If you’re looking for a fiction story with a lot of heart and romance and a dose of the paranormal, look no further than The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston. In this novel, Florence is a ghostwriter for a famous romance novelist, but she’s given up on love after a recent heartbreak. Oh, and she’s not just a ghostwriter – she also sees ghosts. This one has a content warning for parental death.

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The summary, from Amazon:

“I LOVED this book! …Funny, breathtaking, hopeful, and dreamy.”
—Ali Hazelwood, 
New York Times bestselling author of The Love Hypothesis

One of the Summer’s Hottest Reads —Entertainment Weekly

A disillusioned millennial ghostwriter who, quite literally, has some ghosts of her own, has to find her way back home in this sparkling adult debut from national bestselling author Ashley Poston.

Florence Day is the ghostwriter for one of the most prolific romance authors in the industry, and she has a problem—after a terrible breakup, she no longer believes in love. It’s as good as dead.

When her new editor, a too-handsome mountain of a man, won’t give her an extension on her book deadline, Florence prepares to kiss her career goodbye. But then she gets a phone call she never wanted to receive, and she must return home for the first time in a decade to help her family bury her beloved father.

For ten years, she’s run from the town that never understood her, and even though she misses the sound of a warm Southern night and her eccentric, loving family and their funeral parlor, she can’t bring herself to stay. Even with her father gone, it feels like nothing in this town has changed. And she hates it.

Until she finds a ghost standing at the funeral parlor’s front door, just as broad and infuriatingly handsome as ever, and he’s just as confused about why he’s there as she is.

Romance is most certainly dead . . . but so is her new editor, and his unfinished business will have her second-guessing everything she’s ever known about love stories.

Buy The Dead Romantics here.

Florence ghostwrites for Ann Nichols, a renowned romance novelist. She’s struggling to finish her last contracted book in the aftermath of a bad breakup. Florence meets her hot new editor, Ben, who expects her to have the manuscript finished tomorrow, but she’s nowhere near done. When Florence’s father unexpectedly dies, she has to fly home from New York to her small town down south. While reuniting with her family and dealing with the funeral planning – her dad left some pretty extravagant requests – she hears news that Ben was hit by a car. And then something strange happens. Though Florence, like her father, can see ghosts, she never had one follow her before – and Ben has followed her here.

Florence sets out to make her father’s funeral everything he wanted while struggling to reconnect with her sister and to fit in with her family in a small town that always found her a little strange. Meanwhile, Ben keeps popping up and fading out, and though he is a ghost, Florence can’t help but be drawn to him. By the end of the week, Florence and her family are ready to celebrate their father’s life, and Ben and Florence have considered – maybe he should stay to be with Florence. You might be wondering, how does a romance work with someone you can’t touch? But I assure you, this one has a HEA.

This was an interesting read. I went into it expecting romance but I felt it was more women’s fiction (or, as I like to call it, fiction) with a heavy romantic subplot. I felt the heart of the story was about Florence and her family. All in all, this was an enjoyable read, and it handled death in a way that was more nostalgic than truly tragic. I rate it 3 stars and think regular readers of women’s fiction will enjoy it even more, or folks who appreciate gentler, slow burn romances.

The Dead RomanticsThe Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was sweet and fun. I would say more women’s fiction (or, as I like to call it, fiction) than romance, though we do get a large romantic plot and a HEA.

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Book Club Questions

  1. What are your thoughts on ghostwriting?
  2. Explain the dynamic between Florence and Ben.
  3. How does Florence’s relationship with Ben compare to her relationship with Lee?
  4. What is Florence’s relationship like with her family? Why?
  5. What are your thoughts on the afterlife and death?

Interested? Buy The Dead Romantics.
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