Thursday, November 20, 2008

Review- Blood Creek Haunting by Derek Musgrave

Blood Creek Haunting
by Derek Musgrave
2006, March 2007
Contemporary/ Paranormal/ Bi-sexual/f/f

Buy it Phaze - $3.50

Blood Creek Haunting is the story of a woman who's being haunted by the ghost of an Indian brave. Emily discovers that not only is her house being built on the sacred ground of the Blood Creek Massacre, but also one of her ancestors was responsible for the massacre. Can Emily find a way to repay the debt? Will she survive the haunting?

Emily has moved back to the land that’s been in her family for generations and which was the place of an Indian massacre. While tilling the earth for a garden, she comes across a skeleton with a skull having a huge gash in it. Freaking, she tries to get rid of it, but it keeps showing up in different places.

She’s also starts having very vivid dreams/ visions of an Indian brave and her dead fiancé, whom she still grieves over. While having these visions, she always blacks out and often wakes up in a different place and naked, or being cared for by Tessa, her best friend, not knowing what happened.

Tessa believes Emily is being haunted by this Indian brave and gets her to find out her family history as there was some innuendo in her family that her great-great grandfather might have been involved with the massacre.

As she slowly finds out her family history, the visions become more intense taking her out of her body, which could lead to her crossing over and dying if she can’t figure out how to help the spirits that are haunting her.

While all of this is going on, Emily realizes that she has feelings for and is attracted to Tessa, who is into women, but has never crossed that line with Emily. As Tessa helps Emily deal with all of this, supporting her as a friend, she and Emily slowly open up to each other in a very soft, loving and realistic way.

Blood Creek Haunting was a surprisingly good find for me. I bought it because of the possible f/f even though the blurb doesn’t really say how much of this story is about a f/f relationship or if it’s just a sex scene. How nice that it turned out that a big part of this story is about a really sweet love story between Emily and Tessa.

Emily and Tessa have been friends for a long time. Tessa has had a thing for Emily but never put it out there. Emily still thinks about her late fiancé and is trying to build a house on her land. Until this point, she’s only thought of Tessa as a friend. When all of these dreams start happening and Tessa steps in to take care of Emily, Emily starts to fantasize about being with Tessa. Tessa on the other hand, is a bit freaked about this new development even though she wants Emily and she backs off. So it’s a nice slow, emotionally intimate dance between these two with all the hesitations and fears that come up when opening up to a new person. I thought that was done nicely.

This book was written by a man and I had my reservations that a man could write female/female love in a convincing manner without it going into a male fantasy, but Derek Musgrave did a great job on this. The only thing that did come up for me is that when Emily wants to seduce Tessa for the first time, she dresses in a black lace teddy, black garter belt with fishnet stockings and stiletto heels. This felt out of character for Emily who runs a book store and works hard on her land in jeans. That type of lingerie is something a woman would wear to seduce a man, not a woman. But that’s my personal judgment. Take that for what it's worth, it's just something that really stuck out for me as off.

If you like a good ghost/haunting story with a theme of eternal love, then Blood Creek Haunting is also a very satisfying story on that level as well. It does get a bit into trippyville at times though getting a bit convoluted at times. In the mix with the brave who is haunting her, is Emily’s great-great grandmother’s ghost and the ghost/spirit of her dead fiancé who also has something to do with all of this. However, I actually enjoyed that part and thought it an interesting take on the ghost concept.

There were a few things that bothered me, but I don’t know enough to really complain. One is that Tessa takes Emily to a Native American shaman who is a direct descendant of part of that tribe that was massacred, and he’s living in a teepee. I’ve traveled extensively through Native American lands and have not seen any teepees outside of tourist spots. Maybe current shamans use or live in them, I don't know, but that part felt off.

I’ve also read quite a few books about Native American healing rituals and the one that was done in this book seemed totally made up and and a bit hokey. Normally, not an issue on both points, but this is a contemporary and so I do expect a bit more realism on that level.

Even with those things, I found this book to be a very enjoyable read. What was done very nicely was how seamlessly the relationship between Emily and Tessa was integrated with the ghost story and the HEA for all involved.

All in all Blood Creek Haunting is a pleasing feel good story and I highly recommend it as a one of the more satisfying f/f stories out there.

Sex rating: Wet Panties. f/f, m/f

Grade: B

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