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Posted January 8, 2014
Stupid book that was billed as funny. Not funny at all and just overall a bad book and complete waste of my time. I want my money back. I wish that ebooks were returnable for a refund.
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Posted December 1, 2013
Reviewed by Katelyn Hensel for Readers' Favorite
Unfinished Business is the first book in a new chick-lit series by Carolyn Ridder Aspenson, and it has a paranormal twist to it. Angela's mom has just passed away. You would think that means she's gone for good, but it turns out that Mom just won't leave. She comes back as a ghost and won't leave her daughter alone. Now Fran - the mother in question - has to figure out just what her unfinished business is here on Earth or she'll never get to head on into that great white light. It turns out that Angela is part psychic, something mommy dearest forgot to mention, and now the poor dear sees ghosts everywhere. It's now become her additional part-time job to figure out how to help the dead finish their unfinished business; all while figuring out how to salvage her old life and keep Fran from getting into enough trouble to kill her again.
I thought this story was a hoot. I've read a lot of paranormal books, but this was by far the cutest I've read in a long time. Fran kind of had the attitude of Grandma Mazur from Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series, and the paranormal element was very cute. It was a bit cheesy at times, with all the momma-daughter moments that are sure to happen when a parent dies and comes back from the dead. All cute, all fun, and definitely an entertaining read to take you away from the stress of the day for a hot second. I will definitely be keeping an eye out for further titles in the Angela Panther series.
Posted October 29, 2013
Posted October 25, 2013
I LOVED THIS BOOK AND CAN'T WAIT FOR THE NEXT BOOK IN THIS SERIES. IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE AVAILABLE IN NOVEMBER 2013. HURRYWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 19, 2013
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings
Angela is an adult with a husband and kids and right at the beginning she loses her mom to cancer, but her mom reappears as a ghost to help her through some future situations. She realizes that she has a gift and must help other ghosts and beings finish their business, so they can leave and go to "the other side."
Even though I am not a "magical" kind of reader, I loved this book. I loved how the beings were only able to talk to Angela and she had to help them finish whatever they needed to. Among helping ghosts, she also had to work on her immediate family. Angela felt like such a well rounded character. This first book definitely had a cliff ending and I couldn't believe when it ended!
Posted October 7, 2013
With this classified as chick-lit, I was expecting some romance and for it to be fluffy. That is not what this was, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It was well-written, just a bit jumpy plot wise. I enjoyed the characters and it was definitely a funny concept-a woman's mother comes back and haunts her. I also loved the phrases Angela used. They are things that I actually say so I feel like I'm not alone in using them.
Angela starts off the story in a rough place. Her mother just died, her teenage daughter is being overly-dramatic, and her father seems to be sick. Along with these normal life circumstances, it turns out she can see ghosts-starting with her mother's. She seems to be a good mom and all, but definitely a tad hypocritical (especially with the texting thing). It was nice seeing a good relationship with her husband. Her friendship with her best friend was pretty entertaining as well.
The rest of her family is very typical. Her son can actually see ghosts as well, which provided an interesting dynamic. The ghosts themselves are pretty normal as well-simply wanting to tell their loved ones they are sorry or that they love them. There is one exception and this ghost is pretty funny. I don't want to ruin it, but it's really funny. I wish we got more information about the ghosts themselves and who is spreading the word that Angela can see them, but that may come up in later books in the series.
Overall it was good, just not stellar to me. There was a lot jam-packed into this story that made it hard to really connect. It was almost TOO much. Things also jumped around from dealing her mother, worrying about her father and daughter, and helping these other ghosts. Certain characters would randomly appear after not being mentioned for awhile so it was easy to forget who they were. Regardless, it was good and I look forward to the next book in the series since I think it'll be a bit more put together instead of introducing everything as this first one does.
Posted September 21, 2013
As soon as I read the blurb for this book, I knew it had to be my next read. Carolyn combines the perfect amount of grief, hilarity, romance, and paranormal to make this quite an interesting read.
Angela, a seemingly normal housewife who can banter with the best of them, wakes up one morning to find out she can see dead people. More specifically she can see her recently deceased mother. So what's a girl to do? Grab a cupcake and her best friend and set out to find a way to stop seeing her dead mother's ghost. Only Angela gets more than she bargained for when she realizes that not only can see her mother Fran, she can see the ghosts of others and the ghosts are starting to realize that she's a regular ol' ghost whisperer.
Meanwhile her teenage daughter is struggling with personal problems, her son seems to be seeing the ghost of his grandma as well, and her dad is having health problems himself. With one thing happening after another seeing ghosts is the least of Angela's worries.
Although Unfinished Business is a lot about Angela and her ability to now see ghosts, it does touch on some very serious topics such as drugs and peer pressure.
