Genre: paranormal mystery
Delicious blends of tea aren’t the only draw at the Chintz ‘n China Tea Room – Emerald O’Brien, owner and medium also offers her customers tarot card readings. But Emerald, a single mother of two, never saw herself as a sleuth – which proves that even seers make mistakes...
Emerald O’Brien is about to tie the knot with her fiancé, Joe, but one uninvited guest to their engagement party reminds her that some ties still need to be severed. Her ex-hubby, Roy, can’t hold his liquor – or his temper – and after brawling with Joe, he threatens to ruin their wedding. When Joe is wounded by a gunshot the next day, Roy becomes the prime suspect. Emerald knows her ex has a mean streak a mile wide but doesn’t believe he is capable of attempted murder. And when a sinister presence starts stalking her maid of honor, Em begins to worry that her marriage has been cursed before she’s even walked down the aisle...
Emerald and Joe are getting married in a week, and Em’s whole family is in town to celebrate with them. But when her sister Rose gives her an expensive necklace, things start falling apart around her. At the reception for all her friends and customers, one very unwelcome guest shows up, her ex-husband Roy. Apparently her son has invited him over. But Roy is trouble and he will ruin everything for Em if he can. Her grandmother hates him and is ready to give him a piece of her mind, her fiancé will also not stand for Em being insulted, and their friend Jumbo is ready to jump in as well.
The next day is Em’s bachelor party, and after that, a big barbeque at Jimbo’s house. But that event is cancelled when Joe is shot while helping Jimbo set up the barbeque. Is it Roy who is behind this, or does Joe have other enemies? Then the modiste altering Nanna’s wedding gown for Em skips town, leaving the dress in pieces on the floor. The band cancels, so what else can go wrong? The necklace has some very strange energy surrounding it, and when they search for its history on the net, it is clear it has been hexed. So how to get rid of this hex?
All those events are horrible, but the worst part is that Em’s best friend and maid of honor Murray is in danger, from a deranged stalker. He must have thought Joe to be Jimbo, as he was wearing one of Jimbo’s shirt at the time. But who is he, and how dangerous will he get? The chief of police and her fellow officers are not happy with the relationship between Murray and Jimbo, who is a biker with a bad reputation, but now they finally rally behind her. Her house has been ransacked, and destroyed, lingerie has been taken. And a wedding ring and a threatening note are left behind. More assassination attempts on Jimbo put them all on edge, but when Murray is taken, it is up to Em and Jimbo to find her, with a little help from the pendants Nanna gave them.
I loved this book, as I love this whole series. Emerald is such a great character. Her children are growing up, but her son Kip sure does some stupid things like inviting his father and having a best friend who is not a good choice for a friend. Miranda is living through her first heartbreak, and that is not easy for a girl who used to see only the stars in the sky.
I love how a ghostly Nanna always shows up when Em needs her for guidance or just reassurance. They had such a great bond. Her sister Rose was closer to their father’s mother, but Nanna taught Em everything about her culture and her magic. Her father sounds like a bit of a weak person, not wanting to choose between his mother and his wife, so her mother had to be the strong one, the rational one in the war between the grandmothers.
I really enjoy this darker paranormal mystery series, it does not shy away from the harder things in life, bad things happen to nice people. The secondary characters are great, and I do hope that Maeve will show up in any new short stories that Yasmine Galenorn is planning. I do want to know more about her and her past. She is the one who un-hexes the necklace.
This book was not spooky in the paranormal sense, this time it was human evil that threatened everything. And I have to say, that is often more scary than the paranormal stuff as it does happen in real life just like it is written in this book.
What I do love most is Em’s view on life; I will give you this quote from the book, which I completely agree with:
“Even though I loved my kids, I didn’t see motherhood as life’s crowning achievement. It was an integral part of life for some women, but not the be-all and end-all for every woman.”
So often in romance books the message is pounded in your head that a woman is only complete with a husband and children, no matter the career she made for herself. She can’t be truly happy without them, and I so disagree with that message. Of course I still love to read romance, but marriage and children are just not necessary.
© 2014 Reviews by Aurian