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Alex Craft #2

Grave Dance

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Whoever said dead men tell no tales obviously never met Alex Craft.

After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L” word confession from Death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.

The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses, only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end—her own.

371 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published July 5, 2011

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About the author

Kalayna Price

15 books3,540 followers
USA Today Bestselling author Kalayna Price writes the Alex Craft Novels, a new dark urban fantasy series from Roc, and the Novels of Haven from Bell Bridge Books. Her works have been translated into several languages and are available (or have been contracted for release) in the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, France, Poland, Russia, and Germany. Kalayna draws her ideas from the world around her, her studies into ancient mythologies, and her obsession with classic folklore. Her stories contain not only the mystical elements of fantasy, but also a dash of romance, a bit of gritty horror, some humor, and a large serving of mystery. Kalayna is a member of SFWA and RWA, and an avid hula-hoop dancer who has been known light her hoop on fire. To find out more, please visit her at www.kalayna.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,011 reviews
Profile Image for Felicia.
Author 45 books128k followers
October 5, 2011
Well, I loved the first book and stayed up too late reading it, and last night I did the same thing. There was loads of new information in this installment about Alex's new powers, about the world of Faerie, lots of character tension and secondary characters (who I'd like to see even more of). Of course the love triangle is still super yummy, in fact yummier than last book (and boy does this author know how to cliffhanger a book, yeesh!).

I will admit the dudes are a bit 2-dimensional hunk-ville, but I'm cool with peeling back the onions slowly if we're getting somewhere, and I am so interested in the Spirit/Human/Faerie planes stuff that I'm cool with Alex not asking as many basic questions of the guys as she should.

My one request for the main character would be (and this would basically go for EVERY heroine in Urban Fantasy who professes to "not know stuff" about another race) PLEASE GOOGLE STUFF ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO ARE ATTACKING YOU SO YOU KNOW A BIT MORE ABOUT WHATS GOING ON! Seriously, there's no excuse to not look up the Faerie Court stuff if you find yourself mixed in it. Just get your laptop out a bit, you know you want to, you're a smart girl! I hate that about Cassie from Karen Chance's books because it's been 5 books and she hasn't gotten interested in actually RESEARCHING what she is. Alex seems to be a more on-the-ball character, so hopefully she'll do some research instead of stumbling into things she doesn't know about.
Profile Image for Veronica .
744 reviews177 followers
March 19, 2021
Reread in March 2021: I'm leaving the three star rating. I really like the glimpses into the world of the fae. I want to know more about that so I hope the series explores that angle more in future books. Another plus for faerie? Death can't go there! Alex keeps calling him her oldest, dearest friend but I've seen little to no evidence of that. He's dead weight as far as I'm concerned. Ha! The actual mystery in this one seemed a little convoluted and, well, silly.

Grave Dance is the second in the Alex Craft series and as of right now the series looks to end at three books unless the author's contract is extended.

This book takes place roughly one month after the end of the first book. We find that Alex is doing a little better financially as more jobs are coming into her one woman PI agency, Tongues For The Dead, due to her notoriety from book one's events. But Falin, her fae agent lover from the first book, has been incommunicado during the intervening month. And as for the other possible love interest, Death, nothing new has happened on that front since his love declaration at the end of book. But who needs men because Alex still has the support and love from her wonderful group of friends: Caleb, Holly, Tamara, and Roy - the ghost that I think I forgot to mention in my review of book one. And of course, PC, her beloved Chinese Crested.

I gave the fist book four stars but downgraded this one for two reasons. The first is that it tended to drag in some spots. I believe that this book came in at almost 100 pages longer than book one and I'm not sure that the extra pages were needed. Some of the descriptions, expecially for the magic, tended to be a bit wordy and some of Alex's investigative work just wasn't all that exciting. It was still a solid book and a good successor to book one.

This go 'round Alex finds herself drawn into the investigation surrounding the discovery of multiple left feet around town. That's it. That's all that's left of the bodies, just the left foot of scores of victims. Unfortunately for Alex, the genetic memory in a single left foot isn't enough to allow her to raise the victim's shade, which sucks when you're a grave witch and that's your speciality. So Alex has to fall to other talents to solve the mystery. Along the way she discovers new, expanding powers that are directly related to her newly discovered heritage. We also learn more about the fae, the Winter Court, and how Alex may or may not fit into all that.

