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The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James: A Book Review

The Haunting of Maddy Clare
Author: Simone St. James
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: 2012
Pages: 335
Source: My State Public Library
Synopsis: Sarah Piper's lonely, threadbare existence changes when her temporary agency sends her to assist a ghost hunter. Alistair Gellis-rich, handsome, scarred by World War I, and obsessed with ghosts- has been summoned to investigate the spirit of nineteen-year-old maid Maddy Clare, who is haunting the barn where she committed suicide. Since Maddy hated men in life, it is Sarah's task to confront her in death. Soon Sarah is caught up in a desperate struggle. For Maddy's ghost is real, she's angry, and she has powers that defy all reason. Can Sarah and Alistair's assistant, the rough, unsettling Matthew Ryder, discover who Maddy was, where she came from, and what is driving her desire for vengeance-before she destroys them all?

     Winner of two RITA Awards from the Romance Writers of America and the Arthur Ellis Award from Crime Writers of Canada

     My Review: Sarah has finally heard back from her temporary agency. However, her job is unusual. She is to assist a ghost hunter, Alistair, in his investigation of a teenage ghost, Maddy Clare, who is haunting the barn. Alistair has hired Sarah because Maddy hates men and he believes a woman will be most helpful in the investigation. When Sarah arrives at the barn, she finds that there is more than she bargained for. The ghost has scared the living daylights out of the investigation team. Can Sarah help the ghost find peace and rest?

    Sarah has always been very practical. However, the mission Alistair assigns her has made her question everything she has ever known about the world. Thus, this case changes her perceptions about the world. She is also a very brave woman because she is willing to face the ghost by herself. She is very clever and compassionate. She wants to learn more about Maddy’s past and why Maddy is a vengeful spirit. Thus, Sarah is a very likable heroine.

  Overall, this book is about love, vengeance, mystery, and forgiveness. While Sarah is a likable heroine, the character that steals the show is Maddy. She was the most intriguing character in the story, and I wanted to learn about her past. The other two characters, Alistair and Matthew, were also very lovable. The mystery aspect was predictable. However, the paranormal aspect was well-done. After reading this book, I felt like I  knew Maddy, and I wanted her to get the peace she deserved. There were some parts of the book where the paranormal aspect was pushed to the side for some romance parts. Other than that, it was an enjoyable read with engaging stories and an atmospheric setting. The Haunting of Maddy Clare will be sure to keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end! Simone St. James has proven that she is an author to look out for!


Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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