Title: Uncommonly Tidy Poltergeists
Author: Angel Martinez
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Characters: Taro, Jack
A poltergeist haunts Taro, dogging his international travels. It washes glasses, puts dishes away, and even dusts. At least he hopes it’s a cleaning-obsessed poltergeist and not his own anxieties burbling over into neat freak fits he doesn’t remember. When his property manager suggests he call paranormal expert, Jack Montrose, Taro’s skeptical but desperate enough to try even a ghost hunter.
Jack’s arrival crushes Taro’s hopes of a dashing Van Helsing-style hero. Instead of an invincible hunter, he gets Ichabod Crane. As the paranormal puzzles multiply and Jack begins to suggest the entity might not be a ghostly one, Taro adds a budding friendship with Jack to his pile of anxieties. It’s a race to see whether Taro’s poltergeist or his relationship with the obviously-not-ace Jack will reach maximum strangeness first.
Have you ever read a book where you want to cuddle the characters and take them home with you? This is the cuddle book for me. Right from the start, as Taro sits at the dining room table and waits for his family to listen to him, I could relate to him so well. I’m the youngest too and it’s a position only the youngest sibling will understand. Then there is Jack. Where you expect Jack to be the alpha male, that isn’t who you get. He’s wonderful, in a bumbling, completely awkward kind of way. He has his own issues too and Taro must deal with them. This is a book about two awkward people fitting together in the most bizarre of circumstances. And it was lovely.
I was bemused by way they mentioned asexuality in the blurb. Not why they mentioned it, but how, as they referenced the non-ace character. I don’t have much experience reading ace characters, but I appreciated the way the explanation was skillfully slotted into the developing relationship between Taro and Jack, rather than info-dumping and preachy speeches.
I won’t spoil the paranormal element, beyond saying I wish the ‘entity’ would visit me. Once a week would be great. Once a month even. This was a lovely tale from Angel Martinez, which made me laugh out loud more than once, and go for the warm and fuzzies in all the right places.
Reviewed By: Pippa Wood
Click HERE to purchase Uncommonly Tidy Poltergeists by Angel Martinez