Monday, August 16, 2010

After Dark

After Dark / Ghost Hunters Book 1 by Jayne Castle

A race of aliens once lived on the future Earth colony called Harmony, leaving behind them the ruins of a vast, beautiful, and mysterious culture that is still protected by the psychic illusion traps and eerie ghosts that they created. Lydia Smith is a para-archaeologist who can resonate and dissolve the illusions, and those talents, combined with her lack of finances and questionable professional reputation, make her the obvious hire for Emmett London, who is trying to track down a lost antique and the nephew who stole it. Lydia's first consulting job quickly turns dangerous, however, as corpses, ghosts, and illusion traps start popping up--not to mention the rather unprofessional electricity between her and her first client.
--After Dark by Jayne Castle, Copyright ©2000 by Jayne Ann Krentz, published by Jove

My Review

When the mysterious Curtain opened, people of Earth were able to travel between our world and a new one, named Harmony. Long ago, a mysterious alien civilization abandoned Harmony, leaving behind green quartz ruins, unusual artifacts and a strange “vibe” that brought out psychic abilities in all the planet’s inhabitants. Before long, people began to colonize Harmony and travel and trade between the planets became commonplace.

Then, as suddenly as it had appeared, the Curtain closed, stranding the colonists. Cut off from all they knew, the Harmonics had to find a way to survive…or die.

Two hundred years later, Lydia Smith, a para-archaeologist working at a kitschy “alien horror” museum, escorts a potential new client around the ruins. She’s hoping to start a new consulting business, purchasing and selling alien artifacts to collectors. Her previous job at the University came to an abrupt end after her “Lost Weekend” in the catacombs beneath the Dead City and she’s anxious to re-establish her reputation. The meeting is going well, until they stumble across a dead body that wasn’t part of the original display.

Emmett London is not put off and wants her to continue to work for him. He knows his nephew stole the family heirloom and wants both it and his nephew found. And the dead man in the alien sarcophagus was the key to finding both.

Together, Emmett and Lydia must figure out why Emmett’s nephew came to Cadence City, where he is now, where the family heirloom is, and find out where the dead man came across an alien artifact so rare, it shouldn’t even exist.

They must also figure out how to deal with the energy that is crackling between them both. Emmett is a Ghost Hunter, and it was a pair of Ghost Hunters that caused her to lose her memory on that long-ago “Lost Weekend.” She has no love or trust for the Ghost Hunters and wants nothing to do with them, but Emmett is quickly proving to be the exception to that rule.

I give this story THREE STARS.

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