by Lorie Lewis Ham
Details at the end of the post on how to enter to win a copy of the book and a fun tote bag. We also have links to purchase the book from Amazon and an indie bookstore.
The Ghost and the Haunted Portrait is the seventh book in Cleo Coyle’s Haunted Bookshop Mystery series. The series features bookshop owner Penelope Thornton-McClure and the ghost of 1940s private detective Jack Shephard.
Penelope’s store is having an exhibit of original cover art. Together with two of her friends, mailman and Jeopardy! Champion Seymour Tarnish and literature professor J. Brainert Parker, she goes to pick up a shipment of the art from collector Walt Waverly. The exhibit is centered around an art book celebrating the history of American book covers, and the launch party will feature Walt’s extensive collection. Walt is happy to share his collection and to add price tags to it should any curious attendees want to take pieces home.
While picking up the art, Seymour becomes obsessed with another piece depicting Harriet McClure, a distant relative of Pen’s by marriage as well as a local recluse well-known for her many self-portraits. This particular portrait stands out for being a rare picture of Harriet in her youth. Seymour is determined to purchase it despite claims that it is haunted and possibly cursed. When Walt is found dead the next morning, and Seymour is later attacked in his home, they begin to wonder if the painting might really be cursed, and possibly even haunted. There was another buyer interested in the painting, and Pen wonders if that person might be behind the violence.
Jack recognizes the model in another one of the paintings and takes Pen with him in her dreams to show her what happened in the past to the model, who was also murdered. Together they solve Walt’s murder and discover the mystery behind the haunted portrait.
These books are a wonderful blend of cozy and noir, with great characters and well-plotted mysteries full of twists and turns. I adore Jack and it’s fun to travel back in time to his world, but also be able to enjoy a modern mystery in the same book. Even though I jumped into the middle of this series, I don’t feel lost, and I look forward to the time when I can go back and read the rest of the series. Cleo Coyle is one of my favorite mystery authors and she never disappoints!
To enter to win a copy of The Ghost and the Haunted Portrait and a fun tote, simply comment on this article. A winner will be chosen July 5, 2021. U.S. residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.
The first book in this series was featured on a past Mysteryrat’s Maze Podcast. You can check it out here or use the player below:
Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Be sure to check out our new mystery podcast too with mystery short stories, and first chapters read by local actors. A new episode goes up this week.
You can use this link to purchase this book from indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy, and KRL gets a portion of the sale:
You can use this link to purchase the book on Amazon. If you have ad blocker on you may not see the link:
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.