I’m a professional mourner.
Caskets, drag queens and dirty old men are all in a day's work.
But I'm no stranger to loss and that’s what makes me good at my job.
Something is missing though and that something goes by the name of Ahren Finnegan.
When faced with the idea of losing one more person from my life, I pushed him away, my one true love.
Now he’s back and this time I don’t think he’s going to take no for an answer.
Published October 30th 2014
Four stars: A quirky book that explores the morbid.
Genevieve Clare is no stranger to tragedy. On one horrible, tragic day, she loses her parents and her grandmother. Somehow she gets through the funeral. That night, she is surprised by the return of her longtime friend and childhood crush, Ahren Finnegan. Quickly, Ahren helps ease the hurt, but soon, Gen learns that she isn't able to love wholeheartedly as she constantly fears loss. Ahren packs his bags and leaves, and Gen starts a new business. She becomes a professional mourner. A lady who can be hired to attend funerals for those who need extra support, or drama, or to have their corpse shaken to make sure they are dead. Whatever you need, Gen will be there in her black dress, stockings, heels and pillbox hat with veil. After ten years, Gen has a successful business, but is she really living?
What I Liked:
- This was fun, quirky and unique little read. I was completely entertained by the whole concept of being a professional mourner. What and interesting idea. I loved the various funerals Gen attends and learning the reasons why she is hired. Some of them are odd, others entertaining and a few heart tugging. I loved the everything the professional mourner, and I only wished that there was more on it. The titles for the services Genevieve performs such as Shake and Bake (she opens the casket and shakes the corpse to make sure the client is truly dead) are hilarious.
- I loved the new and endearing friendships that Gen formed with two aging clients who hired her for her mourning services when they pass. One is a hilarious, dirty old man who likes girly magazines and big boobs. Bryce made me laugh. He was cute and funny, yet wise and sweet when it mattered. The other was an old gal named Deliah who also imparts some sage advice. I enjoyed each and every meeting with these two, especially since the get togethers involved cake.
- Speaking of cake, I had a hearty hunkering for cake after reading this one. I thought it was great that Gen had an appreciation for good, sweet treats, and that she took cake to her clients.
- Genevieve is a complicated character whom I enjoyed getting to know. She suffers a severe trauma early on in her life, and it takes her years to learn to love, live and feel again. She has some huge obstacles to overcome, and it takes time, but I loved seeing the person she became. I especially liked that she was a good listener and that she helped make a difference in other's lives, like the jilted lady who works at the elderly home where Bryce lives. Gen makes a big difference in her life. Loved that.
- The romance is one built on years of friendship, that evolves from a childhood crush. It is rich and complicated, and full of stumbles. Yet, when it works it is wonderful. Sizzling hot chemistry and all that. I always enjoy a romance that blossoms from life long friendships.
And The Not So Much:
- While I overall liked the romance, I felt that toward the end, the sex scenes were thrown in and they got to be too much. After several, I got the heat and passion and all that, and I didn't need a bunch of reminders. Some of the sex scenes are full of love, and emotion, others are nothing more than going at it, and they do it in some interesting places. I just got tired of the sex and started skimming them by the end. I wanted more of the funerals and less sex.
- The other issue I had was it got a little repetitive. The romance struggles as both parties suffer with their concerns over loss. Just when it feels like things are on track, it falters again over the same issue. It got old.
- As I mentioned, I loved everything about Gen being a professional mourner and I enjoyed the funerals and some of the antics Gen performs at the request of those who hire her. I truly wanted more of this portion of the story, and I got a bit bored toward the end when Gen cuts back on funerals and the book focuses on the romance.
- This book is told with two view points. Gen and Ahren. Ahren's portions were smaller and in the first person while Gen is the main voice and her parts are in first person. I am not a fan of the switching from first to third person, and I wish that both narrations were done via first person.
The Morbid and Sultry Tales of Genevieve Clare was an interesting, quirky and morbid little read that explores the many angles of death and loss. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole concept of a professional mourner. It was definitely different. I also appreciated the character growth and the endearing friendships that are founded throughout. If you are on the hunt for something unique grab this one.
I purchased a copy of this book. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.