EIGHTH GRAVE AFTER DARK by Darynda Jones
Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Hardcover, 293 pages
Published May 19, 2015 by St. Martin’s Press
Book source: publisher
With twelve hellhounds after her, pregnant Charley Davidson takes refuge at the only place she thinks they can’t get to her: the grounds of an abandoned convent. But after months of being cooped up there, Charley is ready to pop. Both metaphorically and literally since she is now roughly the size of a beached whale. Fortunately, a new case has captured her attention, one that involves a murder on the very grounds the team has taken shelter upon. A decades-old murder of the newly-vowed nun she keeps seeing in the shadows is almost enough to pull her out of her doldrums.
Charley’s been forbidden to step foot off the sacred grounds. While the angry hellhounds can’t traverse the consecrated soil, they can lurk just beyond its borders. They have the entire team on edge, especially Reyes. And if Charley didn’t know better, she would swear Reyes is getting sick. He grows hotter with every moment that passes, his heat scorching across her skin every time he’s near, but naturally he swears he’s fine.
While the team searches for clues on the Twelve, Charley just wants answers and is powerless to get them. But the mass of friends they’ve accrued helps. They convince her even more that everyone in her recent life has somehow been drawn to her, as though they were a part of a bigger picture all along. But the good feelings don’t last for long because Charley is about to get the surprise of her crazy, mixed-up, supernatural life….
FIRST DATE: Oh, Charley. How is it, about to give birth to your first (and highly important/prophesied/etc) kid and you’re still getting into an inordinate amount of trouble. I mean, geeze. I can’t even take you out and get you drunk because, well, you’re preggers but also because you’ve got these bloodthirsty hellhounds trapping you on holy ground (I supposed we could always order in liquor but that’d just be for me, then. Not as much fun to drink alone.). Because Charley can’t just let things progress without adding more to the mix, she agrees to help search (“search” being a relative term, as she’s confined to the convent grounds) for a missing girl while also attempting to solve a nun-ghost’s murder and get her BFF married off. I actually found myself getting a touch annoyed at all the running around, wielding heavy sledgehammers and such, Charley was doing. Not that I wanted her on bedrest (because what kind of story would that make) but I wanted to take her hand, look deep into her eyes and shout, “You must chill!” She, of course, wouldn’t listen anyway.
SECOND DATE: Fine, Charley. While you’re off doing your thing, I’m going to hang out with your hottie of a hubby, Reyes. Sure, you get the wall sex but there’s something going on with your husband. He’s having secret meetings, he’s super hot (and not just in the “I want to engage in wall sex with the man” way), and he’s even quieter than normal. (And can I just ask, for those who read the book, was he a little…off in that last chapter? I mean sure *beep* happened and so did *beep* but he seemed really unlike the Reyes we’ve grown to know and love. A real *beeeeep*. But I’m sure it was because of *beep*. So, I’m gonna cut him some slack. Also, because I know he’s not an alphahole. (I mean, we talked about this, right?)
THIRD DATE: Y’all. Sooo much happens and is revealed in this story. The mystery of the Ghostly Mr. Wong? Solved. The hellhounds from hell? Solved. Beep? Birthed. Plus, the most adorable Cookie marries the man of her dreams…even if she refuses to go on a honeymoon with the poor man. And that ending…wow. Just…wow. *teases* Seriously. At least now, I can take Ms. Charley out and buy that woman a drink. Except, well, she’s got *beep* and might not *beeeep*.
FTC disclosure: The publisher/author/company has provided my blog with a copy of this book
for review or I have purchased the book with my own funds. The opinions I share about the story
are mine and not influenced by any outside source, if received for review.
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