Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky is the home of Emma Lee Raines, undertaker and "Betweener", someone who sees the ghosts of murder victims, and pushes the investigation in the right direction so the ghost can cross over. Tonya Kappes has a great deal of fun with Emma Lee, southern humor and the southern lifestyle in her Ghostly Southern mysteries. And, her latest mystery, Ghostly Grave, asks a serious question. Why would anyone want to kill a chicken farmer?
Only the Sleepy Hollow sheriff and Emma Lee's boyfriend, Jack Henry Ross, believes her that she sees ghosts. So, when she convinces him that Chicken Teater was murdered, Jack Henry orders the body exhumed. But, Jack Henry plans his own investigation while Chicken pushes Emma Lee into all kinds of situations. And, he's more concerned about the hen, Lady Cluckington, he wanted his wife to enter in a show than he is about his widow, Marla Maria. He thinks she killed him because she was jealous of Lady Cluckington. Emma Lee ends up in a bar across the county line, and even enters a beauty contest, all while wondering why Marla Maria has Jack Henry out at her doublewide.
Kappes' latest mystery is a fun romp through Sleepy Hollow and the neighboring vicinities. Emma Lee and Jack Henry just can't get together to discuss the case, so she takes some risks. What in most characters would be Too Stupid To Live actions, is just Emma Lee Raines' method of operation. She doesn't always think. In fact, she's more like her eccentric Granny than anyone would like to admit. All of the characters are spritely and fun in these books, but Granny stands out, a redhead running around town on a moped, doing yoga on the front porch of the inn she owns, and running for mayor.
A little mystery, a touch of romance, fun characters, ghosts, and a lot of humor. If you're looking for an enjoyable escape, pick up A Ghostly Grave. Don't you want to know why someone would kill a chicken farmer?
Tonya Kappes' website is www.tonyakappes.com
A Ghostly Grave by Tonya Kappes. William Morrow. 2015. ISBN 9780062374813 (paperback), 273p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.