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Dead Bolt

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Turner Construction's latest restoration project is a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco. This time general contractor Mel Turner has to work around the owners who insist on sticking around- along with some ghosts that insist in their own way that the work stops... The ghosts aren't the only ones standing in the way of the renovations. A crotchety neighbor, E Turner Construction's latest restoration project is a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco. This time general contractor Mel Turner has to work around the owners who insist on sticking around- along with some ghosts that insist in their own way that the work stops... The ghosts aren't the only ones standing in the way of the renovations. A crotchety neighbor, Emile Blunt, secretly wants this house, and could be behind some of the disturbances. But when Emile is found dead, it's Mel who appears guilty. Now she must restore the building-and her reputation-before it's too late.


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Turner Construction's latest restoration project is a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco. This time general contractor Mel Turner has to work around the owners who insist on sticking around- along with some ghosts that insist in their own way that the work stops... The ghosts aren't the only ones standing in the way of the renovations. A crotchety neighbor, E Turner Construction's latest restoration project is a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco. This time general contractor Mel Turner has to work around the owners who insist on sticking around- along with some ghosts that insist in their own way that the work stops... The ghosts aren't the only ones standing in the way of the renovations. A crotchety neighbor, Emile Blunt, secretly wants this house, and could be behind some of the disturbances. But when Emile is found dead, it's Mel who appears guilty. Now she must restore the building-and her reputation-before it's too late.

30 review for Dead Bolt

  1. 5 out of 5

    Juli

    Mel Turner renovates homes. Not just any homes...historic homes in San Francisco. Every house she works on has a story, a colorful past. Sometimes, Mel encounters ghosts and a mystery as she brings old homes back to their former glory. This time, her current project is a Queen Anne Victorian. It's a difficult project but not because of the work required. The homeowners insist on staying in the house during renovations and the resident ghosts seem determined that work should stop. Plus, a cantank Mel Turner renovates homes. Not just any homes...historic homes in San Francisco. Every house she works on has a story, a colorful past. Sometimes, Mel encounters ghosts and a mystery as she brings old homes back to their former glory. This time, her current project is a Queen Anne Victorian. It's a difficult project but not because of the work required. The homeowners insist on staying in the house during renovations and the resident ghosts seem determined that work should stop. Plus, a cantankerous neighbor, Emile Blunt, causes problems. When the neighbor is killed, Mel finds herself sucked into the murder investigation. She's a suspect! Yikes! I like this series. Mel is a strong main character. She's funny, feisty and very good at her job. She still struggles with her new found ability to see ghosts but is doing her best to deal with it. I love the background theme of historic home renovation...perfect backdrop for ghosts and mysteries! The stories always have a nice mix of humor and mystery. Makes for an enjoyable reading experience! The books can be read as stand alone stories and don't necessarily have to be read in order, but there is some character development that might be better enjoyed by reading the series in order. Dead Bolt is the second book in the Haunted Home Renovation series. There are seven books in the series. I listened to the audio book version of this story. Narrated by Xe Sands, the audio is just over 7 hours long. Sands reads at a nice pace and has a pleasant voice. Overall, a very entertaining performance. I have partial hearing loss but was easily able to hear and understand this entire audio book. I will definitely be reading the rest of this series! :)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Betty

    The A Haunted Home Renovation series is a winner. They can be read as stand-alone but the books are better read in order. The Protagonist is Mel Turner, she is recovering from a divorce and her Father has major medical problems. Mel took over the family business of reconstruction and has been running it successfully. Other characters are Dog, a stray that she rescued. Her Father and his disabled friend, Stan. There is Calbel, her stepson from her marriage. Graham, her boyfriend. Olivier the go t The A Haunted Home Renovation series is a winner. They can be read as stand-alone but the books are better read in order. The Protagonist is Mel Turner, she is recovering from a divorce and her Father has major medical problems. Mel took over the family business of reconstruction and has been running it successfully. Other characters are Dog, a stray that she rescued. Her Father and his disabled friend, Stan. There is Calbel, her stepson from her marriage. Graham, her boyfriend. Olivier the go to for spirit matters. Annette Crawford, a homicide, Stephen, a barrister, and Zeke, a photographer. Mel learns in the first book that she has inherited her Mother's gift to see ghosts. The stories touch upon social problems and our opinions of spirituality. This is the second book in the series. Mel is working a Queen Anne Victorian home for a software developer and his Russian wife, Katenka, and baby, Quinn. Katenka is scared because of strange noises she hears and the workman noticed tools and other objects have moved. There a door that a Deadbolt on it. If a person gets near the door, the ghosts become active. Mayhem occurs in another part of the house. Mel is still learning about her gift and attempting to learn more about. I high!y recommend this book and series.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Moondance