The second reason that I only gave this book three stars is because the author did what I had been hoping against hope that she wouldn't do. She went the way of the dreaded romantic triangle. And let me just say that I LOATHE romantic triangles. I fail to see why so many authors in this genre choose to fall back on such a lazy plot device. But here we go again. Falin makes a startling appearance and by book's end we learn that his month long absence wasn't exactly his idea. We also learn something about his history and why a relationship with Alex would be a difficult thing right now despite the fact that it seems to be what he wants. On the other side we have Death. And I know that he has his fans but he's just not doing anything for me as a character at this point simply because we are now two books in and he's still the one-note character that he started out as. He seems to be in the story just to serve as the romantic foil and that just annoys me. Which tells me that the author is writing him in specifically to add supposed tension to scenes when Falin is present. This theory is further bolstered by the fact that there was no movement in the Death/Alex relationship for the month between book one and book two depsite the fact that Falin was MIA and Death had Alex all to himself. So I find this whole triangle aspect of the story to be one huge drag. I wish the author hadn't gone there but she did, unfortunately.

My other personal quibble with Death - on top of being mostly a carboard cutout character - is that he's known Alex since she was five years old. FIVE. And now that she's whatever age she is (23-24?)he wants to get into her pants? There is just an ICK factor there that I can't get around.

This was a solid book but could have been even better without the triangle drama and pissing contest between the two men, and with tighter storytelling. It's still a good read, especially if love triangles don't bother you, but for me my enthusiasm for the third - and potentially final - book is waning.
Profile Image for Choko.
1,198 reviews2,583 followers
December 24, 2015
*** 3.85 ***

A buddy re-read with the wonderful buddies at the MacHalo Freaks

Reading this a second time, although I had read it quite a while ago, I was pleased with the world of this series. Alexis, the raising shades grave witch, has a successful business as an investigator, whose main breadwinner is raising dead people "s essences and questioning them about whatever is in question. Usually a fan of love them and leave them free love type of girl, she finds herself interested in two very inappropriate for her dudes. One is somewhat " engaged" to another woman and the other tends to hang out only with dead people... On top of all that, Alexis has just found out that she is mostly Fae and the Blood Moon of the previous book was the beginning of her coming into the person she is supposed to be. She also tries to take care of a small, hairless dog named PC , short for Prince Charming, but does a piss poor job of it in my opinion... Add some girlfriends, couple of close cops, a nosy journalist , and a carnivorous water horse and you will have the core group of characters whose lives we get involved with.

This series, as I have said before, is very similar to some of my other favorite Urban Fantasies, but I don't mind that. After all, in time all artistic expressions became a variation on a theme, impacting us only through the personal touch of the author, painter, director, composer, singer, dancer, and so on.... So, what I am trying to say is that although it may not be the most singular creation, this series resonates with me and I enjoy it:-)

I will recommend it to all who enjoy stories of magic, Fae, witches and intrigue... And all of it is just for fun, no serious literature here. Enjoy your books!
Profile Image for CJ - It's only a Paper Moon.
2,213 reviews155 followers
July 17, 2011
Ok, so Goodreads just ate my last review. Sigh.

This book was lacking in character development (again) but the action and the palpable tension between Alex, Death and Falin were enough to make me forget that.

Now, since I'm mad at Goodreads, this is an abridged version of my last review.

If any of these characters were my friends and we were meeting for coffee. This is pretty much what I'd Oprah-Offer them.

Death: WAG Jack NOOO Put out or get out. No. Seriously. I get that you're this handsome, otherworldly, tortured being. I also get that you have this forbidden thing with Alex but if you don't do something about it soon, you're going to lose her. You need to stop with the Romeo/Juliet and start...on another couple that doesn't kill themselves due to miscommunication and idiocy. I like you Death. I do. I want to know more about you. I wish you could open up. I wish that you would stop popping up every now and then when you feel like it and try to make a real effort. Alex is confused. You are confusing her. You need to say something. This kiss and run shit is getting old. Oh . So, you need to step up you're game. Figure your shit out and then come back. Stop commenting and judging when you aren't doing anything about it. In the immortal words of Elvis "a little less conversation, a little more action please."

Falin - you're pretty. Oh so pretty. But the lies? They gotta stop. Lies, even by omission, are still lies. I don't think they are as bad as blatant lies but hey, some people do. And you, Assassin and all around awesome guy, are lying. Why don't you try to explain things. Maybe a little less action and a little more conversation would do you some good. You are supposed to be a foil to Death but I gotta say, you both are doing some pretty confusing things and I don't know if I can trust you Falin. Yes, you're good to have around, you're sexy as all get out and you seem to have a good head on your shoulders. What I can't figure out is why you're still with her . I know there's some compulsion thing going on but you need to find a replacement stat. That is if you plan on having any kind of future with Alex. While you're hot and easy on the eyes, the fact of the matter is; you're not really all that available, are you? So, ditch the bitch and move on to greener pastures. I would love to see more of you in this series but you need to play your cards right. Don't become Frost of the Merry Gentry series. Please. gifs

Alex - You remind me of another detective I hold in a begrudging adoration. Perhaps you've heard of her. Toby Daye? No, well I'm sure it won't be long until you meet. Anyhoozit, you're a fine character. Strong, but not too stupid and you're growing up magically. Yay!
You need to work on your regular detecting skills. They aren't bad! I'm not judging you too harshly, in fact they are better than Toby's but that's not the point. You should probably brush up on your spell casting too? Why? So you're not left blindsided (pardon the pun) when shit goes down. Take the proper precautions and bone up. Then, maybe, just maybe, you'll be a little less damsel in distress.

