Here's the thing ... It's taken me quite some time to get my thoughts together to do this review, simply because I was blown away by this book! I'm noHere's the thing ... It's taken me quite some time to get my thoughts together to do this review, simply because I was blown away by this book! I'm not saying I'm anywhere closer to actually formulating coherent thoughts, but I'm going to give it a shot anyway.
To say that Darynda's writing has improved from it's already fantastic level seems silly because as authors, every word we write should be a step toward improving our craft. Darynda is no exception to this rule. I have no idea how this woman manages to have so many things going on at the same time and not get lost in it all. Not only is she able to bring order to chaos that was always well in control, but she does it while still managing to capture the emotion of whatever scene she's writing and developing new relationships on top of that! Darynda, I bow to you. You are my hero.
I received this book as an ARC - actually, it was a gift from a very near and dear friend. The second it was in my hands, I devoured it. In less than 24 hours, I sat there with a big cheese-eating grin on my face, unable to find the words to describe how good this book made me feel. And Darynda? Darynda said she was relieved that I liked it. Silly woman.
First of all, Darynda's creative comedic genius in this book ... oh boy, she outdid herself. I laughed out loud more times in Third Grave than I did in First and Second Grave put together. The friggin' bear ... le sigh. Charley's humor has a way of jumping out at you when you least expect it. The most ordinary conversation suddenly turns into something that'll have you giggle/snorting and all, "Oh, Charley...you so cray-cray, girl." And the way she and Cookie feed off each other??? Dear Darynda, please don't ever do anything asinine like kill Cook off or even separate these two. I know where you live ;) Buahahaha!
Now, the juicy part ... Reyes motherhumpin' Farrow!!! More Reyes! More Reyes! More Reyes! And with more Reyes comes more oh-my-God-I-just-died-of-instant-crotchsplosion! *thud* That man struts onto the page with more swagger than any other character I know, and I can literally feel the temperature in the room shoot up by about ten degrees while I'm reading him. He oozes dark sexuality that is both a breath of fresh air and suffocating at the same time. I NEEDZ me a Reyes Farrow, but I'm not about to pray to Satan himself to send his son to my doorstep because I'm pretty sure he'd want my soul in return and I'm sort of attached to it at the moment. But for Reyes, I'd defs consider it. I mean, COME ON!!! My little luv nubbin stands up and takes notice, ready to abandon ship at the first indication that Reyes might be looking her way, the hussy. Not that I blame her. Again, it's Reyes motherhumpin' Farrow!
Okay, I've rambled enough, but I really hope my word vomit was enough to adequately describe Third Grave, Darynda, Charley, Reyes, and how cray-cray you would be not to read this book. Show my girl some love ;)
Darynda, I FLYAS, but you already knew that. Job well done, my friend. Now, stop being a tease and send me Fourth Grave already. Or, at the very least, the snippets you know I'm dying to have in my pervtastic hands. LOL!
I was given the opportunity to be one of the first to read this book via a First Reads contest on this site. Obviously, I was way excited, and so veryI was given the opportunity to be one of the first to read this book via a First Reads contest on this site. Obviously, I was way excited, and so very honored.
The T-shirt and bumper sticker quotes are back for each of the chapter titles. It seems like such an insignificant detail, but I really LOVE that she added these in. They're a riot all by themselves. Seriously, Darynda, you need a T-shirt that just has a slew of these sayings plastered all over it. Speaking of merch...where can I find some?
All of our favorite characters from First Grave on the Right are back and in living color!! I was so stoked to see this.
True to form, Charley Davidson is an absolute riot in this book - not that I wasn't expecting it. Her wit and humor at even the most inappropriate times never ceases to amaze me. I laughed out loud so many times I couldn't even keep count. Honestly, Charley's mind is disturbingly close to as...well, disturbing as my own. Gotta' love a book where you can see yourself in the character. I mean, this chick has to be a bit on the looney side to deal with all she has to deal with.
If you've read First Grave on the Right, then you know what I'm talking about. Charley is the grim reaper, who just happens to moonlight as a private investigator. I don't know how she manages to juggle four cases at once - a missing person connected to a string of deaths, the ghost of a dead man in her best friend Cookie's trunk, why her father is behaving so mysteriously, and attempting to figure out Reyes's story, as well as the whereabouts of his corporeal body (which he hid from her himself). Sounds like a lot, doesn't it? Sure it does, but Charley is on it. She's like a pitbull when it comes to solving mysteries, and we're all lucky she invites us into her world and allows us to take the ride with her.
Reyes...hot damn! What can I say? This man does things to me. I've found it wise to be sure I'm wearing a Shamwow like a diaper while reading about this man, who's not really a man, but that's very much his allure in the first place, right? Not to mention the fact that he can show up any time, any place without warning and drive Charley into a fit of lust, no matter who's standing around or what the circumstances are. He just has that way about him. Never has sin had so much allure. I want to lick him from head to toe, and everywhere in between...and then repeat the cycle...over and over again...every single day...until I eventually die of over-stimulation...I'm thinking "death by crotchsplosion" on a death certificate should describe it fairly accurately. Just sayin'.
Darynda's writing has improved, if you can believe it, even from First Grave. I was enthralled by each word and torn between wanting to turn the page and wanting to savor every single letter of every single word. Yes, it's that good. Her sudden appearance and quick explosion into the literary world is like a breath of fresh air. Finally, someone who mixes humor, suspense, and sexy goodness all into one neatly bound bundle of yummiliciousness. (It is a word; I typed it, so it makes it so. LOL) Too bad the science community can't actually shrink me down and inject me into her brain, because I would love to roll around naked in her imagination. Creepy? Maybe. Impossible? Certainly, but a gal can dream....more
I'm giving this 5 stars because I can't give it 4.5 and I don't think it deserves just 4.
Darynda is an exceptional writer. I have to say that since thI'm giving this 5 stars because I can't give it 4.5 and I don't think it deserves just 4.
Darynda is an exceptional writer. I have to say that since this was written from the ghost's pov - which was a nice change of pace - I missed Charley's comical inner thoughts. It was nice to see Charley's antics through someone else's eyes, like her trying to sneak up on a security camera and looking like a total dork in the process.
Very short story, but the added bonus of the first chapter for the next two books, and even the first book, First Grave on the Right, was an unexpected surprise. Yayee, me!...more