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Delia's Shadow by Jaime Lee Moyer
Review by Mel Jacob
Tor Books Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765331823
Date: 17 September 2013 List Price $24.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: Author's Website / Show Official Info /

Haunted by a determined ghost, Delia Martin returns home to San Francisco. Her foster mother is dying and her best friend, Sadie Larkin, is getting married. Since childhood, Delia has seen ghosts, but after the 1906 earthquake, they became legion. Tired of the situation, she took a teaching job in New York and remained there for two and a half years. Now, a serial killer is on the loose and Delia suspects he tortured and killed the ghost who haunts her. Will she be next?

Police find the gruesome victims, but no clue to the killer who rages through San Francisco and taunts them with letters on blue paper. Lieutenant Gabe Ryan heads the police team assigned to the case. Thirty years before, Gabe's dad, Captain Matt Ryan, had worked on the earlier killings and received similar letters also on blue paper. The killings were never solved. The latest threat is torture killings of people attending the Panama-Pacific International Exposition of 1918.

Nightmares of stalking, torture, and death come with Delia's ghost. Are the current murders copycat crimes or had the killer stopped for some reason only to now resume? Why had Delia’s ghost chosen her? Was it because only she could see ghosts or was she tied in some way to the killer or the ghost?

Sadie’s fiancé is a police sergeant working on the current murders with his boss, Gabe Ryan. Through Jack and Sadie, Gabe meets Delia and learns of the ghost haunting her. Skeptical, he soon finds Delia’s nightmares holds important information related to the killer.

Told through Gabe and Delia, the investigations continue as more deaths occur. In his dad’s time, threats were made against policemen’s families. Because of that, Gabe insists Delia and Sadie, his landlady, and a spiritualist, have police protection.

Moyer presents Delia’s world of 1918 San Francisco and various ghosts that haunt her and her foster mother, who is on the edge of dying. Maps of San Francisico and the Panama Pacific Exposition are included. Despite the detailed depiction of the dead bodies, the story and the interactions of the characters make for a good read. Moyer manages to hold a few twists about the ghost and the killer until the end.

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