Secondhand Spirits by Juliet Blackwell

Title: Secondhand Spirits by Juliet Blackwell
Scored a: B
Status: Finished


The cover of Secondhand Spirits - in person the grey swirls have sparkles!
The cover of Secondhand Spirits – in person the grey swirls have sparkles!


Before I left town on a trip to San Diego, I was overcome with an urge to read about mysteries with ghosts. Fortunately my mother has one of the biggest cozy collections I have ever known and that included more than a few supernatural mysteries. What I chose was Secondhand Spirits by Juliet Blackwell and Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris. After doing a more thorough reading of the plot of Grave Sight, I chose not to read that one ever, but Secondhand Spirits kept me nicely occupied on the plane as well as being the first paper non-comicbook I read in years.

The summary:

Love the vintage- not the ghosts

Lily Ivory feels that she can finally fit in somewhere and conceal her “witchiness” in San Francisco. It’s there that she opens her vintage clothing shop, outfitting customers both spiritually and stylistically.

Just when things seem normal, a client is murdered and children start disappearing from the Bay Area. Lily has a good idea that some bad phantoms are behind it. Can she keep her identity secret, or will her witchy ways be forced out of the closet as she attempts to stop the phantom?

The summary turned out to be misleading, as it turns out she cannot see ghosts.

I did like it, though. The cast of characters was appealing, her love interest wasn’t a dick, I enjoyed the job she did, and I only snickered a little every time she referred to the ‘burning times’ in reference to witch history.

It was a little light on the actual villain of the story, but the monster portion of the story was pretty cool. It was La Llorona, the weeping woman who drowns children. A note on the use of a Mexican spirit, at first for a lot of the book I thought Lily was Latina, but it turned out that while her grandmother was, she is only Lily’s grandmother via adoption. So it was a ‘oh, it’s her culture!’ followed by ‘oh, it’s sort of her culture’ but you know, a good scary ghost.

I’ve bought the sequel to read soon. Right now it’s chilling its heels in my kindle account.

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