    My father always used to say: There's nothing quite like a protracted remodel to test a person's sanity. Mel Turner is renovating a Queen Anne Victorian In San Francisco when strange things start happening. There are misplaced tools, unusual handprints on 12 foot ceilings and a general feeling of unease. The owner has refused to move from the house during the project much to Mel's dismay. The murder of a shopkeeper after a run in with Mel puts everyone on edge and brings forth even more ghostly a My father always used to say: There's nothing quite like a protracted remodel to test a person's sanity. Mel Turner is renovating a Queen Anne Victorian In San Francisco when strange things start happening. There are misplaced tools, unusual handprints on 12 foot ceilings and a general feeling of unease. The owner has refused to move from the house during the project much to Mel's dismay. The murder of a shopkeeper after a run in with Mel puts everyone on edge and brings forth even more ghostly activity. Mel calls in favors and consults supposed experts to find out the secret of the Cheshire House. This is a good addition to the Haunted Home Renovation series. Mel discovers in the first book that she can see and hear ghosts. The ghosts in this house are darker and more frightening. Mel does her research on the house, finding plenty of reasons for the dark entities. Mel is an interesting character. I like that she is very knowledgeable in the construction field where women are scarce. It's funny that she still dresses very feminine on job sites but always has work coveralls at hand to dive into the dirty work. The storyline with the cat lady was sad. It delves into the realm of hoarders and their disorder. Some clues from her boarding house residents provide information that is helpful in solving the mystery. The history of Cheshire House's original owners is well written with plenty of twist and turns of betrayal. Mel's interest in Graham frustrates me a bit. I'm not sure that I care for him. He flaunts a new relationship in her face too easily yet she still yearns for him. We will have to see where this goes. The Russian wife tie in with past and present characters explains a lot about the strife in the house. The transference of anger from the past to present through the spirits was interesting. I didn't pick up on the killer until right before Mel did. I suspected early on but pushed it aside to consider someone else. Overall all good book. Mel's family dynamics with her dad, step-son and Stan will keep me coming back. 3.5 stars

  4. 5 out of 5

    Lesa

    Juliet Blackwell continues her terrific Haunted Home Renovation mystery series with Dead Bolt. It’s not necessary to have read the first book, If Walls Could Talk, in order to appreciate this one. But, why would you want to miss any of the adventures of Mel Turner as she restores houses and tangles with ghosts? Mel’s latest job is restoration of an 1890s Queen Ann Victorian, Cheshire House, in San Francisco. The project has had a few problems, handprints appearing on the ceiling, deadbolts lockin Juliet Blackwell continues her terrific Haunted Home Renovation mystery series with Dead Bolt. It’s not necessary to have read the first book, If Walls Could Talk, in order to appreciate this one. But, why would you want to miss any of the adventures of Mel Turner as she restores houses and tangles with ghosts? Mel’s latest job is restoration of an 1890s Queen Ann Victorian, Cheshire House, in San Francisco. The project has had a few problems, handprints appearing on the ceiling, deadbolts locking and unlocking. A few workers walked off the job, claiming the house was haunted. Mel’s dealt with haunted houses before. This time, her problems are complicated because her clients are living in the house. And, Jim Daley might seem immune to the presence of spirits, but his Russian wife, Katenka, has sensed a black shadow trying to get into the baby’s room. Mel always talks tough. When her marriage fell apart, she talked about divesting herself of everything and moving to Paris. Instead, she acquired her father’s construction company, her beloved stepson, Caleb, and a dog. And, now, when a man is murdered, and Mel feels there is a connection to Cheshire House, she feels obligated to investigate. After all, unlike the police, Mel can sense ghosts. And, if those ghosts are a threat to an innocent baby and Mel’s clients, she’s going to find out why they’re haunting Cheshire House. Juliet Blackwell’s books are intriguing mysteries. In this series, the protagonist is still learning to accept her ability to sense the presence of ghosts, and deal with them. If readers enjoy paranormal mysteries, they should find this series fascinating. Blackwell combines a murder mystery and hauntings perfectly in the books. Those of us who love series, though, will return not only for the mysteries, but also for Mel Turner. Mel is a compassionate woman who tries to hide her feelings. Time after time, she steps in to care for others. Her relationships with her father, his friend, Stan, and her stepson are wonderful to see. There’s humor and love in every interaction with them. Now, those men in her life would just like to see a romance in her life. It’s one more fun aspect of this series. Once you start Dead Bolt, you’ll want to bolt yourself in your own house and finish it. Juliet Blackwell’s Dead Bolt is the paranormal mystery at its best.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    I liked this better than the previous entry simply due to Mel (the MC) not doing any real work. It read much more believably. She's good a general contractor, not so much with tools. The mystery was suitably twisty with some fun characters & a lot of historical information about the old houses. I liked the way she pointed out how various bits of construction were typically done by specific peoples (e.g., Italian woodworkers) & she really does seem to have an appreciation for it. I do too, so it' I liked this better than the previous entry simply due to Mel (the MC) not doing any real work. It read much more believably. She's good a general contractor, not so much with tools. The mystery was suitably twisty with some fun characters & a lot of historical information about the old houses. I liked the way she pointed out how various bits of construction were typically done by specific peoples (e.g., Italian woodworkers) & she really does seem to have an appreciation for it. I do too, so it's just fun reading about. The ghosts are just icing on the cake.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Heidi Prockish

