Review: In the Air Tonight by Lori Handeland

Posted June 3, 2015 by Jessica in Jessica, Paranormal Romance, Reviews / 15 Comments

Review: In the Air Tonight by Lori Handeland
In the Air Tonight by Lori Handeland
Series: Sisters of the Craft #1
Published by St. Martin's Press
Published on: June 2 2015
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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Four centuries ago, in a small Scottish village, three baby girls escaped the wrath of a witch hunter. Today, one young woman will learn about her secret history, her heart's destiny, and the sisters she never knew she had...

With her blue-black hair and dark eyes, Raye Larsen has never fit in with the Scandinavian community of New Bergin, Wisconsin. Being adopted is part of the reason she feels like an outsider, but what really sets Raye apart is her ability to see dead people. Everywhere.

She’s learned to keep her visions to herself . . . until she stumbles onto the ghost of a murder victim who needs Raye’s help. Enter Bobby Doucet, a distractingly handsome homicide detective who has been tracking a killer all the way from New Orleans. Could this be the break in his case he’s been looking for all along?

Meanwhile, the deeper Raye gets involved with the case—and with Bobby—the closer she comes to unlocking the mystery of her own origins. What she discovers about herself could destroy everything she knows . . . and everyone she loves. Is finding the truth worth the risk?

Filled with dark magic, dazzling romance, and dire suspense, this is the first book in a thrilling new series by New York Times bestselling author Lori Handeland.

ISNTA wtf2 CRIME magical

Raye Larsen is a twenty-seven year old kindergarten teacher. She lives in the same small town she grew up in, the same small town where she has never fit in (b/c typical small town nonsense).

Raye is adopted, you see, and in addition to having dark hair and eyes in a town of blonde-haired, blue-eyed Scandinavians . . . she can also see ghosts.


When she was four—yes, four—she overheard her adoptive parents discussing her oddity, and when Dad suggests they “take her back,” she modified her behavior to never again betray her awareness of things normal people can’t see.

I’ve got all kinds of problems with that.

My personal perspective on adoption is that once you’ve made a commitment, you don’t get to “take them back” anymore than you’d get to take back a child you share DNA with.

But as sympathetic as I was to the instability and emotional distress hearing that would cause a child, I had a hard time respecting an adult who hasn’t come to terms with that childhood distress, preferring to avoid her gifts in favor of trying to fit in (especially when this group of people is so ridiculously small-minded):

Despite having seen spirits all of my life, I’d spent most of my time avoiding them, or trying to ignore them, rather than understand them. Wouldn’t you?

No. I wouldn’t.

So I thought Raye was chicken and an idiot, which is never good, but I also thought she was . . . I don’t know, a dork, maybe? (Not in a geektastic way.)

At first I thought it was a forty-something trying to write a twenty-something, and that may be it, but I’ve got a twenty-five year old sister, and I’m pretty sure she’d get all the random references Raye was making . . . She just wouldn’t ever make them herself . . . b/c dumb.

Like who says a guy flexes “like Arnold”?

1. Arnold’s not flexing much these days.
2. Gross, man.

Or how about while flirting with the new guy in town:

“Maybe I should take you to the doctor.”
“I’d rather we played doctor.” I clapped my hand over my mouth. Had I said that?

Unfortunately, YES, you did. *is vaguely uncomfortable b/c vicariously embarrassed*

Then there’s Bobby.

Bobby sounds hot—dark skin, dark hair, blue eyes, Creole—but Bobby is named Bobby (yuck), and I’m not going to say that he thinks and says things that no man would ever think or say, b/c absolutes are inherently flawed . . . However, I will say that I’ve never met a man who says and thinks things like Bobby, and if I ever did, I would not be attracted to him:

She put her hand in his and stepped beneath the water, lifting her face to the stream, arching her long, slim, white neck like a doe worshipping the moon . . . She resembled a nymph beneath a waterfall, a mermaid in the surf.

B/c when a guy sees a pretty girl in the shower he’s thinking about her neck . . . Riiiiiiiiight.

There’s also a guy who gives him “the creepies.” *frowns and squints*

SO. I had a lot of issues with the characters, but I feel like they were mainly personality conflicts, so there’s a good chance you won’t be similarly bothered.

And aside from my character issues, the story is really cool. It involves witches and witch hunters and secret societies, and the history may even be legit. I didn’t take the time to look all of it up, but I know that parts of it are true, and the rest of it is believable, so even if it isn’t, the melding of fact and fiction is my favorite part, and I felt like it was incredibly well done.

Overall, IN THE AIR TONIGHT by Lori Handeland was a decent first installment in her new SISTERS OF THE CRAFT trilogy. The majority of what I disliked about the book were issues of personal preference, and even with the character clashes, the story was interesting enough to ensure that I read the second book (like right after I finish this review). I’ll let you know how it goes. *crosses fingers*

Sisters of the Craft series:

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My name is Jessica and I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I’m trying my hand at writing, but mostly I read. My favorite genres are Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy, and the YA versions of those genres, but if there is a book of a different color getting lots of buzz, I’ll read it too, just to be informed. If I’m not reading or writing, I’m probably on Goodreads or Pinterest or baking blueberry pies because I love them.


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15 responses to “Review: In the Air Tonight by Lori Handeland

  1. Raye = not my kind of girl. I can get past ignoring all the spirits, but I cringe hard when heroines say something they didn’t mean to, and then ask themselves if they actually said it. Also, playing doctor = not a sexy thing to say when flirting with the new guy. It’s creepy.

    “…like a doe worshipping the moon…” Oh dear God no. *pushes this book away like the plague*

    Awesome review, Jessica!
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  2. Gross, indeed! This does not sound like something I’d want to invest my time in, sadly. Every point you make illustrates a perfect WTF moment that may conceivably result in me throwing my Kindle across the room. And I’m pretty fond of my Kindle, so… Excellent review 🙂
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  3. I probably won’t be reading this book but your review made me laugh.
    I do love the title and now I’m singing Phil Collins’, “I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord…..” Epic song. 🙂