Series: Krewe of Hunters #6
Published by Harlequin MIRA on June 26, 2012
Genres: Paranormal romantic suspense
Source: the library
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Also in this series: Phantom Evil, The Hidden, Heart of Evil, Haunted Destiny, Deadly Fate, Darkest Journey, Dying Breath, Echoes of Evil, The Summoning, The Seekers
Also by this author: Phantom Evil, The Hidden, Flawless, Heart of Evil, Haunted Destiny, Deadly Fate, Darkest Journey, A Perfect Obsession, Dying Breath, Echoes of Evil, The Summoning, The Seekers
The 1940s: Hard-boiled detectives and femmes fatale are box-office gold. In one iconic scene, set in a deserted museum, the private eye arrives too late, and the buxom beauty is throttled by an ominous Egyptian priest.
Now: The Black Box Cinema immortalizes Hollywood's Golden Age in its gallery of film noir tributes. But the mannequin of that Egyptian priest is hardly lifeless. He walks — and a young starlet dies a terrifying death. Movie mogul Eddie Archer's son Alistair is charged with the grisly murder. Eddie calls agent Sean Cameron, who specializes in irregular investigations. As part of an FBI paranormal forensics team, Cameron knows that nightmares aren't limited to the silver screen. Working with special-effects artist Madison Darvil, who has her own otherworldly gifts, Cameron delves into the malevolent force animating more than one movie monster.
The Unholy is the sixth book in Heather Graham’s Krewe of Hunters series, and the second to feature the second Krewe (or team) of agents. Like all the books in this series, it focuses on the relationship of two main characters as they solve a mystery that may have paranormal elements… and as usual, they are aided by one or more helpful ghosts.
In this particular novel, the romantic pairing works pretty well. Sean and Madison are well matched, and they have good chemistry together. The Hollywood special-effects studio, its basement film-noir museum, and the adjacent cemetery contribute to a slightly creepy atmosphere, while the collegiality of the Krewe and of Madison’s studio coworkers and the grief and worry of studio owner Eddy Archer keep things grounded in the real world. And I love the ghost of a certain Hollywood star!
It’s interesting to see this Krewe, which was put together in the last book (The Unseen), continuing to jell as they interact in a completely new setting. Sean is the only one with extensive experience in LA; they have been called in precisely because of his friendship with Eddie, his former employer and mentor. Unfortunately for my overall rating, some elements of the plot, including the killer’s logic (even allowing for mental imbalance), really didn’t hold together. And as any fan of locked-room mysteries will realize, the Krewe should have paid more attention to the killer from the beginning.
That said, these books are fun, and I can go through them like candy despite their flaws. I’m a wimp when it comes to graphic gore or spending much time inside a sick and twisted killer’s head, but with a few exceptions, this series usually entertains me for a few hours without creeping me out. So if you like ghost stories and romantic suspense, but avoid dark psychological thrillers and scary horror novels, the Krewe of Hunters series is worth checking out. And no, you don’t have to read them in order; each one can usually stand alone despite the links between them.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- Library Love Challenge 2019
- The Backlist Reader Challenge 2019