It’s been a while since I’ve found a fictional character I identified with as much as Tuesday Mooney. We’re both researchers. (I’m a librarian.) We’re both dedicated introverts. We both love to learn weird things. So reading Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts, by Kate Racculia, was an exciting read. After all, how many times does a person like Tuesday (and me) get to use her skills at digging up obscure information to track down an eccentric billionaire’s fortune?
Tuesday works for a non-profit that cultivates wealthy potential donors in the hopes that they will give their money to Boston General Hospital. She mines social media, the news, and whatever sources she can get her hands on to create dossiers on these potential donors. On the night of one of the charity’s auctions, two unexpected things. First, Tuesday meets the charming, handsome Archie, a scion of one of the city’s richest and most powerful families. Second, Vincent Pryce—an outrageously wealthy goth, fan of Poe and asking deep questions—drops dead after bidding $50,100 for New Kids on the Block tickets. Pryce’s obituary (which turns out to have been written by the man himself) challenges everyone to a treasure hunt to find or earn a portion of his wealth.
Everyone in Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts has hidden motives except, perhaps Tuesday. Tuesday just wants to solve the mystery that is Vincent Pryce. Archie seems to be playing for all kinds of ulterior motives. Tuesday’s friend, Dex, gets involved for her sake but becomes infatuated with one of Pryce’s friends. Tuesday’s neighbor, teenaged Dorry, has the most heartbreaking motivation: she hopes that the rumors about one of Pryce’s possessions turn out to be true and allow her to see her deceased mother. With all of these motivations tangling around each other, this book turns out to have a lot to say about friendship, loyalty, and betrayal. All of the characters’ friendships are tested more than once as opportunities to get ahead present themselves. Will these so-called friends band together? Or will they let their own games pull them apart?
I picked up Tuesday Mooney hoping for an engaging, intellectually stimulating novel that would help me escape from the news for a while. No buts here! This book absolutely delivered. I loved the snappy, witty dialogue. A constantly shifting plot demanded all my attention. The best part, however, was the emotional depth as the characters are tested. This may be one of the best books I’ve ever read about the nature of friendship. This book is utterly fabulous. If you haven’t read it already, run—do not walk—to read this book.