Curse of Salem by Kay Hooper @KayHooper ‏ @BerkleyPub

Posted January 4, 2022 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 18 Comments

Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Curse of Salem by Kay Hooper @KayHooper ‏ @BerkleyPubCurse of Salem by Kay Hooper
Series: Bishop Special Crime Unit #20
Published by Berkley on December 28, 2021
Genres: Mystery, Paranormal
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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The small town of Salem has been quiet for months--or so Bishop and his elite Special Crimes Unit believe. But then Hollis Templeton and Diana Hayes receive a warning in Diana's eerie "gray time" between the world of the living and the realm of the dead that a twisted killer is stalking Salem, bent on destroying in the most bloody and horrifying way possible the five families that founded the town.

The stakes are high, especially for new friends Nellie Cavendish and Finn Deverell, both members of the Five, and this time Bishop and his wife Miranda will lead the team to hunt down a vicious killer and uncover a dark and ancient curse haunting Salem.

I have enjoyed this Bishop Special Crime Unit series for a long time.  Sometimes the stories feature long known members of the team and some are completely new characters.  With well known characters, there is the advantage of already knowing them and having better developed characters who then further progress.  With new ones, it makes it easier for new readers to jump into the story. I would read some of the earlier books to have some of the background and inside jokes, plus they are great books.

Curse of  Salem follows Hidden Salem in the series. So the setting is the same as the previous book and there are some of the same characters.  This time we get Bishop and Miranda, as well as Hollis who were not present in the previous book.    The earlier books were romantic suspense but I would call these later books paranormal mystery.

The team is brought back to Salem as the mediums, Hollis and Diana, get messages that things are wrong.  As with many books, Hollis is a key figure.  She does seem to adapt and develop in every book as needed to solve the case.  Unfortunately, this feels a little bit special snowflake, and doesn’t add as much to the story or world.  I’d rather see more different people utilize their talents or develop them.

Curse of Salem was very suspenseful because their is a killer and his work is horrific. The pace has picked up with people being kidnapped frequently for brutal torture.  The telepathic and empathic talented, even the clairvoyant who see future visions are not enjoying what they feel and see.  There seems to be some sort of jamming of their talents but eventually they can use some of them to help with the case.

Bishop and Miranda were here, on-site, but not heavily involved.  The locals, Finn and Nellie, who we met in the previous book, were involved but also possibly targets of the killer. The team did add to help train Finn’s team which is more newly developed and also helped with searching for the missing and dumped.

I love this series which has my favorite kind of paranormal, a specific kind of magic, which involves the mind.  There is a suspenseful mystery . Sometimes we get new characters or further development of old favorites.  The series is uneven with some books more romance, others more mystery. Curse of Salem is an interesting addition.

About Kay Hooper

ay Hooper was born in California, in an air force base hospital since her father was stationed there at the time. The family moved back to North Carolina shortly afterward, so she was raised and went to school there.

The oldest of three children, Kay has a brother two years younger and a sister seven years younger. Her father and brother are builders who own a highly respected construction company, and her mother worked for many years in personnel management before becoming Kay’s personal assistant, a position she held until her untimely death in March 2002. Kay’s sister Linda works as her Business Manager, Events Coordinator, and is playing a major role in the creation and operation of The Kay Hooper Foundation.

Kay graduated from East Rutherford High School and attended Isothermal Community College — where she quickly discovered that business classes did not in any way enthrall her. Switching to more involving courses such as history and literature, she also began to concentrate on writing, which had been a longtime interest. Very quickly hooked, she asked for a Christmas typewriter and began seriously working on her first novel. That book, a Regency romance titled Lady Thief, sold to Dell Publishing in 1980. She has since published more than 60 novels and four novellas.

Kay is single and lives in a very small town in North Carolina, not far from her father and siblings. Deigning to live with her are a flock of cats — Bonnie, Ginger, Oscar, Tuffy, Felix, Renny, and Isabel — of various personalities who all like sleeping on manuscripts and whatever research happens to be spread across Kay’s desk. And living amongst the many felines are two cheerfully tolerant dogs, a shelter rescue, Bandit, who looks rather like a small sheepdog, and a Sheltie named Lizzie.

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Posted January 4, 2022 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review / 18 Comments

18 responses to “Curse of Salem by Kay Hooper

  1. I read a lot of Kay Hooper in my younger years but haven’t tried her again in a long while. I like a good mix of paranormal and mystery and it sounds like this has that.