Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Audio Review: Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones

Title: Second Grave on the Left
Author: Darynda Jones
Publisher: MacMillan Audio
Release Date: August 16, 2011
ISBN: 1427212430

Why for the love of all things urban fantasy is Darynda Jones relatively unknown in comparison to some of the others out in the genre? Her books are fantastic and it’s honestly a crying shame that her books on the shelves (electronic or otherwise) of more people.

Charley Davidson, Grim Reaper Extraordinaire, is back in this sexy, suspenseful novel of supernatural shenanigans

When Charley is rudely awakened in the middle of the night by her best friend who tells her to get dressed quickly and tosses clothes out of the closet at her, she can’t help but wonder what Cookie’s up to. Leather scrunch boots with a floral miniskirt? Together? Seriously? Cookie explains that a friend of hers named Mimi disappeared five days earlier and that she just got a text from her setting up a meet at a coffee shop downtown. They show up at the coffee shop, but no Mimi. But Charley finds a message on the bathroom wall. Mimi left a clue, a woman’s name. Mimi’s husband explains that his wife had been acting strange since she found out an old friend of hers from high school had been found murdered a couple weeks prior. The same woman Mimi had named in her message.

Meanwhile, Reyes Alexander Farrow (otherwise known as the Son of Satan. Yes. Literally) has left his corporeal body and is haunting Charley. He’s left his body because he’s being tortured by demons who want to lure Charley closer. But Reyes can’t let that happen. Because if the demons get to Charley, they’ll have a portal to heaven. And if they have a portal to heaven…well, let’s just say it wouldn’t be pretty. Can Charley handle hot nights with Reyes and even hotter days tracking down a missing woman? Will Cookie ever get a true fashion sense? And is there enough coffee and chocolate in the world to fuel them as they do?

Here is your signpost for the most hilarious read of the summer: Second Grave On The Left.

I really enjoyed First Grave on the Right, but I was in for a treat when I checked out the audiobook from my library. Lorelei King does an excellent job of narrating the story and capturing the various accents, personalities, and tones of the various characters. Her Reyes is to die for. (And Charlie almost does at least a number of times before the end of the book.)

The plot is also excellent. The whodunit in this book is rather well done and left me guessing until the very end. It’s one of many threads in the story, all of which I thought were juggled pretty well for the most part. I admit that the murder mystery of the book occasionally tended to take more of a backseat to the Reyes story line at times, but I have to admit that I preferred that. The Reyes stuff was just too interesting, especially the Internet fan club stuff.

This is an absolute must read for fans of urban fantasy. Unless the author pulls a complete 180 in the next few books or tries to drag this out until 450 books ala Laurell K Hamilton, this will probably be one of my faves.

Four out of Five stars

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