Narrator: Lorelei King
Series: Charley Davidson #1
Published by Macmillan Audio, St. Martin's Press on February 9, 2011
Genres: Mystery, Urban Fantasy
Length: 8 hours 58 minutes
I’ve owned First Grave on the Right on audio for what feels like FOREVER, but for some very stupid reason I didn’t read it until it came up as a selection for book club. Well thank goodness that made me read it! There was absolutely nothing about First Grave on the Right that I didn’t love – but I’m giving it 4.5 stars because I wasn’t quite blown away enough to push it to 5.
A smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper Charley sees dead people. That's right, she sees dead people. And it's her job to convince them to "go into the light". But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e. murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice.
Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she's been having about an Entity who has been following her all her life... and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely.
This is a thrilling debut novel from an exciting newcomer to the world of paranormal romantic suspense. The audio includes a sneak peak of Second Grave on the Left.
Charley is nothing like I expected – she’s THE Grim Reaper, that comes with certain dark, badass expectations. Even though that’s not her at all, I adore her. She gets into loads of trouble (she’s not exactly a badass LOL) and has a really sarcastic and somewhat inappropriate sense of humor. As in snark overload. But you love that, right? I know I adore a grim reaper that names her boobs “Danger” and “Will Robinson”!
Charley also has a HUGE heart. Having a heart like hers could be a liability when you have to deal with death so frequently, and it kind of is for Charley – remember all the trouble she gets into? – but I loved that she doesn’t let some pretty horrendous things keep her from caring.
And I just loved her dynamic with her best friend – Cookie. Cookie is Charley’s assistant at her private investigation firm, but she’s also just a GREAT friend. Charley’s life is far from normal and Cookie just excepts it. Sure she freaks out and mothers Charley when Charley almost gets herself killed (notice a theme –> Charley gets into a lot of trouble), but that’s what a good friend does.
And then there’s Reyes. So when I heard his name, I thought, “Ohhhh Reyes!” Needless to say I’ve heard all about Reyes but I didn’t realize he belonged to this series. Yes, I like Reyes. He earned some sighs from me too. But he didn’t illicit the reaction I thought he would, given the hype. That’s okay, because I still really like him and I’m super curious about him – he’s a bit of a twist in the plot all on his own, so I can’t say much without being spoilery.
The way this world works is neat – grim reaping is nothing like I expected. Charley has an awful lot of ghosts around her and I found myself thinking, “aren’t you supposed to reap those souls?” But it doesn’t work that way – Charley is really just that bright light souls pass through. They have to choose to pass through her – so she’s more of a gate than an actual active soul collector.
I really enjoyed First Grave on the Right and look forward to reading more. If you’re one of the few out there that haven’t read it like me – I’d recommend it, especially if you enjoy snark, a bit of paranormal woo-woo, a light (almost cozy) mystery, and some sexy fun! And I’d definitely recommend it on audio – Lorelei King nailed it! I think the personalities, humor, and snark really came to life BECAUSE if her reading. This will be audio only for me, for sure!