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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best-selling author Karen White invites you to explore the brick-walked streets of Charleston, where historic mansions house the memories of years gone by, and restless spirits refuse to fade away.

With her extended maternity leave at its end, Melanie Trenholm is less than thrilled to leave her new husband and beautiful twins to return to work, especially when she's awoken by a phone call with no voice on the other end - and the uneasy feeling that the ghostly apparitions that have stayed silent for over a year are about to invade her life once more.

But her return to the realty office goes better than she could have hoped, with a new client eager to sell the home she recently inherited on South Battery. Most would treasure living in one of the grandest old homes in the famous historic district of Charleston, but Jayne Smith would rather sell it as soon as possible, guaranteeing Melanie a quick commission.

Despite her stroke of luck, Melanie can't deny that spirits - both malevolent and benign - have started to appear to her again. One is shrouded from sight, appearing whenever Jayne is near. Another arrives when an old cistern is discovered in her backyard on Tradd Street.

Melanie knows nothing good can come from unearthing the past. But some secrets refuse to stay buried.

©2017 Harley House Books, LLC (P)2017 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    666
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    225
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    82
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    18
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    6

Performance

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    57
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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Narrator was scarier than the ghosts!

Would you try another book from Karen White and/or Aimée Bruneau?

I'm a fan of Karen White; however, this book is not reflective of her abilities. While Ms. White's books are lighter fiction, her narratives are enjoyable and often didactic. She clearly conducts quality research when researching the topics that ground and shape her narratives. Additionally, her characters are usually multi-dimensional and tend to evolve in meaningful ways. Unfortunately for her readers, Ms. White's latest effort is not up to her own standards. Did she not think her readers would notice? Her narrative breaks basic rules of character development: show don't tell. I'm beyond annoyed at the OCD antics of Melanie, many of which are repeated ad-nauseam. And, no - this is not her "showing" rather than telling. The simplicity of her writing belies such possibilities. Ms. White's characters' in this novel are pedestrian at best and cliche for the rest of the time. As for the narration by Aimee Bruneau... Listening to Ms. Bruneau's attempts at a Southern Accent are grating. I am from Virginia, spent years in Savannah, and now live in Atlanta. My ancestors never left the South, and my maternal family is DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution). Ms. White's portrayal of the contemporary South, replete with haunting histories, mysterious houses, and quirky local customs is often spot-on. Yet, the narrator's inability to pronounce words such as Abba (the rock group) and local areas in Charleston are jarring and disrupt the already weak narrative. The editing is at fault as well. There is no pause between chapters. The announcement of "Chapter X" is treated as a sentence rather than a break. More than a few times I reviewed the end of a chapter as I was sure the audio had skipped.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

Ms. White usually tells a good ghost story. Unfortunately, Ms. White's storytelling was weakened by her own lack of efforts.The least interesting?? Melanie has grown in her life, or should have. Ms. White's continued focus on Melanie's "organizational ideas" and child / family routine / spread-sheets was ridiculous and unbelievable. Southern Moms do enjoy smocked clothing and take pride in dressing their children, but readers could have done without the pedestrian interior monologues and character banter / dialogue The book grew tiresome quickly. I rarely have a desire to drop-kick fictional entities, but I was tempted to do so with the characters of Guests on South Battery.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Aimée Bruneau?

It seems logical that a narrator who has a native Southern Accent would have been the choice reader. Better yet, a narrator who has the unique low-country, Old Charleston or Savannah accent would have been ideal.

Any additional comments?

Better editing needed! The chapters were barely separated. The narrator would read, "Chapter X" like any other sentence, and the text continued without break.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

not like the earlier books. Barely got through.

I just discovered Karen White and have really enjoyed her books. The tradd street series was very entertaining because Charleston is my favorite City. This book was quite simply very irritating. the character Melanie is so unlikeable and silly and not at all like the semi self--confident lady that the earlier books had. I feel like the reader knew what was going on far too early in the story and there was no suspense, just head-shaking numbness that the main character wasn't catching on. the fact that she's already holding back from Jack at the end of the novel lets me know that I will never read another one of these books.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enticing story

This book was very well written I enjoyed the light humor, and also the lack of heavy sex scenes, which serve only to take up space. The narrator was spot on with her characters, and the beautiful Southern accent added greatly to the storytelling and listening enjoyment. .

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love the series!!

There are many series that are amazing in the beginning. As the series continue the books become less and less appealing, but this series only gets better and this last book has been the best. Karen White is an amazing writer and the narration is equally wonderful is a must read for all !'

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

INTRIGUING FROM THE START!!!!

I've listened to this entire series and I truly believe that if there's a 5-star series out there, this is it. The story captures your attention from the very start on every book. Aimee Bruneau's voice wouldn't be my favorite on some novels but I think she fits this atmosphere and location perfectly. I sincerely hope the series continues and SOON!

I will certainly look for other Karen White novels. Worth the credit? Absolutely but starting from the beginning is a must.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A great read

I reccommend starting with the first in the series.
But you can read them separately. Characters and plot will draw you in immediately.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Protagonist in denial

Would you try another book from Karen White and/or Aimée Bruneau?

No.

What was most disappointing about Karen White’s story?

The protagonist was an undisciplined nitpicker I could not identify with. I would have sent
her to a shrink. How could her husband stand her?

What three words best describe Aimée Bruneau’s voice?

I am neutral about her.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

I was disappointed not to be able to return this book. I found the main character a person I could not admire, only criticize. I would shun such a woman if I actually met her.

Any additional comments?

I have returned only one other book I chose in error; it was fantasy & not my genre.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Story collapsed in last chapter

Typical good ghost/bad ghost with interesting twist, but the author never completely explained the semi-unusual syndrome that compelled the bad ghost. She gave many 'hints', which made me suspect the cause early on, but never presented it as the 'cause' until the last few sentences in the book. Being a fairly original illness -as most ghost stories go - I thought she should have devoted at least half a chapter to explain and discuss the syndrome, & I was quite annoyed when it wasn't. It would have made the plot much more understandable, & made the 'bad' ghost more empathetic.

The ending also seemed very abrupt & unsatisfying. Combine all this with the fact that the heroine is now married '- with twins! - the 'romance' portions no longer had the would she - would he interest. Knowing that married primary characters no longer peak reader's curiousity, I wonder if this was actually step 1 in introducing the "sensitive' twin who would eventually generate a new series.

Although I awaited this book, I'm not sure sure if it's deficiencies will sway me from this author...though I have my suspicions that this might be the case. Normally I give this series 4 stars...but I dropped to 3 stars overall , & 2 stars for the story. The author Just seemed to be in too big a hurry to call it finished.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I like the series, but...

Karen White has a terrible habit of writing her heroines as whining, needy, insecure women...the kind you'd really like to slap in real life! I'll keep reading her books but I wish she'd write stronger, smarter, more likable characters. If I were Jack I'd kick Melle to the curb (or send her to a good therapist!).

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Coming Home

What made the experience of listening to The Guests on South Battery the most enjoyable?

The dialect, I love to hear the mother's voice.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Yes, she always has a card up her sleeve!

Which scene was your favorite?

The snowglobe scene with SARA

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Family comes in all ways, you can take them, or leave them....

Any additional comments?

Please change your mind and write another book.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful