Heart of Evil (Krewe of Hunters Series book #2) By Heather Graham (Book Review)

Plot: Donegal Plantation is known for its captivating atmosphere, Civil War reenactments, haunting legends…and now a corpse swinging from the marble angel that marks its cemetery’s most majestic vault. A corpse discovered in nearly the same situation as that of Marshall Donegal, the patriarch killed in a skirmish just before the Civil War. Desperate for help the plantation owner and his granddaughter, Ashley, turn to an elite team of paranormal investigators. Among the “Krewe of Hunters” is Ashley’s ex-flame, Jake Mallory, a gifted musician with talent stretching far beyond the realm of the physical. Jake and Ashley are forced to risk everything to unravel secrets that will not stay buried—even in death.…

My Review: After finishing the first book – Phantom Evil – it took me awhile to even want to begin reading this one. I didn’t like the first one much at all. I expected something completely different out of it then what I got. I expected it to be a book about a haunted house, and that’s it. But what I got instead was a thriller with ghosts sorta in the background, with a lot of characters that had different sorts of “paranormal” talents. So knowing that, I went into this figuring it would be the same sort of book and since I didn’t enjoy the first book all that much, I assumed I wouldn’t care for this one either. But I was wrong. I actually enjoyed this one.

This book starts off with a Plantation House getting ready for a Civli War reenactment. Here we meet Ashley, the granddaughter to the owner of the plantation. Turns out she’s the best friend, and ex lover of Jake (one of the Krew of Hunters) from the previous book. They haven’t seen each other in five years – since he spooked her with his paranormal “talents”.

Right after the reenactment a person goes missing and Ashley is really worried so calls in the local police. The police can’t do anything given its only been a couple hours. So her grandfather calls in a favor to Adam Harrison (the guy who formed the paranormal group from the first book) and asks for help. To me, it was a little silly that this FBI group was called in a couple hours after some guy goes missing just because they are friends as they are really a “paranormal” group. But that’s what happens. They aren’t “ghost hunters” they are actual officers with talents in the paranormal where they can communicate in different ways with the dead to help solve their cases.

Jake arrives early to find Ashley running from the family cemetery. She’s just discovered the missing guy. Dead. Hanging from a gravestone. The rest of the Krew arrive and start getting down to business. More people go missing and of course later their corpses are found on the plantations grounds as well.

Right off the bat with this book I really enjoyed the characters. Mainly it centered on Jake and Ashley, with the other characters from the previous book slowly showing up as extras. We had already gotten to know them from the first book, so there wasn’t a whole lot of that going on with anyone other then Jake and Ashley. Of course the book deals with their romance as well which I felt was much sweeter then the romance in the first book, and felt  more “real”. The romance in the first novel between Angela and Jackson just felt rushed and boring. Thankfully that wasn’t so with Jake and Ashley.

Also, another thing I liked about this book was that it didn’t give me a history lesson on everything revolving around New Orleans, like the first book did. That annoyed me and really made me lose interest fast. This one didn’t have any of that really. Obviously we have background info on the Civil War battle that took place on the property and the people that were involved with it.

Another problem that I had with the first book was that the editing and the format of the book seemed all over the place. The kindle preview version I had of the first book had sentences that would pause in the middle and continue on the next line. It made for harder reading. This one had some like that, but not much. It still had no indents for paragraphs or correct breaks for when it was switching to another persons perspective or later in the day. Again, not sure if this is just the preview edition being converted, or if that’s what the retail kindle version would look like.

Overall: The characters were a lot more likable in this, as was the romance aspect. The paranormal abilities of the characters weren’t shoved down your throat sounding all weird like in the first book. Really this book was a LOT better then the first one. But you need to know going into it, its not a “haunting” book. The plot and cover image to me was misleading and made me want to read the series. But they really don’t play out like that at all (so far).

[rating:3.5/5]

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