Ghostly Acts

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Ghostly Acts

“First love can be wonderfully thrilling but extremely dangerous, especially with a ghost.”

Multiple Award-Winning Paranormal YA Romance by Melinda Rucker Haynes

Available in Paperback from The Wild Rose Press Now!

Available in Paperback from Amazon!

Available for Kindle from Amazon!

Coming Soon to audiobook!

Synopsis * Story Behind the Story * Awards * Reviews


The world is ending…or so it seems for junior tennis champion Ele O’Neill. How can she face life in a Montana ghost town after Seattle? No tennis courts, no friends, and she’s stuck in a falling down old theatre with a rotten little brother and parents who are acting like aliens. And something’s hiding in Ele’s room, watching her every move, but no one will listen to her.

Steven Douglas is a nineteen-year-old cowboy with one little problem—he’s been dead for over one hundred fifty years. He’s supposed to protect the weird O’Neill family from unimaginable evil lurking in the theatre, but the modern world of tight jeans and outspoken young ladies—namely tall, blonde Ele O’Neill—has his full attention.

Though he seems kind of old-fashioned, Ele soon learns her ghost boyfriend Steven will brave her parents and hell itself to save her—and he’s going to have to!

Story Behind the Story

Every story I write begins in my dreams, imaginings, and often reflects some facet of my experience. The setting of my story GHOSTLY ACTS was inspired by my husband, who grew up in Montana and whose ancestor rode with the Vigilantes of Virginia City. We visited the Ghost Capitol of Montana where I researched the history of the Vigilantes and the Innocents gang. Story bones began their skeleton dance. But no one interestingly motivated emerged to tell this story.

My son was a successful AP junior in high school, on the swim and water polo teams, worked as a lifeguard and, as a working actor since he was six-years-old, active in school and community drama productions. Mid-year my husband was transferred and we moved to the new job location. My son knew no one at his new school and spent all his free time driving sixty-five miles one way back to his old school and friends. There had to be a better answer to this family problem that would keep our boy off I-5! Our son’s solution was to graduate the new high school with honors a year early and, as a seventeen-year-old, matriculate at Montana State University. A motivated storyteller had emerged . . .

One demand that my son has always had is–don’t put me in your stories. So, to find another storyteller I started the What If Speculations. I didn’t have to look far as my extended family has been blessed with a smart, athletic, kind, talented young woman with megawatt star power. I wondered if such a teen queen suddenly had to move from her kingdom to the Ghost Capitol of Montana so her parents could live their dream, and was without friends, academic stimulation, family support focus, and in her case, no tennis, how would she act? What would she do especially if there were real ghosts haunting her and her family?

Wow! Did I put Miss Electra (Ele) O’Neill through hell. I’m not sorry and I don’t believe Ele is sorry either. She stepped up with solutions–most unusual ones–to her problems many, except for one: is there any real future in loving a ghost?


Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award WINNER~Best Young Adult Romance

RWA FF&P Chapter Prism Award~Best Light Paranormal

EPIC Finalist~Best YA Paranormal Romance


“Ms. Haynes writes an intriguing story of an angry teenage girl who, with the help of her ghostly sweetheart, comes to terms with what life hands her. GHOSTLY ACTS is a rip-snorting adventure and a tender love story, as well as a fascinating slice of Virginia City’s colorful history.”

Rated: 4 CROWNS

“In search of a good young adult romance brimming with thrills and chills of the paranormal kind? If so, grab a front row seat to GHOSTLY ACTS by Melinda Rucker Haynes. This award-winning novel is an entertaining and insightful read for teens and adults alike. GHOSTLY ACTS is a funny, scary and heart-warming book with a charming cast of very human characters.”

“When you read GHOSTLY ACTS, you’ll see why Melinda Rucker Haynes is a Golden Heart Winner. This is a sweet story of first love for young adults, but I think moms will enjoy this story too. Although a “first love” story, this novel moves along at a brisk pace, and adds enough excitement and adventure to keep readers hooked. Ele has problems every teenager can understand and relate to, and her character growth by the end of the novel is a model every teenager can follow and emulate. A very enjoyable read.”

“This a wonderful book. You definitely will not be able to stop once you start. It’s a must for readers who like paranormal stories with a little romance. I highly recommend it for those in their late teens and adults.”

“An entertaining book for the younger romance reader. This is a nice little romance appropriate for the younger set and … even for adults.”

“Melinda Rucker Haynes is a writer who can show even grown-ups what it’s like to be a young person these days. She has more e-novels lined up for release later in the year. If they are half as entertaining and insightful as GHOSTLY ACTS, they’re well worth looking up.”

“Young readers will identify with the trials and tribulations of Electra and Steven as they try to show the world that they really do know what’s going on. GHOSTLY ACTS is an engaging and entertaining read for the preteen set and their parents. In fact, their parents may find aspects of Mr. and Mrs. O’Neill as uncomfortably close to home as their daughters find Electra’s mood swings.”

“I read GHOSTLY ACTS with my twelve-year-old daughter, Marisa, who gave it two thumbs up. Marisa declared the story “very well written,” and would definitely recommend it. And we both liked the way the epilogue resolved the love affair. It’s always nice to think that love transcends time and space.”

“Melinda Rucker Haynes is a very accomplished teacher, author, and educator. Her uncomplicated and easily-read manuscript shows her extensive background in its emotional and exciting rendering. Her vibrant and unique characters capture the reader. Humorous moments abound when Steven tries to take in the modern world of tight jeans and outspoken young ladies. This refreshing story makes you feel the young characters’ conflicts and insecurities. GHOSTLY ACTS is meant for young adults, but should be enjoyed by any fan of good, sweet romance. I look forward to reading more of this talented author with her upcoming releases.”

Author Recommendation:

“Melinda Rucker Haynes brings kids and their parents a wonderfully fun read in GHOSTLY ACTS, with the right mix of romance, danger and humor. If you are 10 or 110, you’ll love and understand Ele’s frustrations with a brother who gives bratty new dimensions, and celebrate in her excitement at meeting her true love in the ghost capitol of Montana.”