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Death and the Girl Next Door

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Sophomore Year Was Never Supposed to be This Complicated

Ten years ago, Lorelei McAlister's parents disappeared without a trace, and she is finally beginning to accept the fact that they're never coming back. Life must go on. She's got her grandparents and the support of her best friends, and high school is not quite as painful as she thought it would be.

But This is What Happens When You Fall for the Angel of Death.

Until the day the school's designated loner, Cameron Lusk, begins to stalk her, turning up where she least expects it, standing outside her house in the dark, tough, sexy Jared Kovach - comes to school. Cameron and Jared instantly despise each other, and Lorelei seems to be the reason for their animosity.

Life as She Knows it is About to Change Forever.

What does Jared know about her parents? Why does Cameron tell Jared he can't have Lorelei? And what will any of them do when Death comes knocking for real? Thrilling, sassy, sexy, and inventive, Death and the Girl Next Door proves Darynda Jones is a force to be reckoned with.

274 pages, Paperback

First published October 2, 2012

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About the author

Darynda Jones

50 books15.4k followers
NYTimes and USA Today Bestselling Author Darynda Jones has won numerous awards for her work, including a prestigious RITA, a Golden Heart, and a Daphne du Maurier, and her books have been translated into 17 languages. As a born storyteller, Darynda grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, certain they went away the better for it. She penned the international bestselling Charley Davidson series and is currently working on several beloved projects, most notably the Sunshine Vicram Mystery Series with St. Martin's Press and the Betwixt and Between Series of paranormal women's fiction. She lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

Click here to read one of the more popular short stories by Darynda called The Monster:

She can be found at http://www.daryndajones.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 931 reviews
Profile Image for Shannon.
3,029 reviews2,341 followers
October 24, 2012
I apologize for my gushing status updates in the beginning. Please, don't pick this book up because of them. I'm not sure what happened here, but this book is nowhere near the caliber I expect from Jones. The plot made no sense, the humor dried up, and the male posturing was so over-the-top that it became absurd and incredibly annoying. I had to make a new shelf just for this book - "you disappointed me" - and it saddens me to put it there. If the beginning hadn't been so enjoyable I would've given this 1 star, and perhaps I should do just that because of the spoiled potential.

So, you have the main girl who thinks she's ugly and not special (though of course she's quite the opposite), two sassy best friends, the mean popular girl and her minions, and two preternaturally hot guys who are at each other's throats constantly. And I mean, constantly. If they aren't fist-fighting they're trading sarcastic quips or glowering at one another. Lots of puffed-up chests and ruffled feathers and it gets TIRESOME. And once you learn why the one boy hates the other boy it becomes stupid, especially when he learns the truth and still carries on. Seriously, dude, you're just embarrassing yourself now.

I can't believe this book was published the way it was; there are some parts of the story where the action is so haphazardly pieced together that you're forced to re-read just to be able to follow along. There are also way too many plot points crammed into one book, which adds to the confusion. Was this a paranormal romance? A book about angels? A book about demon hunters? Ghost hunters? Secret societies? Ancient prophecies? How about ... all of the above? And not a single one was fully developed.

This book was a total mess. It felt like a rough draft that nobody bothered to check for continuity or plausibility before sending it out to the printers. It's full of the same old, same old that's being churned out hand over fist and it's so disappointing to see a book like this with Jones's name on it. I honestly wish I hadn't read it and I think I'm going to pretend it doesn't exist because I love Jones's adult series and this foray into YA fiction was a complete letdown.

A copy of this book was provided by NetGalley.
Profile Image for Giselle.
990 reviews6,356 followers
July 31, 2012
I became a big fan of Darynda Jones when I read her adult series that proceeded to make me giggle spontaneously for days. Hearing about her new YA novel, Death and the Girl Next Door, prompted a lot of squealing. Within the first 20 pages, I already had taken note of a handful of awesome quotable lines; I knew I was in for a good time!

Lorelei's parents have mysteriously disappeared, and now she seems to have a stalker - or two. Lorelei, as I already expected from Darynda's characters, is witty and smart, and she can hold her own which is always a plus to create a character that is easy to root for. She also has two fabulous best friends who are lively, supportive, and provide us with plenty of humoristic banter. Now the boys... Cameron and Jared - both hot, both uniquely compelling, both defensive towards Lorelei. Who else automatically thinks Love Triangle? You don't have anything to worry about, however, this book is actually void of any love triangle. Regardless if this is good news to you or not, you can look forward to a sexy, steamy, and swoon-worthy romance.

These boys are not without secrets. Once we get a glimpse at what Jared's powers are, a gazillion questions arise: About his abilities, Cameron's strong dislike towards him - basically, just what the heck is happening. I found it exceedingly interesting, unquestionably original, but I was dying for answers; it takes a while before details are finally given up. I was expecting Lorelei, when observing a very surreal scene, to scream for answers, no, demand answers. She doesn't, which was surprising for her character and a little frustrating. She was obviously in some sort of shock and worrying about the boy's injuries, but I still felt like the information was being dragged out needlessly. Cameron makes a huge deal about how Jared does not belong here and is dangerous, he also keeps calling him an "it", yet he refuses to answer any questions. You know, like someone who shows off that they're "in the know" and you're not. Maybe I'm simply too impatient, but this is how it came off.

When we eventually get the inside scoop, we've got an incredibly unique spin on death, the angel of death, and how Lorelei fits into all of this. Knowing the theme of the plot, there is some mention of God and religion but it's kept light and pertinent to the story. This is all followed by thrilling twists and turns, one in particular I found myself stupefied by how awesome and fascinating it was. It's also one that I look forward to exploring in the following installment, which promises to be positively exciting.

Entertaining, unique, and down-right sexy, Death and the Girl Next Door is an absolute must read! The characters are convincing, their relationships and surroundings are realistic, and the parents are present - which I was particularly pleased with. It's not as persistently sarcastic as her adult series, but there's plenty of humoristic, sassy dialogue. For Darynda's first foray in the Young Adult genre I was very satisfied and I'm convinced that fans will undoubtedly enjoy it.

Now to end with requisite Darynda quotables:

"We can't fling short jokes at each other when we're all short." It's just not effective.

"Few things were more disturbing than sticky fingers. Forest fires, perhaps. And people who claimed to have been abducted by aliens."
-Quoted from the uncorrected proof

For more of my reviews, visit my blog at Xpresso Reads
Profile Image for hayden.
1,051 reviews732 followers
July 26, 2014

Darynda Jones, you rock my world.

At the beginning of her writing career, she brought us the stunning First Grave on the Right, which was filled to the brim with laughs and clever wit. After that were the next two books in the Charley Davidson series, which were filled with the laughter and wit, but in even greater amounts. Those books made my spleen hurt from laughter.
Then, on October 2, 2012, Jones did something extraordinary.
She ventured into YA.

The YA genre as a whole has grown a lot over the last few years, yet Jones still manages to bring something fresh, unique and downright hilarious to the table.

Death and the Girl Next Door is, at least in my opinion, Darynda's best book yet.

From the get go, I loved Lorelei. She was funny, bright, and serious when needed, especially during the upheaval of every aspect of her life when the new kid, Jared, starts going totally creeper-status on her. Not to mention the defensive and secret-hiding Cameron, who warns Lorelei of Jared's evil side...

Jones's characterization is amazing. She has a unique way of making every character awesome. Even Tabitha, the evil queen-bee of Lorelei's school, I was able to sympathize with, which is a cool thing to be able to say.

