Kristen Ashley’s Ghosts & Reincarnation Read Along
by Donna Soluri
Every other year or so, I feel the deep, soul-searing need to usher in Fall with a re-read of Kristen Ashley’s Ghosts and Reincarnation series. It’s a total of five books, and if you start October off right, and cross your eyes a little, you can usually finagle five weeks from your calendar. This October is especially prime for a comfort re-read, so starting October 1, I’m diving in, and I hope you’ll join me.
If you’re unfamiliar with Kristen Ashley’s Ghosts and Reincarnation series, let me give you a little back story and a bit of a series primer. This is old school Kristen Ashley, at her finest. I say it’s her finest because it has everything I love about a KA book. This series has grumpy, grunty, high-handed alpha men; smart, strong, and determined women; a smattering of adorable children; and spooky, creepy ghosts haunting things and causing mischief. What more could you want from an October group read along?
Kristen Ashley lived in England for a time back in the day, and while there, one of her favorite things to do was visit the National Trust properties. Three of the Ghosts and Reincarnation stories are based on National Trust properties. Lacybourn Manor is based on Clevedon Court. Penmort Castle is based on Dunster Castle. My personal favorite in the series, Sommersgate House, takes place in a castle based on Tyntesfield. One day, when we are allowed to travel again, I’ll be able to check these bucket list visits off of my Go See list!
We are giving away my favorite book, Sommersgate House,
right here, right now!
Each Friday, I’ll share some discussion questions and my thoughts on the discussion book over on my Book+Main Bites profile in the Community section. We will have a lively discussion in the comments section, and I hope you’ll join me. I’m not above talking to myself, I do it all the time, but it’s always better to talk books with a friend. To up the ante, we are giving away my favorite book, and the second discussion book, Sommersgate House, right here, right now! Follow this link, or click on the giveaway image, to enter for your chance to win an e-book copy.
Below is the Big Ghosts and Reincarnation Series October Book Club schedule. Like I mentioned earlier, I’ll drop a list of points of interest on my B+M Bites page, and we can chat all about it in the comments. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts! Oh, and before you yell at me about reading order, yes, I realize this is not how it is listed, but I assure you, my discussion order is absolutely fine, it’s how I’ve read them for years, and I’d never lead you astray! I hope you guys enjoy this Book Club idea. Stay tuned for our November Book Club announcement!
Discussion Date: Friday October 2, 2020
Cash Fraser is planning revenge and to get it he needs the perfect woman. So he hires her. Abigail Butler has lost nearly everything in her life and she’s about to lose the home she loves.
Cash meets Abby, who is posing as a paid escort, and the minute he does he knows he’s willing to pay for more than Abby being his pretend girlfriend. A lot more. Abby needs the money or the last thing that links her to her dead family and husband will be gone. The deal is struck but both Cash and Abby get more than they bargained for.
Cash realises very quickly that Abby isn’t what she seems and while he changes strategies, Abby discovers that Cash’s legacy, Penmort Castle, is like all the tales say – very, very haunted. Making matters worse, the ghost in residence wants her dead.
Abby’s found herself in the battle of her life so she enlists Mrs. Truman, her nosy neighbour; Jenny, her no-nonsense friend; Cassandra McNabb, white witch and clairvoyant with a penchant for wearing scarves (and lots of them); and Angus McPherson, dyed-in-the-wool Scot (which means he hunts ghosts in a kilt) to fight the vicious ghost who has vowed that she will rest at nothing to kill the true, abiding love of the master of Penmort.
Discussion Date: Friday, October 9, 2020
Douglas Ashton is the cold and unfeeling owner of the gothic Victorian Mansion, Sommersgate House. Julia Fairfax is his stubborn American sister-in-law. After tragedy strikes, Douglas and Julia are forced to live together at Sommersgate and raise their newly orphaned nieces and nephew.
Douglas has no desire to raise his dead sister’s children nor does he want the distraction of the tempting Julia living under his roof. Julia is struggling with grief and trying to make a go in a new country without much help from impossibly handsome but even more impossibly remote Douglas. Not to mention, she has to deal with the active hostility of Douglas’s frosty, Attila-the-Hun-in-a-skirt mother, Monique.
Douglas decides the best way to give the children what they need, get his mother to behave and give himself what he wants is to marry Julia. When he tells her (yes, tells her) she will be his wife, Julia thinks Douglas is (probably) insane. And anyway, she’s decided if she ever has another husband (since the last one wasn’t so great), he was going to be short, balding, have a paunch and worship the ground she walks on (none of these characteristics define Douglas in the slightest).
