When Maddie Kosloski’s career flatlines, she retreats to her wine-country hometown for solace and cheap rent. Railroaded into managing the local paranormal museum, she’s certain the rumors of its haunting are greatly exaggerated. But a new ghost may be on the loose. A fresh corpse in the museum embroils Maddie in murders past and present. With her high school bully as one of the officers in charge, Maddie doubts justice will be served. When one of her best friends is arrested, she’s certain it won’t be. Maddie grapples with ghost hunters, obsessed taxidermists, and the sexy motorcyclist next door as outside forces threaten. And as she juggles spectral shenanigans with the hunt for a killer, she discovers there truly is no place like home.
I’m not entirely sure how anyone can pass up a book with a title like The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum??? In fact, the title is exactly what drew me to this quirky, light mystery and the characters that kept me reading all the way through to the end.
Maddie: Maddie is the very definition of a person getting screwed for doing the right thing. When her lucrative career came crashing to a halt, Maddie retreated to her hometown to lick her wounds and begin the search for a new job. Turns out, finding another equally lucrative job isn’t all that easy to do and explains why Maddie has enough free time to take over the running of the Paranormal Museum. Temporarily! Though she has no real experience running a museum, Maddie does have a good deal of curiosity and the Paranormal Museum is just the place to capture her interest. The exhibits are creepy and once Maddie dives in and starts doing some research, she finds more than one mystery that needs solving. Though she only intends to be at the museum temporarily, Maddie finds it is an easy place to become connected to and invested in. She immediately looks for ways to improve the site, draw in more visitors, and encourage more involvement from the community. That last one is met with some seriously funny resistance that causes Maddie to dig her heals in.
Adele: Not to be confused with the British bird who sings like a dream. This Adele is outrageously wealthy, newly single, and the prime suspect in the murder of her ex-fiancé’s new fiancé. It doesn’t help at all that the murder victim was found by Adele (and Maddie) in Adele’s still-under-construction tea room which happens to be attached to the Paranormal Museum. Did you follow all that? J Adele’s attitude makes her a hard character to like but you do feel some sympathy for her situation. Her money gives her some distinct advantages including having a team of lawyers to plead her case and the ability to literally give the Paranormal Museum to her out-of-work best-friend.
Mason: Oh! There has to be a love interest and Mason is about as good as it gets. Mason starts off quite cranky but quickly warms up to Maddie and is willing to help her solve the various mysteries she has on her plate. Mason is big and tough, kind and caring (when he’s not cranky!), and smokin’ hot. The more he becomes involved with Maddie, the more protective he becomes which leads to some seriously crazy/heroic actions. Though Mason doesn’t appear a lot in this read, his appearances are significant and hold the promise of more to come in later installments of the series.
GD Cat: Stop thinking I’m cursing at you! GD is Ghost Detecting and this cat may be the coolest character in the whole book! I love this cat with his bad attitude, judgmental looks, and ghost detecting abilities. GD has a habit of showing up at the most inopportune times, making his displeasure known to all, and leaving when there is nothing to knock off a counter or shelf. Typical effing cat 🙂
The Bottom Line: The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum is a strange and quirky light mystery that turned out to be a decent read. The characters, both major and minor are the driving force behind this read and compensate for an alright plot. The mystery really is light and just as quirky as most of the characters. In all, I wouldn’t put this title at the very top of the TBR list but I wouldn’t reject it either. The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum makes a good read for those times when you’re in between series or just don’t know what to read next.