Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Hauling Ash by Tonia Brown: Book Review

Hauling Ash
Title: Hauling Ash
Author: Tonia Brown
Genre: Horror, Ghost Comedy
Published: January 27th, 2015
Publisher: Post Hill Press
Formats Available: Mobi, ePub, PDF

~ Synopsis ~

When the spirit of his recently deceased uncle appears in his kitchen, lonely mortician Octavious Waldorf can only guess the ghost isn’t there just for the coffee. His miserly uncle reveals the location of a hidden fortune with the promise of more if Otto will spread the dead man’s ashes across the Caribbean Sea. Through a simple mistake Otto ends up with almost a million of the mafia’s money instead of his uncle’s simple few thousand. Otto does what any desperate man would do and flees the country aboard a cruise ship headed to the Bahamas to fulfill his uncle’s last request. With the money, his dead uncle’s ashes, and a nervous schnauzer in tow, Otto sets out to change his fortune and life.
That near million just so happens to belong to crime boss and all around bad guy Tony “Waldorf” Maloney (no relation), who happens to be on the same cruise. Maloney isn’t interested in just getting the money back. Along with the help of the much feared hired hit man Mr. Banjo, as well as the blonde bombshell Penny Lane, Maloney plans on squeezing the money as well as a few vital juices from Otto’s cold, dead corpse.
On the other end of the law, the FBI is hot on Maloney’s tail. Special Agents Frank Wallace and Larry Lawrence aren’t sure who this Otto guy is, or how he fits into Maloney’s organization, but they don’t plan on letting either of them get away. Maybe it’s time for the nearly retired Frank to take a much needed cruise to the Bahamas.
It’s a comedy noir of hilarious errors as Otto learns that sometimes money does buy happiness.

~ Book Review ~


I recently read Skin Trade by Tonia Brown and really enjoyed it.  Hauling Ash is a comedy and in a totally different genre, but the blurb sounded intriguing and, like Skin Trade, I loved the cover.

Hauling Ash caught me off guard because I was immediately pulled into Otto’s life.  Poor man, he is such a bonafide loser! I was just amazed at the way in which he coasted through life, unlucky fellow!  His only living relative, a cheap skate uncle, just died.  So imagine Otto’s surprise when he is confronted in his kitchen by the ghost of said uncle. It seems his uncle has some unfinished business and needs Otto’s help.

What ensues is a hilarious and crazy chain of events that kept getting more tangled as the pages flew by for me.  Otto encounters people from the seamier side of humanity, and gets help from his dead uncle, both solicited and unsolicited, as he tries valiantly to fulfill the wishes of his deceased kin. Nothing goes as planned – Otto’s staid, boring, lonely existence is left behind as he tries to navigate the perilous situation unexpectedly thrust upon him.

This fun, light read is a relaxing escape.  It is sure to put a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

This book was provided through the JGBS Review Library in exchange for an honest Review.

Reviewed by Laurie-J

~ About the Author ~

Author Tonia Brown
Tonia Brown is a Southern author with a penchant for Victorian dead things. She lives in North Carolina with her genius husband and an ever fluctuating number of cats. When not writing she raises unicorns and fights crime with her husband under the code names “Dr. Weird and his sexy sidekick Butternut.”


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