Sunday, March 12, 2017

Review: A Ghostly Mortality by Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Mortality (Ghostly Southern Mysteries Book #6)
by Tonya Kappes
Release Date: February 28th 2017
2017 Witness
Kindle Edition; 336 Pages
ISBN: 978-0062466976
Genre: Fiction / Cozy / Paranormal
Source: Review copy from Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours

3.5 / 5 Stars

That ghost sure looks . . . familiar

Only a handful of people know that Emma Lee Raines, proprietor of a small-town Kentucky funeral home, is a “Betweener.” She helps ghosts stuck between here and the ever-after—murdered ghosts. Once Emma Lee gets them justice they can cross over to the great beyond.

But Emma Lee’s own sister refuses to believe in her special ability. In fact, the Raines sisters have barely gotten along since Charlotte Rae left the family business for the competition. After a doozy of an argument, Emma Lee is relieved to see Charlotte Rae back home to make nice. Until she realizes her usually snorting, sarcastic, family-ditching sister is a . . . ghost.

Charlotte Rae has no earthly idea who murdered her or why. With her heart in tatters, Emma Lee relies more than ever on her sexy beau, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross…because this time, catching a killer means the Raines sisters will have to make peace with each other first.

My Thoughts
A Ghostly Mortality is the sixth entry in the Ghostly Southern Mysteries series and unfortunately, it's not my favourite in the series.  That doesn't mean I didn't enjoy it as all of the usual quirky characters and other things that make this series to interesting and fun were definitely there; headstrong main character, ghostly apparitions, unique settings, and the set-up for the next book are all elements that I have enjoyed in the previous novels.  It's too bad though, that I just couldn't overlook one of the main things in this story, and it's one I can't even talk about, except slightly, as I will give away the ending to the book.

Fist of all, other than the paranormal element, it was always the characters that drew me to this series.  I always loved the relationship between Granny and Emma Lee and even liked the sibling rivalry between Emma and Charlotte Rae as it provided some interesting elements into all of their characters as well as provided some entertainment.  To say that I am sad Charlotte is gone is an understatement as I liked their rivalry and the spark it gave to the story; I will be sad to see that story line laid to rest.  And normally I love Granny and her antics, but I wasn't overly impressed with her behaviour in this one as I felt it was so uncharacteristic of her to behave the way she did, even if I understood it.   And while I always admired Emma Lee's spunk and attitude, and she did display many moments of it in this one, I just felt like something was off, as if the author had a hard time going through with the concept herself and wasn't sure if she should.  I did like the moments between Emma Lee and Charlotte, even if those moments were so different from the ones we were used to, but it was nice to see them get along and share those final moments together so nicely, but they were definitely bittersweet.  For someone who has read all of the novels, it was kind of hard to wrap my head around this new Charlotte though.  For someone who has not read the previous novels, I think it would be a lot easier to swallow. 

I also think I am going to be in the minority here when I say I wasn't overly thrilled by the mystery aspect to this story.  Don't get me wrong though, the lead-up, the hunting for clues, Emma Lee getting caught where she doesn't belong, were all strong points to the mystery as usual, but I couldn't get past the actual solution and resolution because I couldn't buy it.  Unfortunately, medically wise, I know it doesn't work that way and I couldn't just shake it off as one of those things and leave it - it bothered me for quite a while so it definitely dropped the rating for me.  I can't mention too much more without giving it away, but I think other people involved in the medical profession would definitely notice the flaw.  I am not in the medical profession, but having studied science, including Anatomy, Cardiology, and Physiology, I did notice.  

A Ghostly Mortality had all of the usual elements that I love in this series: ghosts, quirky characters, interesting settings, and witty dialogue.  I did think it was sad that Charlotte had to go as I didn't think the relationship was developed enough, and as usual there is the setup for the next mystery in this one, one aspect that I really liked - ghost kitty, something the author hasn't really done at this point.  I wasn't overly crazy about the mystery and I thought the resolution was way too quick and abrupt.  I liked the emotional twists to this one though, as it made you realize how important Charlotte was to everyone even if she was very annoying.  Even though there were some things with which I had problems, the core of the book, the characters, the setting, was strong, and I am looking forward to the next one in the series. 

Author Information 
For years, USA Today bestselling author Tonya Kappes has been self-publishing her numerous
mystery and romance titles with unprecedented success. She is famous not only for her hilarious plotlines and quirky characters, but her tremendous marketing efforts that have earned her thousands of followers and a devoted street team of fans. Be sure to check out Tonya’s website for upcoming events and news and to sign up for her newsletter!


  1. Good review! I do like the premise. I'll look for the previous parts of the series.

    1. I really loved her other books so I hope you enjoy them.

  2. Interesting review. Thanks for the review.