Friday, October 31, 2014

Ghost Wanted by Carolyn Hart

Reviewed by Kristin

Wiggins has called Bailey Ruth to the heavenly Department of Good Intentions with the urgent telegram, “Bailey Ruth, Dastardly deeds in Adelaide. Come at once. Posthaste.”  Someone has been wreaking havoc at Goddard College in Adelaide, Oklahoma.  Vandalism, theft, and other mischief has the campus in an uneasy state.  Wiggins has a very personal interest in the mission because an old friend, Lorraine Marlow, has chosen to remain on earth and haunt the halls with carefully placed roses.  Bailey Ruth is one of the souls in Heaven chosen to give occasional assistance to those on earth, just a nudge in the right direction or a little help clearing the name of someone falsely accused.  Bailey Ruth jumps into her missions enthusiastically, perhaps too enthusiastically, some might say.

As Bailey Ruth makes contact with Lorraine, she realizes that Lorraine knows Wiggins as “Paul”, a dashing young soldier on the front lines during The Great War, a man whose heart was full of hope for a lifetime of love when the fighting was done.  Bailey Ruth is touched by this insight into the gruff soul she knows as Wiggins, stationmaster of the Department of Good Intentions.

Lorraine has been keeping an eye on things at Goddard College for decades, and is more than a little perturbed when people she has grown fond of are in danger.  Bailey Ruth jumps in with both feet (well-heeled, properly attired feet, of course) and does her best to guide the police investigation into the crimes.  Bailey Ruth has much practice swirling into her physical appearance wearing the French blue uniform of the Adelaide police, complete with her “Officer M. Loy” name badge, honoring a favorite actress: Myrna Loy.  Bailey Ruth has even moved beyond writing clues on chalk boards for the police chief to notice; she can now send clueful emails to the detectives in charge of the case.

It's never just the mystery plot of Carolyn Hart's books that draws me into her stories.  The way that Bailey Ruth sees her hometown of Adelaide with fresh eyes is, well, refreshing.  She sees the good and bad in people, but always the potential.  Bailey Ruth has an eye for fashion, always swirling into visibility wearing flattering clothing and a sparkle in her eyes.

I have always enjoyed Carolyn Hart's books.  Imagine my delight when I walked into the library and found not only Ghost Wanted, but also Death at the Door, the latest Death on Demand bookstore mystery.  For anyone who might wrinkle their nose at the “heavenly emissaries” in the Bailey Ruth mysteries, be sure to pick up Carolyn Hart's series starring Annie Darling and her relaxing island mystery bookstore.

Congratulations to Prentiss and caryn for winning a copy of Low Country Boil!  We just need mailing addresses to send you your books.  Please contact bplref at our email.

No comments:

Post a Comment