Jones's writing is also quite pleasant in places. Throughout, it's quite good, certainly not lacking, but she has a few gems dispersed in Death, particularly during the Lorelei-Jared lovey scenes. And a certain phrase that is repeated throughout the novel that cracks me up.

The beginning of Death was a bit plotless but still entertaining. The plotlessness wasn't noticeable for me after a while, because I became thoroughly invested in the characters and the situations they were in and totally forgot about the beginning. Death left me with simultaneous feelings of anxiety and satisfaction when I closed it. The ending was practically perfect: there were certain things left unsaid that were to be answered in the next two installments of the series, but also a couple of things that were resolved and left you in a happy-sigh kind of mood.

(Also, Darynda, you get a bonus star for leaving out the shoddily-constructed love triangle of doom that pops up in so many YA books du jour.)


It's official: I will read anything this fabulous lady's name is stamped on.

Profile Image for Maja (The Nocturnal Library).
1,013 reviews1,870 followers
September 5, 2012
As a huge fan of Darynda Jones’ Charley Davidson series, I was incredibly excited when I heard she was writing YA. Death and the Girl Next Door is one of my most anticipated books this year, and even though it wasn’t exactly what I thought it would be, I’m overjoyed that Darynda decided to write it. The fact that it wasn’t quite what I expected is actually one of my favorite things about this book: if you decide to pick it up (and you should), you can throw your expectations right out the window.

Here’s what you need to know about Darynda Jones’ YA debut: First, it is about Lorelei McAllister, a 16-year-old high-school sophomore who lives with her lovely grandparents and spends time making mischief with her two best friends, Brooklyn and Glitch. Second, (and I’m sure this will come as a shock), neither Brooke nor Glitch happen to be madly in love with her. Third, there are two hot boys, Jared and Cameron, but there is no love triangle, not even close. Fourth, there are guns – several real ones and one nasty-looking water gun. Fifth, although a secret society is involved, no one gets naked to perform weird rituals. This isn’t The Da Vinci Code. Sixth, just like Charley, Lorelei has a bit of Lorelei Gilmore in her, and I don’t just mean her name.

Death and the Girl Next Door is one of those books that made me laugh so hard I was constantly forced to stifle my laughter lest I wake my poor sleeping child. I stayed up half the night to finish it and even the toothpicks I used to prop my eyes open the next day didn’t make me regret it. Darynda’s trademark humor is present on every page, though she did tone it down a bit for the younger audience. Lorelei and her two best friends can lighten up just about any situation they find themselves in. Darynda Jones can claim all she wants that she’s not as funny in person, but I’ll have to meet her and drink a cocktail or ten with her before I can actually believe it.

I won’t lie to you and say that this book is without problems – it’s not. The first part felt a bit disjointed, I had some minor problems with the love interest, and there were a few things that made me slightly uncomfortable (revealing them, however, would reveal too much of the plot), but truth be told, I’m willing to overlook it all. I expect hilarity and steaming hot romance from Darynda, and that’s exactly what I got with Death and the Girl Next Door.

If you’re like me and you tend to run away screaming every time someone mentions an angel book (or any other book with religious undertones), get over your justified fear and give Death and the Girl Next Door a chance. Writers who don’t take themselves too seriously are few and far between, but when you find one, you’re in for a treat.

Profile Image for equilibri.
17 reviews11 followers
March 1, 2015
DNF award!
This book was bizarre, and not in a good way. The narrative was incoherent and disjointed. The main heroine was trying too hard to be funny, but actually came off as pretty lame. And the lame jokes went on and on.
The worst part? Several pages into the book, the silly twit lays her eyes on some tall muscled guy for a second, and from then on it's an unending ode to his 'hotness'. For pages and pages I got to slog through lines like these:

“So he’s hot.” “Can you say blazing inferno?”
“You know, when you told me he was good-looking,” Brooklyn said without taking her eyes off Jared, “I had no idea you meant godlike good-looking.”
It was the new guy. And his eyes were amazing. Dark, steady, penetrating.
His dark gaze was startlingly intense. The contrast of molasses-colored eyes and hair made his flawless skin appear almost translucent. The effect was haunting.
I had never seen eyes so dark, nor a face so perfect.
A mental image of his flawless face materialized in my mind.
A strong jaw the next. Lashes, thick and impossibly long.
The boy was tall, strong and solid and … breathtaking. Every move he made was powerful, full of strength and dangerous grace.
I looked up just in time to see Jared walk in. My stomach clenched at the sight of him.
His deep voice, velvety and rich like hot chocolate, tugged at my insides, warmed them.
His voice was deep and smooth. It slid over me like warm water and caused a sharp tug in my belly.
A half smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes lifted one corner of his incredible mouth. I couldn’t seem to look away. His lashes lowered to fan across his cheeks as if overcome by a sudden jolt of shyness. They were long and thick, just like in my vision, and made his eyes sparkle. I felt that sharp tug at my insides again."

Somewhere between all the squirming insides, drooling and breathlessness, the storyline seemed to have fallen by the wayside. For me, it was slow torture. If you enjoy that kind of thing, by all means, have fun with Jared's "blazing inferno of hotness".
Profile Image for ♥Rachel♥.
1,802 reviews830 followers
December 30, 2015
Darynda’s signature funny storytelling style. Sexy, mysterious hero, spunky heroine with abilities yet untapped. No love triangle as the description leads you to believe, yay! Fun start to the series, but information was frustratingly slow to trickle in, and the heroine was slow to clue in on a few obvious conclusions. Lorelei King’s narration makes up for most of that. I plan on listening to the next one.
Profile Image for Jen ♥Star-Crossed Book Blog♥.
496 reviews302 followers
February 22, 2017
Death and the Girl Next Door was so much fun and a quick read. The story-line was easy to follow, and within those first few chapters I knew some of the characters and I would get along just fabulously. There was a wonderful mix of personalities, and I loved how many of them had sarcasm as their form of humor. While I had a few hangups with some of the people, and not wanting info dragged out longer than should need be, Death and the Girl Next Door was still exactly what this paranormal lover was looking for.
Nothing would ever be fine again.

Lorelei has had visions for as long as she could remember and it would occur, at times, when she touched someone. The visions would be a peak into that person's life, whether it was a glimpse into their past or their future. There were also times when the visions didn't make any sense at all. But regardless, I loved how she accepted that this was just a part of who she was. And her two best friends, Brooklyn and Glitch, did too.
"Oh my god," Brooklyn said. She swung her surprised look at me. "Just what did you two talk about this morning?"
I beamed, not daring to breathe as he walked towards us. "Oh, you know, the usual. School. The weather. How many children we want."
I expected Brooklyn to at least giggle, but apparently her current state of shock had immobilized her vocal cords. What I hadn't expected, however, was the faint laughter from Jared. He lowered his eyes like before, as though embarrassed by what someone had said. As if embarrassed by what I'd said. No way could he have heard me. Not from that far away.

But things started to get weird when the class loner Cameron, who they've known since grade school, started appearing everywhere Lorelei was. Including outside her house all night long. Creepy! And then things become even stranger when we met the new hot guy at school, Jared. Jared had a lot mystery surrounding him from just his name (I was like uhhh really, that's how you're going to play it?! Lol) to how he made Lorelei feel. So when push comes to shove, and Lorelei's whole world explodes on a city street, things got a lot more interesting!
He leaned forward and whispered in my ear. His warm breath sent shivers cascading over my body. “You intoxicate me, Lorelei McAlister. You will be my downfall.”