    This was a fun one! Ghosts & renovations :)

  7. 4 out of 5

    LORI CASWELL

    I was first drawn to this series because I used to build and remodel houses, then I enjoyed these wonderful characters and couldn’t get enough. Mel Turner is a take charge kind of gal, very organized, meticulous and not afraid of much except maybe getting her heart broken. She also has a special gift that at times is as much a curse as a blessing. With traits like these readers can’t help but care about her as we take each step right along with her, up those attic stairs or home to her Dad, Stan I was first drawn to this series because I used to build and remodel houses, then I enjoyed these wonderful characters and couldn’t get enough. Mel Turner is a take charge kind of gal, very organized, meticulous and not afraid of much except maybe getting her heart broken. She also has a special gift that at times is as much a curse as a blessing. With traits like these readers can’t help but care about her as we take each step right along with her, up those attic stairs or home to her Dad, Stan and Caleb, or even into those confusing romantic situations. She is funny and smart, the kind of friend you would want to tag along with, even when she’s off trying to get a family of ghosts to move along and out of the house she desperately wants to finish renovating. This book is fun, entertaining with perfect amounts are mystery, mayhem and haunting characters. I loved every word!!

  8. 5 out of 5

    ✨Susan✨

    A cute, cozy, ghost story. A young woman who has taken over her fathers construction company in San Francisco has the ability to see and sometimes communicate with ghosts. In this addition to the series there is a murder across the street from a house that she is renovating and there is evidence that it may be connected to her project. I enjoyed this story but it fell flat for me. Very predictable with a cooky cutter, simmering romance. The narrator's good job helped me to want to finish it. A cute, cozy, ghost story. A young woman who has taken over her fathers construction company in San Francisco has the ability to see and sometimes communicate with ghosts. In this addition to the series there is a murder across the street from a house that she is renovating and there is evidence that it may be connected to her project. I enjoyed this story but it fell flat for me. Very predictable with a cooky cutter, simmering romance. The narrator's good job helped me to want to finish it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    SheriC (PM)

    This second book in the Haunted Renovation mystery series was a fun enough, but distressingly heavy on Romance and light on Mystery. There were still some interesting tidbits on historical homes, though. I’m going to try the third book, but if it continues to emphasize goofy love triangles and sexual “tension”, then I’m outta here. Audiobook via Audible subscription; Xe Sands’ performance is excellent as usual.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kristin

    I always enjoy JB's books, even when they are not particularly amazing. I do wish she would move her characters' development more quickly though. I always enjoy JB's books, even when they are not particularly amazing. I do wish she would move her characters' development more quickly though.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Second in the Haunted Home Renovation Series. Mel has recovered from her last encounter with a ghost, but the new reno she's working on seems to have some malevolent spirits involved. And the couple that have hired her refuse to leave the house during the reno, which makes things more difficult. Add to that the murder of the guy across the street, well, there may be more than ghosts involved. Mel's senses are tingling, and not just because the handsome Graham is nearby. I like this series a lot - Second in the Haunted Home Renovation Series. Mel has recovered from her last encounter with a ghost, but the new reno she's working on seems to have some malevolent spirits involved. And the couple that have hired her refuse to leave the house during the reno, which makes things more difficult. Add to that the murder of the guy across the street, well, there may be more than ghosts involved. Mel's senses are tingling, and not just because the handsome Graham is nearby. I like this series a lot - paranormal isn't my 'go to' genre, but this series continues to delight. I like the no-nonsense way the ghosts are integrated into the mystery. Not to mention that Mel isn't some young hipster who has decided she can be a crime-fighter. Melhas movix, but she isn't above an occasional whiney moment. My kind of gal. This one continues with character development. I've read others in the series but had missed #2. Glad I went back and picked this one up.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin Copp

