RITA Reader Challenge Review

RITA Reader Challenge: First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones


Title: First Grave on the Right
Author: Darynda Jones
Publication Info: St. Martin's 2011
ISBN: 978-0312360801
Genre: Paranormal

Book Cover This review was written by Young Librarian . This story was nominated in the Best Novel with Strong Romantic Elements and Best First Book categories.

The summary: Charley sees dead people. That’s right, she sees dead people. And it’s her job to convince them to “go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e. murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she’s been having about an Entity who has been following her all her life…and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely. 

And here is Young Librarian's review:

I’m reviewing this novel from the point of view of its nomination as Best First Novel, not the other category it was nominated in. I’m not surprised this is up for Best First Novel as it won the 2009 Golden Heart for Best Paranormal. Jones is a very strong writer, and Charley jumps from the page and grabs you. In some ways, the pitch perfect characterization of Charley was the one drawback to the storytelling. Charley is a character with ADD, and it was a little jarring at times to follow her thought processes.

With that being said, I’m very glad I picked this book up. At the 2011 RT Convention, I had a lot people telling me that I needed to get my hands on it. Even before I finished it, I ordered the second book in the series. Jones hooked me into Charley’s world and left me wanting more Charley and more Reyes. The relationship between them was well balanced. It teased, taunted, and spiced up the story.

Most of all, this story allowed me to put my trust into Jones as a storyteller. I’m looking forward reading more of the Charley Davidson series, but I’m also willing to try anything else Jones publishes.

This book is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo.

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Natalie says:

    I absolutely love this series! I can always count on Charley Davidson to make me laugh :D

  2. 2
    riwally says:

    I loved Darynda Jones’ books from the very first one.  I just wish her books were cheaper.  I’ve read the first and second books in this series along with another shorter book.  These are laugh-your-pants-wet funny.  Is it okay for me to say two thumbs up and a big whoo rah for Charley Davidson? 

  3. 3
    Anna @ AnnaAllegraBooks.com says:

    I’ve never read anything but this author, but I’m always looking for some funny with my romantical stories. Thanks for the review!

  4. 4
    whitetam says:

    This sounds almost exactly like Cabot’s Mediator series from the synopsis. 

  5. 5
    Renda says:

    It has a different feel to me than the Mediator series.  It is more a “Stephanie Plum Sees Dead People” series, and I mean that in the most positive way.  Instead of Grandma who gives the evil eye, Charley has dead people do a lot more than evil eyes.  But now that I think about it, the Mediator has the same spin.  Hmmm. 

  6. 6
    Amy Raby (Alpha Lyra) says:

    I love this series. So funny! And sexy too.

  7. 7
    Eve Langlais says:

    Marvellous series. I really enjoy Charley’s inner ramblings. And Reyes is the ultimate alpha male. When he drops into bad ass protector mode (scythe, shadowy robe and all), it hits all my happy romance reader spots :)

  8. 8
    Lenorej says:

    ADD…Hah! Now I know why Charley’s “voice” hit all my sweet spots…I can totally relate to the way her mind works!  I’ve got #2 on my TBR pile.  You’ve inspired me to put it at the top.

  9. 9
    Guest says:

    I love these books, I have read them and listened to them on audio, the narrator does an excellent job!!

  10. 10
    Grace says:

    This has an interesting premise and reminds me of the TV series Ghost Whisperer.  I’d pick it up on that similarity alone.  What really caught my eye about this book was the cover, specifically the footwear.  Those sandals?  Those are awesome sandals (I desperately want a pair) and awesomely expensive.  Alexander McQueens – $895.00

  11. 11
    Roserita says:

    I can’t believe no one has mentioned the quotes at the start of each chapter.  Total snarkfest:  “Never knock on death’s door.  Ring the doorbell then run.  He totally hates that.”  “Genius has its limitations.  Insanity…not so much.”  “Guys have feelings, too.  But like…who cares?”  Life isn’t about finding yourself.  It’s mostly about chocolate.”  “Do not disturb.  Already there.”  “A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.”  And my favorite: “When fighting clowns, always go for the juggler.”

  12. 12
    Bnbsrose says:

    Oh, I so agree! I put the chocolate quote in my reading journal because I plan to use it in a quilt.

  13. 13

    Yes! Such a fun series! I saw the cover of the third book and decided I needed to read all of them. They strike a great balance of mystery and romance. And I really enjoy Charley’s extreme ADD thought process. It seems to make everything move along really quick.

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