Give a great Smexy welcome to Jenn Burke who is here today with some ghostly reads. Jenn’s new book, Give Up the Ghost released on June 3.
If you’re looking for more of that sensation in your m/m reads, check out these five spooky stories. They’re some of my favourites!
Who doesn’t love a spooky, ghost-laden story once in a while? When I was writing Give Up the Ghost, I knew I wanted it to hit some of the notes traditional, around-the-campfire ghost stories do. I wanted my readers to get chills racing down their spine and have that wonderful creepy sensation when they encountered the ghosts alongside Wes. I hope I succeeded!
Summary: Detective Matthew Bennett doesn’t believe in ghosts. So when the spirit of a murdered child leads him to her body, he’s shaken to the core—and taken off the case. Unable to explain his vision, or to let go of the investigation, Matthew turns to renowned medium Kiernan Fitzpatrick. Though he has doubts about Kiernan’s claims to communicate with the dead, Matt is nevertheless drawn to the handsome psychic, who awakens feelings he thought were long-buried.
Haunted by the lingering spirit of the little girl, Kiernan is compelled to aid in the search for her killer. The chance to get closer to the enigmatic Matt is an unexpected bonus. Although Kiernan’s been betrayed by people who turned out to be more interested in his fame than in himself, with Matt he’s willing to risk his heart. As the two men grow closer, Kiernan helps Matt rediscover that life offers no guarantees—but love offers a reason to believe…
Why you should read it: This was one of the first m/m books I ever read, and it still stands out as a favourite. The starting conflict between Matt and Kiernan is delicious, and Kiernan is just so joyfully and unapologetically himself, it’s wonderful to read.
Summary: After losing the family fortune to a fraudulent psychic, inventor Henry Strauss is determined to bring the otherworld under control through the application of science. All he needs is a genuine haunting to prove his Electro-Séance will work. A letter from wealthy industrialist Dominic Gladfield seems the answer to his prayers. Gladfield’s proposition: a contest pitting science against spiritualism, with a hefty prize for the winner.
The contest takes Henry to Reyhome Castle, the site of a series of brutal murders decades earlier. There he meets his rival for the prize, the dangerously appealing Vincent Night. Vincent is handsome, charming…and determined to get Henry into bed.
Henry can’t afford to fall for a spirit medium, let alone the competition. But nothing in the haunted mansion is quite as it seems, and soon winning the contest is the least of Henry’s concerns.
For the evil stalking the halls of Reyhome Castle wants to claim not just Henry and Vincent’s lives, but their very souls.
Why you should read it: I love Jordan’s historical paranormal romance! This series is especially fun, with the cusp-of-the-last-century focus on spiritualism, industrialism, and the conflict between the two. It’s got a sort of steampunk feel to it, and the enemies-to-lovers vibe is great too.
A Frost of Cares by Amy Rae Durreson
Summary: Military historian Luke Alcott leaps at the chance to live in the seventeenth-century country mansion of Eelmoor Hall, home of the Royal Military School of Medicine, after being offered a job cataloging the school’s archives. Luke believes he chose the perfect place to start a new life and put his broken past behind him. But soon after settling into the old house, he hears strange noises—like footsteps—and he begins to suffer from terrible nightmares.
The only person Luke can turn to for help is the taciturn caretaker, Jay, a veteran of the Afghanistan war who carries an old battle wound. Together they try to understand Eelmoor Hall’s history and decipher what could be causing the haunting. As the weather grows colder and snow dusts the countryside, a child goes missing. Luke needs to deal with his own demons and learn to trust in love again if he hopes to face down the angry spirit and find the missing girl.
Why you should read it: The two main characters in this book are neither psychic nor looking for ghosts, so the fact they find one makes it all the spookier. The build-up of danger from the ghost is nicely done, and keeps you on the edge throughout the book.
Summary: Only love makes life worth living—over and over again.
Ghostwalker Blake Jones dies every day. It’s his job and how he helps trapped souls cross over. But to return to life, he needs an anchor. His new partner, Derek Scott, is a surprise. Not only is he male, but his appearance belies a caring and gentle heart. Despite attraction and a strengthening relationship, they know they shouldn’t take things further. But there’s a big difference between knowing and doing.
Their growing love presents a problem, though not the one they expect. Blake and Derek have to decide if they should take their relationship to the most permanent level—an unbreakable metaphysical bond. Doing so offers both risk and unimaginable reward. Can Blake let go of his fears and put his complete trust in Derek in order to have the happily ever after he’s always craved?
Why you should read it: I loved the worldbuilding here. The idea that a ghostwalker needs to die to become a ghost himself to help other ghosts was intriguing. Because it’s a Dreamspun Beyond category book, it doesn’t get as dark as the concept implies, and it’s a nice, light, romantic read.
Summary: Dying sucks hairy monkey balls, even when you’re not the stiff.
Denton Mills has a secret: he can see dead people. Or rather, how they died. It’s quite a drag in a city like Chicago, teeming with the echoes of the no-longer living. Rather than whine about it, Denton has learned to live with his troublesome talent. His adaptability comes in handy when he meets his enigmatic new neighbor.
Bran Maurell catches Denton’s eye right away, but unfortunately Mr. Tall, Dark, and Mysterious is as standoffish as he is alluring. However, after an unexpected introduction from Bran’s cat brings the two men together, Denton discovers they have a mutual interest in the spirit world. Herbalist by day, Bran moonlights as a witch, performing house cleansings for a fee.
From Bran, Denton learns that his knack for interacting with the dead qualifies him as a necromancer. It makes good business sense for them to team up and rid Chicago of its pesky spirits one grateful client at a time. Amongst ghostly adventures the attraction between the men is impossible to ignore. They seem like perfect partners—unless Bran’s not-so-little secret comes between them.
Why you should read it: Can you imagine walking down the street, then suddenly reliving a random person’s heart attack? That’s how this book opens, and it sets up Denton’s odd ability perfectly. But the story just gets weirder from there, which makes it that much more fun to read.
What are some of your favourite ghostly m/m reads? Please share—I’m always looking for more to add to my to-be-read list!