Ahoy there me mateys! I received this young adult gothic fiction eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings . . .
girl at the grave (Teri Bailey Black)
Title: girl at the grave
Author: Teri Bailey Black
Publication Date: TODAY! (hardcover/e-book)
The beginning of this novel was promising but it ended up being not to me taste. The positive things that made me finish the book were two-fold:
- I liked the main character, Valentine. She was smart and resourceful.
- I wanted to know how Valentine was going to prove her mother’s innocence and find the true killer.
Unfortunately, there were several plot issues that made this an unlikable read for me.
- The love triangle. This was the primary plot of the story. Who was Val going to pick? The angst drove me bonkers even though I liked both love interests for once. I just honestly didn’t care who she chose.
- The murders. Val did not really use her brain for solving the crime. She was too busy trying to decide who she loved. The “clues” were lackluster and Val admits to herself in the book that she was focused on boy problems and willfully ignored everything else.
- The killer. The who-dunnit was so boring and not really fun. In fact I just sighed in exasperation about how reveal happened.
- The scariness. Well there wasn’t really any. I didn’t really feel there was any suspense or danger or excitement.
- The ending. It had a convenient plot “twist” to make Val’s life magically get better in an instant.
Though the Gothic elements were technically there, the novel itself really had no Gothic feel in either writing style or plot. Most of it felt like a typical teen romance novel with a historical fiction veneer. I was disappointed in the plot in terms of the murder mystery element. The true version of events just felt convoluted and unexciting. Shame because I wanted to like this one. Unfortunately it must walk the plank! Arrrr!
So lastly . . .
Thank you Macmillian-Tor/Forge!
Goodreads has this to say about the novel:
Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother’s legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer.
Only one person believes Valentine is innocent—Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed all those years ago. Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.
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