Title: The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum
Publisher: Misterio Press
Author: Kirsten Weiss
Price: $14.99 (pb) / free (ebook)
Maddie Kosloski — jobless, nearly homeless — returns to her hometown of San Benedetto in California. She moves into the tiny garage apartment behind her aunt’s house and reluctantly takes over proprietorship of the local paranormal museum as a temporary favor for her friend, Adele. When Adele is accused of murder, Maddie finds herself pulled into the investigation. And it turns out that there might be more to the paranormal museum (and its resident ghost hunting cat) than she initially realized ….
I am perpetually on the hunt for new paranormal mystery/urban fantasy titles to read. I mostly enjoyed Weiss’ The Metaphysical Detective, so, when The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum appeared on a list of recommendations, I decided to give it a shot.
I am glad that I did. This is a delightful cozy mystery with an engaging protagonist. Maddie is a loyal friend and an often exasperated daughter; she is also clever, stubborn, skeptical, and ethical — she finds herself jobless and black-listed because she refused to follow her corporation’s policy of paying off local officials. She won’t offer bribes, and she certainly won’t accept them. That sense of ethics, her inherent need for fairness, draws her into not only the murder investigation centered around Adele, but also a century old homicide that most of San Benedetto has chosen to forget.
Maddie is (sort of) assisted in her inquiries by a host of secondary characters. Dieter the handyman who runs a gambling racket on the side. Mason, who builds custom motorcycles that are works of art and manages the bike shop next to the museum. Harper, one of her closest friends, who has been keeping a big secret from Maddie. And even Ghost Detecting Cat; unlike the animals in so many other paranormal mysteries, GD Cat is not cutesy and he never speaks; he spends most of the book begging for food, ignoring Maddie, or hissing at things that only he can see.
The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum was a lot of fun; the perfect diversion on a hot summer day. I look forward to reading the following books in the series.
Recommended to fans of the Love, Lies, and Hocus Pocus series by Lydia Sherrer, the Sonoma Witches series by Gretchen Galway, A Witch of Edgehill Mystery series by Melissa Erin Jackson, and the Southern Relicsseries by Bella Falls.
[Rebecca Buchanan is the editor of the Pagan literary ezine, Eternal Haunted Summer. A complete list of her published work can be found there.]