Thursday, January 6, 2011

Nightwalker by Heather Graham

Synopsis courtesy of Shelfari....

Jessy Sparhawk has seen firsthand how gambling can ruin people's lives. But one night, desperate for money, she places the bet that will change her life forever. Just as she's collecting her winnings, a man stumbles through the crowd, a knife protruding from his back, and crashes into her, pinning her to the craps table. Hired to investigate the murder, private detective Dillon Wolf finds himself fascinated by the gorgeous redhead who'd been trapped beneath the victim—and by the single word the dying man had whispered in her ear. Indigo. What neither of them realizes is that the nightmare is only just beginning. Because bodyguard Tanner Green may have been killed by that knife, but his angry ghost isn't going anywhere—not without vengeance. Now, literally caught between the living and the dead, Dillon and Jessy have no choice but to forge ahead together. Their investigation will take them from the glitz of the Vegas strip into the dealings of casino magnate Emil Landon, the man who signs both their paychecks, and out into the desert to a ghost town called Indigo, where past and present come together in a search for gold. Years ago, blood was shed on that very ground, and now it looks as if history is about to repeat itself, with the living and the dead facing off for possession of a fortune, and Dillon and Jessy fighting not only to stay alive but for the chance to build a future.

My Thoughts....
I read this book only a couple of days ago and honestly have no strong opinions on it at all. I did think that the character development was much better than the first Graham book I read (The Last Noel) and the romance aspect better. However the romance itself seemed more about sex than...well romance. That doesn't mean I didn't enjoy reading about it, I did. I just wished there were more Awwww moments that make my romantic soul sigh.
I think that the strongest point of this book was the suspense. The mystery of the Paiute land gold spanned well over a century into modern date Las Vegas. That rumored gold killed a handful of men in the 1800s and the talk of it in Las Vegas 100 years later ended up killing more.
Another strong point was the woo woo paranormal in the form of people who see ghosts. I really liked this part but since my biggest genre crush right now is wrapped up in fangs, fur and witches hats this isn't so surprising. What was really fascinating is that this subject (ghost seers aka Nightwalkers) was prominent in the Indian history that Graham wrote about. There were several different people with Native American ancestry (not all from Paiute but others as well) and the Nightwalker  legends were common among them all.
So, I have to admit it was the ghosties that I really liked best. Kind of a Sixth Sense take, once you find out why the ghost is there, the Nightwalker can then help them so they can go towards the light. The spur wearing ghost Ringo added the right touch of history and comic relief to the story.
I also liked that Jessy's grandfather Timothy, although an aged Native American, talked liked everyone else. There was no stilted Me Tonto talk which I really appreciated. I just read a book last month that also had Native Americans in it that had the characters talking stiltedly and it drove me nuts. Timothy did refer to Jessy formally as Granddaughter and never really by her given name but his passages flowed just as well as the ones by the teenager of Jessy's best friend.
What I didn't like was that Jessy all of a sudden started seeing ghosts. Having never seen them before (not even as a child that she blocked out because it was too traumatic) all of a sudden seeing them really freaked her out (would me too) but the why of it was never explained. She did meet others just like her but none of them talked about their first experience either so it was as if suddenly on the 4th day of the 6th month in her 25th year she was targeted to see ghosts and *poof* she does. {I made up the age of Jessy...I can't say for certain if she was actually 25 years, 6 months and 4 days old or not but just go with me on it...OK?}
Overall I would say that this was an enjoyable book and I will definitely read more of Heather Graham's books in the future. 4 Stars.


Hott Books - Gina said...

You know, I think that not having an opinion is worse than having a bad one. I'll reread a book that I hated to see if my opinion has changed but I'll never reread a book that was just there.
I know just what you mean! I want a book to grab me & drag me into the story.
I'm not sure if I've ever read Heather Graham before but if you gave it 4 stars maybe it's worth a few hours to try her out.

Thanks for a great review - as always!!

LindsayWrites said...

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