Profile Image for Amanda.
99 reviews20 followers
July 29, 2011
Not even Death can save this book now.

I admit, I had some expectations for this book. The prequel was nothing particularly spectacular but it had potential. However, Grave Dance subsequently ruined whatever interest I had that was invested into this story. I feel disappointed, because I really enjoy the premise, the world building and a few of the characters.

Alexis Craft. While there were redeeming qualities about her, she annoyed me to no end in this book. I thought that she was inevitably portrayed as daft and weak, which are two characteristics that I am unable to tolerate in any story, daft being the worst. During a scene where she rants her head off to Falin (rightfully so, too) and tells him to get out which he dutifully agrees to, she immediately says, "Wait, maybe we can meet for drinks or something if the situations change."

After that statement, the whole novel pretty much started going downhill. Alexis has no integrity and worse, Falin came back for awhile now and she still does not press him for answers whatsoever. I am floored by how absolutely terrible this love triangle is. There was zero chemistry between Alex and Falin. Alex and Death, I can understand since they knew each other a whole lifetime and all, but still, none of the male characters' personalities were properly explored or displayed. Death, who I semi-like, was only riding on the tail coats of his love for Alex and nothing more; and even Falin who only had tenacity to his nature in the first book, had lost it. My problem is, they had no range of characteristics, they only usually show one emotion.

The writing was overly descriptive and I have to say, I skimmed through a number of paragraphs. It failed to hold my interest and a good number of times I was thinking, 'So... many... words..'. The book was filled with boring sentences and descriptions that was not pertinent to the story nor could I care less for. There was also so many things happening at once that I struggled to keep the story straight It felt like a maze that had things popping up and distracting you all the time.

One of the pros of this story would have to be the brownies. I thought they were a very original addition, a strange and quirky personality and held their own albeit their involvement was miniscule. I loved the world of the Fae and their magic; the enchanted disks were very creative. Of course, the weaving of the grave essence and planeweaving is something that was carefully created in the story, too.

Unfortunately, the cons outweigh the pros and it leaves me frustrated because I did grow quite attached to the storyline after the first book. I give the author kudos for taking on such an ambitious story, but sadly the execution failed to deliver and in fact leaves the reader in a befuddled state of mind. I highly doubt that I will be picking up the third book in the series.
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,336 reviews1,016 followers
April 8, 2019
1st read - March 2012
2nd read - March 2019

Alex uses her grave magic to raise shades from dead bodies, these shades have all of the memories that the person had and she is often asked to use her ability to help the police solve murders. When the police contact her they usually have the whole body though. This time all they have is a mysterious pile of left feet and no idea how the people they belonged to were killed. Alex agrees to help but how can she solve the murders when they don't even know who the victims are?

I really enjoyed Grave Witch, the first book in Kalayna Price's Alex Craft series so had high hopes for Grave Dance and picked it up immediately after finishing the first book. I wasn't disappointed and if anything this book was even more action packed than the last. It definitely had me turning the pages and I was annoyed when anything interrupted my reading time - after all who needs sleep when there's a good book to be read?

In Grave Witch we are introduced to two very different potential love interests and while I didn't think I'd enjoy another triangle the author managed to convince me otherwise and I found it impossible to choose between Falin and Death. Although I'm enjoying the triangle I was a little nervous that it might start to take over the majority of the story line so I was pleased to see that didn't happen. This book focuses much more on the investigation into the random body parts that the police keep finding. It also lets us discover much more about Alex's abilities as a grave witch and her family history. We learn a lot more about the Fae realms and the Winter Queen's Court and I'm very curious to see where the series takes us next. The story steams along at a great pace and had plenty of twists and unexpected surprises to keep me guessing at the outcome.

To go back to the triangle I'm pretty sure I've decided - Team Death! Although we still don't know as much about Death as I'd like we do know more than enough to pique my interest. He may be a mystery man but I feel like he is being as honest as he can be with Alex and I can't say the same for Falin. When Death keeps quiet about something I feel like he has a good reason to but with Falin it comes across like he has something to hide. I like Falin but at the moment I don't trust him to have Alex's best interests at heart. I may be proved wrong in the future but either way I'm looking forward to seeing more of all 3 characters.

