Moore hits a 3-run homer in this second entry in the Essex Witch Museum series. We first met Rosie Strange in Strange Magic where she inherited the quirky Essex Witch Museum from her even quirkier, estranged grandfather.
Here, the story picks up a few weeks after the events of Strange Magic concluded, with Rosie and Sam accepting work as paranormal investigators. Rosie’s Auntie Babs has directed a friend to the duo to assess a possible haunting in his trendy new London restaurant. When they arrive, armed with their “ghostbusting” equipment, they find themselves smack in the middle of a gruesome murder that may be connected to the ghost. The restaurant, it seems, is the former site of a notorious murder from an earlier century, and the eerily charged atmosphere awakens a dormant sensing ability in Rosie.
To make things even doubly interesting, Rosie learns more about her mysterious family, including the disappearance of her clairaudient grandmother, Ethel-Rose. Rosie and Sam need all their wits about them as they try to outsmart the ghost, which they do in a very satisfying resolution where the murderer is unmasked.
Moore does a good job here building on the attraction between Rosie & Sam, but also in developing the story arc of Rosie’s family. What really happened to Ethel-Rose, and why is Rosie’s father utterly unwilling to talk about his parents? Combine that with a well-plotted mystery that skillfully blends the past and the present, and you’ve got a highly readable and entertaining modern mystery. I look forward to the next installment in this series. Highly recommended.
Publication Date: November 14, 2017
Thanks to Edelweiss for the review copy