Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Book Review: Monster in my closet by RL Naquin (Monster Haven #1)

I stopped believing in monsters long ago. But I knew I wasn't imagining things when I found one in my kitchen baking muffins. I'd seen him before: lurking in my closet, scaring the crap out of my five-year-old self. Turns out that was a misunderstanding, and now Maurice needs a place to stay. How could I say no?

After all, I've always been a magnet for the emotionally needy, and not just in my work as a wedding planner. Being able to sense the feelings of others can be a major pain. Don't get me wrong, I like helping people--and non-people. But this ability has turned me into a gourmet feast for an incubus, a demon that feeds off emotional energy. Now, brides are dropping dead all over town, and my home has become a safe house for the supernatural. I must learn to focus my powers and defeat the demon before he snacks on another innocent woman and comes looking for the main course...

My Review:
Part of me loved the idea of real life closet monsters, while the other part of me had little interest in a wedding planner and dead brides. I was in two minds about reading this book but I'm glad that I decided to give this one a chance.

Zoey is an empath and a wedding planner, which go together nicely when dealing with neurotic brides and obnoxious mothers. She is a fashion disaster and that drives her freakishly neat business partner Sara mad. Life takes a strange turn when the closet monster from her nightmares appears in her kitchen, making muffins and looking for somewhere to stay while he deals with his wife cheating on him with a bridge troll. This opens the floodgates to various creatures seeking her help.

Maurice is wonderful! He is kind, caring and is determined to protect and look after Zoey. It helps that he is the world's greatest and fastest cook! I would have loved to have a friend as loyal and caring as Maurice and he can move into my house anytime. The rest of the 'monster' cast are a lot of fun. We meet Iris, who is like a Sasquatch bodyguard-a lot of very funny scenes involve Iris! Molly and her brownie family are very sweet and she has a drunken abusive husband to deal with. Zoey has a friendly hag as her neighbour, the fairy version of Homeland security to protect her and a herbalist friend-Andrew-who can read auras. Andrew is a really nice guy and would be the perfect match for Zoey if he wasn't gay. His adorable pet fox Milo is one of my favourites in the book.

Zoey has her problems. A psycho incubus has become fixated with her and is seducing and murdering the women that Zoey has connections with, including her brides. It is up to Zoey, Andrew and Maurice to find a way to save these women and destroy the incubus. As if that wasn't enough, Zoey has to deal with her pathetic ex husband Brad who doesn't get the picture that being divorced for eight years entitles Zoey to have a life that he doesn't feature in. The scenes that he appears in are pretty funny. You really do want to give the guy a big slap.

There is a romance on the cards in the book but I confess that it left me pretty cold. Yes Riley was a nice enough guy with an interesting job but I felt there was no chemistry between him and Zoey. The book would have worked equally well without him. I felt as if he was just there to save Zoey when she got herself into trouble-something that Maurice was perfectly capable of doing, and with more personality! However the good part of him being a potential love interest was that it allowed Brad to spoil a date in a scene that was very funny and it was something that a lot of people can relate to.

My real niggle with the book was that it spent too much time on the details of the various weddings that Zoey was involved with. I wasn't really caring about fabric samples, bird seed decorations, colour schemes and bands. I found that a little boring in places but it doesn't really ruin the story. And Zoey is a bit on the dumb side when it comes to recognising who the incubus is targeting in her social circle! A few DUH moments for sure.

This book has a really good mixture of paranormal action, interesting creatures and good humour, which makes it a light and enjoyable read. I recommend this book to fans of cozy paranormal mysteries and those who like light urban fantasy.
star rating photo: 35 star rating 3-5-stars.jpg


  1. This does sound like an enjoyable quick read. :) I do want to get them. Thanks!

    1. It's impossible not to love Maurice and his fussy ways!