Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hainted Love-Maureen Hardegree

Hainted Love
Maureen Hardegree
Bell Bridge, Mar 21 2011, $12.95
ISBN: 9781611940145

In suburban Atlanta fourteen year old Heather Tildy knows summer vacation will give her more time to help those who died but unable to move on to do so although she prefers her paranormal gift to go away as it is a burdensome curse. However, the teenage Ghost Handler has set several resolutions involving her family while school is out. Though her motive is for a smooth entry into high school Heather hopes to connect with her grumpy older sister Audrey in spite of her sibling’s BFF nasty Karen. Second she wants to keep her younger sister Claire from turning into a clone of their nasty older sibling by spending time with her.

Heather makes progress on the sisters’ mission until Jack the ghost arrives. He died a few weeks ago though no body was found. Jack insists he is comatose not dead and proves it to Heather with a soul searing kiss. At the same time Aunt Geneva believes Heather is the next generation Ghost Handler, her sibling’s scheme has no ghost of a chance of succeeding as she is preoccupied.

Although the plot is similar to Hainted Misbehavin’, the second Ghost Handlers middle school urban fantasy. Heather is a great character who remains abashed by her new paranormal skill as everyone who matters to her believes she is fruitcake except for her aunt who everyone knows is a fruitcake; ergo Heather a chip off the nutty block. Young adult readers will enjoy the opening Ghost Handler thriller due to the heroine who remains in deep trouble with her parents, sisters and others, and has a crush on an apparent dead guy.

Harriet Klausner

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