Grave Dance is another great instalment to what is shaping up to be a fabulous new urban fantasy series and it's one I'm looking forward to continuing. If you're looking for a story full of magic and mayhem with a strong heroine who can kick ass but who has to pay a price for using her powers then this will be right up your street and it's a series that I'm very happy to recommend.
Profile Image for Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*.
2,428 reviews1,059 followers
January 27, 2016
I'm happy to report that I enjoyed this one more than the first. While I still don't like the idea of having a grim reaper as a real character (and a potential love interest at that!), I was more comfortable with him this time around. Alex is as enjoyable a heroine as usual, especially as we find out more of the mystery surrounding her abilities, history and genetics. Falin is back but the role is changed due to revelations from the first novel. He's as yummy and interesting as ever.

One of the main contradictory elements of the story stands as Alex's abilities and disabilities. Her powers come at high cost - when she uses her grave sight, she's temporarily blinded. Raising shades from bodies come with a price as well. Trying to blend the costs of her abilities while being forced to use them, amidst the confusing mess of characters who are all mysterious with their own hidden agendas, makes fun reading. Having to weight whether the risk is worth it to use an ability or not sometimes results in disastrous repercussions.

The author injected more enthusiasm this time because of how in-depth the fae world has grown. It's almost like an adult, surreal fairytale at times. The different characters were fascinating, especially the almost funny Nightmare Man. The Witch and King were unique as well, helping make this flow quickly into an easy read. Price again writes with a talented hand, including a depth of detail to make the literary world come alive in convincing, alluring ways.

While the first didn't have a plot issue, the plot for this one was even better. There are so many possible personal disasters now for Alex and several characters that it's easy to become engrossed. A hefty dose of suspense, too, as in the fae situations much was at stake. Price is a gifted writer with her phrasing and keeping the moment taut when much is at hand.

It seems the love triangle is still here and planting itself even stronger.

As before, the book really takes off toward the end, making it engrossing more then than when initially starting it. The series so far has its up and downs for me, being mediocre on some fronts while excelling in others. I'm anxious to read the third after that cliffhanger.
Profile Image for Denisa.
1,193 reviews290 followers
August 7, 2016
As good as the first one!

Still some stuff here that make no sense, so I can't give it more than 4 stars, but what can I say, I really enjoyed it.

Plus, it made me really curious about the next book, it was fast paced and really interesting. Worth a try, if you liked the first one!
Profile Image for Kt.
798 reviews167 followers
June 23, 2011
Alex has spent plenty of time recovering from the outcome of the showdown at the end of Grave Witch, and is more than ready to get back out there. She really needs the distraction from her messy love life and throws herself head first into her latest case. Problem is that there will be no easy solve on this one. They are only finding pieces of bodies, no where near enough to raise a shade. Her investigations put her front and center and she becomes the prime target. Someone wants her dead in a bad way and it will take everything she has to pull out of this mess alive, let alone in one piece.

In the aftermath of the Blood Moon in the last book, Alex has noticed some major changes in herself. Her fae heritage is making itself well know and is definitely complicating things. She has developed new abilities as well as some difficulty controlling her old ones. It is almost as if that showdown unlocked a door to her potential. The downside to that is she now has to deal with the implications of being far without growing up knowing the "rules." Her new found sensitivity to iron as well as an inability to lie are all part of her growing pains. The lying in particular is going to be a very rough one as it will take time to learn to twist her words around in order to tell the truth yet mislead. That being said I have a feeling that once she comes into her own she will be more powerful than most of the far put together. She just seems to be able to harness so much raw power as well as break down glamour whereas other fae cannot. I'm really looking forward to seeing more of her journey and hope she is able to stay true to herself.

Alex's love life could not possibly be more complicated. One of the side effects of the changes she is going through is that her body temperature has drastically lowered, to the point where most men cannot stand to touch her skin. In fact only two men can handle her "chill," but of course things aren't easy as she can't seem to really have either one of them. Death made the shocking love confession at the end of the last book yet for some reason he seems to be forbidden from doing anything about that. Falin on the other hand seems to care as well, but he disappeared right after the blood moon. Even if he shows back up, he is the winter queen's lover, so that puts a wrench in things as well. Typically love triangles only frustrate me, and while Grave Dance does do a little of that, I also feel that Kalayna Price did a really great job of keeping a good balance. I honestly don't know who I would pick as they both seem to genuinely care but are kept away by something/someone else by force. I can only hope that in time once Alex is ready to make a decision, she will be strong enough to claim the one she wants and won't suffer further heartbreak.

I really enjoyed Grave Dance, especially the new shift into all things fae. I've always loved books that center around the far, but have found some of them to be a little overwhelming at times due to all the rules and hidden agendas. Kalayna Price did a fantastic job at keeping things detailed enough to feel realistic without ever once stepping over into the realm if too much information. I really felt like I was learning the rules of being far right alongside Alex. I have greatly enjoyed all of Ms. Price's books, but Grave Dance has ratcheted her up into my top list of authors on "auto buy." If you haven't checked out the previous Alex book, Grave Witch, or her other series, The Haven books, you just don't know what you are missing. I know I eagerly anticipate her next release and hope to see many more in the future.
Profile Image for Angela.
319 reviews63 followers
January 21, 2016
I enjoy this book more than the first book Grave Witch. It was fast paced, had an interesting plot and plenty of reveals along the way. I love Falin. Yes the series has a love triangle and yes, I don't think Alex will end up with Falin. That being said I prefer him more than Death. So we will see what happens. I think wanting Alex with Falin is a minority opinion. I'm no stranger to thinking that in other series where a love triangle is involved.

