Second in the Harper Blaine "Greywalker" paranormal series, featuring a young woman P.I. who died for two minutes and since that time is able to walk the world that exists between the living and the dead, known as "the Grey." In this book, Harper is hired by a college professor who is running experiments to see if the collective minds of a group of people can make their own poltergeist. He wants her to figure out whom, if anyone, is faking some phenomenon that have begun to crop up, or else authenticate that the experiment has worked and is valid. When one of the participants of the group ends up dead--beaten and mangled--in his apartment, Harper sets out to find whether the energy entity that has become Celia, the poltergeist, did Mark in or whether he was killed by someone all too human.
I enjoyed this book a lot; it certainly did have an interesting premise and storyline, though it did take me a good 50 pages to really get sucked in to the story. The only downfall for me is that Harper still feels somewhat "dry" to me--even though we learn more *about* her, what she likes, dislikes, what's important to her, we haven't yet really been shown who she is...the messy parts, the 'soul' of Harper seem to be sitting there just beyond our grasp. It's hard to explain just what I mean. Still, this is a series I enjoy. One thing I really appreciate is that there isn't a bunch of gratuitous sex and continual sexual tension between Harper and every male she encounters like in some paranormal books. I mean, after all, if I want romance and erotica, I'll read books from those genres!
I really wanted to like this book. Kat Richardson is a very talented writer who clearly has done her research on psychokinesis (âPKâ) and the Philip experiments â and therein may be the problem I had with the book.
The first three chapters of this book are dedicated to setting up the case and explaining PK and the Philip experiments with little to no attention paid to character development or a broader story arc and even 80-odd pages into the book, Richardson is still explaining theory and case studies. I really enjoyed the first book in the series and was looking forward to reconnecting with the characters I had formed a bond with but the first half of the book was so bogged down with an in-depth study of PK that it was a real challenge to hold my interest long enough to get on with the case.
If you are a reader with a cultivated interest in PK or the Philip experiments then you'll love this book, Kat Richardson is a talent and she has done her homework. If however, you're like me and you're a reader who was looking more for continued character development and growth in the overall arc to the series, then you're going to have get a little more than halfway through the book before you hit pay dirt. This is not a bad book, it's just not what I expected as the second installation of a series.
I enjoyed this book, and the first in the series, "Greywalker". Harper is a young working woman struggling to cope with her ability (or curse?) to see in the Grey, something that life (or death, in this case) has thrust upon her. Something else I really appreciate is the fact that Harper doesn't lust after every man she comes across. A lot of paranormal books have all this gratuitous sex and the plot of the book takes a back burner. I see these books as being real paranormal thrillers, not paranormal romances, which aren't really my cup of tea.
This is the second book in the Greywalker series. Book 3 "Underground" and book 4 "Vanished" are already out. The fifth book "Labyrinth" is due out in August 2010. Right now there are six books contracted for this series. This book was a great addition to the series. I listened to this on audio book and the audio book was very well done.
Harper Blaine is starting to get better at this Greywalker thing. Then she gets a call from a psychologist who is running a study with a group of people who are supposed to be using their mental energy to create a Poltergeist. Well the group has either created or summoned something and things are starting to get violent during their seances. The psychologist is convinced that someone in the group is faking the effects and wants Harper to find out who it is. When one of the group members either dies or is murdered the stakes are increased and Harper has to figure out if the happenings are paranormal, normal, or a combination of both.
I really like Harper Blaine as a character. She is definitely not a bad-ass but she is smart. She approaches her cases with a very analytical mind, sets up great plans to solve her cases, and is very practical about it all. Mira and Ben as the couple that assist Harper with paranormal knowledge are great, and their little two year old boy Brian had me chuckling at his antics a number of times (maybe this is because I have a three year old son). I liked Brian's crazy two-year old stunts and thought they added some humor to the book.
This book is definitely more of a paranormal mystery than any other genre; Harper doesn't really have a love interest in this book and Harper assumes mundane causes before fantastical causes. A lot of time in this book is spent going into technical details on how ghost phenomena can be faked. Another large chunk of time is spend going into technical detail on how the Grey works. I really enjoyed the technical discussions; Richardson has done her home work and I found a lot of the information around the faking of ghost phenomena to be very interesting. This is a warning to people who don't like this kind of stuff though; if you aren't interested in hearing all the intricate details behind the workings of things then this book might not be for you.
I really loved how Richardson has expanded Harper's working with the Grey. I still enjoy the creativity behind the idea of the Grey and the idea of Harper being able to travel through layers of ghostly time is really interesting and adds a whole additional layer to the story. The story was very engaging, action packed and the writing very readable.
My only complaint with this book was that Harper only had the one case to work on and, at times, her foot work on that case got a bit boring. It would have been nice to have Harper juggling a couple cases, as she did in the first book, to keep things interesting during the inevitable lulls in the one case.
I enjoyed this book and look forward to listening to the next book of the series on audio book. If you like paranormal mystery that pays special attention to detail when explaining the workings behind the paranormal phenomena then I think you will really love this book.