Scott Nicholson's Speed Dating with the Dead will always have a special place in my heart. It has the distinction of being the first e-book I ever read using an e-reader, thus igniting a growing passion for e-books in my heart.
If you have followed me for any amount of time, you will know that Mr. Nicholson is one of my favorite authors. I haven't read anything by him that I haven't enjoyed on some level. That said, I must admit that I didn't know what to expect from this book based on the title. It evoked images of a bunch of 40-somethings jumping from table to table in a hotel lobby trying to meet a future companion. And in my mind they were all zombies. Go figure. I probably read more zombie books than is healthy.
Set in Mr. Nicholson's familiar Appalachian mountains, Speed Dating with the Dead is about a paranormal conference at an old hotel. There is a wide array of characters attending this conference, including your die-hard ghost hunters, clairvoyants, groupies, and skeptics. Probably not much different than real life. As the conference goes on, strange things begin to happen. Before long, Mr. Nicholson has you moving at break-neck speed as an ancient, malignant force makes its presence known at the conference.
Like all things Nicholson, I wasn't disappointed by this offering. I would actually say this book was a little bit edgier than some of his mass-market paper backs, which I liked. Mr. Nicholson weaves a wonderful story with a diverse cast of interesting characters. The book is paced very well, with the last half of the book flying by. Even with all the action, the book stays focused on the story and moving it along. And as with all of Mr. Nicholson's books, this one is atmospheric, making you feel like you're attending the conference with the other guests.
You won't be disappointed by this book. Even if you aren't into the whole ghost-hunting scene, there is plenty in here for you to enjoy. Mr. Nicholson is a story-driven author, and words in his hands turn into a very enjoyable story.
4 out of 5 stars.