Thursday, April 22, 2010

Haunting Jordan by P.J. Alderman

Title: Haunting Jordan
Author: P.J. Alderman
ISBN: 9780553592108, Bantam Books, 2009
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Amateur Sleuth, #1 Port Chatham mystery
Rating: B
Source: Paperback Swap

First Line: Her satin shoes left damning footprints in the pearlescent dew on the moonlit garden path.

Jordan Marsh is the prime suspect in her cheating husband's murder. The police allow her to leave Los Angeles, and she heads for Port Chatham, Washington, where she's purchased the old Longren House. She intends to renovate the old Victorian house, and find the peace and the balm for her soul that she so desperately needs. Once she's moved in, she quickly learns that Longren House is fully furnished with two very active ghosts who have a hundred-year-old murder they want her to solve.

Although I normally don't let the cover of a book persuade me to buy it, I have to admit that the cover of Haunting Jordan spoke to me. When I found out that the setting of the book is "Port Chatham", Washington, I let it and the old Victorian house on the cover tell me that Port Chatham is really one of my favorite places: Port Townsend. As I read, I discovered I was right, so I had the added bonus of picturing that lovely old town as I read.

At first, I was wary. The very first sentence seemed a bit over the top in its descriptive powers, but that, thankfully, disappeared. Although Alderman is a romance writer, and I am most decidedly not a romance reader, it was used to enhance only and took a backseat to the characters and plot. Besides the setting, I enjoyed Alderman's characterizations and thought she caught the nuances of life in a small town perfectly. Am I willing to read more about Jordan Marsh in Port Chatham? Yes-- bring 'em on!


  1. The cover and the title made me think it was a horror story. I just love it when a book is set in a place that's familiar to me. This book sounds like a winner.

  2. Oh, this one sounds good. I love a book with a ghost. Cover is nice too. Thanks for sharing!

  3. The cover is beautiful but I, like you, was put off by the first line. My first thought was, "First time author." But that isn't so! Romance author also makes sense...But now that you give it the seal of approval, I will have to check it out.

    Is the mystery compelling as well?


  4. That cover is quite a strong argument, I would say. So I am also tempted in spite of the first sentence.

  5. I love that cover! Sounds like a cozy I would like, guess I'll be adding this to my wish list too.

  6. Kathy-- I was very pleasantly surprised by it.

    Kay-- Any time! :)

    Michele-- Yes, the mystery is compelling. After giving it some thought, I believe that first sentence was trying to delineate the 1890s flashbacks from the modern part of the book. I could be wrong. :)

    Dorte-- You should've heard my "Oh no!" when I read that sentence. I came very close to not reading the book at all.

    Kris-- I hope you enjoy it!

  7. I'm in love with that cover and your review convinced me that I need to give this one a try. Thanks for the review.

  8. Ryan-- You're very welcome. I hope you enjoy the book!


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