Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Review: Grave Witch (Alex Craft #1) by Kalayna Price

Published: September 21, 2010 Roc
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Format: Kindle
Source: Purchased
Goodreads Summary 

Grave witch Alex Craft can speak to the dead, but that doesn’t mean she likes what they have to say.

As a private investigator and consultant for the police, Alex Craft has seen a lot of dark magic. But even though she’s on good terms with Death himself—who happens to look fantastic in a pair of jeans—nothing has prepared her for her latest case. Alex is investigating a high profile murder when she’s attacked by the ‘shade’ she’s raising, which should be impossible. To top off her day, someone makes a serious attempt on her life, but Death saves her. Guess he likes having her around...

To solve this case Alex will have to team up with tough homicide detective Falin Andrews. Falin seems to be hiding something—though it’s certainly not his dislike of Alex—but Alex knows she needs his help to navigate the tangled webs of mortal and paranormal politics, and to track down a killer wielding a magic so malevolent, it may cost Alex her life...and her soul.

"Death was certainly consistent in my world."

Whew I've been lucky with some pretty great Urban Fantasy reads lately! This is another series to add to my favorite UF list for sure.

The Good

There is so much going on in this story that it would be impossible for me to touch on it all. Alexis is as the title suggests, a grave witch. She has the power of the grave and is able to raise shades and speak with ghosts. I had a lot of fun learning about this intricate world full of different types of witches, fae, ghosts, gargoyles and even reapers. With her business, Tongues for the Dead, she raises shades so they can speak to clients about a number of things. I got to watch this spin out of control into court cases, fae politics, magical battles, and soul sucking. It was quite the sight to 'read'.

The characters were also many and a lot of fun. Each very different from each other. I will talk more about some of them in the Romance section because my favorites were the love interests. Also, I really enjoyed Alexis' family and their odd dynamic. I look forward to learning more about what is going on there in future books. This is one dysfunctional family.

Caleb, Tamara, and Holly are close friends of Alex. Caleb is a fae and apparently a good one. The wonderful thing about this series is the 'some are good and some you need to watch out for' when it comes to the fae. I love it when there are fae characters that you can trust, but I also really enjoy the tricky fellows because nasty fae can be extremely terrifying.

The story is excellent. There is action virtually non-stop. It did keep me guessing, and with Alex, I was wondering who was behind the mischief until the very end almost. I was kept on my toes throughout most of it, and thought the ending was a good setup for the next book.

The Bad

Alex resembles some other characters that I've read in fiction, though only a little. With her grave powers and detecting, she immediately brings to mind Anita Blake from her Vampire Hunter Series. Then there is the FIB. Called the Federal Interland Bureau in The Hollows, but in this story known as the Fae Investigation Bureau. Other similarities to The Hollows is that there is a gargoyle on her steep, and in one scene she mentions having to sport her red halter and leather pants. She clearly has some Rachel Morgan in her. So even though this is it's own story with a dynamic world and characters, there are some instances of other UF series shown slightly throughout.

Alexis clearly makes an odd deductive reasoning that had me scratching my head since I knew that she had it wrong. Not sure why she went down the wrong path when the answer to me was so clear, but this irked me a bit.

The Romance

My favorites were the love interests Falin and Death. Yes, you read that right. The collector in this series, Death, runs into Alexis often and she's the only one she knows of that can converse with and physically touch him. He's brooding and mysterious and, personally, I found him fascinating. Falin, on the other hand, starts out a little pompous and they don't get along too well. Then slowly through the pages, he turns up the yummy meter and somehow the more I got to know of him the more mysterious he becomes. She has two juicy prospects. I don't usually enjoy love triangles because I feel like another guy is just thrown in as a distraction, but this time she is presented with two options right off the bat, and I kinda like that. There is a pretty detailed romantic scene. Hope to see more of this romance because I enjoy both of the guys, and I'm really wondering where this triangle will go.


This was a great read! I was thrilled with the amount of action involved and the fact that I was on my toes though everything. I enjoyed all the characters that Alex interacted with throughout and the romance is intriguing. Recommended to Urban Fantasy lovers!


"Sorry. One handshake doesn't admit you to the good graces club."
   "But one phrase said in anger - justified anger that someone was tampering with evidence in my case - is enough to bar me from it?"
I smiled at him. "First impressions suck that way."
   His shoulders rolled back. "You have pertinent information about my case. I could arrest you for obstruction of justice."
And on to threats.

"This goes no further than you, but I believe the body is a fake. It is only spelled to look like Coleman." Okay, that wasn't completely what I believed, but it touched the truth in quite a few places.

I cried when I was angry. Which only pissed me off more.

"They tried to kidnap me." Falin glanced at me from the corner of his eye but didn't say anything. I looked up at him. "You shot him." Still he said nothing. I cleared my throat. "Shouldn't you, like...call it in and secure the scene?


  1. I love when there are so many supernatural creatures in a book. Makes things interesting. And if the main character is a little like Anita and Rachel, I wouldn't mind that.

  2. This is yet another UF/PNR series I have on my TBR as well, and I'm pretty sure I'll enjoy it. I'm not too happy to see that there are some similarities to The Hollows series, though. If they are small it should be OK.

    Great review, Jaclyn :) Have a wonderful afternoon.

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

  3. This sounds perfect for my sister since I'm not too crazy about grave/ghost chats. Have you read any Kat Richardson? I thought of that series when I read your review. I'm not too bothered by love triangles if they're not drawn out too long or taken too seriously, or if some compromise can be made...hehe. Wrong genre. Great review, Jaclyn!

  4. Gaaaa! I have this one on the shelf waiting for me! I neeeeeed to get to it. :D Thank you!!

  5. I've been meaning to try this for years! Great review that is definitely inspiring me to get the first book soon.

  6. I love a lot of supernaturals too. Really spices things up. I don't mind the similarities much either because Alex really is her own character. I think you really will enjoy this one. Thank you so much for stopping by!

  7. The similarities really are small and are just all that I mentioned. I think you will probably enjoy this read a lot when you get to it. Thank you so much for stopping by! Have a great day :D

  8. I haven't read Kat Richardson. This love triangle is set up really well so I'm looking forward to see where it will go. Thank you so much for stopping by :D

  9. Oh I can't wait to see you try this one - it's great :D Thank you so much for stopping by!

  10. Wonderful! It's a great story so I'm happy you're going to be trying it out. Thank you so much for stopping by :D

  11. I really liked the first two in this series and only just realised I had somehow missed #3. Thanks for reminding me about what makes the series so cool.


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