All of Carolyn's characters are easy to relate to and the emotions are very real. The friendship between Angela and her bff, Mel is the kind any woman would want and the banter makes you laugh out loud. The mother-daughter relationship between Angela and her mother, Fran, is one of a kind and the interactions between them are hilarious. Only a ghost mother would be telling you that you need a fresh coat of paint!
This was a laugh out loud, remarkable read. I'm looking forward to the next Angela Panther book, Unbreakable Bonds.
Posted September 18, 2013
You have to read this! I am so impressed right now with this author and this book! I laughed, I cried, and I couldn’t put this one down. I mean, I cried so hard at some points that my dog stared at me with worry. Not the cats, they never care, but at least the dog does. That’s beside the point.
I’m in my early twenties and even though the main character in this book is a mother, I felt like I could relate to her because she is so fleshed out by the writer. After reading this book, I found myself thinking that this character could be a real person, it’s that good. The things that she has to deal with on a daily basis are riddled with humor, even though it’s a bitter humor at points.
The ending, wow. It will make you smile and cry at the same time. Hands down I give this book five stars because, unlike a lot of the books I’ve been reading lately, this one made me feel.
Posted September 4, 2013
This is a great debut novel by Carolyn Aspenson. It is a witty, laughable, emotional roller coaster that will make your shed a few tears
and make you really think about life. Angela's life is pretty simple until her mother comes back to haunt her from the after life.
Things go from simple to chaotic throughout this tale. Carolyn does an awesome job in the telling of this story. I would recommend
this book. I give it 4 stars.
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Posted August 14, 2013
When Angela Panther's mother Fran passes away from lung cancer, Angela knew she would be dealing with the grief from her mother's death, but she never thought that she would see her mother return as a ghost! It seems that before Fran could rest in peace in heaven, she has some unfinished business to attend to on earth. Thinking that she is dreaming at best and hallucinating at worse, Fran's celestial reappearance awakens a psychic gift of sight in Angela where she can see dead people, making her a reluctant medium who becomes a ghost whisperer helping the dead with their own unfinished business.
In her debut novel, author Carolyn Ridder Asperson weaves a wickedly humorous and touching paranormal chick lit tale about the unending love that survives death between the living and their departed loved ones. Written in the first person narrative and set in Atlanta, Angela Panther takes the reader on a wild and emotional roller coaster ride as she tells them about her ghost whisperer adventures and life lesson experiences that is spurred on by the reappearance of her mother. I absolutely loved Fran, she was my favorite character, this Italian mama kept me in stitches with all her crazy antics. I also loved the best friend relationship between Angela and Mel, everyone needs to have a BFF like Mel, her one-liners were hysterical. I would be remiss if I didn't touch upon the poignancy of the loss of a loved one and the need for closure of unfinished business, it took me back to the bittersweet loss of my own mom in 2007. I believe that the author wrote from her heart, she has a way of keeping the story light and entertaining, while also providing a therapeutic touch that simply warms the heart and makes the reader smile.
The author easily draws the reader into this entertaining story with a mixture of sassy humor, joy, sorrow, and true-to-life experiences that pulls at the heartstrings and keeps them turning the pages. With a witty cast of characters who are larger than life; a balanced mixture of laugh-out-loud moments, serious dialogue and fun interactions; and a touching storyline that anyone who has ever lost a loved one can relate to; Unfinished Business is a thoroughly enjoyable tale that leaves the reader wanting more.
Unfinished Business is the first book in the Angela Panther Novel Series. Unbreakable Bonds, the second book in the series is scheduled to be released in November 2013.
Posted August 12, 2013
While dealing with real life issues is always difficult, this story puts a humorous paranormal spin on the chaos most people hope to avoid in their life. Turning the sadness of a mother's death into a comedy is challenging, but this book succeeded. Most of us wish, when a parent dies, that we could have had more time with them. This book certainly has a “be careful what you wish for” aspect, all while tackling deep life issues, and fighting those sneaky carbs.
Filling this story, are several colorful and crazy characters. Angela's honest and realistic sense of humor is probably pretty accurate for most women, making her a good icon for the modern wife and mom. I loved the fact that she and Jake had a good marriage, and there wasn't any kind of unfaithful husband drama- it's nice to read a chick-lit story where there's a happy marriage. Angela's mom, the back-from-the-light spirit with a crazy sense of humor, is by far, the funniest and most entertaining character. Mel's one liners are killer, and most people would kill for a friend like her. The kids all seemed pretty typical, which is sad, but the honesty behind their personalities was refreshing. What I loved most about this story, is how it successfully showed the personal growth of each of the characters, and in the end, leaves you with a sense of connection and growth as well.
I personally couldn't relate to several of the running jokes in the story, so that did have me feeling somewhat alienated and uncomfortable. The jokes weren't at all uncommon or in bad taste, they're just not things I joke about or agree with. Most women make those kinds of jokes with their friends though, so I think this book would be very relatable for most women.
