September 23, 2013

Spirit and Dust Review

I stayed up late last night reading Spirit and Dust by Rosemary Clement-Moore. This is the second book in the Goodnight Family series. The author informed me on twitter that each book is an independent novel based off one family- the Goodnights.
Daisy Goodnight can speak to the dead. It’s not the result of a head injury or some near-death experience. She was just born that way. And she’s really good at it. Good enough to help the police solve the occasional homicide.

But helping the local authorities clear cold cases is one thing. Being whisked out of chemistry class by the FBI and flown to the scene of a murder/kidnapping in Minnesota? That’s the real deal.
Before the promotion can go to Daisy’s head, she’s up to her neck in trouble. The spirits are talking, and they’re terrified. There’s a real living girl in danger. And when Daisy is kidnapped by a crime boss with no scruples about using magic—and Daisy—to get what he wants, it looks like hers is the next soul on the line.

This book is set in modern day America with no obvious distinctions. The FBI is still here and people still go to school. A large portion of the story happens at  The Field Museum in Chicago- the one with Sue the T. Rex. 

The characters: 
I really liked Daisy- she was tough and spunky and didn't mind telling a guy he was being a jerk- the actual term she uses isn't as kid friendly. Daisy is matter of fact about her talent- she was raised in a family where everyone was a witch or psychic. She was just born this way and she can see remnants of people's souls and help them pass on beyond the Veil. I love how Daisy tries to convince herself and everyone around her she is a tough-as-nails psychic but her thoughts show her as the typical almost 18 year old girl. 

I thought Agent Tasty- I mean Taylor was a great part of the book. Agent Taylor is a young FBI agent who is Daisy's handler. He works to support Daisy as they work through their cases and doesn't question whether or not she can speak to the dead. Rather he questions how she can interact with the dead. They have a very clear non-relationship with the understanding that something might happen after Daisy turns 18. She won't call him by his first name until she's legal and until then he calls her Jailbait. 

Carson played a main role in the book and I found myself liking him more and more as the book goes on. He played the typical brooding male in a love triangle but he played it well. He had moments of humor and he wasn't overwhelmingly arrogant or prideful. In fact, Daisy does a good job of beating him up at one point and he handles it with humor and without an overabundance of wounded male pride. During the course of the book you realize Carson has his secrets but he would do whatever it takes to protect Daisy. I liked him and was cheering for him during the book.

The book held my attention- it actually kept me up- the entire time I was reading it. I was rooting for the characters and following along with the mystery. There was a lot of action that propelled the book forward. I liked the concept of the Goodnight family and how close they are and their talents. 

The book follows Daisy and Carson as they look for Alexis Maquire- daughter of a crime lord- who has been kidnapped. Maquire coerces Daisy to do everything possible to find his daughter- he's not above using magic or blackmail to get what he wants. They quickly realize Alexis was kidnapped by a mysterious cult looking for the Oosterhouse Jackal- what that is they have no idea. So begins an epic quest to find the Jackal before the cult can; save Alexis; and perhaps, save the world.

A good amount of supernatural events unfold in the course of the story but Clement-Moore does a good job of explaining what is going on without overwhelming the reader. 

 I will definitely be looking for the other books about the Goodnight family. I hope Daisy will pop up again in later books.

Overall, the story held my attention all night and I couldn't put it down once I started. I liked the main characters and while the love triangle wasn't the main point of the story, I could understand why Daisy was torn between the two men. Usually when there is a love triangle I lean toward one man over the other almost immediately but I felt drawn to both Carson and Taylor. The writing was solid and drew the reader on. The book was action-packed but not in such a way that the characters weren't developed. This was a solid read that I really enjoyed. I'd definitely recommend this to people who like a strong heroine and supernatural reads. As long as you're willing to give bad boys a try and stay open minded about psychic talents.

This book was pretty amazing. Have you read Spirit and Dust or another Goodnight Family book? What did you think? Are you interested in supernatural books? Leave me a comment and let me know!


  1. I haven't read a book review in ages! I used to read them all the time to help me pick my next book, I have a loaded shelf! When you mentioned supernatural, you hooked me with this one, thanks! I love reading and I think more people should read. PS- It's KristinCali from SB!

    1. I'm so glad you decided to read my review then! I think it's helpful to read book reviews to help pick the next read because even if the person didn't like the book because then if you decide you still want to read it you can keep these things in mind. It really is a great supernatural young adult read. Daisy is a kick-butt heroine. Thanks for stopping by!

    2. I agree. And your reviews don't seem biased or one-sided. You state the facts how they are, which is helpful for the reader to make their own choice. PS- I absolutely LOVE the Anita Blake series! I've read every single one! Some of them more than once :)

    3. I'm so glad you think so. :) I try to say "the heroine was like this" which I may or may not have enjoyed but some people like stronger characters than I do and some people appreciate a weaker character with more faults. It's all personal opinion.

      I love the Anita Blake series too! I haven't had a chance to check out the last book yet but I too have read some of them more than once. How do you feel about Richard? Does he kind of annoy you sometimes?


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