Tuesday, 22 July 2014

My Review of How to Date Dead Guys

How to Date Dead Guys by Ann Noser

Series: Under The Blood Moon
Genre: new-adult, urban-fantasy
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Date of Publication: July 15th, 2014

Cover Reveal: June 2nd, 2014

Blog Tour: July 14 - 25th, excluding weekends


College sophomore Emma Roberts remembers her mother’s sage advice:  “don’t sleep around, don’t burp in public, and don’t tell anyone you see ghosts”.  But when charming Mike Carlson drowns in the campus river under her watch, Emma’s sheltered life shatters.
Blamed for Mike’s death and haunted by nightmares, Emma turns to witchcraft and a mysterious Book of Shadows to bring him back.  Under a Blood Moon, she lights candles, draws a pentacle on the campus bridge, and casts a spell.  The invoked river rages up against her, but she escapes its fury.  As she stumbles back to the dorm, a stranger drags himself from the water and follows her home. And he isn't the only one.  
Instead of raising Mike, Emma assists the others she stole back from the dead—a pre-med student who jumped off the bridge, a desperate victim determined to solve his own murder, and a frat boy Emma can’t stand…at first.  More comfortable with the dead than the living, Emma delves deeper into the seductive Book of Shadows.  Her powers grow, but witchcraft may not be enough to protect her against the vengeful river and the killers that feed it their victims.
Inspired by the controversial Smiley Face Murders, HOW TO DATE DEAD GUYS will ignite the secret powers hidden deep within each of us.

About the Author:

annmugshot.jpgMy to-do list dictates that I try to cram 48 hours of living into a day instead of the usual 24.  I’ve chosen a life filled with animals.  I train for marathons with my dog, then go to work as a small animal veterinarian, and finish the day by tripping over my pets as I attempt to convince my two unruly children that YES, it really IS time for bed.  But I can’t wait until the house is quiet to write; I have to steal moments throughout the day.  Ten minutes here, a half hour there, I live within my imagination.
Like all busy American mothers, I multi-task.  I work out plot holes during runs.  Instead of meditating, I type madly during yoga stretches.  I find inspiration in everyday things:  a beautiful smile, a heartbreaking song, or a newspaper article on a political theory.  For example, a long drive in the dark listening to an NPR program on the SMILEY FACE MURDERS theory made me ask so many questions that I wrote HOW TO DATE DEAD GUYS to answer them to my satisfaction.
I’d love to have more time to write (and run, read, and sleep), but until I find Hermione Granger’s time turner, I will juggle real life with the half-written stories in my head.  Main characters and plot lines intertwine in my cranium, and I need to let my writing weave the tales on paper so I can find out what happens next.


I received a copy of How to Date Dead Guys for the blog tour this week, so here we go with the review.
Cliff notes version: girl who can talk to the dead, tries to summon her crush back from the dead but ends up bringing back a whole bunch of boys. Each one teaches her a lesson of some sort and crazy awkwardness ensues.

Emma, our resident witch and quirky, awkward protagonist, is pretty much everything I’ve been wanting in an NA character. She’s unsure and uncomfortably shy until she’s faced with challenges and she grows to be more confident and open and I really admire that. She’s a little boy crazy, a total book worm, judgmental and I could go on. The point is she’s not “strong”. She’s a girl. She’s unique in a lot of different ways, the least of which is her magical ability to interact with the dead.

The ghosts that visit Emma remind me a lot of the ghosts that visit Scrooge. They all have a story to tell, a lesson to teach, and she doesn’t always agree with them but she comes to learn their value. In that way, it’s a story about self-discovery and taking risks and the importance of strong relationships.

I may have also fallen hopelessly in love with one of the boys.

Regardless, this is an incredibly well-written story. The characters are consistent and the first person, present tense narrative brings the readers into Emma’s head in ways we probably didn’t want but definitely enjoy.

I may have mentioned my mixed but always entertained feelings in my Random Notes While Reading:
  • ·         Nice way to establish character and topic right away
  • ·         Freshman 15: adding pounds to your ambition
  • ·         Ha ha, I find that ironic because she see dead people
  • ·         Boy, crazed, girly, juxtaposing roommate. Check
  • ·         I do enjoy the descriptive language. It’s in character, light and hormonal
  • ·         Although you just said “the dead don’t scare me” and then you panicked. You, ma’am do not know yourself very well. I like it
  • ·         My eyeballs are going to hurt from eye rolling
  • ·         Really? He glowed? Could you be more love struck?
  • ·         Do girls actually do that?
  • ·         At least she admits she’s obsessed
  • ·         These are well-written, consistent characters but really?
  • ·         Okay, the chapter titles are really entertaining
  • ·         You’re slowly moving from tragic to adorkable
  • ·         He’s not wrong, sweetie
  • ·         She’s so…flawed, I don’t know what to do with myself
  • ·         That’s because you just met Abby
  • ·         I like Officer Walker. He’s nice *shifty eyes*
  • ·         Yup, I’m gonna bitchslap Chrissy
  • ·         They all have the mentality of a 10th grader
  • ·         Even I miss Sam
  • ·         I want to hate you, new boy, stop ruining my story with your logic
  • ·         Ah yes, we’re leaning valuable lessons here
  • ·         Good lord, Tony
  • ·         Oh.
  • ·         That’s actually really cute. Stop it
  • ·         I’m not getting teary-eyed, what are you talking about?
  • ·         You’re killing me guys, my heart can’t take it
  • ·         Ha ha ha – that’s my “oh shit” chuckle
  • ·         Ugh, why does he make you care so much?
  • ·         Emma’s really growing on me…she’s quirky
  • ·         What?
  • ·         Even I feel dirty
  • ·         Oh it’s coming, I know it is
  • ·         I really want to see this performed just to see the actors play Bernard, Steve and Mike
  • ·         Yeah, Mike, geez, give her a break
  • ·         Ew
  • ·         Eugh
  • ·         You’re totally jealous
  • ·         Greta you’re so random
  • ·         Oh he’s probably totally hot but that’s beside the point
  • ·         Judgmental parents are judgmental
  • ·         You know it’s coming but it still kills you
  • ·         God, I miss Jake so much, I’m just head over heels for that boy
  • ·         Okay, Officer Nosey. You’re being a creep. Shut up
  • ·         I’d almost forgotten she was an awkward teenager
  • ·         No one. No one hates a pizza buffet
  • ·         *hums* Obsession
  • ·         Dude. Not cool. I’m all…emotional now

Overall, I found How to Date Dead Guys intriguing, entertaining and definitely worth the read. I can’t wait for book two to be released.


  1. This is great! Still love the list. :)

  2. Just posted a link from my blog to your review (I FINALLY have a "book" page!) --thanks again for such a fun review of my book. Next one is due June 2015! :)