First Grave on the Right is the debut novel and 2009 Golden Heart Winner by Darynda Jones. From the author’s website.~
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 to 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 buys 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.
I bought First Grave on the Right for my kindle after seeing lots of talk on twitter, many blogs, and one very long conversation with a bookseller in the Elizabethtown, KY B&N store (who says actual bookstores aren’t still a good thing?). I’m glad I went with my gut instinct and downloaded it to my kindle as soon as I walked out of B&N that day (parking lot Wi-Fi doesn’t restrict kindle like some B&N store Wi-Fi does).
Charley Davidson is one of the best characters I’ve ever read about. She is the grim reaper and dead people see her as sparkly. She works as a PI to help dead people who have been murdered find their killers so they can move on. She also been having some really hot dreams involving Reyes, who she remembers seeing from the very first moment she was born. Charley remembers every single thing that has happened since the day she was born. She can be pretty snarky at times, but she is also super smart and I love smart women in books.
While Charley is helping the police solve the murder of 3 attorneys, she is also trying to figure out who and what Reyes really is. She also has to deal with skip tracer Garrett Swopes, who knows her secret thanks to her Uncle Bob, who gave up her secret after having a few too many beers one night. Uncle Bob is on the police force and Charley uses her talents to help him solve crimes. Garrett doesn’t know what to do about Charley. I could see he was attracted to her, but didn’t believe she could really see and talk to dead people. Charley’s focus throughout the entire book was really saving Reyes. She knew he had been in her life since she was born and wanted to know who he really was, especially since he didn’t seem to age.
I really liked First Grave on the Right and already have Second Grave on the Left waiting for me on my kindle. I like the characters and can’t wait to see what happens with Charley and Reyes and even what happens with Garrett.