I’m terrified of ghosts. If I found one like Talulah in The Haunting of Hotel LaBelle by Sharon Buchbinder, I would be more than a little terrified. Yet I’m fascinated by stories of hauntings and ghosts. (Otherwise I may not have written Evil Speaks Softly). So Sharon’s paranormal romance looks pretty intriguing. That, and who wouldn’t love a story with a pug!
When hotel inspector, Tallulah Thompson, is called in along with her pug, Franny, to investigate renovation delays, she meets an extremely annoyed and dapper turn-of-the-century innkeeper. The only problem is he’s in limbo, neither dead nor alive, and Tallulah and the pug are the first to see him in a hundred years.
Cursed by a medicine woman, “Love ‘em and Leave ‘em Lucius” Stewart is stuck between worlds until he finds his true love and gives her his heart. When he first sees Tallulah, he doesn’t know what he’s feeling. Yet, her stunning beauty, and feisty attitude pull him in.
With the fate of Hotel LaBelle on the line, Tallulah with the help of a powerful medicine woman turns Lucius back into a flesh and blood man. She and Lucius team up to save the hotel, but Tallulah can’t help but wonder if he will ever let go of his past love and learn to love again.
Excerpt For The Haunting of Hotel LaBelle:
Every muscle in her body screamed for a hot bath. Tallulah cranked on the faucets of the claw-foot tub, plugged her cell phone in to charge, and stripped out of her travel clothes. She stepped into the steaming water and sank down into the bubbles, closing her eyes with a sigh of contentment. Franny plopped on the rug next to the tub and snored. An hour later, Tallulah awoke to a yapping pug and tepid bathwater. She stepped over the dancing dog, dropped her flannel nightgown over her head, and brushed her teeth while the little beast cocked her head and watched. “Let it never be said that a pug allowed its owner to brush their teeth alone.” Franny snorted.
The nightlight cast a small yellow glow when Tallulah opened the bathroom door, headed to the bed—and stopped.
A drop-dead gorgeous mustachioed man with brown wavy hair falling to the collar of his old-fashioned suit perched on the edge of her four poster. The scent of cigar smoke and whiskey wafted to her on the breeze from the overhead fan, and his shadow stretched across the quilt in an extended parody of his height.
Franny leaped at the man’s legs and barked. He reached down to pet the dog, murmured something, and she wagged her curly little tail. Rooted to the spot, heart thrumming in her throat, Tallulah debated running back into the bathroom and calling Will on her cell phone to get his butt up to the room and explain how this stranger got past her dead bolted and chained door. She took a deep breath. Flight wasn’t an option since he blocked her path from the room. Besides, she’d have to unwrap her pug from around his ankles or leave her here with the intruder. Not a chance. Time to put up a good fight. “Who the hell are you?” She wanted to snatch Franny away from him, but didn’t want to get too close to this stranger. “What are you doing in my room?”
The man’s dark, intelligent eyes widened and his eyebrow quirked. “You can see me?”
“Of course I can see you. I repeat. Who the hell are you? You’re sitting on my bed as if you own the place.”
“I’m Lucius Stewart. I do own the place. I’m the proprietor of Hotel LaBelle.”
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