Published March 8th 2016 by Midnight Ink
4.5 Stars

Synopsis: When Maddie Kosloski’s career flatlines, she retreats to her wine-country hometown for solace and cheap rent. Railroaded into managing the local paranormal museum, she’s certain the rumors of its haunting are greatly exaggerated. But a new ghost may be on the loose. A fresh corpse in the museum embroils Maddie in murders past and present.

With her high school bully as one of the officers in charge, Maddie doubts justice will be served. When one of her best friends is arrested, she’s certain it won’t be.

Maddie grapples with ghost hunters, obsessed taxidermists, and the sexy motorcyclist next door as outside forces threaten. And as she juggles spectral shenanigans with the hunt for a killer, she discovers there truly is no place like home.

My Review: This is the first book in the Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum series. I am not a big lover of the supernatural, witches kind of book so was pleasantly surprised that this book was a good Cozy Mystery with just a hint of the supernatural/paranormal thrown in. Maddie has returned home to San Benedetto after being fired from her globe-trotting job for refusing to offer a bribe to government officials to get a job done for her company. She comes from an over-achieving family so is at odds when the book begins. Not being able to find a new job has her at loose ends, so when her friend Adele asks her to take over the Paranormal Museum attached to her tea shop she decides to help her friend out. The museum is more creepy than paranormal with a “Creepy Doll” room and some other artifacts that claim to be “haunted”. When they find a dead body inside, they scramble to solve the case as both of them are suspects. Adele eventually gets arrested, so Maddie buckles down to figure out what happened.

I really liked the characters. Maddie, Adele and Harper have been friends for years and we get to see a little bit of their close and loyal relationship. We find out tidbits about them that I hope will be expanded on in the next book. Maddie’s neighbour and possible love interest, Mason, is a builder of motorcycles and motorcycle lover. He just happens to be in the right place at the right time to help Maddie solve her problems. He is gorgeous, friendly and a little bit funny and Maddie looks like she is heading into a romance. The quirky Herb, who sells her artifacts for the museum is a bit of comic relief and even the cat, GD cat (ghost detecting cat) has a personality all his own. They all mesh together very well.

The book has a lot going for it. There were times that I laughed at the more outrageous characters and their actions and there were quite a few of those. The mystery was interesting and I did not figure out the culprit at all. It made sense at the end, but I has another suspect in mind throughout most of the book. There was a touch of paranormal which added a bit of fun too. There was a second mystery within the book with Maddie trying to solve a murder from the early 1900s. All these things were balanced quite well in the book and I am definitely looking forward to the second one in the series. The story kept me reading until I could find out what happened, a big draw for me with a new series. I recommend this to readers of Cozy Mysteries who enjoy trying to figure out “who dunnit” while being entertained. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.