The Ghost of Marlow House (Haunting Danielle #1) by Bobbi Holmes
Read: 25th – 29th January 2019
Publication Date: 30th August 2014
Quote from The Ghost of Marlow House (Haunting Danielle #1)
“Walt Marlow had adapted to his solitude though there were times he missed sharing a brandy with one of his friends or admiring a pretty young woman”
My Overall Rating: 4/5
Plot: 4/5 – Flow: 4/5 – Character Development: 4/5 – World Building: 4/5
So what’s this book about?
The Ghost of Marlow House is the first novel (approx 258 pages) in Bobbi Holmes’ cozy paranormal mystery series – Haunting Danielle (currently 20 books) about a young woman who starts her life anew after she inherits an old house in the seaside town of Frederickport in Oregon.
If you’ve read any of my reviews before, you’ll know that I don’t post spoilers of any kind or reveal any plot twists in my book reviews, so here’s what the official blurb has to say about the story:
When Danielle Boatman inherits Marlow House, she dreams of turning it into a seaside bed and breakfast. Since she’s never visited the property, Danielle’s not sure what awaits her in Oregon. She certainly doesn’t expect to find one of the house’s previous owners still in residence. After all, the man has been dead for almost ninety years—shouldn’t he have moved on by now?
Charming Walt Marlow convinces Danielle the only way he can move on is if she solves the mystery of his death. Danielle soon discovers her real problems may come from the living—those who have their sights on Marlow House’s other secrets.
As there are no cliffhangers and the “mystery” is solved by the end of the book, I think that The Ghost of Marlow House could be read as a standalone title, although I am keen to find out what Danielle uncovers next.
So, what did I like about it?
The Ghost of Marlow House is currently free on Kindle so I added the audio version as it was offered at a reduced rate too. I alternated between reading and listening to the narration before bed, which has become my favourite way to “read” a book.
Bobbi Holmes is a new-to-me author and I really liked her writing style; I found this book very easy to read. I liked the pace at which her tale progressed and way she wove all the mysteries of this story together – both past and present. I must just say that I usually work out the mystery in these sorts of books before the big reveal at the end but that wasn’t the case with this one and I loved that! As a narrated book, I was impressed with Romy Nordlinger’s performance; loving the pace at which she read the story and her tonal adjustments for the dialogue. I would definitely buy books narrated by her in the future.
I loved that the characters, both living and dead, were complex and multi-dimensional, each with their own stories and I liked the twists and quirks that Ms Holmes created for them; it made them all feel very believable. I must also add that the fictional town of Frederickport was also richly drawn; steeped with history and charm and so well described, I was easily transported there.
I prefer to read stories with intelligent, witty heroines who have plenty of gumption and resilience and who never give up. Our leading lady here does not disappoint and her best friend, Lily, isn’t too shabby either.
Although I wouldn’t class this as a romance novel, I did enjoy how the friendship between Danielle and Walt built throughout this book as well as the romance between her best friend Lily and mystery man, Ian; the pace felt very natural and realistic in both.
So, ummm, was there anything I disliked about it?
I am pleased to confirm that as there are no cliffhangers (Woop!) and the “mystery” is solved by the end of the book, I think that The Ghost of Marlow House can easily be read as a standalone title, although, I am keen to find out what Danielle uncovers next.
So, basically what I’m saying is…
I really enjoyed this book. It’s a great ghostly cozy mystery that has everything I look for in a good story; some wonderful characters and a plot that made me chuckle with gentle humour, shed a tear or two and a romance that made me root for a happy ending.
I don’t think there is anything in this book that could cause offence, therefore, I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys ‘cozy mysteries’ with a paranormal focus. I have already added the whole series to my Amazon wish list.
So, has my review of THE GHOST OF MARLOW HOUSE (HAUNTING DANIELLE #1) encouraged you to find out more? I really hope so. Just click on any of the links below to check out the book yourself or to find out more about the author.