I absolutely loved Lorelei. So I was happy to struggle right along with her, with not only trying to figure out what some people were, but also who was good and who was bad. Because while she'd always known Cameron, he acted a little psychotic lately. And while she didn't know anything about Jared, he made her heart do crazy things and I wanted him around just as much as she did. So be warned, there was a little bit of insta-love going on in this book. But regardless, I loved both of those boys! Cameron and Jared were broody, grumpy, held on to their secrets extremely tight and I just wanted to learn everything about them. And don't worry, there wasn't a love triangle at all.
“.....My desires are a bit more...self-serving.” he said with a wry gleam. “So, no, Lorelei, I should not be here. In a thousand different ways, I shouldn’t be here.”

Normally friends can fade into the dark when supernatural elements get involved, but thankfully Brooklyn and Glitch got to learn right along with Lorelei. Btw, I loved Brooklyn. She was funny, warm and I saw a lot potential for a possible future love interest for her. But Glitch? *shrugs* He never won me over, I never connected with him and I just didn't care about him. I'm sorry Glitch. Another thing I never connected with were the twins, Ashlee and Sydnee, and I didn't get Lorelei's hatred towards Brooke - those were people they all went to school with. But even with my issues towards not understanding feelings or not caring about certain characters, it was still so easy to become lost in their world. I absolutely adored this book, and I can't wait to see how the rest of the series goes! Plus I can't wait to spend more time with Jared so I can fall even harder for him, and Cameron too!

PS Yes, I know I didn't talk a lot about what happened in the story, but but but spoilers. It's hard to say anything without giving everything away. ;)

For more of my reviews, please visit:
descriptive text here

October 9, 2012
Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge from the Goodread's First Read giveaways. It was sent from the publisher in exchange for a review. This will not affect my review, and I will give my honest opinion. This review also has reaction!gifs.

Back Cover: Darynda Jones, author of The New York Times bestselling series that began with First Grave on the Right, brings us Death and the Girl Next Door, a thrilling Young Adult novel garnering high praise and early buzz from major authors

Ten years ago, Lorelei's parents disappeared without a trace. Raised by her grandparents and leaning on the support of her best friends, Lorelei is finally beginning to accept the fact that her parents are never coming home. For Lorelei, life goes on.

High school is not quite as painful as she thinks it will be, and things are as normal as they can be. Until the day the school's designated loner, Cameron Lusk, begins to stalk her, turning up where she least expects it, standing outside her house in the dark, night after night. Things get even more complicated when a new guy—terrifying, tough, sexy Jared Kovach—comes to school. Cameron and Jared instantly despise each other and Lorelei seems to be the reason for their animosity. What does Jared know about her parents? Why does Cameron tell Jared he can't have Lorelei? And what will any of them do when Death comes knocking for real? Thrilling, sassy, sexy, and inventive, Darynda Jones's first foray into the world of teens will leave readers eager for the next installment.

"Unique, witty, and touching—I LOVED THIS BOOK!" —P.C. Cast, New York Times bestselling author of The House of Night Series

General Thoughts: It just really sucked. I tried to give this book a chance, but it was like watching a train-wreck. Lorelei is slightly less annoying than Zoey from House of Night. I will also mention that I blame Twilight, even though it was not the first book of it's kind, that endorses unhealthy relationships and made it popular recently in the YA genre.

Super stalking skillz.

Rating: Two stars

What I liked: I liked the actual plot, and the idea behind the series. It had potential to be really awesome. The writing itself was decent, and I didn't notice any obvious grammatical errors. Grammar, though, is not my area of expertise. I have to admit the super secret religious order was actually interesting, but by then I already checked out mentally from the book, because it was revealed near the end.

What I Disliked: The characters. I found them two-dimensional and the ones that I didn't dislike I found boring and bland. The main character, Lorelei is a sue. I could buy her being a psychic. Plot twist: She's a descended of a line of powerful psychics/possibly witches. Okay, maybe, I can buy it. Apparently they were burning witches before Sappho's time, because Sappho is a decent of this powerful witch as well. And don't forget Joan of Arc. History fail that made me laugh. Then it turns out she is important enough to have two angels, one sent to kill her and the other to protect her. Plot twist: she also has been possessed by a demon since early childhood, but she is so powerful and has supah skillz that she restrained this demon that possessed her, and didn't even realize it until that twist was revealed. Mhm.

Quinn Fabray does not approve.

The main love interest: Jared. He was sent to stalk and kill her, but he couldn't so he saved her life. He is so tortured, and so sexxy so it's totes okay that the main character is in twu luv with him. Totally healthy message to send to teenagers. If someone is sexxah enough let them stalk and attempt to kill you. I could have been okay with this plot point if it was the writer showing how unhealthy this is, but it didn't seem like that to me. It felt like the writer was actually approving of this. Upon further thought, I realized that the writer could be voicing her opinions through Cameron, the other angel, but it's unlikely because he also stalked Lorelei to "protect her from Jared", luckily since Lorelei isn't actually attracted to him it was just creepy, until it was revealed he was an angel, so it was no longer creepy. Lorelei was actually surprised that he actually kills people, because he is the freaking angel of death. Kind of the point of his job title, sweetie.

Professor does not approve of your shenanigans.

I suspect that there will be a future love triangle between Cameron, Jared, and Lorelei. My spidey senses are tingling.

There is a lot more I could comment on, but I think I made my point.

How I think this could have been improved: Third person narration, and stop with idealizing stalking and attempted murder, please.

How this should be marketed: It's the next Twilight meets House of Night.

Do I recommend this? Only if you are a masochist, or Twilight and/or House of Night fans.

This is me, running away to find my palate cleanser.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
November 17, 2012
I am so, so disappointed in this book. I am a huge fan of Darynda Jones after reading her Grave series, and I was expecting much more than this. It's not a terrible book, I guess, but it is very slow and confusing. There is not much action, despite the fact that its two main male pro/antagonists spend much of the first half of the book fighting and beating the living crap out of each other. Not much is explained by anyone, and i found myself increasingly frustrated with the chauvinism with which Cameron and Jared treated Lorelei, keeping her in the dark like that. Suffice it to say that by the time we figure out who Lori was, I had completely lost interest. The humor and wit is similar to her adult series. The writing is good enough. I just had a big problem getting attached to any of the characters besides Glitch. I'm halfway through and I don't really feel an urgent need to find out what happened in the rest of the book, despite just getting past the big revelation.
Profile Image for Jody McGrath.
335 reviews52 followers
December 23, 2016
This would have been really good except for two things.
1. Insta-Love
2. Predictable

Still worth a read though.
Profile Image for Terri ♥ (aka Mrs. Christian Grey).
1,372 reviews471 followers
October 20, 2013
Quick review:

Cover: Nice
Rating: PG-13
Thumbs Up: 4
Overall: Entertaining and kept my attention
Characters: Solid
Plot: Twist and double twist to a story of life and death
Page Turner: Yes
Series Cont.? Yes
Recommend: Sure
Book Boyfriend: Cameron

SUMMARY (50 words or less)

I love the Charley Davidson series. So, I wondered what Darynda would do in YA. I’m not sure what I expected but it was good. Not Charley good, but a lot better than many YA series I’ve read. There were laughs, not as many as Charley and there was romance.

