wants to give his recently found daughter a normal home, but he discovers his new house in small town Wisconsin is haunted by a ghost with an attitude. His ghost whisperer has an attitude too — even before someone tries to kill her. So why does he have the hots for her? And why does she lust after him? He wants conventional; she wants acceptance. No wonder she thinks men are hard and dead people are easy.
"Cassie Taylor cruised down the smoking tree-lined driveway, her foot on the brake, as if her body knew something she didn't.."
A Quick Tease
"She must be ovulating. Her body taking one whiff of his pheromones and lighting up like a stripper strung with Christmas lights, saying, Prime sperm nearby. Give me some of that good stuff. Her body was an idiot, it needed chocolate, not sperm..."
I was pretty excited to start reading this book because the blurb sounded really amazing. Having recently read a story where a ghost was involved, I was eager to see what DEAD PEOPLE had to offer. While the main hero wasn’t a ghost but a man of flesh and bones, I was still intrigued with this form of supernatural and learning more about what it’s like for those who have the ability to see and talk to spirits. What I found was a pretty good read, one that kept me entertained but I found myself in a predicament. I’m a sucker for flawed heroes – those men that for whatever reason take a little longer realizing just how amazing the heroine is because they have some hang up or past issue that hinders them. Luke definitely fits the bill when it comes to this category of men but as I began to get more and more frustrated, I had to ask myself – just how flawed do I love them? Is there such a thing as being TOO flawed and a point where it all becomes too much? I’ve never read a story where that was a thought for me so for that alone, DEAD PEOPLE made for interesting reading. The answer? Unfortunately, in this case I think I discovered my limit.
I thought the storyline was a great concept. Cassie Taylor is this assertive and at times opinionated woman who has had to deal with some harsh judgments through her life. Given the ability to see and talk to spirits, she chooses to spend her life acting as a ghost “counselor” to help them move on. No stranger to ridicule and disbelief, Cassie isn’t surprised when her newest client, uber sexy songwriter Luke, looks at her as if she’s a fraud. But she’s there to do a job and regardless of the spark of attraction, she’s a professional. As she becomes more and more involved in the case, she realizes that the ghost in question Isabel didn’t die of natural causes, was in fact murdered and is hell bent on staying. Cassie begins to investigate but gets tangled in her feelings for Luke, the drama surrounding his angry daughter, the jealousy of the housekeeper and her friendship with another ghost Joe. Luke also wants Cassie but refuses to act on his feelings because of his daughter. There is a constant tugging back and forth between them as they get closer together and tempers fly as Luke fires, then rehires, then fires again each time he overreacts. Cassie is left wondering – what exactly is going on with the house and those that live there? Why is she suddenly experiencing these needs and feelings for Luke and will he ever be able to fully accept her for who she is – freaky ability and all? I really liked the way the story was written. There was a great sense of humor that I enjoyed that I felt gave the story that extra something. I’ve never read anything by this author beforehand and from the way that she was able to pull me in and keep me interested, I can’t wait to check out what other books she’s done.
What stopped this from being an over the top read for me was my frustration with Luke. There really did come a point where I just wanted to reach in and beat him with something heavy. Flawed or not, I could understand his hesitancy to get involved with Cassie because with everything that was happening in his life with his daughter and ex wife, it was noble to not want to upset his child. But I really felt he took it too far and bordered on offensive the way he treated Cassie at times and it made it really hard to like him. I bounced back and forth between “Wow you have so much potential” and “My gosh you’re an idiot and Cassie would do best to kick you to the curb” No woman deserves to get her heart messed with like that and I was left wondering if men really are as clueless as Luke. He felt strongly for her, “burned” and wrote songs for her but told her as much as he didn’t want to be with her, couldn’t her just screw her while she was there? I cringed at times when he opened his mouth to see how insensitive he could be and wondered how Cassie could put up with it. I was over the moon though when he finally snapped out of it and realized just what a gift he had in Cassie and wasn’t as painfully flawed but it felt like it was a little too late and the damage was done. Having said all that, he was an interesting character to get to know because of my reaction to him. Super hot guy but too much of a headache.
Other than our resident song writer, I was happy with the other characters and what they contributed to the story. Cassie had real sass and I loved the way she was adamant in what she needed. She wasn’t some freak to be scorned out and definitely deserved to be loved and worshiped for the incredible woman she was. I can’t imagine how difficult it was to have to defend herself all the time to people and having to deal with those who were narrow minded. It definitely gave her an edge that I liked reading. I loved watching as she bonded with Luke’s daughter and what a shock that was for her. There was just so much going on with Cassie and I enjoyed watching how she dealt with all the different situations she found herself in. My favorite character was Joe, Cassie’s ghostly friend and I won’t lie – I spent most of the book wishing some miracle would happen so he would win Cassie and whisk her off for a happily ever after ending. There were moments were I thought that was where it was heading but alas, Cassie was meant for the super flawed Luke. In all fairness though, I think if the story had have kept going a little longer and I saw more of the “awakened” Luke, I would have loved him more. *sigh* Is it wrong that I love I’m so conflicted? Maybe Luke wasn’t as bad as I thought LOL
For sure I’d recommend reading DEAD PEOPLE because it is a great story. People react differently and for some, Luke may really float their boat and have them squealing with excitement. He definitely has a lot of potential and the smolder is there. I just couldn’t get past some of his “bang head against the wall” comments. I was happy with the way the story flowed and ended, left in a mini swoon. Give the book a go and see what you think because it’s definitely worth the few hours it takes to experience it. Happy reading!