Melody Bittersweet has always been able to see dead people. Her mother and grandmother run a service connecting people to their late loved ones but Melody decides to branch out, with her best friend Marina, and launch a ghostbusting agency. When she spots her ex, Leo Dark, on TV talking about a haunted house, she decides to get in on the act. The owner, Donovan Scarborough, wants the ghosts gone so he can sell up. Melody not only discovers there are three ghosts in situ – all brothers – but that one has been accused of murdering another. With Melody battling a belligerent owner, a competitive ex and a sceptical reporter called Fletch, this turns into a madcap rollercoaster ride of Scooby Doo proportions as she tries to solve a century-old murder-mystery. This story – the first in a series – shows great promise. Melody is a spunky character who is surrounded by a great supporting cast, including the socially awkward Artie. But the real strength here was the Donovan brothers’ story – it gave real heart to this quirky, witty and memorable tale.
Honeysuckle Jones, known to her friends as Honey, loves her job running a charity shop that is part of a local care home for the elderly. When Honey’s best friends, Nell and Tash, suddenly discover their friend has never had an orgasm in her life, they decide it’s time for action. They go on a search to find the perfect man to help with Honey’s problem, preferably one who is good with his hands, such as a pianist. However, Honey has more than enough to keep her busy without her friends’ good intentions. Not only is the home, and therefore the charity shop she works at, about to be closed down, she also has a new neighbour in the form of Hal, who is grumpy and arrogant but intriguing at the same time. The Piano Man Project is one of those reads I already was excited about and as soon as I started reading I didn’t want to stop. I immediately liked the protagonist, Honey, and the wonderful group of secondary characters. Kat French knows how to create a convincing cast of characters which I couldn't help but warm to and want to know more about. The novel focuses mainly on Honey, but there are several things going on in her life which separated the main storyline into an entertaining mix of topics, such as the upcoming closure of the care home, the search for a piano man for Honey, and Honey's new mysterious neighbour, Hal. While I had to get used to Hal at first (he's really moody and quite arrogant), the chemistry between him and Honey just sparked off the pages and I couldn't help but develop a soft spot for him. It’s an uplifting, light-hearted, fun romantic comedy which I couldn't get enough of and a novel I'd like to highly recommend to any chick lit fan out there! (JoH)
Marla Jacobs operates a quaint wedding chapel, complete with Elvis or any other theme the brides can dream of. With a cupcake shop opening across the road, Marla envisages business success for her future. Little does she know, the cupcake store won't be opening... Gabriel Ryan is handsome, charismatic and a funeral director. The premise across the road from the wedding chapel is just what he needs to provide the people of the country town with a new service. Little does he know, there is a fiery redhead across the road who will not only make his heart melt, but fight to stop his doors from opening. Undertaking Love is a unique look at the cycle of life in chick lit style, with both tears and laughter. Kat French has superbly described the hardships of love and death. The storyline line is interwoven with strong friendships, star-crossed lovers, infidelity, death and marriage. (MP)