ILLUSION TOWN Jayne Castle
Jove
ISBN-13:  978-0-515-15575-4
August 2016
Paranormal Romance

Illusion Town, Harmony - The Future

Hannah West lives in Illusion Town, the Las Vegas of Harmony, just weirder.  Their motto is The Thrills are Real .  Under Illusion Town they have just discovered mysterious ruins called the Ghost City.  One of the largest companies in Harmony, Coppersmith Mining Company, has been awarded the contract to open up this new territory.  Hannah is called the Finder; she uses her para-psych senses to find things for people, called a dreamlight talent.  She usually departs from her body during her dreams, what she calls her doppelganger, and it gives her the clues that lead her to finding things.  Recently she helped Elias Coppersmith find a family heirloom ring, and now he wants to take her to dinner.  With strictly an email relationship, Hannah isn't sure she should take the chance, because usually clients who want to make things personal just want some extra work for free.  But Elias prevails on her for a date.  The next thing they know they are waking up together in a cheap hotel, married.  How did that happen?

When Elias wakes up, neither of them knows what happened, only that they have the paperwork from a wedding chapel saying they married early that morning.  They have what is called a Marriage of Convenience, temporary and lasting only as long as they want, until neither couple wants it.  There are also Covenant Marriages, which are regular marriages, if a couple decides to make their relationship permanent.  Elias and Hannah go back to the Chapel and see what happened the night before, and why they can't remember anything.  Obviously they were put under some type of spell, and for some reason they were scared and decided a Marriage of Convenience would help them, and then they hid in a hotel room.  But who would do such a thing to them?

Under Illusion Town is a whole other world where Coppersmith Mining is working, and this is where Elias and Hannah start their search.  One of the mining company's foremen is found dead, and all sorts of paranormal places and visions await Elias and Hannah before they can figure out what happened to them, and does it tie up with the death of Hannah's mother years ago?

Jayne Castle is justly famous for her paranormal romances set in Harmony.  A different world that has people with supernatural gifts, remnants of an Alien population, dust bunny friends, and unique situations are the hallmarks of her books.  Told from Hannah's and Elias's points of view; Hannah has accepted her special talent and built a business for herself.  Elias is a member of one of the more prominent families in Harmony, and while he is an engineer and works for the family company, he does not feel entitled.  Neither Hannah nor Elias ever really thought about marriage, but maybe this Marriage of Convenience could work into something real if they get to know each other.  Up to now the paranormal world was a backdrop to Ms. Castle's stories, but I felt here there were so many different pirate portals, paranormal shadows, psi, five paranormal keys, and an underground world with a Carnival that the relationship between Hannah and Elias sort of gets swept into the background.

Secondary characters include Virgil, her dust bunny, who sometimes acts as an early warning device for trouble, as long as he doesn't lose his Arizona Snow doll.  Aunt Clara and Aunt Bernice raised Hannah after the death of her mother.  Maxwell Smith is the owner of the Amber Palace Casino, and while he wields a lot of power in Illusion, he is a good person to have on your side.  Also very important is Runner and his delivery crew, who, though teenagers, know everything that goes on in Illusion Town and protect their friends, especially Hannah.  And there is Grady Barnett, who alleges he can measure Hannah's abilities but might have more to do with the Underworld.

Lovers of Jayne Castle will certainly line up for ILLUSION TOWN and its fabulous, exciting, and alien world.  It will take the brains and paranormal senses of both Elias and Hannah to journey through Ghost City and come out alive.  Will they change their Marriage of Convenience to a Covenant Marriage and make it real and lasting?  Grab up ILLUSION TOWN and find the answers to all your questions.

Carolyn Crisher