The Ghost Wore Yellow Socks was one of the earliest Lanyon books I read, after Fair Game and the Adrien English series. I adored Perry and really liked Nick. The atmosphere of the old house full of crazies was perfectly written and eerily portrayed, and the mystery was engaging and just as zany as the people in the house. I've read that book at least three times and enjoyed it more each time.
However, it wasn't a book or a pairing that was crying out for a sequel. Even so, I was one of the ones (semi-)excited when the sequel was first announced a few years ago. But I was nervous too because so many of the JL's books lately just haven't appealed to me or haven't lived up to those earlier books, so I went into this with mixed feelings.
This was painfully average. Once again, I found myself asking "who wrote this" while I was reading it because this isn't the JL of ten years ago, or even of five years ago. The writing was adequate but there was no real sense of atmosphere or the space this story was taking place in, which is too bad because she really could've done a lot with this setting of a broken down hotel full of B-movie horror props. The characters were zany but randomly so, as if their characteristics were chosen by throwing darts at a board. They didn't play off each other very well at all, and there was so little interaction with them - or maybe they were just so forgettable - that I couldn't really keep them straight, even though this only took a little over a day to read. The mystery was all over the place and didn't even make any sense. There are just too many unanswered questions, and it felt like Lanyon was just making things up on the fly instead of plotting out the mystery elements ahead of time.
Most importantly, Nick and Perry's relationship was just there. Because they're a couple and in the same book. It was barely touched upon. They have next to no conflicts in their relationship. Nick is gone a lot because he's the low man on the totem pole at work and has to do the overnight and away assignments, but Perry's busy with work (whatever that is) and school and his paintings, so while he misses Nick it's not really an issue for him. Perry's homesick, but that's hardly touched on either. Nick misses Perry but that's just mentioned in passing. He's frustrated their rare weekend together is being hogged up with a silly mystery in an old house, but other than a couple of short conversations about it, it's also not really an issue. So there was no real development, either individually or as a couple. There was only one sex scene - interrupted thank God, because it was averagely written as the rest of this.
I have to say, I finished this and had to wonder why this story was even necessary. Maybe a lot of this could have been improved if the story had been longer, but then we'd still be waiting for it.