Ghost in Trouble

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Ghost in Trouble

Bailey Ruth Raeburn Series, #3

Ghost In Trouble by Carolyn Hart is a cosy mystery featuring the sometimes disembodied heavenly emissary Bailey Ruth Raeburn employing her unique brand of detective skills.  Bailey Ruth has trouble complying with all of the precepts governing the Department of Good Intentions but she enjoys the opportunities to leave Heaven and travel to her hometown of Adelaide in southcentral Oklahoma to help someone in need.  Unfortunately, her enthusiasm sometimes overwhelms her sincere desire to avoid being seen, heard or otherwise overtly acting with those who are still living and this time is no exception.  Tasked with keeping Kay Clark alive, Bailey Ruth must solve the mystery behind the death of one of Adelaide’s most prominent family members and keep Kay from becoming the next victim.  Unfortunately, the vivacious Bailey Ruth manifests herself several times but she always knows the perfect outfit to complement her beautiful red hair and youthful appearance.  Gradually unearthing the motivations behind the suspected murder, Bailey Ruth revisits people and places from her beloved town while trying to make sure that her primary task of protecting Kay is completed successfully.  Unfortunately, more than a few precepts get slightly bent along the way but Bailey Ruth is nothing if not well-versed in genteely accomplishing her goals in a ladylike fashion.

A nice premise to an intriguing series with a wealth of interesting characters, including the typecast beleagured Wiggins, Bailey’s supervisor.  Some of the affectations are a bit annoying since it is difficult to imagine why a ghost needs a shower or a meal and where the fluids and solids disappear to if the cups and plates don’t disappear when being lifted by the ghost.    Bailey Ruth changes outfits more often than a fashion model but at least they always enhance her appearance.  A little ditzy to be a detective given the number of mistakes and accidental sightings that she prompts but a very likeable character nonetheless.

Book Blurb for Ghost in Trouble

In Agatha-winner Hart's charming third mystery featuring ghostly emissary Bailey Ruth Raeburn of heaven's "Department of Good Intentions" (after 2009's Merry, Merry Ghost), Bailey returns to earth to protect Kay Clark, a former Adelaide, Okla., acquaintance, from danger. After the fatal fall of Kay's old boyfriend, Jack Hume, at the Hume estate, the Castle, Kay pays her respects to his family at the Castle, where an enormous vase nearly flattens her. In delightful Topperesque fashion, Bailey appears to Kay in an ever-changing array of fashions as Kay's "assistant," Francie de Sales, and together they investigate Kay's brush with the vase. When they discover Jack may have been murdered, suspects range from Hume family members to two of Jack's former lovers. Often disregarding the "precepts for earthly visitation" (avoiding public notice, not consorting with other departed spirits, etc.), Bailey with her sunny Pollyanna attitude makes an irresistible cozy sleuth. (Oct.)

Night Owl Reviews Nov, 2010 4.00