Saturday, May 27, 2017

GHOST AT WORK by Carolyn Hart

Series:  Bailey Ruth #1
Author:  Carolyn Hart
Publish Date:   10.01.2008
Publisher:  William Morrow
Category /Genre:  Paranormal, Cozy Mystery
Recommended for:  18+ due to sexual content
Narrated by:  Ann Marie Lee
Received from:  Borrowed from Orange Co Public Library /audio CDs
Goodreads link: Ghost at Work
Date completed: 05.25.2017

Description from the publisher:
Bailey Ruth Raeburn has always been great at solving mysteries. Why should a little thing like her death change anything? In fact, being dead gives her more of an opportunity to be on top of events. Bailey Ruth is delighted that her unique position as a ghost makes it possible for her to lend a helping hand, sometimes seen and sometimes not. And if anybody needs a little help, it's Kathleen, the pastor's wife. There's a dead man on her porch, and once the body is discovered, the pastor is sure to become a suspect.

Uncharitable people might call it meddling, but Bailey Ruth knows Kathleen needs her help! As a member of Heaven's Department of Good Intentions, Bailey Ruth goes back to earth to extricate Kathleen from a dire situation. If Bailey Ruth has to bend a few rules to help Kathleen save her family, Wiggins, her fussbudget supervisor, will make sure it all turns out right in the end.

This is not the first book I have read from Ms. Carolyn Hart.  Many years ago (I won’t admit to how many), I was then, as I am now, a voracious reader.  My parents signed me up for a book club where I would receive two mysteries a month – Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, etc.  One of those books was a Nancy Drew that Ms. Hart co-penned with Carolyn Keene.  Imagine my delight to see a name I felt such a familiarity to, now as an adult …. And why hadn’t I known that she had written so many cozy mysteries?

GHOST AT WORK is the first book in the Bailey Ruth series.  I believe you should always read the first book first.  Here is where you are introduced to the main characters of the series and why they are together.  I listened to this one on CD while driving to/from work. 

I love ghosts – or emissaries as we are taught in this book that they should be called.  From Topper to Casper to the Ghost & Mrs. Muir – these were among my favorite movies, cartoons, and TV shows.  So, it should come as no surprise that when I am looking for a break from all of the romance that I read, I would choose a cozy mystery that features a friendly helpful ghost.

Bailey Ruth is a sweetheart of a girl who proves that going to heaven does not turn you into something you are not.  She may have been good enough to gain entry, but that has not erased her personality and her tendencies to be impulsive.  I can relate to the good girl who makes mistakes.  On the other hand, there is her boss at the Department of Good Intentions (and don’t those lead to… well, never mind), Mr. Wiggins.  He is so condescending and ball-busting that there were several trips to/from work that I didn’t turn on the discs just because I didn’t want to listen to him.  I get enough of the male superiority and condemnation in real life that I just don’t need to hear more from him; thank you very much.

The story was sweet and simple, though engaging enough to make me want to turn the discs back on again. 

All in all, I would say it was an excellent choice for me as a change of pace story to listen to as I made my daily commute.

I would love to pick up more of this series to continue with Bailey Ruth as she acts as an emissary from the Department of Good Intentions, Heaven.  I’ve also heard that the Death on Demand series is very well written and I would like to check them out as well.

Bailey Ruth series:
  1. Ghost at Work
  2. Merry, Merry Ghost
  3. Ghost in Trouble
  4. Ghost Gone Wild
  5. Ghost Wanted
  6. Ghost to the Rescue
  7. Ghost Times Two
  8. Ghost on the Case
Also from Carolyn Hart:
  • What the Cat Saw
  • Letters From Home
  • The Sign of the Twisted Candles (Nancy Drew #9, with Carolyn Keene)
  • Escape from Paris
  • Cry in the Night
  • The Devereaux Legacy
  • Skulduggery
  • The Rich Die Young
  • Death by Surprise
  • Brave Hearts
  • Love and Death
  • Flee from the Past
  • Dangerous Summer
  • Cliff’s Edge
  • High Stakes
  • The Secret of the Cellars
  • Secrets and Other Stories of Suspense
  • A Settling of Accounts
  • Crime on Her Mind
  • Rendezvous in Vera Cruz
  • No Easy Answers
Death on Demand Series:
  1. Death on Demand
  2. Design for Murder
  3. Something Wicked
  4. Honeymoon with Murder
  5. A Little Class on Murder
  6. Deadly Valentine
  7. A Christie Caper
  8. Southern Ghost
  9. Mint Julep Murder
  10. Yankee Doodle Dead
  11. White Elephant Dead
  12. Sugarplum Dead
  13. April Fool Dead
  14. Engaged to Die
  15. Murder Walks the Plank
  16. Death of the Party
  17. Dead Days of Summer
  18. Death Walked In
  19. Dare to Die
  20. Laughed ‘Til He Died
  21. Dead by Midnight
  22. Death Comes Silently
  23. Dead, White, and Blue
  24. Death at the Door
  25. Don’t Go Home
25.5     From the Queen
  1. Walking on My Grave
Henrie O Series:
          1.      Death
          2.      Scandal in Fair Haven
          3.      Death n Lover’s Lane
          4.      Death in Paradise
          5.      Death on the River Walk
          6.      Resort to Murder
          7.      Set Sail for Murder


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