Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Publication date: May 5th 2015
My rating: 4 stars
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository
From the author of Grim Shadows and Bitter Spirits comes the new Roaring Twenties novel in the series hailed as “Boardwalk Empire meets Ghost Hunters, but so much better” (Molly Harper, national bestselling author of the Jane Jameson series).
Feisty flapper Astrid Magnusson is home from college and yearning for the one thing that’s always been off limits: Bo Yeung, her notorious bootlegging brother’s second-in-command. Unfortunately her dream of an easy reunion proves difficult after a violent storm sends a mysterious yacht crashing into the Magnussons’ docks. What’s worse, the boat disappeared a year ago, and the survivors are acting strangely…
Bo has worked with the Magnusson family for years, doing whatever is needed, including keeping his boss’s younger sister out of trouble—and his hands to himself. Of course, that isn’t so easy after Astrid has a haunting vision about the yacht’s disappearance, plunging them into an underground world of old money and dark magic. Danger will drive them closer together, but surviving their own forbidden feelings could be the bigger risk.
Supernatural evil, danger and a forbidden romance combined to make Grave Phantoms a thrilling read. I’ve been eagerly awaiting Astrid and Bo’s story, since we’ve seen hints of their attraction in the previous books, and I was not disappointed!
Astrid, the baby sister in the Magnusson clan has been in love with Bo Yeung, her brother’s right hand man in the family’s bootlegging business, for years. Now back home on winter break, Astrid is determined to do something about it, make Bo realize she’s a woman and not Winter Magnusson’s kid sister. Little does she know that Bo returns her feelings, even if he feels their romance is impossible.
Winter, the Magnusson’s patriarch, took Bo under his wing, sponsored his education, gave him a place to live, and made him his right hand man, but that doesn’t mean he’ll approve of Bo for his little sister Astrid. Bo is of Asian descent and back in the 1920s when prejudices were running high, anything romantic with Astrid is near impossible and taboo.
All this is put to the side when a mysterious yacht crashes into the Magnusson dock, and they find out its none other than the Plumed Serpent which has been missing for a year. Astrid climbs aboard with Bo and launches them straight into danger when she touches and absorbs the energy of an ancient idol. Now Bo and Astrid must solve this evil puzzle if they want any future, let alone a future together.
Normally a forbidden romance puts me on edge because I’m on pins and needles worrying when the romance will be discovered, but there was too much action, danger, and sexy times to fret about any of that. Plus, Bo and Astrid were determined to make things work whatever the cost so there was never any despairing that they wouldn’t be together. I loved the pluck and courage of Astrid. Bo was amazing, protective, and a sexy surprise behind doors *wink, wink*! I loved his take charge attitude, and boy-oh-boy can Ms. Bennett write some HOT scenes!
I was completely immersed in this story and the Roaring Twenties that Jenn Bennett so cleverly recreated. Although I’m no expert in the time period, it felt authentically portrayed. (Check out Jenn’s Pinterest board as well as mine with character picks and the look of San Francisco in the 1920’s). “Seeing” the previous couples, Winter and Aida with their baby Karin and Lowe and Hadley still so madly love was a treat, but even more so was the amazing epilogue set years in the future! If you haven’t picked this exciting and super sexy series you are definitely missing out!