The book also gave more information about Alex's parentage, which is very intriguing for later on. Her father was only in the book for a small amount of time, but I want to know more. Why is he pretending to be human and anti fae?

I did struggle with a couple of aspects that I find irritating in a lot of Urban Fantasy. The heroine seeming to never listen to advice from others, the ability of the heroine to keep functioning without eating. Probably one of my biggest problems with the book was that PC never seemed to need to go to the toilet after spending so much time in Alex's purse. I know it's strange to pick that up but it bothered me. He must have been busting by the time he was let out. I'm almost surprised later on that he didn't pee on the Queen.

That being said, I think this series is growing on me and I'm curious to see where it goes in the next book.
Profile Image for Natasha.
289 reviews108 followers
October 8, 2011
This is the second installment in the Alex Craft series by Kalayna Price.

When I first read Grave Witch, I knew I'd love this series. The characters are fantastic and complelling and the storyline is always gripping. Alex Craft is a unique character. She's a grave witch who can speak with the dead. She's also on Death's sweet side and spends more time with him than the usual person. Oh, and death's image we all have in our head. It's wrong. He's not the cloak and reaper staff death, he's the tight shirt and solid build death. Yeah, it mus tmake death a bit sweet. Don't yah think?

Alex just can't seem to catch a break.
You'd think finding several severed feet all from different bodies was enough, but poor Alex is also getting attacked, hunted and also finding herself torn between to men. She's used to things being tough, but this tops the cake.

Now, I can't forget about Falin. With him, the more I read, the more I like. He's myserous and unique. You never know what's coming with him. Alex and Death have something unique, but Alex and Falin have a chemistry that can't be beat. This love triangle is a fun one to read.
You better check this series out, it's going to be a hit!
Profile Image for Jess.
1,491 reviews102 followers
July 12, 2011
I'm not sure what to say about this one. I was so excited to see it in stores and get it and yet it took me a few days to read it. I just kept putting it down, and it wasn't necessarily that it was bad, but something just felt off about it. It was a good storyline, but there was so much going on and Alex was constantly running around, it became hard to keep track of where she was at the moment. I did like the introduction to a few new characters, and I think this is going to be the predominant storyline from now on. Unless the author decides to go a different route. The love interest part of the storyline just became irritating after awhile. It was the same situation happening over and over again with both of the male characters. I would rather a decisive decision from Alex, but I actually don't even see how it could be possible since both males are "otherwise engaged".

I'll read the next one, but perhaps I won't spend money on it. Hopefully this was just a weird time for me and the next book will be awesome.
3 reviews
July 3, 2011
I was extremely disappointed!! Having read the first book and really enjoyed it the second installment doesnt even begin to measure up. I felt the storyline was disjointed and honestly quite bland as the love triangle distracts from everything else and is really frustrating. But mostly I just got completely sick of the character Falin, he is just plain dull and as the reader I couldn't care less what happened to him or about the unfolding relationship between him and Alex. Unfortunately the best character in the book, Death, only features in snippets throughout the story and there could have been far more development of his character. The love triangle ruins the story for me and the only saving grace for the third book will be if Falin gets killed off.
Profile Image for Faith Hunter.
Author 90 books5,427 followers
June 23, 2011
Kalayna's character Alex is sexy ang smart and *different*! I adore her. Prediction: Price will hit the NYT BS List with book number 3.
Profile Image for All Things Urban Fantasy.
1,921 reviews613 followers
July 6, 2011
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

GRAVE WITCH was one of the most promising urban fantasy debuts from last year. It introduced us to strange and alluring Nekros City where all the horror stories and fairy tale creatures you’ve ever heard of live along side with humans, two potential romantic leads with enigmatic Death himself and a fae with ambiguous loyalties, and a fearless protagonist in Alex Craft who works as a private investigator with a talent for communicating beyond the grave. With so much going for the debut, could the sequel live up to it? No. It’s better actually.

The worldbuilding in the Alex Craft series is a dense and vibrant tour de force. It’s the best I’ve read since Ilona Andrews’ Atlanta from the Kate Daniels series. Magic has serious consequences, especially for Alex who permanently damages her vision and goes temporarily blind every time she uses her Gravesight. Raising a shade from a dead body exacts it’s own price on her too. It’s this cost that made the stakes in GRAVE DANCE so high. Alex had to constantly weigh the benefits and risks every time she needed to use her abilities, and the choices she made often had devastating repercussions.

