Clark's Eye on Books

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Ghost at Work - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat

"He's dead!" Her
voice was a whisper. "What am I going to do?" "Call the police." I
clapped my fingers to my mouth. I hadn't intended to speak. "I can't."
It was a moan. The moan turned into a strangled gasp. She looked
wildly about. "Who's there? Where are you?" Skirting the body, she
hurried to the back door, flung it open, clattered down the steps. In
an instant she returned to the porch, dashed to the rectory back door,
yanked it open, seeking the source of the voice.

Bailey Ruth
Raeburn is dead and living the the glories of Heaven, but there are
times when an "emissary" from Heaven needs to be sent back to earth to
help out those in trouble. Bailey Ruth has never had the honor of being
returned to earth as an emissary so Wiggins, who is in charge of this
Heavenly task, must teach her the rules and prepare her before letting
her depart. Unfortunately, there is no time for preparation. In Bailey
Ruth's own home town of Adelaide, someone has murdered Daryl Murdoch
right on the steps of the rectory. It becomes Bailey Ruth's job as an
emissary to protect Kathleen, who just happens to be the pastor's wife,
and hopefully find the real killer.

As Bailey Ruth approaches
Kathleen, she knows that before she can help her she must first gain her
trust without scaring her half to death. This isn't an easy task since
Kathleen can hear Bailey Ruth but not see her. The solution to that is
to appear but that is frowned upon in the Precepts, which are the rules
an emissary must follow.

After Bailey Ruth and Kathleen
finally get a grip on the real situation, it's decided that the best
thing to do is to move the body away from the rectory. And where would
be a better place to deposit a dead body in the cemetery. But doing
that will take some imagination from Bailey Ruth. She can't just snap
her fingers and have the body moved, so she must find a mode of
transportation and the wheel barrow seems to be perfect vehicle. As she
and Kathleen wheel Murdoch's body to it's destination, they discover
that the cemetery is occupied by a couple of teens who are attempting to
remove the greyhound statue that watches over the Pritchard mausoleum.
She accomplishes this by grabbing the crowbar away from one of the boys
and flinging it out into the darkness. But, Kathleen has already
dumped the body on the steps of the mausoleum where it's discovered by
the two frightened teens.

at Work
is the first book written by Carolyn Hart in the Bailey Ruth series. In Ghost at Work, Bailey Ruth is an
emissary in training and on probation. Following her antics as she
tries to follow the rules of not appearing, speaking, nor scaring the
living half to death unless completely necessary, I've found Ghost at Work to be humorous and
creative. Hart's characters are not only believable but you find
yourself completely wrapped up in them, not wanting the book to end.
And fortunately, Bailey Ruth is carried forward in Hart's second book in
the series titled Merry, Merry Ghost.
I've had the enjoyment of reading both of these light hearted books
and can't wait for the next.

I've read many series books which
spotlight the same character and have found that after a while, the
character becomes predictable and over years "aged." Bailey Ruth is one
character that I feel that can never happen to. After all, she is a

Harper Collins Publishers
290 Pages
ISBN 978-0-06-087436-0

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