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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Review: Grave Witch by Kalayna Price

Title: Grave Witch
Author: Kalayna Price
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Release Date: 10/05/10
Not even death can save her now.

As a grave witch, Alex Craft can speak to the dead -- she's even on good terms with Death himself. As a consultant for the police, she's seen a lot of dark magic, but nothing has prepared her for her latest case. When she's raising a "shade" involved in a high profile murder, it attacks her, and then someone makes an attempt on her life. Someone really doesn't want her to know what the dead have to say, and she'll have to work with mysterious homicide detective Falin Andrews to figure out why...

Plot: 5 Stars
I absolutely love a novel based around magic in which the use of magic extracts a physical price from the person performing it. In the case of this novel, the use of Alex's grave magic affects her vision afterwards, to the point where she needs light up stones to get to her apartment door after a normal ritual, and is basically blind after a stronger than normal ritual. Another aspect to this novel I really enjoyed was the different kinds of magic, and how the fae were weaved into the supernatural world. It's not very often a novel has only witches and faw; it was a very interesting combination. The twists and turns in this novel kept me guessing until the very last second. And the ending didn't disappoint. It's not very often (knowing there's at least another book in a series) that I seriously don't know how a main character is going to make it out alive.

Pace: 5 Stars
This was one of those awesome novels that I just could not put down. I read at least two-thirds of the book in just one afternoon. And I could barely put it down to watch some of my favorite tv shows. I would pick it up again at every commercial, just for those couple pages I'd be able to read in the break. Every scene in this novel flowed together very well, and all of the crazy events that took place wrapped up very nicely in the end. Time also passed in a very realistic, but still hectic, amount of time. Alex didn't have a lot of time between each crazy twist and turn, but it didn't feel like forty hours worth of mayhem was crammed into a day either.

Characters: 5 Stars
Alex was a very likeable and interesting heroine. Her family was all kinds of crazy, but that didn't keep her down. Plus, she really loved her little dog. Her grave magic was interesting and unique, and the author really did a great job weaving all of the little details of her magic together. Although I wish we could've seen a bit more of John and her roommates, they seemed like great characters and I hope to see more of them in future novels. Detective was fun to hate in the beginning, although I think he grew on me as much as he grew on Alex.

Cover: 4.5 Stars
Normally, I find black and white covers to be a bit boring. But this cover had just enough color splashed onto the cover model's face, hair, and shirt to stand out. Although the scene depicted on the cover takes place during the night, it wasn't too dark. The contrast between all the black, gray, and white layers was enough to keep the details crisp. I also liked the scene depicted on the cover. It doesn't depict an actual scene from the novel, but it still gives a good idea as to what Alex does for a living. The graveyard is a great setting for a Grave Witch, although Alex does a lot of her jobs in morgues and funeral homes. And although Alex doesn't make her ritual circles out of candles, like on the cover, she uses a wide variety of means to make circles throughout the book, so one could assume that a circle of candles would also work. Lastly, I want to point out that I think the cover model looks a bit likea slightly younger Chelsea Handler, but that could just be because I watch Chelsea Lately every night before bed.

Overall: 5 Stars

Disclosure: I bought this book for my own enjoyment.


  1. I enjoyed it very much, and Price says there is a sequel (Grave Dance) coming out very soon. I'm going to get it when I can.

  2. Although I enjoyed this book - I finished it in a day, couldn't put it down. It did remind me a bit too much of Kim Harrisons books, with friends, not all of them human, oh the gargoyle, the otherwold being a decayed version of the normal world, fingerstick to activate charms, FIB...The list goes on. I hope she comes up with a few more original ideas in the sequel - which I'm definitely going to read.


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