For a full review and yummy pic, see my blog post at:


Audio Review
Lorelei King narrated this series as she does the Charley Davidson series. It took a bit to not associate the voices with the adult series, but once I was in, it was good. And I have to wonder if Darynda purposefully named the main character after her narrator? Hmmm.
Profile Image for Jasprit.
527 reviews732 followers
October 25, 2012
3.5 stars

Darynda Jones is an author whose books I’ve always been curious about. With my friends singing high praises of her Charley Davidson adult series, I was given the extra push when I heard she was dipping into the YA, something that was completely new to her. I like it when authors try something outside of their comfort zone. So I was willing to give it a try.

Lorelei has been living with her grandparents for the last 10 years after her parent’s disappearance; there’s never been any clear evidence as to what happened, so Lorelei lives in the hope that one day they will return. Lorelei is lucky to have two best friends Glitch and Brooke to help keep her sane through the stressful times. They know what she’s been through and what she’s capable of yet are still there for her constantly. When strange things start happening with Cameron Lusk the school loner suddenly stalking her and a gorgeous boy Jared starting their school, Lorelei is creeped out but excited at the same time. She’s happy as she likes Jared and he seems to want to spend time with her too, but Cameron constantly keeps butting in, she has no clue what’s up with these two and she doesn’t really want to find out. But despite this she is dragged into the middle of it, if Lorelei thinks her life was bad it takes a turn for the worse.

What I loved about this book was that I was immediately drawn into Lorelei’s world. Books which take such a long time building up to something big which isn’t even big at all I tend not to have the patience for. But Jones sure knows how to get things kick started; she’s not one to beat around the bush. Lorelei finds herself smack bang in the middle of a tug of war competition between Jared and Cameron. Usually I’m quite quick to pick sides between two male characters, but I found that neither Cameron nor Jared were fully able to win me over. As the book progressed I did like the character development of both characters but neither of them made a massive impact on me. I admit Jared occasionally made me swoon (one favourite scene which comes to mind is the shower scene ;). He was always the gentleman in my eyes despite Cameron’s accusations. Cameron on the other hand just bugged me; he had this huge big secret which I’m still constantly thinking about. He seemed to know everyone’s life story but didn’t seem to want to share it. Consequently most of the time Cameron had me utterly baffled! I think another reason Cameron and Jared didn’t work for me was because they were constantly in each other’s faces, not one time did they agree with each other, the constant manning up and puffing their muscles did eventually lead to a few eye roll moments.

This book was definitely made for me by Lorelei’s friend Glitch and Brooke, with these two around there was never a dull moment, the constant banter, winding each other and Jared and Cameron up lightened the mood loads, when you had two big giants squaring off all the time, a joke from these two would have me cracking up.

Despite the great start, this book did drop off quite a bit in the middle I found it hard to pay attention with the repetitiveness, but thankfully the book picked up its brilliant pace it originally started off with in the last 30% or so. It also threw a nice couple of surprises in the mix which I for one didn’t foresee. Death and the Girl Next Door was a very promising to start to this series, I’m quite eager to find out how things will pan out in the next book; Death, Doom and Detention.

Thank you Sam for reading this with me!

This review can be found on The Readers Den
July 27, 2015
Title: Death and the Girl Next Door, book 1, "Darklight" series.
Author: Darynda Jones
Published: October, 2012.
Format: audiobook via www.audible.com
Narrated by: Lorelei King
Genre: Young adult, paranormal, fantasy, mystery, drama, legend, spirituality, demons, possession, fiction.
Read (listened to): July, 2015.
My rating (0-5 scale): 3.75-4.

Brief remarks:

Very intriguing story, truly! Not Charley & Reyes (OBVS, lol), but a solid young adult novel built of a good storyline. I'll stick with it. :)

Oh and plus, Lorelei King is the narrator and she's super good! :D

Profile Image for Van (Short & Sweet Reviews).
532 reviews17 followers
October 4, 2012
I am a fan of Jones’s Charley Davidson’s series and when I heard she was coming out with a YA series I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it! Death and the Girl next Door is NOT what I expected. Our Main heroine Lorelei is your typical sophomore, who enjoys hanging out with her two best friends Brooklyn and Glitch. Things start to get weird when the school loner Cameron begins stalking Lorelei, every time she turns around she sees him lurking in the corner. Lorelei always had visions; some come true while others are just random and bizarre. Things get stranger when a boy from Lorelei’s vision shows up at her school! Next thing you know Cameron and the mysterious Jared are fighting over her.

I truly wanted to like this book, but I found Lorelei extremely annoying, and the story’s mystery too dragged out. I’m probably in the minority who didn’t like this book. When Jared first shows up at school, Lorelei didn’t really freak out that this is the SAME guy from her vision. Instead she’s drooling over how amazingly hot he is, and he of all people noticed someone like her who is pasty white and plain (she said so herself). In another scene in the first half of the book, we have Cameron and Jared fighting over Lorelei, Cameron tells Lorelei to stay away from Jared because he’s the dangerous bad guy. While Cameron tries to get Lorelei away from Jared, what does Lorelei do instead? She attacks Cameron and defends Jared! WTH? She doesn’t even know Jared and Cameron may be the school’s loner but at least she knows of him since the third grade (or was it kindergarten, I forgot). If I was in her situation, I wouldn’t trust either dudes.

The book’s pacing was slow, I found myself constantly losing interest or not caring about what’s going on. In the first quarter of the book, Lorelei is demanding answers to what is going on around her. Why are Cameron and Jared fighting over her? Why are they both so freakishly strong? What is Jared? etc. Instead of getting answers, the characters beat around the bush about it. This drove me nuts! I pushed on hoping that things would get better but not so much. Once I found who was what, I was a little surprised since I wasn’t expecting the book to be about certain paranormal beings but it still didn’t make up for the majority of the book.

Overall I felt this book lacking in the story, character development, and world-building. The world-building didn’t feel put together until towards the end of the book where readers finally get some answers. Death and the Girl next Door didn’t offer anything new or exciting to the YA genre, the elements found in this book can be found in numerous of other YA title in the market today. This is a start to a new series, and one I won’t be continuing. From the other reviews I’ve seen, many seem to really love this book, so while it wasn’t for me it might be for you. I suggest anyone who’s still interested in this book to maybe read a chapter sample or excerpt, or borrow from friend/library before thinking about dishing out the $10.
Profile Image for Crystal.
449 reviews89 followers
October 5, 2012
This book in my opinion is pure fluff. I can't think of any other way to describe it, it is just fluff. The plot took a major backseat to the insta lurve between Lorelei and Jared. I am all for romance in a book, but when you have demons, reapers, angels, and prophets I expect way more than a story filled with "oh he is hawt" and "I want to kiss him".

Lorelei, after surviving a near death experience gets caught up in a battle between Jared, the guy she thinks saved her, and Cameron, the guy beating Jared up for being something that surely nobody can be. After finding out the who's who game Lorelei decides to side with Jared and figure out exactly what all this prophet stuff is about. Joined by her friends she discovers that things in her town are not what they seem and the guy she is falling for could very well bring death upon everybody. That is in a sense what this book is about. There are a few twists and turns along the way and something way more sinister working among them but if I reveal that then there won't be any point to reading the book so I am just going to leave it at that.

Honestly the plot of the story is kinda brilliant, but I don't know if I can read 200 pages of nothing just to enjoy 50 pages of brilliance. The story was so slow and fluffy until the middle of the book where we finally get a glimpse of the hidden plot. All to soon though we are thrown back into sarcasm, mind numbing jokes, and that all too familiar inst love. The last 10 pages finally FINALLY showed me what this book is really about and loved those last 10 pages. The plot jumped out and took hold for the ending and I am a little mad about that. I wanted the whole book to be this way. I didn't want to read Lorelei's internal monologue questioning if she was worthy enough for Jared, I wanted to read about the kick arse demons!

