Between the evil and the deep blue sea…
A historic cruise ship, a haunted ship, the Celtic American Line's Destiny, sets sail from the Port of New Orleans—with a killer on board. He's known as the Archangel Killer because of the way he displays his victims in churches. And how he places a different saint's medallion on each body. No one knows exactly who he is or why he's doing this.
Jackson Crow—head of the FBI's Krewe of Hunters, a special unit of paranormal investigators—is assigned to the case, along with local agent Jude McCoy. Then Alexi Cromwell, who works in the ship's piano bar, is drawn into the situation when a victim's ghost appears to her—and to Jude. She and Jude share an attraction, and not just because of their mutual talent.
There are many suspects, but one by one they're ruled out… Or are they? In the end, Jude and Alexi have to rely on each other to catch the killer and escape his evil plans for Alexi.
Every moment in the story reminds me of Agatha Christie books and Hercule Poirot character stories, where he would solve crimes on the cruise ships. The book has a cozy mystery vibe through it, with easy going, friendly cast of characters, and cruise ship in a world of trouble.
I have read several of the Heather Graham's Krewe of Hunters series stories, and this was very different from the rest I have read. It was missing the constant action, sharp edges in the story, and turbulent emotions. The cruise ship environment is restricted, to the action, cast of characters, possibilities to investigate, and when the storm hinders the connection to the mainland, the agents have to use the old fashion way to investigate the murders.
There's a lot of attention paid to the living and entertaining on the cruise ship. If this is not in your interest, it might get little repetitive. The characters talk in an old fashion, and rigid way, making it sound even more like a story from the other era.
Jackson is a true gentleman, and fighting against his ability to be able to communicate with the death. Alexi, who has accepted her ability as a gift, is helping him, and in the process falling for him while on the story seas. The emotions between them fell a flat for me, yes, there was an attraction, but I couldn't connect the deeper emotions between them, or with them, at any level.
I've liked the little ghost appearances in the past stories of the series, gives them a little extra spice. In this story they are actual, active characters of the story, and part of the investigation more than in the stories I have read before.
Obviously, this wasn't my favorite Krewe of Hunters story. It is a cozy mystery, that manages to keep the suspect conjecture for a long time.
~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
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