A Match Made in Hell by Terri Garey
published by Avon in June 2008
A brush with death and a brief trip to the hereafter left vintage clothing store owner Nicki Styx an unwilling ghoulfriend to the dead. She can see and hear spirits, and boy, do they want to be heard! Luckily, her new boyfriend, sexy doc Joe Bascombe, is there to help, especially when Nicki faces her latest ghost, a woman in pink sequins who holds the key to some family secrets.
Unfortunately for Nicki, it turns out that there are more skeletons in the family closet than she thought, including a twin sister and a mysterious house full of spirits and surprises. Things go from bad to worse when the devil himself shows up, determined to lure Nicki from Joe's side. Will she give in to temptation and sell her soul (or someone else's) for one incredible night?
Demons may be a ghoul's best friend, but with this particular hottie, it could be a match made in hell!
Genre: paranormal romance (ghost)
Series: Nicki Styx series, book #3 (book #2 is novella in anthology)
The Story: In Dead Girls are Easy, Nicki had a near-death experience which resulted in her ability to see ghosts. She also met Dr Joe Bascombe, her new boyfriend, and discovered that she had a twin sister... Joe's wife.
A Match Made in Hell starts out with a bang when a disorientated ghost named Peaches appears in Nicki's store and directs Nicki to the car crash site that claimed her life where her daughter needs help. Imagine Nicki's shock when the daughter discovered turns out to be her twin... but it doesn't end there. Turns out Kelly is also able to see ghosts... and their maternal grandmother, Bijou, shows up at Peaches' funerals, wanting to teach them about their roots... but what if Satan is part of their roots?
My Opinion: Sigh. Okay, so this was a miss for me :( This was a tricky sequel to carry on, but based on the excerpt I read, I thought Ms Garey would pull it off andI really, really wanted to like it, but unfortunately didn't.
There were a couple of issues for me. First of all, Kelly. OMG, I found her annoying ^_^; She ruined it for me. Perhaps I've read too many books with psychics in it, but I know that when you suddenly starts to see ghosts, you should be cautious and careful. However, no, Kelly just barges into it and put everyone at risks. I can understand why she acted the way she did, but perhaps because I was feeling the same as Nicki and so Kelly just rubbed me the wrong way.
I found Nicki a bit standoff-ish in this sequel. The way I remember her, she was a bit more warm in Dead Girls are Easy. Therefore it kind of annoyed me a bit the way she kept Joe at arm length. However, it wasn't so bad until the characters start to mention it so much. It seems Ms Garey was emphasizing on issues that weren't really there.
Finally, the love triangle between Joe and the two sisters. So the situation is that Kelly and Joe married young and for the past 4 or 5 years, Kelly has been MIA. Joe met Nicki and fell in love with her and is looking for Kelly to demand a divorce. Then out of no where, Kelly reappears. Definitively an uneasy situation I wouldn't like to be in. For sure, this was going to be tricky... thing is, I felt like the characters react wrongly. Let's start with Nicki... Did she really expect Joe to ask Kelly for a divorce as soon as she came out of the car accident and announced that his new girlfriend was her twin? I also didn't like how Kelly clung to Joe, although it was understandable. My problem is that she never loved him... so what? Are you just being childish? He's mine, you can't have him? Overall, Joe was okay. Poor guy, stuck in this situation. Thing is, you already know the situation is tricky, plus Nicki has doubts... so perhaps you should do your best to clear things up?
Oh and one last thing... In the story timeline, about a month or two has gone by between the two books... and even in Dead Girls are Easy, I think it spans what, one or two weeks? Everything happened very fast, but to the readers, it seems like a lot of time has gone by... literally months. As a result, I felt Nicki should have been more comfortable with her abilities and accept them. It felt like she wanted really badly to deny seeing ghosts and just want them to leave her alone... however, we all know that it's not going to happen. It just wasn't fun to read Nicki seeing ghosts because they were so inconvenient for her :(
So yes, lots of issues bothered me, enough that the rest of the storyline didn't grab me and couldn't salvage A Match Made in Hell. It seems that the storyline is only going to get more complicated, but at least, Kelly is far away now.
My Grade: C- . I think I've said it all...