Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones: Book Review

First Grave on the Right
by Darynda Jones
St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 978-0-312-66275-2
Publication Date: February 1, 2011

Description: A smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper. 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.

The Good Stuff

  • You have to read this one folks, a wonderfully unusual and creative premise
  • Just plain adored Charley with her creative, and extremely witty and sharp tongue
  • Loved the relationship between Charley and her family and friends
  • Great introductory chapter that grabs your attention (not to mention made me lmao!) and doesn't let it go
  • Everything I want in a book including a strong and fun female protagonist, sexy boys, paranormal twists and turns, naughty stuff and tons of excitement. 
  • Made me lmao on so many occasions that I had a hard time picking only 3 favorite passages
  • Also very sweet and sad on occasion, but done in such a marvelous non mushy way -- I think Charley and her family are related to mine
  • Love the dead lawyers -- trust me so will you!
  • Very much looking forward to further books by this author
  • I really felt a connection to her family and friends
The Not so Good Stuff
  • I was confused about what was happening at times and sometimes the chapters just jumped around too much -- but that could also be blamed on the fact that I was reading it while home on xmas vacation with my two boys
  • Would like more back story on her sister and some other secondary figures, and hope that will happen if there will be further books in the series
  • Enjoyed it so much that I turned on Handy Manny (toddler crack), ignored my toddler and kept reading -- I know, I know -- Bad Mommy!
Favorite Quotes/Passages

"I eyed him with my infamous death stare, second only to my infamous fluster stare, and got a response immediately." "Sorry, sorry." he said, stumbling over his words, "didn't meant to frighten you." Did I look frightened? Clearly my death stare needed work."

"You set one foot in this bathroom, and I will melt your face with my transcendental pest repellent." His eyes widened. "Seriously?"  "No," I said, my shoulders deflating.  I had a really hard time lying to the departed. "It's just water. But don't tell Mr. Habersham, the dead guy in 2B. This bottle is the only thing that keeps that dirty old man out of my bathroom."

"I know what kind of man it takes to get involved  with something as barbarous as human trafficking." I get it,  Swopes. He's not the kind of man you take home to meet your stepmom." I rethought that. Wait a minute. Maybe my stepmom would like to meet him. Do you think he ships to Istanbul?"

Ok, I lied I had to put in a fourth quote -- but it's a quickie!

"Dead thirteen-year old gangbangers were so moody!"

What I Learned

  • Being a Grim Reaper isn't a downer and quite frankly sounds like a lot of fun
Who should/shouldn't read
  • Fans of MaryJanice Davidson, Jennifer Estep, Julie Kenner, Jill Myles, Marta Acosta and Charlaine Harris will probably really enjoy
  • Anyone who loves fun quirky smart kick ass chicks with a wonderfully dark sense of humour

4.5 Dewey's

I won this from GoodReads and didn't have to do a review but well I really enjoyed it and I love Goodreads so what the heck


  1. Lol, ok...this one does sound pretty entertaining, loved the quotes you shared!

  2. Thank you so much for posting this here and on Goodreads, Jennifer! I'm so glad you liked it. I keep waiting for the day someone hates it so much they send me death threats. That will be a bad day. But today! Today is a very good day. :)

    Thank you again! This was so cute and well-written.

  3. This looks like fun. Going on my list. Which means I'll probably get around to reading it in 2030!

  4. Hey Stacy

    They are giving away more on GoodReads at

  5. You're welcome Darynda -- I really did enjoy it and am lending my copy (She better give it back to me in good shape) to my neighbors daughter tonight