SECOND GRAVE ON THE LEFT by Darynda Jones-a review

Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones-a review

SECOND GRAVE ON THE LEFT by Darynda jones

SECOND GRAVE ON THE LEFT is the second novel in Darynda Jones’s Charley Davidson Grave series. Once again, written in first person POV, we follow Charley and her side-kick Cookie as they investigate a missing person’s case and a cryptic message left on a bathroom stall wall. Blending humor and mystery, Second Grave is another powerful storyline that delves deeper into the relationships that make up Charlotte Davidson, PI (aka Grim Reaper). Oh and we mustn’t forget her bunny slippers, Bugs Bunny comforter, Danger and Will Robinson and the heart stopping Reyes Farrow 😉

Unlike First Grave, there are NO recently departed following Charley around hoping for resolution about their own deaths.  But, that is not to say that some spirits do not make a re-appearance=Angel, Rocket Man and Strawberry Shortcake to name a few.

Second Grave begins when Cookie receives an urgent message from a high school friend-Mimi, who is in need of Charley’s services.  But like all good mysteries, Mimi is no where to be found and although no witnesses recall seeing the woman, Mimi has left a cryptic message on the bathroom stall at a local all-night café.  And to complicate matters, her husband believes she has been having an affair, and has been threatening those he believes are responsible.

Searching through the past, Cookie and Charley stumble upon a 20 year old secret that may soon reveal itself, amidst a Senate campaign.  When all clues point to a cover up, Charley and Cookie soon discover that everyone who knows about the secret is suddenly dying under mysterious circumstances. Although the clues point in one direction, Charley is forced to confront those who do not wish the secret revealed.

At several times throughout the storyline a trio of ‘FBI agents descend on Charlie, posing a threat to her life. But unlike in the previous storyline, Reyes Farrow aka Big Bad has not been present to serve and protect.  And this has Charley worried.  In First Grave, Reyes professed his lifelong protection of Charlotte Davidson, but he is currently derelict in his duties, whenever Charley is faced with a life-threatening situation.  Two knife attacks and a shoot-out do not bode well for Charley, and resulting injuries must be attended. But Reyes will finally explain, that he will be present-if truly needed.

Again, there are several secondary storylines and investigations.  Charley and her father must face some realities as it involves his previous career as a police detective in the APD.  When someone from his past threatens his family, Charley’s father seems willing to risk the life of his daughter to save those that he loves.  Garret Swopes is injured in the line of duty and the prison warden is well aware that Reyes Farrow is not all that he appears.  And like the headlines from gossip magazines and horror stories, Reyes has a following that will both surprise and force you to withdraw into the world of ‘ick’ knowing that there are people out there, willing to do anything for attention and money. Oh and we mustn’t forget about the spirit riding around in the trunk of Cookie’s white Taurus.  His identity will come as a shock to everyone but Uncle Ubie.

Reyes and Charley’s relationship grows as Reyes reveals more about what destiny has in store.  As the story continues, Reyes’s corporeal body’s whereabouts is still unknown as Charley searches in vain.  Knowing that Reyes is continuously tortured for information and the map, Charley hopes to find his body, to stop Reyes from allowing his own death.  But Reyes has warned Charley that she should not interfere.  As the son of Satan, Reyes is well aware of the prophecies and who is the KEY to both heaven and hell.  But Charley’s interference and refusal to back down will now place everyone at risk, and her relationship with Reyes will take them into another direction-one that she isn’t willing to accept.

Second Grave on the Left is another wonderful instalment in the Charley Davidson series by Darynda Jones.  Darynda writes with plenty of humor and  just enough sexiness that your will find yourself laughing out loud.  The character of Charley is a no-nonsense woman, who readily speaks her mind (sometimes without thinking), but as a reader I love the first person POV, as we are able to hear the thoughts and what truly goes through a characters mind when caught in a compromising situation.

READING ORDER
1. First Grave on the Right
2. Second Grave on the Left
3. Third Grave Dead Ahead
4. Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet
5. Fifth Grave Past The Light (2013)

LINKS TO ORDER
Amazon / Barnes and Noble / The Book Depository / KOBO / Books a Million

Reviewed by Sandy

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