A typical day in the life of Charley Davidson involves cheating husbands, missing people, errant wives, philandering business owners, and oh yeah…demons, hell hounds, evil gods, and dead people. Lots and lots of dead people. As a part time Private Investigator and full-time Grim Reaper, Charley has to balance the good, the bad, the undead, and those who want her dead. In this eleventh installment, Charley is learning to make peace with the fact that she is a goddess with all kinds of power and that her own daughter has been born to save the world from total destruction. But the forces of hell are determined to see Charley banished forever to the darkest corners of another dimension. With the son of Satan himself as her husband and world-rocking lover, maybe Charley can find a way to have her happily ever after after all.
Worldbuilding: The usual fascinating world of the Charley Davidson series, full of paranormal elements – ghosts, gods (from this or other dimensions), magic artifacts, demons – all delicious.
Characters: Charley was as fun, irreverent, kick-ass, and passionate as I expected her to be. And what a delight she is! I could probably read 1000 books about her and would never, ever tire of her awesomesauceness. I loved to see her accommodating to her new godly status – and how awesome is it to just say that about her, lol? – and I loved every minute of it.
Reyes was just as smoldering, alpha-licious, and irresistible as always – if not more. The relationship between him and Charley had its ups and downs, and the tension made it all the hotter imo. But that ending!! For freak’s sake, that ending!! Shiver me panties!!
Plot: There were some twists and turns I didn’t expect – hello, godly appearances! – and there’s an undercurrent of relativism regarding gods and the godly nature in a somewhat Greek-gods-esque way and I always enjoy some good relativism. There’s a lot of action, some Charley-specific insanity, some mystery-solving and crime-fighting (yummy!). The romance tangent is just as interesting, with tensions in the couple, super-fun banter, and some hot one on one making up. The end of the novel might give you a moment of temporary insanity, but I trust Darynda Jones to make make it all good in the next one – coming end of October, btw. Yey!
Writing: First person, past tense narrative, 1st person POV. Kickass snarky writing style, Charley’s voice is the best thing since the discovery and popularization of coffee.
Curb Appeal: Cool cover, hooking blurb – instabuy author name and series anyways.
I enjoyed Eleventh Grave in Moonlight more than I did previous titles for some reason. Maybe because I was in a particularly shitty mood when reading it, and it came like a much-needed breath of delightfully fresh air. This year’s first absolute fav, ie Bomy Award of Excellence.
I recommend Eleventh Grave in Moonlight to fans of UF, PNR, sleuth-ing xD and general kickasness, but particularly to lovers of strong MCs with a snarky and coffee-loving nature.
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