Tag Archives: Paranormal romance

Grave Witch

Book Review: Grave Witch, by Kalayna Price

Grave Witch Kalayna Price

I won a $10 credit to The Book Depository and Grave Witch, by Kalayna Price is the book I chose to purchase with it.

About the book

Grave witch Alex Craft can speak to the dead, but that doesn’t mean she likes what they have to say.

As a private investigator and consultant for the police, Alex Craft has seen a lot of dark magic. But even though she’s on good terms with Death himself—who happens to look fantastic in a pair of jeans—nothing has prepared her for her latest case. Alex is investigating a high profile murder when she’s attacked by the ‘shade’ she’s raising, which should be impossible. To top off her day, someone makes a serious attempt on her life, but Death saves her. Guess he likes having her around…

To solve this case Alex will have to team up with tough homicide detective Falin Andrews. Falin seems to be hiding something—though it’s certainly not his dislike of Alex—but Alex knows she needs his help to navigate the tangled webs of mortal and paranormal politics, and to track down a killer wielding a magic so malevolent, it may cost Alex her life…and her soul.

my review

I generally enjoyed this. It suffers from many of the faults of Urban Fantasy/PNR published a decade ago—the hero/love interest is an asshole for half the book, the cast isn’t very diverse, there’s a possible love triangle thrown in at the end—as well as some just generally questionable things like solutions presenting themselves in easy and coincidental fashions. But I liked Alex. The writing is super readable. I was invested in the story and would happily read more of the series.

Review of The Grim Assistant, by Jodi Hutchins

I picked up a copy of Jodi HutchinsThe Grim Assistant from the publisher (Nine Star Press).

Description from Goodreads:

Postal carrier and amateur surfer, Samantha Diaz, lives an uncomplicated life. Well, other than helping her sister with childcare, crushing on her unavailable customer, Lauren Brennan, and catching as many waves as possible before hurricane season begins. Suffice to say, she isn’t looking for much more, but when Lauren invites her to a monthly game night at her house, Sam happily agrees.

When Sam sets out on an early morning surf, the last thing she expects to do is die, but a sudden thunderstorm thrashes offshore, creating a riptide that steals Sam’s life. She awakens to a snarky woman named Margo speaking cryptic nonsense. Not only does she claim to be one of the many Grim Reapers, or Grims, in the world, Margo makes Sam an offer: she’ll bring Sam back from the dead, as long as she becomes Margo’s temporary assistant. Sam accepts but soon realizes the deal was too good to be true, and the consequences she faces may be worse than the death she dodged.

Review:

I think the best way to describe my relationship with this book is to admit that I checked my progress at the end of EVERY chapter. I was literally counting down until the end. The reason is that I was BORED. This book seemed focused on all the wrong places, the pacing was inconsistent, as was Lauren’s character. It’s predictable, repetitive, and written largely in tell (instead of show), so I didn’t feel connected to anyone.

Review of Bless Your Heart (Fairy Tales of a Trailer Park Queen Book 1), by Kimbra Swain

I purchased an e-copy of Kimbra Swain‘s Bless Your Heart.

Description from Goodreads:

Scorned by her family. Banished by her kind. Hunted by zealots. 

Where does an exiled Fairy Queen hide? 

A remote mountain cabin, the seedy underbelly of a metropolis, or an uninhabited island. All would be good choices, however, after hundreds of years on the run, the daughter of Oberon, King of the Wild Fairies, signs a binding contract with the zealots that hunt her. In exchange, they allow her to settle down in the last place anyone would look for fairy royalty. 

Adopting the name Grace Ann Bryant, the Queen buys a double-wide and moves into a trailer park in the one-horse town of Shady Grove, Alabama. Her contract requires her to lend aid to the local sheriff, Dylan Riggs, when supernatural problems arise. 

But when two children go missing, the humans point to the trailer park queen helping the sheriff, and the zealots point at the exiled fairy. Grace must decide whether to fight for her innocence or break her contract returning to life on the run. 

Bless Your Heart is a Southern Urban Fantasy that will make you laugh, cry, and laugh until you cry, as Grace wrestles with the dark fairy inside herself and starts to see that she’s more than just trailer trash.

Review:

This was a cute story let down in the execution. It really needs another copy editing pass, to catch misplaced commas, missing words and homophones and such. Plus, someone really needs to sit the author down and discuss the fact that people DON’T SAY NAMES IN EVERY CONVERSATION. It’s one of my biggest dialogue pet peeves. It’s redundant and annoying, and Swain is particularly bad about it. I almost DNFed the book pretty early on honestly, because of it. 

Beyond that, I didn’t believe the twist at the end (in the church). Grace would have to be exceedingly oblivious, moving into Too Stupid To Live territory, to really not have noticed ANYTHING until the big reveal. And could/would the town really have kept that secret so well? Plus, keeping the secret from her doesn’t even make sense. 

All in all, I did actually like the characters and I appreciated the male/female platonic friendship. But beyond that, the book didn’t live up to what it could have been.