Sunday 9 September 2012

CBR4 Book 72: "Grave Memory" by Kalayna Price

Page count: 348 pages
Rating: 4 stars
Date begun: July 5th, 2012
Date finished: July 9th, 2012

This is the third book in the series, and as such, this review can and probably does contain spoilers for the previous two books. So if you don't like that sort of thing, avoid this whole review, and start at the beginning with Grave Witch instead.

Plot summary from Goodreads:
When the dead need to talk, Alex Craft is always ready to listen...
As a Grave Witch, Alex solves murders by raising the dead - an ability that comes at a cost, and after her last few cases, that cost is compounding. But her magic isn't the only thing causing havoc in her life. While she's always been on friendly terms with Death himself, things have recently become a whole lot more close and personal. Then there's her sometime partner, agent Falin Andrews, who is under the glamour of the Winter Queen. To top it all off, her best friend has been forever changed by her time spent captive in Faerie.

But the personal takes a backseat to the professional when a string of suicides occur in Nekros City and Alex is hired to investigate. The shades have no memory of the days leading up to their brutal endings, so despite the very public apparent suicides, this is murder. But what kind of magic can overcome the human will to survive? And why do the shades lack the memory of their deaths? Searching for the answer might mean Alex won't have a life to remember at all...

Having eagerly anticipated this for months, ever since I finished Grave Dance, I must admit that the book didn't entirely live up to my expectations. I think this is partly due to the fact that the book starts very slowly, and the action part of the plot doesn't really kick in until about a third of the way through. What the readers do get in this book, is a lot more Death. More of his back story is revealed, and there's further developments in his relationship with Alex. Falin, on the other hand, barely makes an appearance, but the very end of this book suggests that book 4 is going to be a lot more focused on him. While I'm not normally a fan of the drawn out love triangle, I must admit that Price does a marvellous job of making me root for both guys, and making both options seem both extremely appealing, yet seemingly impossible for Alex. I can't wait to see where Price is going with this.

If you liked the first two books, you'll enjoy this one too, and I suspect that if I hadn't had my expectations turned up so very high, and if I'd known it was a slow starter, I would have been less impatient and enjoyed it more. You'd better believe I'll be getting the next one in the series, eager to find out more about Falin and the various Faerie courts.

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