So if the next book has more demons and dark I will probably read it but if it continues on being fluff I am going to have to say bye bye to Lorelei and company and hope they all get their HEAs even though I have no idea how that will be possible.

winter haven books
Profile Image for Taylor.
23 reviews
June 29, 2013
See more of my reviews at my blog: http://readsoverneeds.blogspot.com/

My initial reaction when I first got my hands on this book:


I really, really wanted to like this book. I'm a HUGE fan of Darynda's Charley Davidson series, and I thought that in this novel she'd bring the same amount of witty comments, sexy heroes, and capable heroines. I was wrong. In actuality, I'd give this book 2.5 stars, and let me take you through my reasons why.

What I Liked

1. Lorelei's relationship with one of her best friends, Brooklyn - Their interactions seemed so real, and their comments reminded me a lot of the things I'd say to my best friend. The way that their friendship started (in the third grade, I believe) made me laugh. They're protective of one another, and you can tell that they really do value their friendship instead of Brooklyn being a simple "best friend plot device" with no personality that I see constantly in so many other YA novels.

2. Cameron - He made this entire book bearable. Amongst all of the confusion, and with Lorelei trying to figure out what was going on, his personality never changed. He was still pissed off and agressive and funny, and he seemed to be the only character with substance. Not once did he come off as 2-Dimensional, and all of his reactions--blown out of proportion as they sometimes were--seemed genuine to his character. His reasons for his hostility towards Jared were completely understandable in my opinion. Even their constant fighting had a purpose aside from Cameron's revenge. He was fighting Jared to protect Lorelei, and that raised him up a few notches in my book.

3. Cameron & Brooklyn's relationship - This was perhaps the biggest shocker of all. When Cameron came into the picture, I didn't really pay any mind to Brooklyn calling him "hot" or whatever. I never thought anything would come from it. But as the storyline progressed, so did their relationship, and I can't help but wonder what the future holds for these two. I may even read the next book to find out. Cameron seemed to lose some of his anger whenever he spoke to Brooklyn, and he seemed almost in awe of her, especially during their conversation about auras. Plus, he seemed to listen to Brooke when he would listen to nobody else, and I think he has a genuine respect for her.

What I Did Not Like

1. Lorelei & Jared's Relationship - Their relationship literally bitch slapped me in the face. It's not that I didn't expect for them to develop feelings for one another, but it just happened so fast that I couldn't help but facepalm mid-sentence when Lorelei mentally admitted that she'd "fallen in love" with Jared approximately 2/3 of the way into the book. *sigh* Really?




It was so incredibly unbelievable. She couldn't have had more than 5 conversations with the guy. Keep in mind: All she knew was that he'd saved her life, and that, apparently was enough for her to think she loved him. She didn't know anything about him at first, and even when she did find out his "secret", she didn't give a crap. In my mind, this was all puppy love. Seriously. I think that Lorelei felt sorry for Jared, and was so blinded by his stunning, gorgeous, beautiful, etc etc (I'm not even exaggerating here, she mentions his beauty ALL THE TIME) that she convinced herself "since he saved me, he must not mean me any harm whatsoever" and that she was in love with him. And Jared wasn't really better. He declared that after stalking her he never wanted to take his eyes off of her and that he couldn't let her die and blah blah blah.....keep in mind, he was thinking these things BEFORE he actually got to know her. I think they had one conversation before he saved her life and risked everything. And, of course, Lorelei felt SO guilty....I just couldn't believe their relationship. It felt too forced and too...shallow.

2. The "Sanctuary" Concept - Another thing that confused the hell out of me. In the beginning, we know from what Lorelei tells us that the Sancutary is like a church, and her grandfather is the Pastor. By the end, we find out that it's a super secret, super ancient organization and almost everyone in the city is in on it. My reaction: "wha....??" This came out of nowhere. It felt like a huge info-dump. One moment, her grandparents are normal citizens, and the next they know everything there is to know about angels and demons and possessions...it was just too much. Questions were being thrown around, and answered just as quickly. I could barely keep up. Lorelei finally finds out what happened to her parents, and Jared's identity is officially uncovered. We also find out some shocking things about Brooklyn and Lorelei. By the end of it, I was just like...


3. Glitch & His 'Tude - I really don't understand the purpose of Glitch's (aka Casey Blue-Spider) character. I mean, was he supposed to be the voice of reason, or something? No, thanks. I felt that the entire time, he was opposed to anything and everything Brooke & Lorelei wanted to do. He'd complain that he had football practice, or that he was grounded, and by the middle of the book I just wanted to shout:


I feel like Glitch's character could've been deleted, and the story would still flow. In all honesty, I think that the reason Glitch was actually in the book was to create a love triangle between Brooklyn, Cameron, and him. While I am interested in what would come of a love triangle, I don't care for Glitch at all. Plus, his refusal to admit what happened with him and Cameron made me angry and more confused than I'd been initially. I really hope Darynda reveals what happened all those years ago, or at least give Glitch some redeeming qualities. And while she's at it, maybe a 3 Dimensional personality.

4. Hardly any explanation - There were a lot of things in this book that just went unexplained, period. There were also some things that went unexplained until a few chapters later. I can't really mention them all without giving away tons of spoilers. For example, Another thing was, Mostly, the problem I had with this novel was that Lorelei had no idea what was going on, therefore the reader had no idea what was going on. It's a personal preference, really. I'm fine with mystery novels, but I don't want to feel completely and totally ignorant throughout the entirety of reading the book. Maybe others do, but I don't.

Favorite Parts:

"Do you know what she'd say if she were here right now?" Jared asked.
Cameron stepped closer. "You're a bitch?"
"Exactly." He closed the distance, meeting him head-on, challenging him with the heavy set of his shoulders. "Only she'd be looking at you."

"If I get hit," I said, interrupting whatever dire threat he had in mind, "shoved," I continued, stepping closer for effect, "or run over one more time today, I swear by all that is holy, I will make it my personal goal in life to have the person responsible sent to prison on charges of kiddie porn."
Profile Image for Joy (joyous reads).
1,454 reviews290 followers
August 29, 2015
I am a huge fan of Ms. Jones. She’s a brilliant story teller and a master in the art of sarcasm. Why it’s taken me a long time to read this book escapes me. Going into this book, I was expecting more of the same. I was expecting Lorelei to be like a teen Charley Davidson: hilarious, sarcastic, and one with a huge personality. I’ll tell you right now that if you’re going to keep the same expectations prior to reading this book, you’ll be in for a disappointment. Lorelei is nothing at all like Charley Davidson. She’s more reserved and a bit on the shy side. Even if they share the same beginnings, their supernatural roles differ.

One of the things that made me wary of this book was the cover. As you know, I detest love triangles. The cover certainly implies something of that sort. Well, rest assured, there’s none. What it has is a couple of boys who are — well, crush-worthy. Only one of them vies for Lor’s attention, which was reciprocated the first time they met. Basically, one is the Angel of Death (a grim reaper of sort) and the other, a niphilim hybrid who has a bone to pick with the Angel of Death. How does Lorelei fit into the all this madness? Well, she’s the last living bloodline of the Prophet, Arabeth. She’s protected by a secret society that she didn’t know of at first. I quite like the mythology here. While it may have echoes of her adult PNR, she’s done her best separate both.

