Wednesday, December 23, 2009

grave sight by Charlaine Harris

grave sight by Charlaine Harris

Borrowed from my local public library.

**** "Loved it!"

From the inside cover: "Harper and Tolliver are experts at getting in, getting paid, and then getting out of town fast - because the people who hire Harper have a funny habit of not really wanting to know what she has to tell them. At first, the little Ozarks town of Sarne seems like no exception. A teenage girl as gone missing, and Harper knows almost immediately that this girl is dead. But the secrets of her death - and the secrets of the town - are deep enough that even Harper's special ability can't uncover them. With hostility welling up all around them, she and Tolliver would like nothing better than to be on their way. But ten another woman is murdered. And the killer's not finished yet..."

This book is the first in Harris' "grave" series, telling the story of Harper Connelly and her step-brother Tolliver Lang. Harper and Tolliver are strongly bonded through the experience of parental neglect during their formative years - her mother married his father, and together they descended into a drug and alcohol fueled decline. During these desperate years, Harper was struck by lightning, and though she survived, she was left with a legacy of ill-health and a strange, unexplainable gift - the ability to locate corpses and identify them, along with their cause of death. Harper and Tolliver travel the country as a very unusual private detective team; Harper finds the dead and allows them the dignity of a burial, while giving their families closure. tolliver supports the fragile Harper, and takes care of the business side of things.

Anyone who reads my blog regularly will know that I am a very frequent visitor to my public library. That is because I simply don't have the disposable income to buy many books. Often the books that I want to borrow are already out, and for some reason my library charges $2.50 to put you on a waiting list to receive it when it comes back in. For this reason I often check my library's online catalogue frequently so I can see when a book is back in and nab it quickly! grave sight is one of those books that I had to be patient for, so I actually ended up reading the second book in the series, grave surprise, first. You can read my review here.

Anyway, the fact that I had read the second book in the series first in no way diminished my enjoyment of this book. The characters of Harper and Tolliver are interesting, and their not-quite-brother-and-sister relationship is fascinating. The paranormal aspect of Harper's gift is handled very well, without hoopla. Apart from Harper's ability, this is not a paranormal story, rather it is more like a classic murder mystery. I like the way that while Harper and Tolliver's story goes on, the mystery is wrapped up by the end of the book. In this way, the books are like episodes of your favourite TV show - you don't want to miss one, but if you do it's not the end of the world, you can keep watching.

Highly recommended. 


Ashley @ Ashley's Library said...

I'm reading this book right now! I love Charlaine's Sookie Stackhouse series so it was only natural that I wanted to read this series as well. I really like her characters and plots.

Fiona said...

What I love about this series is the fact that there is a murder mystery that gets solved. I think you'll really enjoy them.