    This is the second in the Haunted Home Renovation Mysteries. Mel Turner and her construction company have started on a new project- a beautiful Victorian in San Francisco. This beautiful Victorian was recently purchased by new owners but the more Mel works on the house the more she realizes that the old owners never left. Matters are made worse when the ghosts start presenting as malicious, hurting the construction team members, causing destruction on the job site and scaring the home owners. Wh This is the second in the Haunted Home Renovation Mysteries. Mel Turner and her construction company have started on a new project- a beautiful Victorian in San Francisco. This beautiful Victorian was recently purchased by new owners but the more Mel works on the house the more she realizes that the old owners never left. Matters are made worse when the ghosts start presenting as malicious, hurting the construction team members, causing destruction on the job site and scaring the home owners. When the neighbor across the street is murdered Mel starts to wonder if she is in too deep. With the help of her friend Luce and her hunky ex-boyfriend, Graham, Mel is determined to rid this house of ghosts and solve the murder.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sophia

    I really enjoyed the book and raved through it however I was a bit disappointed with the ending. It felt like most of the book was building up to a really good suspenseful ending but it didn't really live up to it. The story of the ghosts seemed a bit tame and the boarding house story didn't really have any closure. Everything just seemed rushed at the end. I will carry on with the series and I hope that book 3 will be as good as the first book. I really enjoyed the book and raved through it however I was a bit disappointed with the ending. It felt like most of the book was building up to a really good suspenseful ending but it didn't really live up to it. The story of the ghosts seemed a bit tame and the boarding house story didn't really have any closure. Everything just seemed rushed at the end. I will carry on with the series and I hope that book 3 will be as good as the first book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    This is the second book in the haunted home renovation series. Mel Turner runs Turner Construction and is currently renovating a Queen Anne Victorian. When weird things start happening on the job site the owner is sure that the house is haunted. When their neighbor is murdered, Mel suspects that there is a connection between the murdervand the ghosts. I am really enjoying this series and am excited to read more in the series. Mel and her father have a great relationship. And i love the relationsh This is the second book in the haunted home renovation series. Mel Turner runs Turner Construction and is currently renovating a Queen Anne Victorian. When weird things start happening on the job site the owner is sure that the house is haunted. When their neighbor is murdered, Mel suspects that there is a connection between the murdervand the ghosts. I am really enjoying this series and am excited to read more in the series. Mel and her father have a great relationship. And i love the relationship between mel and her stepson, Caleb.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    This fun little book does not disappoint! Mel continues to come to grips with the fact that she can see ghosts...which might be easier for her than coming to grips with the various men in her life! No, MOST of them are NOT romantic interests, they are just men...with all that entails! SUCH a good way to spend a rainy day!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Minx

    I am really digging this series. The whole renovating old houses and running into spectral visitors is quite fun. I also like the main character, Mel, a lot. She is level headed and I endearing. She is not a drama mama and doesn't do stupid things in order to solve a mystery. I hope this series continues to be this good. :D I am really digging this series. The whole renovating old houses and running into spectral visitors is quite fun. I also like the main character, Mel, a lot. She is level headed and I endearing. She is not a drama mama and doesn't do stupid things in order to solve a mystery. I hope this series continues to be this good. :D

  17. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

    Better than the first! This mystery was based on a true story, which always adds a neat touch to this kind of story.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Janet Robel

    Cute cozy mystery. I would have liked a little more mystery, but overall, I enjoyed this. I like the main character, Melanie Turner, and love the presence of ghosts in her renovation projects.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Amy lifewiththe_williams

