Review: Ghouls Rush In (Peyton Clark #1) by H.P. Mallory
Is it a natural thing now for the synopsis to be completely different from the story? For several of the books I've read recently, the blurb on the back of the book always misleads me about what the book is about, and more often than not, I end up disappointed. It wasn't that this book was boring, just that the romance promised in the synopsis wasn't delivered (and you know how I am about romance).
The synopsis explicitly promised me that Peyton, the main character, was "receiving kisses from unseen lips and caresses from a ghostly hand, and soon she begins to have vivid dreams, bringing her face-to-face with the incomparably handsome ghost of Drake Montague." But guess what? There were no invisible kisses or caresses, and the "vivid dreams" consisted of Drake sitting in one chair, Peyton in the other. To be completely honest, the ghost romance was the reason I jumped into this book so quickly, but Drake and Peyton suffered from insta-love, a condition I despise, and did not really enjoy.
Ignoring the nonexistent beyond-the-grave romance however, the plot wasn't too bad. It kept my interest, especially since it revolved around the Axeman, a serial killer - who is at present a ghost - and could bee either man or demon. That brings me to another annoyance I had with this book: it isn't complete! Typically, when an author writes a mystery in a series, each book has one mystery solved, or at least leaves the reader with some of the answers. This book, unfortunately, did not. It was not revealed how the handsome Drake Montague died, it was not revealed who the Axeman was, and why he was targeting the people he did, and it was not revealed why in the world nothing was revealed!
Now the main character, she was a piece of work. At the beginning, it seemed like I'd like her. Peyton had been mentally abused by her husband for years, and finally, years after their marriage, she gets the courage to divorce him. She claims she is going to be her own woman and will try to find herself again, but as soon as she sees her hot neighbor in front of her house, she is head over heels in love. The rest of the book went along these lines, with Peyton throwing herself at Ryan every time a ghost came around, but beginning to care for Drake at the same time. The entire romantic aspect of this book made no sense. How can someone fall in love at first sight, twice?
In my opinion, the novel spent too much time attempting to create a romance between Peyton and two other men, instead of focusing on the fact that the ghost of a serial killer is trying to murder Peyton. The latter was by far the most interesting part of the story, so it was not the greatest of ideas to barely skim the surface of the exciting mystery and instead zoom in on a love triangle that just didn't work. 'Ghouls Rush In' might satisfy someone craving a chick-lit - though Peyton never really picks anyone at the end of the novel - but for people looking for a serious romance or mystery, this isn't the book to reach for.
Book Synopsis: Do you believe in love after life?
Looking for a fresh start, Peyton Clark becomes the proud owner of a piece of New Orleans history: an Antebellum-era two-story house in the Garden District. It’s going to take time and a fat wallet to restore the fixer-upper to its former glory, but after her recent divorce, Peyton could use the distraction.
It’s not long before Peyton discovers she’s moved into the haunted home of a flirtatious paranormal prankster. She’s receiving kisses from unseen lips and caresses from a ghostly hand, and soon she begins to have vivid dreams, bringing her face-to-face with the incomparably handsome ghost of Drake Montague.
When Peyton grows closer to her general contractor, Ryan Kelly—who is as charming as he is alive—the chill in the air could only suggest Drake’s jealousy from beyond the grave. But even though she’s definitely attracted to and interested in Ryan, Peyton also can’t get Drake out of her dreams, or her heart, as she begins to uncover the frightening truth behind his death a century ago…