One more thing, Sommersgate House is haunted by the ghosts of the man who built the house and the woman who was the love of his life. They both died mysteriously at Sommersgate months after it was finished. When they did, a curse settled on the house making it seem strangely alive. And the only way for the beautiful but frightening house to rid itself of this curse is for its owner to find true love.
Discussion Date: Friday, October 16, 2020
In 1522, the very night they were wed, Royce Morgan and his new bride, Beatrice Godwin, were murdered on their way home to Lacybourne Manor. After the cruel deed was done, a local witch came across their bodies, witnessing firsthand the tragedy of star-crossed lovers. Vowing that Royce and Beatrice would someday uncross those stars, using magic mixed with murder as well as true love, she linked their spirits together with hers (because someone had to protect them) forever… or until their reincarnated souls find happily ever after.
Now arrogant, forbidding Colin Morgan lives at Lacybourne, knowing, from lore (as well as the portraits of Royce and Beatrice that hang in Lacybourne’s hall and the small fact that he looks exactly like Royce Morgan), that he is the reincarnated soul of his ancestor.
One stormy night, flighty, free-spirited, scarily kind-hearted Sibyl Godwin comes to Lacybourne and it doesn’t escape Colin’s notice that Sibyl is the spitting image of Beatrice. However murder, magic, a warrior’s heart beating in a modern man’s chest, a woman bent on doing good deeds even if they get her into loads of trouble, a good witch whose family has vowed throughout the centuries to protect true love, distrust and revenge make a volatile cocktail.
This means the path to happily ever after is paved with tranquilizer darts, pensioners on a rampage, Sibyl’s bad morning moods, heartbreaking misunderstandings and all kinds of magic, good… and bad.
Discussion Date: Friday, October 23, 2020
In Isabella Austin Evangelista’s life miracles never happen… she knows she’s destined to be the princess who’s stuck in the middle of a fairytale where there will be no happily ever after.
Once upon a time, Prentice Cameron loved Isabella Austin until he discovered she was a spoiled, rich girl who spent her summers toying with his heart.
Life led Prentice to his own fairytale, the love of the full-of-life Fiona Sawyer. That being so, that fairytale was torn away when Fiona died of a brain tumor leaving Prentice with a house to keep clean, piles of laundry to be done, a business to run and two children who were getting tired of takeaway.
But Isabella comes back to Prentice’s tiny fishing town and she sweeps into his children’s lives like a beautiful, well-dressed fairy godmother who bakes exquisite chocolate cakes and gives the perfect manicure to six year old girls. Then Prentice finds out Isabella’s soul destroying secrets, secrets that explain why she left him so many years ago.
Fiona, stuck in her village and forced to haunt her family and watch Prentice and Isabella’s crazy dance, finds the impossible happening. She’s cheering for Bella and Prentice to rekindle their love. Then she finds out why she’s caught in her heartbreaking haunting and discovers she must embrace her magic and keep Bella safe or Bella’s fairytale will never come true.
Discussion Date: Friday, October 30, 2020
Belle Abbot is pathologically shy and because of this, she’s living a nightmare due to the fact that she’s also a national treasure hounded by the media. James Bennett is known the world over as the perfect catch, handsome, wealthy and the owner of an intimidating castle on a Cornish Cliff, Chy An Als Point.
Belle and James meet and in one night, they fall in love. The problem is, Belle’s dating James’s brother.
As quickly as they fall together, Belle and James are torn apart. Not long after, circumstances throw them back into each other’s lives and they find they were right that first romantic night, they were meant to be.
Even if their families want them together, James’s brother Miles does not. Dogged by a rabid media who are fascinated by their love triangle, as well as Belle’s hidden demons, James and Belle find they have yet another problem to solve. The Point is haunted by the ghosts of two children murdered in the castle. Their murderer will stop at nothing to keep their souls tethered to The Point instead of letting them live eternity with their mother and father.
Belle is determined to find her courage and help them and she enlists her loopy mother, loopier grandmother, James’s even loopier ex-girlfriend and the dubious (but talented) team of rock ‘n’ roll witch Cassandra McNabb and Scottish ghost hunter extraordinaire Angus McPherson to help the children find their way back home.
Donna should be an empty nester, but she’s not, thanks COVID-19. She’s a voracious reader of all books; she can’t pick just one sub-genre. A staunch supporter of seasoned romance and a lover of cupcakes, you’ll often find her with a cup of tea and a mountainous TBR pile close at hand. Follow her @DonnaSoluri on B+M Bites.
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