    Another great story by Juliet Blackwell! I listened to this one on audio and with every story cannot express my love for XE Sands any more. Juliet Blackwell’s words spoken by XE Sands is the perfect combination! I can’t wait to listen to the next one!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    If I were Mel I would have slapped several people throughout this book. Ooooooo! They just grind my gears! Urgh!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Enjoyable mystery. I really like Mel and the other characters. This story had a regular murder mystery as well as a ghost mystery and there was more focus on the ghosts than the murder so it was as if she just accidently discovered the murderer. Still very enjoyable and I like the relationship between Mel and Graham and want to see where that goes.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

    Not as good of a resolution as the first one, in my mind, but still fun.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Suspense Magazine

    San Francisco general contractor Melanie Turner is up to her ears in trouble—of the human as well as the ghostly variety—in “Dead Bolt,” the second Haunted House Renovation Mystery by Juliet Blackwell. I’m not normally a fan of paranormal mysteries, but this one hooked me in right away. Melanie and her crew have been hired to restore a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco’s Cow Hollow neighborhood. This is no easy task because the home owners—the Daley family—refuse to leave and demand San Francisco general contractor Melanie Turner is up to her ears in trouble—of the human as well as the ghostly variety—in “Dead Bolt,” the second Haunted House Renovation Mystery by Juliet Blackwell. I’m not normally a fan of paranormal mysteries, but this one hooked me in right away. Melanie and her crew have been hired to restore a historic Queen Anne Victorian in San Francisco’s Cow Hollow neighborhood. This is no easy task because the home owners—the Daley family—refuse to leave and demand that the renovation be done “around them.” Eerie things start happening at the job site, and Katenka Daley admits that she’s seen ghosts on the property that have really frightened her. As if that isn’t enough to deal with, Melanie’s father happens across the dead body of a cantankerous neighbor at the house—the same neighbor who continually complained about the renovation disrupting the neighborhood. In order to unravel this mystery with its many layers and finish the restoration job she was hired to do, Melanie has to return to the past and confront the previous house owners in their current, ghostly state. And break the paranormal hold they have on the house. Good characters and a great plot with surprises that keep on coming with every chapter. And an ending that is guaranteed to keep you looking over your shoulder for quite a while! Reviewed by Susan Santangelo, author of “Moving Can Be Murder” for Suspense Magazine

  24. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    I highly recommend this series if you like paranormal mystery. The main character, Mel, a general contractor, is interesting and quirky. However, she wears frilly clothes to the job site even though she has “overalls to wear over them if she needed to crawl through grime”. (Please, that is a little over the top.) She has taken over Turner Construction from her retired dad and is surrounded by a warm non-traditional family and steadfast friends who add to the interest of the story. Every house h I highly recommend this series if you like paranormal mystery. The main character, Mel, a general contractor, is interesting and quirky. However, she wears frilly clothes to the job site even though she has “overalls to wear over them if she needed to crawl through grime”. (Please, that is a little over the top.) She has taken over Turner Construction from her retired dad and is surrounded by a warm non-traditional family and steadfast friends who add to the interest of the story. Every house has problems during a renovation, but this one has the additional problem of Jim Daley, the owner, who insists on living in the basement apartment with his family while the renovations occur despite the fact that his wife is against it. There are spirits residing in Cheshire Inn. Mel has dealt with spirits on other jobs but this one is different. When cantankerous neighbor and former resident of Cheshire House, Emile Blunt, is found dead, Mel believes there is a link between the murder and the spirit. Although she understands the risk, Mel, must find a way to coax the ghosts to move on and out of Cheshire House while finding out who killed Emile. There is also a sub plot involving Jim’s wife that adds to the mystery and intrigue as well as a female police investigator that has her eye on Mel's dad as a suspect for Emile's murder.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    This is the second book in this series, I also read the first one. Back in March, after I finished reading “If Walls Could Talk”, I remember not being able to wait for the next one to come out in December. Upon reading the first few pages “Dead Bolt”, I felt like I had read it before… then I realized the previous book had an excerpt of this one in it. Silly me. It took me a little bit to remember why I had enjoyed these books to begin with. At times, the details can be exhausting if you’re not o This is the second book in this series, I also read the first one. Back in March, after I finished reading “If Walls Could Talk”, I remember not being able to wait for the next one to come out in December. Upon reading the first few pages “Dead Bolt”, I felt like I had read it before… then I realized the previous book had an excerpt of this one in it. Silly me. It took me a little bit to remember why I had enjoyed these books to begin with. At times, the details can be exhausting if you’re not overly into house renovation details. Ha. After really getting into it though, I remembered that I quite enjoyed the characters. I find myself right now wishing the next book was out right now so I can continue on with the characters’ lives. A review on the back of this book states that “Melanie Turner may well be one of the most exciting, smart, and funny heroines currently in any book series.” I was going to argue this, but she is an enjoyable character and has her humorous moments. I’m fairly new to the ghostly mystery books, but I like these by Blackwell. Not too frightening, plenty of humor, and a bit of romance. Also, she makes me want to build my own home… to go to salvage yards and find old beautiful door knobs and such. :) ((((Copied from my book blog on Tumblr))))

