Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The House on Tradd Street- Review

Title: The House on Tradd Street
Author: Karen White
Source: Library

Goodreads Summary:

Practical Melanie Middleton hates to admit she can see ghosts. But she?s going to have to accept it. An old man she recently met has died, leaving her his historic Tradd Street home, complete with housekeeper, dog?and a family of ghosts anxious to tell her their secrets.

Enter Jack Trenholm, a gorgeous writer obsessed with unsolved mysteries. He has reason to believe that diamonds from the Confederate Treasury are hidden in the house. So he turns the charm on with Melanie, only to discover he's the smitten one...

It turns out Jack's search has caught the attention of a malevolent ghost. Now, Jack and Melanie must unravel a mystery of passion, heartbreak, and even murder.

My thoughts:

Where to begin?  I will start with what I liked.  The Charleston setting, the mystery, the ghosts, Jack, and the rest of the supporting characters. What I didn't like? Melanie.  That feels so harsh to state it like that, but I comfort myself with the fact that Melanie wouldn't sugar coat her feelings, so why would I? 

Melanie inherits a big old house in the historic district of Charleston, from an elderly man who was virtually a stranger.  She met him one time, when she wanted to leave her card in the event he went to a nursing home and moved out, she wanted to be the one to sell his house.She is impatient with his storytelling at first, yet by the end of the visit she kind of likes the old guy. The reader learns a lot about Melanie from this visit- she hates old houses, they are dirty and gross and filled with ghosts. Oh yeah, she can see ghosts, but chooses to ignore them.  She cares a great deal about her job as a Realtor (capitalized the entire books), new construction, white walls, and chrome and glass furniture.  He dies right after their meeting basically, and she inherits this awesome old house and the funds to fix it up, but she doesn't appreciate it. Nope. She wants to just sell it, but the will stipulates she must live in it for a year before she can.

Melanie is uptight, inflexible, a neat freak, and hasn't gone on a date in years. She doesn't own a pair of jeans, is supposedly beautiful, and can eat like a longshoreman on leave without gaining a single ounce.  (no woman wants to read that! Lol) When she meets Jack, she dislikes him instantly because he didn't take her out to dinner at a fancy pants restaurant, drinks beer, and she doesn't like his casual clothing. Too plebian for her. 

Jack is a writer, and tells Melanie he wants to investigate the mystery behind her inherited house for his new book.  Apparently the mother (Louisa) of the man Nevin, who died and left the house to Melanie, ran off with a criminal type (Joseph) when Nevin was a kid.   Nevin never believed this and said as much to Melanie, because she loved him and the house very much.  Louisa and Joseph were never seen or heard from again.  Jack also knows there is more to the mystery, but doesn't tell Melanie. 

There is the expected romantic triangle as well, which for me felt flat, only because Melanie seemed clueless and she was also never nice to Jack.

This is where the story is actually interesting and I won't spoil it! If you can get past Melanie, the mystery is intriguing, and while I figured some of it out, I didn't figure it all out. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm not sure I'm getting past Melanie at this point. I just read an author bio about her and I was a little excited to read her newest book. I will have to investigate a little further. I have one of hers, On Folly Beach, in my stacks. Maybe I should read that one first. Thanks for the good review.


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