The plot was equally compelling. It was dark without being disturbing. There are harrowing moments of danger and bleak displays of capricious depravity especially from the many fae in GRAVE DANCE, but they are tempered with Alex’s subtle humor and her impressive resourcefulness and bravery that made her ‘this is going to hurt but what choice do I have’ attitude all the more appealing. And despite how many time I thought I had figured out the true motives of each character, Kaylayna surprised me while still remaining completely believable.

And the romance! Urban fantasy is the perfect genre to build really good romantic tension that can span several books and that’s exactly what Kaylayna Price is doing with her Alex Craft series. Falin or Death? Death or Falin? I don’t know who I want Alex to end up with, but if there are more scenes like delicious ones in GRAVE DANCE, I’m really going to enjoy the chase. No word yet on the next Alex Craft book, but this series is now firmly placed on my favorites list.

Sexual Content:
Kissing. References to sex
Profile Image for Kira.
1,241 reviews132 followers
February 12, 2017
2012: 4 stars
2016: 3.5 stars

Although there were parts of this book that I loved, it was really lacking in some ways. The P.I./mystery part of it was good, but it got dragged out way too long. It was boring after a while. Constructs tried to attack Alex and her friends one too many times. If a hard to beat enemy is going to pop up frequently, someone needs to die as a result or have some severe consequences from it. It's lame when no one's really in danger.

The last 30% of the book was awesome! The journey into faerie was enlightening. Alex learned more about how magic works there. She discovered some interesting things about her family. The fae are fascinating because it's damn hard to know who to trust. All of them wanted Alex because of her abilities and because she is unaligned.

I really like this series because of the characters. Alex handled herself well considering she wandered around blind both literally and figuratively. No one has bothered to fill her in on how to deal with the fae. Death didn't get a lot of page time, so nothing much in the way of character development happened with him. In Grave Witch, I thought Falin was an ass. His reasons for acting the way he did were explained. He's really in a shitty situation.

Both Death and Falin were vying for Alex's attention. I'd really be okay with her ending up with either guy. Falin seems like the more logical choice considering he's alive, but his deep ties to faerie don't make him reliable. I love Death! He's very protective. Although he has his own rules to follow as a reaper, he is willing to break them when it comes to Alex. It may be the concept of Death that I like more than the actual character. He and Alex together would be an interesting HEA because it wouldn't be easy.
Profile Image for Amyiw.
2,253 reviews63 followers
February 21, 2016
Solid 3 maybe 3.25
This was better than the first. It didn't have quite as much of the young adult vibe as the first, where she seemed to be coming into her own even though she actually learns a lot more about herself and Fairy. As much as we learn about this other realm and the rules, we get questions, and more questions than answers. Still the main 'mystery' is answered as to who and why the constructs are being made, but still that isn't totally answered either.

My main issue with this book is that although there is the plot of the feet, magic circles, and constructs, it really doesn't feel like the main story of the book. Instead the main story seems to be Alex's Fae origins and these new powers of open rifts along with her relationship with Death and Falin. And all three of these are furthered in this book but none are answered and some are left with more questions than we came into it. To me it was cliffy without being a true cliffhanger. Three side plots that gained more of my attention than the main plot and left to be answered in the future, and I can almost guaranty that the future is not in the next book but probably several books down the line. I would stop here but only need two more to fullfill a yearly challenge and was lucky enough to get all the audios from hoopla this month. So I'll continue and who knows, maybe I'll start loving it and questions will start to be answered instead of asked. It is not bad, just not my favorite or really good enough for me to want to continue except for some sort of outside push.
Profile Image for Mlpmom (Book Reviewer).
3,001 reviews368 followers
May 18, 2017
It isn't often I fall in like with a series about the fae, let alone love it but Price has managed to do just that.

I just know if it is all the secrecy deception, or even the horribleness that the fae are usually portrayed as that makes me leery of them or maybe it is just the bloodthirsty ways they have, either way, I seldom read about them and even more rare, actually like the books that are strictly about them and no other supernatural beings.

So it was rather a surprise when I picked up book one and actually really liked it that I wanted to continue the series and even more rare that now, after having read the second book, can I say without a doubt, that I love this series.

It is fun, different, and just fun. Yeah I know, I said that already but it's true and the best way to describe it. It has everything I look for in a good urban fantasy and even with the fae being the deceitful buggers that they are, I love them as well.