  26. 5 out of 5

    Akhmal Aiman

    Took me more than a month to finish this considering my hectic semester. Rating: 2.5/5 stars Just like the first book, I think it is a good read. Interesting plot, as always, I mean, come on. Not everyday you read/hear a story about a construction worker who redoes haunted houses, right? If you feel like reading it, you're more than welcome, although some may find it slightly boring. It is a calm read. The pace of the book was right and I think all the questions I asked myself throughout my reading Took me more than a month to finish this considering my hectic semester. Rating: 2.5/5 stars Just like the first book, I think it is a good read. Interesting plot, as always, I mean, come on. Not everyday you read/hear a story about a construction worker who redoes haunted houses, right? If you feel like reading it, you're more than welcome, although some may find it slightly boring. It is a calm read. The pace of the book was right and I think all the questions I asked myself throughout my reading were answered nicely. The ending was pleasant with a little surprise. You know, things like "Are you serious? (S)he's the murderer?" and "Palui. No wonder it's haunted." But I just saw that the series has like... 6.5 books thus far? And I already bought the third book. I guess I'm going to stop after reading that, although I'm not planning to read it anytime soon.

  27. 5 out of 5

    MLL

    I highly recommend this series if you like paranormal mysteries with a bit of romance. So far this series is clean. The main character is interesting and quirky. She is surrounded by a warm non-traditional family, fun friends and a cast of interesting extended characters. And of course she sees and talks to ghosts. Sometimes they even talk back. I love the constant bits of facinating trivia throughout the books. There is also a thread of social consciousness without preaching. I love this author I highly recommend this series if you like paranormal mysteries with a bit of romance. So far this series is clean. The main character is interesting and quirky. She is surrounded by a warm non-traditional family, fun friends and a cast of interesting extended characters. And of course she sees and talks to ghosts. Sometimes they even talk back. I love the constant bits of facinating trivia throughout the books. There is also a thread of social consciousness without preaching. I love this author and this series. As soon as I finish this series I will check out her Witchcraft Mystery Series. So far I find Juliet Blackwell a brilliant author.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    This was one of those books so enjoyed you read it in one sitting if possible. I enjoy Ms Blackwell's writing style and in this book the way she ended and began chapters kept the story moving quickly. I was even hoping the story might be a bit longer. If there is a weak spot in the story, it would be near the end where she eluded to malicious activity, enough that you got the idea but she did not fill in seedy details. This does make Dead Bolt a story safe for all age levels. This can be read as a This was one of those books so enjoyed you read it in one sitting if possible. I enjoy Ms Blackwell's writing style and in this book the way she ended and began chapters kept the story moving quickly. I was even hoping the story might be a bit longer. If there is a weak spot in the story, it would be near the end where she eluded to malicious activity, enough that you got the idea but she did not fill in seedy details. This does make Dead Bolt a story safe for all age levels. This can be read as a stand alone novel but also as part of a series to be enjoyed.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Brenda Kirton

    This was a good read. I enjoyed the fact that the protagonist is a female general contractor. She is smart and capable. I work for a building supply company, it is not a good idea to underestimate the women in this field. It was a good blending of the old mystery and the new one. Mel Turner isn't afraid to ask for help with the ghosts she is dealing with. I will be looking forward to the next in the series. This was a good read. I enjoyed the fact that the protagonist is a female general contractor. She is smart and capable. I work for a building supply company, it is not a good idea to underestimate the women in this field. It was a good blending of the old mystery and the new one. Mel Turner isn't afraid to ask for help with the ghosts she is dealing with. I will be looking forward to the next in the series.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    I really enjoy this mystery series. Not only does it have the woo-woo factor, it takes place in wonderful San Francisco with all those historic houses. I also find the details of period renovations interesting. The characters are likeable and the stories are fun. Highly recommend this series to anyone looking for a book that will keep you reading.

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