The book was a fast read, addicting, even. Just don’t expect to bust out laughing as you would reading Charley Davidson. The first book was more laying out the foundation for the series, so there wasn’t much of a plot direction to speak of. So much so, that the poltergeist thing near the end looked more like an addendum than an original part of the plot. No matter, I immediately ordered the second and third book soon after reading this.
Profile Image for Kerrelyn Sparks.
Author 38 books5,591 followers
May 28, 2013
I really enjoyed this! Darynda has such a fun, sassy voice! I will be definitely reading more from her!
Profile Image for Jacklyn (ReadingBliss).
216 reviews28 followers
January 22, 2018
This book made for cute and funny company while I was sick in bed over Christmas week. I feel the cover and title says it all and really relates a strong correlation to what's between the pages to the potential readers. There is no love triangle, so never fear you triangle haters. The boys compete in other interesting ways, however, that add flavor to the backbone of the mythologies this story is heavily based on. Many familiar, but popular tropes are ever present but not without their own accompanied creative twist to keep it unique. I really wish this series had adult "companions" for those who would like to delve further into the mystery of the world building Jones tempts and teases us with. But hey, don't take my word for it. Go see for yourself how tantalizing some of its tidbits are.
Profile Image for Mel.
413 reviews55 followers
October 7, 2012
Full review to come...Darynda Jones is brillant. She has created a series full of riveting plot twists and young love to ensnare teens and adults alike. I loved this book and cannot wait to read the next book in the series!
Profile Image for Rose.
1,854 reviews1,047 followers
October 10, 2012
"Death and the Girl Next Door" represents a smorgasbord of every YA paranormal stereotype there is and couples it with a bag of chips. Well, maybe not with a bag of chips, though I almost wish the chips were there, because then it would at least provide something different to the mix.

Long story short, I was quite disappointed with Darynda Jones's start to her new YA series. That's not to say that it didn't have moments I thought were worth merit, but seriously, how many mediocre insta-love, antagonistic love triangle, specially endowed protagonist, boy-gushing books are we going to get out of this genre? There's far more merit to the YA paranormal (even paranormal romance) genre in general than this, and so many releases as of late keep settling into the same generic lines like a paint by numbers book. I'm sad to say that "Death and the Girl Next Door" doesn't deviate from that template. Not to mention the progression throughout this story was very rough in spurts before getting to some of the fruit this story had to bear.

Lorelei is a sophomore with a special gift - the ability to have odd visions when she touches people that she can't always explain, but she's known about them for a long time. So have her friends Glitch and Brooke. She's also been coping with the odd disappearance of her parents from ten years ago as well. Things in her world begin to change when Cameron, the boy she's grown up with for some time, suddenly starts stalking her, alongside a strange new boy who seems to captivate her attention (Jared). Suffice to say, Jared and Cameron do not get along and some turns of events reveal that they're more extraordinary than Lorelei thought and fighting each other for reasons beyond themselves. The reason - primarily because of her, and the secrets behind her identity which will ultimately throw her world in a tailspin once it comes to light.

Original premise this is not. "Thrilling, sassy, sexy, and inventive" this isn't either. Well, the sassy nature is there somewhat because Lorelei has a distinct voice that carries a certain hit or miss humor throughout the book. Sometimes it worked, bringing a chuckle out of me with references to Pigpen from Peanuts or something that struck a chord of familiarity to me. (The fact she calls her iMac "iPrecious" and the reference to the Lord of the Rings did make me grin.) And while I'm at it for describing things I liked - I liked both Glitch and Brooke's personalities because they seem fun in their interactions with Lorelei. I also liked Lorelei's grandparents, though they're not featured that often in the work.

Lorelei generally has a sense of humor to kind of combat the craziness she faces in spurts. Othertimes, however, I thought the humor tried too hard and wasn't funny at all.

It's not funny when someone's being stalked (as is insinuated when Lorelei notices that Cameron's stalking her for the first time).

It's not funny when someone gets hit by a truck, though I figured Lorelei was trying to buffer her reaction to the situation when she realized it had happened. (Though I got Twilight vibes when I read that particular scene, and it was confusing as all heck to follow because the narrative was so loopy during those turns of events. Don't ask me where and why Cameron got a gun and started shooting at Jared when it seemed like he saved Lorelei's life initially.)

Certainly not funny when Lorelei realizes that Jared's was trying to kill her and did an about face and saved her life. Let me make this clear: he tried to KILL her. I don't care how hot someone is, if they tried to kill me, I'd be either angry, scared, hurt, or concerned, not lusting. But what does she do? She swoons after him anyway. No real explanation given except that he's all kinds of hot and contrary to knowing Cameron as long as she had, she's more likely to hear Jared out because of his hotness. Insta-love in full swing.

I rolled my eyes quite a bit.

I know I may speak for myself when I say this, but the sinews and muscles of a male character don't automatically make my eyes pop and send my amorous senses tingling, not even when I'm reading between YA and adult literature. It never has. I develop character crushes on how well the characters are defined, interact, and are shaped as people - that allows more character intimacy to shine through. It's also contingent upon their experiences and how they react to/are shaped by them. Physical attributes might be a factor of attraction, and that's fine, but it shouldn't be the only factor. Here? I think Jared and Cameron struck me as the typical immortal enemies and Lorelei focused far more on Jared's body and physical hotness and strength rather than really connecting to him as a being. Sure, later on she realizes what he is, but it isn't really developed smoothly or as well as it could've been.

It took a long time for me to realize why Cameron hated Jared so much, and while it was a fair reason, the book not only took too long to reveal it, but was somewhat dismissive of it without much expansion, I felt. I think there was an attempt to make this a love triangle, but seriously Jared came out as the leading person in the race if that was the intention. Cameron was pretty much a background antagonist for a good bit of the narrative and it didn't get much clearer as the book went on. There were other more obivious antagonists who played roles, such as the reporter who witnessed Lorelei's accident and the fight between Jared and Cameron. Even still, I wasn't as invested in the conflict as much as I think the narrative could've shown in spurts.

And then there's the matter of Lorelei's identity and role - that I think was where the book had its intriguing points, but even that came a bit too late in the narrative and I thought the development of it was threadbare. I think the very last part of it lent an interesting break point where it would lead into the next part of this series, but considering all the bumps in the road I had with reading this, I'm not so sure I want to continue reading on.

Overall, I thought "Death and the Girl Next Door" was a very derivative YA paranormal read and it didn't really excite me in the aftermath, even with being my first read from Jones's work. I'm apt to see if her other work strikes me more than this, but I think this could've been much more than what it presented itself.