It s nice to have a UF series that isn't riddled with vampires and were. As much as I like them, it is fun seeing more witches and ghosts and yes, even the little people. With as much lore woven in as new and exciting ideas and concepts, this really is a series that is extremely underrated and needs to be noticed more. I'm so glad that I've not only discovered it, but have truly enjoyed it as well.
Profile Image for julia ☆ [owls reads].
1,559 reviews308 followers
December 19, 2020
Original rating: 3 stars
Reread rating: 3 stars

Grave Dance had a really rough beginning. I'm not sure why Alex seemed so incompetent during the first half, but she kept getting herself into dangerous situations due to her inability to connect the dots and think Real Thoughts. The plot did get a lot better during the second half as the mystery started to unravel, though, and I really enjoyed getting to learn a little bit more about the courts.

Things I could have done without: the romance.
Profile Image for Meghan K..
229 reviews57 followers
April 11, 2015
Tohle je kruté čtení. Nebo já mám slabé štíty. Protože mi Alex, Falin a Death nedali spát a ani jsem se nedokázala soustředit na něco jiného.

Tenhle díl byl o 100 % šílenější, než ten předchozí, ale Faerie mě svým způsobem fascinuje, takže to autorce odpouštím. Aspoň to byla lepší jízda. Dlouho jsem moc nechápala, proč je Alex hlavním terčem útoků, jakou v tom měla roli, ale ono to bylo už od začátku všechno tak zamotané, že se mi to musí odpustit :)

Těším se na další díl. A doufám, že autorka už fakt letos vydá čtyřku. Nebo jí pošlu huláka. Tak.
Profile Image for Patrycja.
639 reviews3,803 followers
February 6, 2014

I'm so in love with this series! I'm starting third installment now!
Review to come.
Profile Image for Devann.
2,434 reviews134 followers
May 26, 2019
DNF @ 42%

there was nothing really 'wrong' with this book, but i was listening to it and suddenly it was like the clouds opened up and the sun shined down and i was just like 'you know, i literally don't even care what happens in this'. i am trying to get better at just not reading things if i'm not really enjoying them, so i decided to drop it halfway through even though i almost NEVER do that. if this was just a trilogy i might have powered through and finished the series, but seven book is a lot to read if you are just not really feeling it.

i really don't like love triangles in general, but after finishing the first book i thought i could handle this one and also hoped it would resolve rather quickly. however, after reading some reviews of the later books it seems like this triangle is going to drag on and also that the author definitely favors falin as death gets less and less page time, which is pretty much the opposite of how i would have wanted that to go if we HAD to do the whole romance angle.

i mean i guess both of them are kind of creepy as far as love interests go, but i could deal with death being creepy because like ...he's death! but i was just not feeling it overall. i was kind of hoping it would be like the nicki slobodian series because she dates the grim reaper and then becomes one herself and i actually really like it, but alas. in this series i would have liked more focus on the cases she is trying to solve as well as the relationships with her two best friends, but that part of the story felt pretty flat.

it seems like i just cannot find a satisfying urban fantasy series lately. am i just doomed to reread the cal leandros and october daye books over and over again until i die?
Profile Image for Heather.
1,928 reviews15 followers
May 6, 2019
After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L” word confession from Death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.
The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses, only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end—her own.
Heather's Notes
These are good books. I like that Alex is not perfect. She fails but she always keeps trying. I also like that she is still learning and her powers are still evolving. I really want to know more about her past, but I guess I will learn it as she does. I really thought they were going to use the debt owed her for the bad witch, and felt like, since she didn't, it was unnecessary, but otherwise enjoyable. I do not like the love triangle. I feel they are so unnecessary, unless you are going to have a ménage. Then I guess you need 3 but it's not really a love triangle anymore is it. I will keep reading the books, but I really hope the love interest is cleared up quickly.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Catherine.
523 reviews540 followers
August 9, 2011
What happened with this book? I thought this was going to be a sure thing! Maybe it’s more glaring because I read the first book, Grave Witch, immediately before I started this one, but everything felt off kilter. I’m not saying that I thought this was a bad book, because it wasn’t, but it sure was a lot less engrossing than the first one was.

I don’t understand what happened to Alex’s character. I felt distant from her the whole time I was reading. And that’s pretty amazing considering the fact that I was reading a first person book. She felt like a passive participant in her own story. People pointed her in the direction they needed her to go and she just went. No real thought or deliberation, she was just one reaction after another. And the fact that it always led to trouble made me grind my teeth.

Grave Dance starts a month after the end of Grave Witch, but in that time Alex didn’t bother to learn anything helpful about the mysteries we were left with. Like Falin—why didn’t she bother to learn more about him and his role in Faerie? It’s not like it would have been hard to find information. She rents from a Fae who (based on how he reacted in the first book) would probably love nothing more than to give her the dirt on him in the hopes that she’d realize what a bad idea hanging around him would be. I know finding information on the new developments with her power would be near impossible, so I can’t criticize that, but why not take a proactive role in finding out more about Faerie itself, since she now has a need to know? Why did she have to stay so clueless?