The overall writing was good. The author kept the story flowing well, and seamlessly mixed humor with serious topics. While there were several editing mistakes, they were minor, and didn't pull me out of the story too much. I think I'd be happy to read just about anything from this author, and look forward to more of her books in the future.
Overall, I liked this book, and I think it's is a solid 4 star comedy. This is certainly a story I'd like to continue with, and I'm hoping there will be a sequel. I'd recommend this book to any chick-lit fan, or anyone who enjoys a good seeing-dead-people-because-I'm-a-spirit-medium story.
*I was given an ebook copy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.
Posted July 31, 2013
I loved the way the author told this story. The underlying subject matter was serious, but her funny, snarky tone lightened the mood to make it a very enjoyable read. The author has a great sense of humor, even about death, but when the story called for it, she was reverent and empathetic in the way her characters handled each other.
I really identified with the main character—she’s just a mom, trying to do the things she needs to do to keep the family on track. She’s not an overbearing supermom by any means, but she will do anything to keep her kids safe, even siccing her ghost-mom on her daughter’s frenemies.
I highly recommend this book if you like chick-lit, especially if you want a book with more substance than most. I would love to read more by this author.
Posted July 11, 2013
I'll admit I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book. The beginning drew me in, but the next couple of chapters were a little bit slow for me. However, once I got further into the story, I really enjoyed it. After the passing of her mother, Angela begins receiving visits from her and soon discovers that she has the "gift" of seeing and speaking with dead people. Angela's mother, Fran, was so entertaining, making me laugh out loud several times throughout the book.
Surprisingly, I also found myself teary-eyed a few times. I don't know whether or not I believe people can communicate with those who have passed on, but there were several extremely touching moments with Angela relaying messages from the dead to their loved ones. I didn't expect them to choke me up as much as they did.
What I liked most about this book was that the author managed to balance the moments of sadness with lots of off-the-wall, humorous side notes and conversations, keeping the story from being too heavy, and yet she still handled the moments of loss and tragedy with sensitivity.
Posted June 26, 2013
This was a really enjoyable book. It was a real page turner from the very first page. The story was so well paced and kept my interest the entire way through; it was so hard to put it down! I found it to be a little bit of a tear jerker in a couple of spots, as someone else mentioned, but it was a really good story. I would definitely recommend it for your summer reads!
Posted June 18, 2013
This was a very entertaining read. A lot of humor, some witty characters and a bit of tear jerking makes for a great book. The characters were so easy to relate to and the dynamic between all of them was touching. The death of Angela's mother sets off a series of events that's part carnival show and part ghost story. When her mother appears to her after her death it sets her "gift" off and suddenly she's seeing ghosts everywhere she goes, and they all want her help. There are a lot of laughs and some very sad moments that keep the reader engaged and wanting to know what happens next. As a mom I felt myself relating to Angela and feeling her joy and her sorrow. I think this is the start to what could be an amazing series and I can't wait to see what comes next for Angela and her celestial mother.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 5, 2013
By nature I am not a skeptic so this was my kind of book. I have been always interested in the afterlife and especially after my sister passed away a couple years ago. My heart stopped as I read through the first page and tears streamed down my face. I was now the one sitting in a chair next to my sister’s hospice bed holding her hand until she took her last breath. It was like I was thrust back into that cold room that I hated so much. I could feel Angela Panther’s heartache and I knew that I was not going to be able to put this book down. I feel my sister’s presence with me and I know that her death made me look at my life from a new perspective. Carolyn’s book has reinforced my thoughts and I am very thankful for that. This book delivered beyond my expectations. The pain of losing someone you love so much is indescribable and no matter how hard we try the void is huge. We are all going to leave behind unfinished business that is part of life and death. Angela Panther however has a very special gift. She can see the dead; she can talk with the dead and use that information to help the living. The author has done an amazing job and you can’t help chuckle through some of the pages and then cry through others. It was definitely for me a page-turner that provided comfort and enjoyment at the same time. The characters are wonderful and their conversations memorable. I would recommend Unfinished Business to anyone with an open mind. It will bring home how important it is to learn from our immense grief to never forget that life is way to short, and make the most of it. For me it is an amazing thing to be able to see, talk and share experiences with souls that have crossed over and bring comfort to the people still here. Carolyn Aspenson had done exactly that with this book. She is now one of my favorite authors. She has done a beautiful job with this novel.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 7, 2013
I enjoyed this book. The characters are solid and several scenes made me laugh out loud. The ghost, Fran, is witty and sassy and obviously loves her family. Her daughter Angela is smart and like every woman, except she's able to see ghosts. I enjoyed how the author intermingled the drama of the teenage daughter into the mix. Good back story. Sort of like the TV show Ghost Whisperer but with fun characters, no evil ghosts and an older heroine. I read on her site she's already working on a second book and I'll buy that. Strong dialog. Very impressive.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 6, 2013
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