Overall score: 1.5/5

Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher St. Martin's Press.
Profile Image for Lauren.
28 reviews4 followers
August 27, 2012
I received this book free from goodreads. I wanted to push all the books that I had to read back so that I could read this and push out a review since this is a book that has yet to be released. My problem with this book is the lack of originality. I am sick and tired of Young Adult books (from a female's perspective) that follow the same pattern: Narrator is a plain looking girl (or so she thinks) who is attracted to a guy who is so beautiful it should be illegal. This boy does not glance at ANY other girl EVER but only looks at the Narrator (who CONSTANTLY says things like, "Why would he be looking at me? A guy like him doesn't look at a girl who looks at me.") and I have to suffer through the constant pity the girl gives herself. To make matters worse, the boy is a bad boy of some sorts and warns her not to be with him. Most likely, said boy sacrifices something to be with this girl and probably pisses off a lot of people by doing so. Throw in the best friend who's beautiful and the best guy friend who is either in love with the Narrator or (most likely) in love with the Narrator's best friend... And you've got a Young Adult Novel. To make matters worse, the writing is TERRIBLE. The best friend constantly tries to make "Holy Hagaan-Das" an actual thing and the author is too scared to have her AMERICAN characters say "Bloody Hell" so they get to say "Bloody Heck" like good little teenagers. In the end it's not the WORST book I've ever read. I was at least able to keep interested enough to keep reading. I did skim most of it in hopes that the ending would come sooner, rather than later. Unfortunately, I'm sensing that this book is just the beginning of a few books. I definitely won't bother to read the following books.
Profile Image for Yodamom.
1,975 reviews194 followers
August 19, 2012
Lorelei, has to live with the pain of her parents disappearance. The ten year anniversary is near and her two best friends stay near her during this period to comfort her. Everything is going normal till Lorelei brushes against a tall, dark, boy who starts an avalanche of change in her life.
When she touched people she gets visions or predictions she's not sure which. Most of her past visions have been pretty mundane, till the dark haired stranger. When she touched him, she saw something that left her with goosebumps, something evil.
There is a strange blond boy at school. She has known him all her life but he has been very distant the last few years. He avoids crowds, sneers at all. He's creepy and handsome. Lorelei starts seeing him staring at her, following her, stalking her, while giving her that glare. Till a dark handsome stranger shows up at school and the glare switches and the fights begin.
I love the characters that Ms. Jones writes. She develops full, interesting 'people' with ticks, troubles and intelligence. I look foreword to seeing where these teens travel to on their quest and who they become in the process. There is no sex, crudeness or extreme behavioral issues you see in many YA books just a great adventure with a light romance and some snark.
Profile Image for Samantha.
373 reviews72 followers
September 30, 2014

I can't believe how disappointed I am in this book. Especially considering how much I absolutely LOVE the Charley Davidson series.

It's almost baffling how Jones can get it so right with Charley, and yet so very wrong with this one. I can see the same quirky sense of humor trying to come through in Lorelei, but it doesn't quite work. Instead, she and the characters come off as vapid and shallow. Not to mention, Lorelei is almost physically incapable of putting two and two together.

Profile Image for Heidi.
1,395 reviews153 followers
October 11, 2012

Three and a half stars: A solid beginning to a new, entertaining YA series.

Lorelei is prepared to spend the week with her two best friends, Glitch and Brooklyn, in order to take her mind off the anniversary of the disappearance of her parents ten years ago. The trio is piled into a booth at the local coffee shop, busy making plans. When Lorelei excuses herself to use the bathroom, a brief brush of her hand in the darkened hall spurs a strange vision in her head. Lorelei is no stranger to visions. Random touches can sometimes give her brief glances into the future or glimpses of a person's past. This time she sees something out of this world. A devastatingly handsome boy is fighting some type of demonic monster under a violet sky. Clearing her head, Lorelei searches for the boy that she touched, but there is no one in sight. The next day, she is still haunted by visions of this boy, and then he shows up at her school. Lorelei is drawn to this mysterious boy, but there is something not quite right about Jared. Even more puzzling than the sudden appearance of Jared is that Lorelei now has a stalker. Cameron, a boy she has known since kindergarten, a quiet loner is following her everywhere. He even stood outside her bedroom window all night. Weird! For Lorelei and her best buds, life in their quiet town just got a little more interesting. Who is this mysterious boy, Jared and why is Cameron stalking her?

What I Liked:
Darynda Jones is best known for her humor in her remarkable Charley Davidson Series. I was happy to find that this book is also filled with lots of snarky, witty and funny comments. It is a bit subdued compared to her adult books, but nevertheless it is still present and you are sure to laugh at the dialogue.
*I loved that Lorelei has two inseparable best friends, Glitch and Brooklyn, who stand beside her through thick and thin and they are just that, friends with no attraction whatsoever. I always enjoy books with strong best friendships but too often they move into something romantic. It was nice to see that this bond remained just a friendship!
*This book has a complex story line with numerous threads. I always love that Darynda Jones gives the reader a run for their money. Her stories are imaginative and multi layered and Death and the Girl Next Door is no different. I liked that this book presents so many unique ideas such as: angels, reapers, prophets, visions, demons, poltergeists, and a secret society. Expect to find unique ideas and original takes on reapers and angels and such.
*I adored Lorelei's grandparents. They are so fun, not stuffy and uptight and old. They both are kind, loving, and possess great senses of humor. Her grandpa always manages to steal the scene whenever he is present.
*This book refrains from the typical love triangle. In the beginning there were shades of a possible love triangle, but thankfully the story never strayed into that territory. You can expect some explosive, fiery kisses.
And The Not So Much:
*I went into this book with certain expectations having read Darynda's Charley Davdison series. This book ended up being entirely different than I anticipated. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, I was hoping to find something a little closer to Charley. That being said, there are some similarities, but all in all it takes a whole new direction. It is best when reading this one to get rid of all you're preconceived notations.
*This book starts out a bit slow and takes awhile to get going. Luckily, the antics of Lorelei and her friends will keep you entertained. The story line tends to wander all over as well and is not always cohesive. The climax and ending are full of astonishing reveals and it ends fast and furious.
*The biggest disappointment for me with this one was that it develops so many different story lines, but none of them reach conclusion. I am used to Darynda's multi layered plot that tie off neatly at the end. This was not the case with this book. It does not have a cliffhanger, but it leaves a bunch of unanswered questions. This book ends a bit abruptly, but it does establish a strong foundation for the series.

Death and the Girl Next Door is a book that tackles some interesting and new ideas regarding death, angels, reapers and demons. Lorelei is a plucky, witty heroine who will draw you in and keep you laughing. Her two best friends, the moody Cameron and the mysterious Jared round out a terrific cast. This is a different read than her adult series and I liked that Ms. Jones is willing to take new directions with her writing. Watch for the sequel: Death, Doom, and Detention in March 2013. I am excited that the wait is short for the sequel!

Favorite Quotations:

"I froze as his sculpted mouth descended onto mine. A kiss, soft as a summer breeze."

"Beautiful. Young. Expression soft with unconditional love. Her blond hair gave into the breeze, fluttering like butterflies around her backpack. He loved her hair. It smelled like apples."

"The rest of the world crumbled away as he lifted my chin. Your energy is liquid and hot. Even from a distance you burn, you scorch anyone who gets too close. You are wine on my tongue and honey in my veins, and I cannot get enough of you."

"Sometimes," she said, seeming to sense his confusion, " we must swim against the current to find our true purpose."

"You're eyes get darker when you are emotional." He took a step toward me. "They're darker now, like smoke from a forest fire drifting toward Heaven."

"Don't they keep all the old newspaper articles on eight-track tapes or something?"

"I seemed to be stuck in the land of bubblegum and lollipops. I still had to pray every night for the girl part fairy to get off her butt and do her job."

"Glitch was about as wild and unpredictable as a carrot stick. Though he did have an unnatural fear of turtles that was interesting."

All quotations are taken from an ARC copy that was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Rainy Day Ramblings.
Profile Image for Dark Faerie Tales.
2,274 reviews544 followers
November 11, 2012
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: A love triangle with a nephilim and an archangel. And I thought my high school drama was bad.

Opening Sentence: The small town of Riley’s Switch, New Mexico, had only one coffee house, and I sat at a booth in it with my two best friends.

The Review:

Best-selling author, Darynda Jones, takes on young hearts and paranormal mayhem with her debut Young Adult novel, Death and the Girl Next Door. Small town girl, Lorelei, is about to get a crash course in all things angelic when she is saved from a fatal collision with a bus by the sexy new transfer student, Jared Kovach. If that wasn’t enough to set her heart racing, maybe the crazy supernatural fight she witnesses right afterward will. Things start speeding up in Riley’s Switch that includes some dark secrets, a destiny, and the Angel of Death.

