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A previously published romance writer kicks off an urban fantasy romance series, her first under the Ashwood pseudonym, with this well-paced tale of supernaturally infested Fairview, U.S.A. First a haunted house nearly kills witch Holly Carver. Then her boyfriend dumps her. Finally, a demon escapes from a portal that her ancestors tried and failed to close. Though Holly's not great at big magic, she determines to finish the job, aided by her sage grandmother's advice and spell books and handsome police detective Conall Macmillan, who got "some sort of psychic flu" after being kissed by a strange woman in a bar. As for Holly's undead business partner, Alessandro Caravelli, his loyalties are split between his vampire queen, Omara, and Holly, whom he realizes he loves. Strong world-building and romantic elements benefit from deft touches of humor; readers will look forward to the sequel. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.