Friday, February 10, 2017

Review: Eleventh Grave in Moonlight by Darynda Jones

Publication Date: 1/24/2017      
Series: Charley Davidson Series #11
Rating: 4 Stars

Official Blurb: 

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.

For the first time in a very long time, I’ve read a book in one of my long standing favorite series that has left me a little… stumped.  I have loved this series from the very beginning and devour each new book like it’s the last thing on earth to read.  Usually, I am left with a smile on my face and a sense of satisfaction that is soon replaced with anticipation for the next book. Yet, Eleventh Grave in Moonlight left me absolutely indifferent. It wasn’t that I didn’t enjoy the story because some of Charley’s best zingers have come from its pages, but so much of it was focused on Amber’s plight with stalker and Ubie’s sudden mood change that I’m not sure how it fits into the series.  Sure, there was Reyes and Charley’s never ending battle of “Don’t do it” and “You’re not the boss of me, son of Satan” mixed in with the other story lines, but something just didn’t feel right to me.  It was if something was missing and even days later, I can’t put my finger on what it was.

Fast forward to the end of the book, and things are suddenly getting back from track from Tenth Grave.  In true Charley style, the end turns the doom and destruction meter to 11. Fast Jones leaves us with a major cliffhanger and seems to be setting up the ending to the series with confusion and fear about Reyes and Charley’s survival power with what is to come.  I can only hope that my brain was playing tricks on me with the subtle tones that I picked up reading this at 3am.

The Easter eggs laid in this book about what could be impending doom for one of our beloved characters set a chill in my literary bones.  While I have longed to get a chance to read more about Beep, I’m honestly afraid of what’s to come when she does make her grand entrance onto the scene and faces her destiny.  Will she upstage her mother and father?  I sure hope not, but all signs are beginning to point to maybe with the last two books in the series coming within the next year or so.

Maybe 11th Grave was filler to the action-packed conclusion to this series. The ending sure points in that fiery path and I just hope Charley, Reyes, and company can reach the final chapter un-singed. 

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