The Fae are the main focus of the plot, so her lack of knowledge about their customs and their plane was the driving force behind the action. She cluelessly tripped through one situation after another and always came out the worse for it. The events of the book came quickly one after another, but instead of feeling like I was on the edge of my seat, I felt confused by the disjointed storyline and wished it would just slow down a little and make sense. The situation kept changing without ever resolving and I couldn’t see a need for half of it except to pave the way for future storylines.

The love triangle that was hinted at in the first book comes to full steam. Every time I blinked Alex was cozying up with another end of the triangle. I liked Falin in the last book—at least I did in the second half of it ;)—but he really turned me off here. The fact that he was constantly around in the second half did not help as my attention began to waver. His constant silence and half-truths, while still trying to cuddle up with Alex, did not impress me. The fact that she had such a hard time resisting him ticked me off and didn’t ring quite true based on how she was presented in the first book. And that leads me to something that bugged me the whole book. Why exactly is Falin the only other person who can touch her without feeling scorchingly hot? That seems awfully convenient for me.

I was much more interested in Death, although I still am not happy about getting stuck with yet another UF love triangle. Are there even any Urban Fantasies out there without love triangles? Anyway, that’s beside the point… In the first book Death was only a hint of any idea, but here he steps fully into the spotlight and completely captures my attention. He’s trying to share more with Alex and you can see the struggle he goes through whenever he runs into an area where he can’t. The rules and the constant cautioning by the other soul collectors has me intrigued. I haven’t seen an indication of which way the triangle is going, which irritates me, because I don’t want to get attached to the losing team. Logic tells me that Death is the less likely choice since she’s the only one who can see him, but I have to admit that I’m pretty unhappy making that prediction.

Although it may seem by now that I didn’t enjoy the book, that wouldn’t be accurate. I really enjoyed learning more about her connection to Faerie and the new turn her magic has taken. I still love a lot of the side characters and would love to see more of them. Holly plays a nice role in this one. I wonder how things will develop with her and what will happen with the location it was hinted she might need to visit. I’ve really loved getting to know more about the soul collectors and am eager to see more develop with them in the next book.

Favorite Quote:
"Someone had come in my house. Had entered my space, violated the masculinity of my dog, and...and...cleaned?"

Review originally posted on Fiction Vixen.
Profile Image for Haydn.
52 reviews2 followers
July 1, 2011
Okay, this was better than the first one in terms of story, but it was certainly harder to follow.

Basically, Alex Craft has come to realize that she is faekin and learned that it entails some things that she didn't fully expect. She gains ownership of a friend, an aversion to cold iron--oh, and she melds realities together. That's right. Realities.

After not quite a month of recuperating from the first novel, Alex finds herself able to pay her bills due to a steady client list, yet unable to convince herself to have one night stands with random bar hoppers. Of all the luck in the world, she is once again constantly cold because the one thing that really helps when she's raised a shade is the feel of a warm body on, around, and in her general area (I really do wonder if that's the best route; it seems rather Hamilton-esque, somehow, as if Price is trying to contrive reasons for Alex to have ludicrous amounts of sex--which strangely never happens). This, of course, is because her beau left town randomly, and a reaper she's named Death has a major wish to be the only man in Miss Craft's life.

Aside from her love life, Craft is also immersed in a very strange series of murders...all of which are thus far impossible to explain because all that's left of the bodies is their left foot (I sensed some bad jokes concerning dancing here, and I wasn't disappointed...well, I was disappointed in the delivery of the jokes, but I certainly received more than enough of them to make up for it). She is once again hired by multiple sources to help solve the problem--but the Fae want her, and they want her enough that they're willing to do pretty much anything to get her.

Okay, that done, now to the review. I have a weird problem in that I tend to like books despite their skill. Maybe it's because I like the idea of them more than the book itself, but bear that in mind here.

At times it bordered on needless confusion. From various bounces in different planes (all of which Alex can now see with her super grave-sight), to characters changing appearance multiple times, to times where Alex is left blind, the narrative gets confusing whenever something dramatic happens. I appreciate the feeling of confusion when she's in battle, but I'd really prefer some direction as to where things are. In fact, the final confrontation occurs in the real world, but for a good page and a half I thought she was still in the realm of nightmares (which she just appeared in without warning or intent). It was all just a bit confusing.

The story, however, was varied and delightful. From logical jumps in story-line, to points where her character is shown to be truly human (she ends up carrying her dog around with her because she doesn't know when she'll be back home, even as she goes into some pretty freaky places), I never fully anticipated what was coming next. I mentioned earlier that Alex doesn't have a passionate love scene in this novel, but at one point I fully anticipated one, only to be denied at the last second by the supernatural love-triangle of Alex's life. It's twists like that, along with unexpected villains, and quirky side characters that make this novel enjoyable to read.

And once again, I remain thankful despite the negatives I did find because once again...

At least there weren't any vampires.
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