What price would you pay to rescue a friend from hell?
For Logan Conner, the answer is almost anything. Guilt-ridden over trapping his college roommate in a ghost war rooted in Portland’s pioneer past, Logan has spent years searching for a solution. Then his new boyfriend, folklorist Riley Morrel, inadvertently gives him the key. Determined to pay his debt—and keep Riley safe—Logan abandons Riley and returns to Portland, prepared to give up his freedom and his future to make things right.
Crushed by Logan’s betrayal, Riley drops out of school and takes a job on a lackluster paranormal investigation show. When the crew arrives in Portland to film an episode about a local legend of feuding ghosts, he stumbles across Logan working at a local bar, and learns the truth about Logan’s plan.
Their destinies once more intertwined, the two men attempt to reforge their relationship while dodging a narcissistic TV personality, a craven ex-ghost, and a curmudgeonly bar owner with a hidden agenda. But Logan’s date with destiny is looming, and his life might not be the only one at stake.
Sooooo, I went back and forth as to whether or not I was going to review this book. I’m not a big fan of ghost stories. I’m not a fan of time travel themes. I’m really, really not a fan of reality-style ghost hunting shows. And yet, something about the blurb kept calling me back to it. I said no. Then I said maybe. I said no, again. Then I said, oh heck, I’ll give it a go. [Thank you, boss lady, for being patient with my indecisive self.] When I saw that the book was creeping up on my review schedule, I started it a few days early, just in case I had trouble getting into the ghost story – I wanted to be able to walk away for a day or two, and come back to it with a clear head (yes, that’s how hard of a time that I have with romances with spectral themes). In the end, I fretted for no reason. Stumptown Spirits was so freaking entertaining that I stayed up until 2 am to finish it because I HAD TO KNOW! I had to know if the ghost war was real. I had to know if Logan saved his roommate. I had to know if Logan martyred himself or if he managed to make it out. I had to know who was responsible for sabotaging the show. And most importantly, I had to know if Logan and Riley got back together.
Because Stumptown Spirits is a bit of a romantic suspense and a bit of a mystery, I really cannot go into specific details because it would be way too easy to reveal a spoiler. And take it from someone who wasn’t convinced she would enjoy the book, you do not want the story spoiled. Any of it. This is the kind of book that you’ll want to experience for yourself, so if someone warns that their review might contain spoilers, AVOID IT! What I will say, is that I thoroughly enjoyed Russell’s writing style and I was hooked almost immediately. Oh yeah, I forgot that the reason I finally said yes to reviewing this book was because I read the excerpt on the publisher’s website that featured the first couple of chapters. I was hooked and when I got to the end of the excerpt, I wanted to keep reading – and that was with only meeting Riley. Once I began reading the actual book and Logan was thrown into the mix, as well as Riley’s best friend, and the crew from the cheesy ghost hunting show, I couldn’t stop reading until I reached the end. And what an ending it was! I literally exclaimed, “That was awesome!” when I got to the last page. I absolutely loved Stumptown Spirits and am so glad I got the chance to read it.
My recommendation? If you enjoy romances that contain ghosts, then grab this. If you’re not a big fan of ghost stories, but find yourself on the fence, download the sample and read the beginning – you’ll figure out quickly whether or not it appeals to you. If you’re still undecided, I hope you’ll take a chance like I did and find it just as entertaining. As for me, I’m stoked to learn that there is a second book in the series (yes, series!!!) being released in October. I cannot wait for Wolf’s Clothing.