Lorelei McAlister has always had visions. It’s not something she feels makes her special in anyway. At least that’s what she believed before she met Jared Kovach and her life was forever changed. He saved her when she should have died, keeping her soul on this Earthly plane for reasons of his own. Now with the help of her friends, Lorelei will find out the unintentional consequences of changing this one event in history. Her character is smart and sassy while underplayed physically, making her very likable indeed. The love of her grandparents and support of her friends allows her to be more self-confident than other teenage girls that might be thrown into situations beyond the ordinary. Rather than brood and whine about her lot in life, she seizes and enjoys each moment. Without the support of all of the secondary characters, Lorelei would come off as less than genuine.

There is a forbidden quality to the love interest in this book. Lorelei and Jared most assuredly have chemistry but do they have what it takes to make it last? Jared is not in the least bit human and has confessed to breaking “the rules” for her at least once. Their relationship definitely has a “star-crossed” feel to it but I hope that there is a happier ending for them than Romeo and Juliet had. While they do not have other characters making themselves known as contenders of affection, they most certainly have others that are against their relationship. Cameron certainly offers a negative, both verbally and physically, aspect toward anything to do with Jared.

Cameron Lusk is a fantastic character that enriches the entire story. Lorelei has supporters, like her friends and family, that trust her judgment. This is not the case with Cameron. He has known her most of his life but also has extensive knowledge of the supernatural aspects that she is just becoming privy to. His character offers a brooding and pessimistic view of events as they unfold. His pain and anger provide a more well-rounded emotional response to the story as a whole. All the characters in this book represent multiple facets of human nature that give the reader a fuller overall appreciation of circumstances.

The story itself is fast-paced and the revelations never stop coming. I ended up reading it twice just so that I had time to absorb all the information. Death and the Girl Next Door offers a ride which leaves you breathless and longing for more. I can recommend this to established fans and new comers alike. If you enjoy Kenyon’s Chronicles of Nick, you’re going to love this series as well!

Notable Scene:

“Okay, so I was wondering, if Cameron kidnaps you, kills you, then buries your lifeless body in a shallow grave in the desert where your remains lay decomposing for several decades until they’re accidentally discovered by some guy on a journey to reawaken his spirit at the Salinas Pueblo Missions, can I have your iMac?”

I gaped at her. “You’ve really thought this out.”

“I love your iMac.”

“I love my iMac too, and you’re not getting her.”

“But you’ll be decomposing,” she said, her voice more whiny than usual.

Fighting a bubble of laughter, I shook my head. “I had to save a whole year for iPrecious. She stays with me no matter what state of decomposition I’m in.”

“Well, I hate to be the one to tell you this,” she said, clearly enjoying the task, “but that’s a ridiculous name.” She rifled through her books. “I mean, iPrecious? Seriously? You sound like the Apple version of Gollum.”

FTC Advisory: St. Martin’s Press graciously provided me with a copy of Death and the Girl Next Door. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. The only payment received came in the form of hugs and kisses from my little boys.
Profile Image for Danny.
597 reviews160 followers
September 4, 2012
Read Full Review at Bewitched Bookworms

Death and the Girl Next Door

Classic Motives with a thrilling paranormal twist (but... I won't tell!)

Girl meets mysterious, sexy boy and learns that there is a paranormal world out there and must embrace her powers to save the world. Heard before? Yes me too! Is it getting old? No. Not for me! It always depends on how you spin the tale, how you develop the characters and how you embrace the story. I love stories like this – I just love them. Which is why I was more than eager to dig into this story!

The only small problem I have now is – how much should I tell you about the paranormal twist here? I decide to stay as usual mostly spoiler free – in the end, I went blindly into this story and only knew what the synopsis told me. I’ll stick with this for this review….

Lorelei – smart, witty and comes with the most adorable best friends ever!

Lorelei does not come without her two best friends, and before talking about Lorelei, we must admire this trisome of friends! I loved their relationship, I loved their deep love towards each other, I loved their loyalty! It’s one thing to have a great heroine, but to have a heroine with a great set of friends is even better! Talking about well developed and perfectly placed secondary characters..

Let’s talk mysterious boys –shall we?

Seriously, there is no good story without the mysterious bad boy who steals our heart and … we not only have one of them. No! We get two of them! Both are hot, sexy and mysterious, but each one as intriguing as the other! Cameron is actually not the “new guy” but has always been at their school – but suddenly he seems to stalk Lorelei- just why? Then there is Jared – who is the very new mysterious guy! Just what does he wants? I love both boys equally!!!! They were amazingly portrayed, providing layers of questions and mysterious to uncover!

Kissing – Butterflies – Romance and Mysteries…

Before we move to the kissing part, it would be important to point out that the feared love triangle actually did not happen! For once I am grateful not having to choose between tortured & sexy and sexy & mysterious.

Jared was an incredible boy/man/mythical creature!!!! I was fascinated by him right from the start and once it was revealed what he was I was even more excited and fascinated. If you are now waiting for me to reveal who he was – I’m going to disappoint you and strongly recommend finding this out on your own!

However, Jared was a very contradictory character, which is something I always find most appealing. He’s both,light and dark – good and bad! There a few grey layers here to explore!

Then, we must take a minute to appreciate the kissing scenes. Holy Awesome!! Those kisses were so hot and sexy, I was actually reading them twice – I couldn’t get enough! Imagine scenes where you sigh along with the characters, and scenes that manage to plaster a happy smile on your face! Every girl should be kissed like this…

*insert dreamy face here*
Profile Image for Anjana.
Author 3 books261 followers
June 21, 2012
When I found out that Darynda was writing a young adult series, I literally squealed in joy. Not because it's young adult but just because it's another book by Darynda. She's definitely the coolest author I know and one of my favorite authors EVER.
Going in, I knew that it was going to be awesome and I was so right. I finished this book in one go; I stayed up until 3 AM reading it because I just. couldn't. put. it. down.

Lorelei's parents went missing when she was a child. No one knows what happened to them, they just disappeared one day. It's been years since the incident and on the anniversary of the day her parents went missing, a new boy shows up at school; A ridiculously hot, mysterious boy who's pretty much the epitome of tall, dark and handsome and ever since he popped up, things around Lorelei have gotten really weird.

Death and The Girl Next Door has all the awesomeness, if not more, of Darynda's Charley Davidson series. Just as I expected, Lorelei is a witty, smart, fun and kick-ass protagonist.
I found her thoughts/narration endlessly amusing and was laughing out loud so many times while reading this book. Lorelei and Jared literally had me glued to the pages. They're the kind of characters that just draw you in; especially Lorelei, who you can't help but appreciate for being so real.

You know how every author has a particular strength such as character development, writing style, plot etc? Darynda's strength(s) is all of them. This is one of those incredibly rare books where I found myself attached to not just the protagonists but even the supporting characters. Glitch and Brooklyn are amazing best friends and along with Lorelei, the three of them make an incredibly cool team that makes you wish you were a part of. As for the story - there isn't a single cliche moment in it. It's unique in a way that only Darynda can make it with her humorous and entertaining writing.

With a strong plot, sexy romance, brilliant and lovable characters, Death and The Girl Next Door is pure epicness all-around. There's so much more I want to know and I absolutely cannot wait to read the next book in this series!
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