Book Critique - The Dead Room (Harrison Investigation # 6)

For review of all books in this series: Go here

Stars: 3 / 5

Recommendation: A neat blend of history and paranormal folded with romance and murder is what we see with this plot

The Dead Room is the sixth book in the Harrison Investigation Series by the paranormal author Heather Graham published in 2007. The primary plot revolves around Leslie MacIntyre - a successful archaeologist with the gift of "sight" - and Joe Connolly - her fiancé, Matt's cousin and an ex-cop turned PI.

Long before her Krewe of Hunters series (My review of the books I have read in that series so far are here), she had her Harrison Investigation Series headed by Adam Harrison. She credits him for starting the FBI special division called the Krewe of Hunters. While I was reading those books I was curious to read about Adam Harrison and books that came under his series. And so the book reviews continue in this series.

A year ago Leslie MacIntyre loses her fiancé Matt Connolly, a successful journalist, during a gas line explosion while working at a dig at the Hastings House in historic Manhattan district. Now she is back in the house surveying another dig close by. Although she had survived the blast, she came out of it with a new gift - a gift to see the ghosts who stay back. Her hope was that she would see Matt and get to say goodbye.

Joe Connolly is assigned to find the missing socialite, Genevieve O'Brien. But he could not let go the sinking feeling that the blast at the Hastings House has something to do with Matt and not an accident. Together Leslie and Joe work towards finding the missing girl and the actual cause of the blast while Leslie works on her digs to bring the historical past into light. 

Heather does have a slew of characters supporting the plot again. With so many characters, there would be repeat paraphrasing of having to explain a particular scene to the remaining characters. However, it was lesser compared to some of her other books I read. She tied up all the inconsequential details in neatly towards the end of the plot as usual.

As expected we have one of the investigators from Harrison Investigations - Nikki Blackhawk, whom we had met in the third book Ghost Walk - and Adam Harrison himself involved in the plot. Of course we had known Nikki as Nikki DuMonde in that plot, but now she is married to Brent and takes his name. 

In this plot, we get an archeological and guided tour of Manhattan along with historical references all through. In the beginning I wondered if Hastings House was a fiction of Heather's mind. But I did find a Hastings House in New York City and they indeed have historical tours. You can read more about the actual house here.

This was surprisingly an emotionally drenched plot for me somehow. At first I was put off by the way Heather has the ghost element participate in the plot. But as the story moved on I got what Heather was trying to show us. The essence of someone, even passed on, always stays with you no matter where you are.

I could not identify who the killer would be until Heather revealed so it was a real surprise. However, I may not have liked the ending, but it is very fitting to the plot. A tight paranormal plot involving romance and murder. Like always Heather Graham makes it chiller without making it gorier 

On a side note, this time around the hard-card inserts are missing which readers could use to buy books.

Another intriguing plot that would lead to a plethora of books in this series and entertaining the reader every step of the way with murder, mystery, ghosts and romance

Spoiler Alerts:

1. Plot Reveals:

a. Brent Blackhawk is shown to be out in Los Angeles on a case. Adam Harrison is scheduled to head to London from Manhattan the following day for a case. I wonder if Heather's next plot would be in Los Angeles or London. 

b. The lead character Joe Connolly is left in a limbo with regards to his love life. I so much wanted him to have a life with Leslie MacIntyre. But Leslie is tied to Matt Connolly, Joe's cousin, and in the end joins him in the other world. Joe is seen walking away from Matt and Leslie's graves with Genevieve O'Brien, the rich socialite he and Leslie had saved from the clutches of a psychopath. I wonder what will Heather do to these characters, will she have a story for them? Will she find true love for Joe who had lost so much in his life? One has to wait and see.

c. Heather also leaves the plot with Joe Connolly getting the ability to see ghosts, the gift of sight.

2. Sub-Plots:

a. Another one of Adam Harrison's team is introduced in conversations - John, in the first book Hanuted. Will he become a main character in a future book is something we have to wait and see. 

b. In Haunted, Adam Harrison mentions that the case in London is complex and would be solved another time, hence he has come to Stoneyville to aid Darcy Tremayne. I wonder if Heather Graham would make this little tidbit into a plot for a future book in this series or the Krewe of Hunters series.

c. In Haunted, Randy Newton, an FBI agent and friend of Matt's, is introduced in the plot as a contact and friend of Matt from a serial killer case that they had worked together on the outskirts of D.C. I wonder if he was a main character in a previous book that of Heather Graham's that I hadnt read yet.

d. In The Vision, Heather Graham has one of her characters, Jack, mention about a guy killing prostitutes around Eighth Street in Miami. I don’t remember any of Heather Graham's so far read plots that has this certain plot. Perhaps it is from one of the books I didn’t read or maybe it was just an off-hand instead mentioned for the sake of the plot.

3. Grammatical / Historical / Location / Character Errors:

a. On Pg. 57, Line 14, it should be "..thought that the professor…"

b. On Pg. 78, Line 4 from bottom, it should be "…cast by the security lights…"

c. On Pg. 268, Line 3, the conversation should have been said by Brad, but Heather mis-quotes it as being said by Joe.

d. On Pg. 302, Line 2, it should be "…just as Adam came back…"

e. On Pg. 308, Line 3, it should be "..photograph," Leslie said."


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