Doing an incredibly rare review this Sunday for this book tour 😀
Designed for Haunting (Aurora Anderson Mystery)
by Sybil Johnson
About the Book
Designed for Haunting (Aurora Anderson Mystery)
4th in Series
Setting – California
Henery Press (October 9, 2018)
Hardcover: 276 pages
Paperback: 276 pages
Digital ASIN: B07FSYFM8Q
October brings a message from Beyond The Grave…
Halloween is fast approaching in the quiet Los Angeles County city of Vista Beach, home of computer programmer and tole-painting enthusiast Rory Anderson. While her painting chapter prepares to open its annual boutique house, Rory receives an unexpected email from Beyond The Grave, a company that automatically sends out messages when someone dies.
“I think I have a stalker,” the message reads. “If you’re reading this I’m either missing or dead. My life may depend on what you do. Please find out what happened to me.”
Haunted by her friend’s disappearance and possible death, Rory begins her search with the help of best friend and fellow painter, Liz Dexter. Can they discover who has designs on the missing woman and uncover the truth before one of them becomes the stalker’s next victim?
Halloween is just a few days away and so is the annual decorative painting open house. Rory’s group has been working hard to get everything ready. But an unusual and scary email has Rory Anderson concerned about a friend. The company, Beyond the Grave, offers a service that sends out a prewritten email if their member fails to respond to their check-in emails after a set number of days. Rory has received an email from Zelena, “I think I have a stalker,” the message reads. “If you’re reading this I’m either missing or dead. My life may depend on what you do. Please find out what happened to me.” Zelena was at the recent painting meeting, so she must have disappeared shortly after that. Rory asks her best friend Liz to help her try to find Zelena, hopefully, alive and get to the bottom of this haunting email.
This fourth installment to the Aurora (Rory) Anderson series evokes the Halloween theme very well. In addition to the missing woman, there are pranksters creating havoc with each prank worse than the last, a craft sale open house I would love to attend, and rumors of a ghost appearing nightly on the beach. All of which are drawing Rory’s attention.
The core characters of Rory and Liz are strong. They have each other’s back and Liz is still doing her best to push Rory to be a little more adventurous. Not quite Thelma and Louise and not quite Lucy and Ethel, but they do share characteristics of these famous duos. They do make a great team of sleuths.
We did meet some new characters this time. They were interesting in their own ways and added so much to this story. I did miss some of the usual characters from previous stories though.
I did enjoy the open house charity event. Set in an actual home that was on the market, each room set up to show wares decoratively painted for the different upcoming holidays. There was even a special escape room experience where entrants are given a set limit of time to “investigate” the room and its contents to solve a mystery. What a fun addition to a craft sale.
With three mysteries to solve, revealing the pranksters, the “ghost” on the beach, and Zelena’s disappearance, readers are kept on their toes. Rory is asked by her detective boyfriend to let him handle things but Rory just can’t do that even when things take an ominous turn. I always have fun tagging along with these amateur sleuths. Rory has a way of getting to the truth and the closer she gets the faster the pages were flipping. Hold on tight for that ending.
Another great story from Ms. Johnson and a fine addition to this series.
About the Author
Sybil Johnson’s love affair with reading began in kindergarten with “The Three Little Pigs.” Visits to the library introduced her to Encyclopedia Brown, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and a host of other characters. Fast forward to college where she continued reading while studying Computer Science. After a rewarding career in the computer industry, Sybil decided to try her hand at writing mysteries. Her short fiction has appeared in Mysterical-E and Spinetingler Magazine, among others. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she now lives in Southern California where she enjoys tole painting, studying ancient languages and spending time with friends and family.
More praise for Designed for Haunting (Aurora Anderson Mystery)
by Sybil Johnson
. . . kept me engaged the entire way through. The climax is very suspenseful and perfectly wraps everything up.
I enjoyed the layers in this book. The mystery is well thought out and keeps the reader engaged through the entire reading experience.
~A Cozy Experience
It’s a fast-paced mystery with many puzzle pieces to put together.
~Socrates’ Book Reviews…
Within the first couple of paragraphs, the words “I think I have a stalker” pulled me right into the story and pulled me right along throughout the entire book. That was a great opening.
A complicated entangled mystery that will keep your interest all the way through.
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”