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Fifth Grave Past the Light
Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This time I thought I’d figured out who did what before I finished the book but yet again I found that I was wrong. As it turned out, so was Charley so at least I was in good company.

Fifth Grave Past the Light not only kept me guessing towards the end, it also seemed to have more of everything than its predecessors. For a start and for all his fans, it has a lot more of Reyes because he was pretty much constantly there. And following on from Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet now that he is Charley’s neighbour he is in her life more than ever. Which segues nicely into the next thing that there seems to be a lot more of and that is hot steamy scenes between Charley and Reyes. I certainly don’t remember the scenes being quite this hot in the previous books, but I’m not complaining.

in stark contrast there are also more departed souls than ever before due to the actions of a serial killer which makes for a crowded apartment at Charley’s. This latest case is heart wrenching due to its sheer scale and made even more so when Charley makes a connection with a scared girl of six or seven years. This was the whodunnit that I thought I’d solved but hadn’t.

Along with Charley, we also learn a bit more about what it means to be the grim reaper and perhaps the real reason Reyes was sent by his father. All the regulars are in attendance. Mostly Ubie her uncle as they try to figure out the case at hand but Cookie is delightful whenever she appears and the banter between her and Charley is brilliant. Amber, Cookie’s daughter, may have had a chance to shine in the last book but unfortunately makes an embarrassing mistake when demonstrating her sign language skills. Charley’s relationship with her sister Gemma seems thankfully repaired as does her relationship with her dad.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Garrett Swopes following the trauma that he suffered. The same is true of Rocket when Charley is faced with something that she does not want and in that moment, I didn’t like her at all. She does feel guilty and berates herself for what was said but the fact that it happened in the first place makes this the first time that I’ve thought Charley can be nasty.

As with previous books, whilst Fifth Grave doesn’t end on a cliff hanger, it does have a surprising ending that practically screams “to be continued” so consider yourselves warned.

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