Publisher: Disenchanted Publishing
I received this as an ARC for review from the author in exchange for an honest opinion.
A devoted fashionata and practical New Yorker, Skylar Blackwell doesn’t believe in the supernatural—until she inherits Summerwind Mansion. . . .
When her uncle is brutally murdered, and the cops seem uninterested in following up the case, Skylar journeys to California to seek answers. Her search for clues is soon overshadowed by haunting nightmares of a young woman also murdered in the house. Now the inhabitants of Summerwind are mysteriously dying, leaving no evidence as to how or why, and Skylar finds herself in a deadly race against time to expose the killer—before they strike again. The problem is . . . whoever it is may not be human.After losing her job, Skylar decides to move the California for a while to wrap her recently deceased uncle’s estate, but discovers that all is not right at his mansion. Something seems to be stalking Skylar and the staff are less than welcoming. When unexplained things start happen Skylar quickly has to decide if there is a logical reason for everything or is it something else entire…?
Skylar is a definite fashionista – she loves looking good and shoes especially. At the same time she is firmly rooted in practical world and has little time for superstition and supernatural. I liked her even if I thought she was a little slow to grasp what was happening at times. Her friendship with Emma and blossoming relationship for the estate manager, Dorian help explore different aspects of her personality. Dorian is a little hot/cold which is a little frustrating – I couldn’t help thinking if he was a little more open they would have saved themselves a lot of trouble! There were a lot of secondary characters though that were little more than ciphers – a hostile butler and disapproving housekeeper, the friendly stable-lad, all of which could have been developed more. However, Skylar is likeable enough and Dorian fits the damaged alpha male role well.
The house and grounds are creepy and well described – I loved the idea of a gothic mansion with ghosts and history haunting it. In fact I feel the story could work very well as a film – there were some great scenes which I could picture perfectly particularly near the end. The start of the story was a little slow but sets the scene and builds towards a fast-paced finale. I really liked the ideas and plot which took some usual stereotypes and twisted them into a fresh twist on the genre. Nice characters, good story, there is some great potential here and I think Sherry could be one author to keep an eye on!
Recommended for fans of Heather Graham and Nora Roberts. 7 out of 10