Girl At the Grave by Teri Bailey Black
Publisher: Tor Teen
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Genre: Young Adult — Historical Fiction, Mystery
Synopsis: Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother’s legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer. Only one person believes Valentine is innocent—Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed all those years ago. Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.
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(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review).
(This review may contain spoilers).
I found this book a really engaging read. Valentine was a character who was really easy to relate to and empathise with and I really liked learning more about the history of her parents and what really happened to Rowan’s father as the book went on.
I didn’t really like either Rowan or Sam at times, I have to say. It was good to see that both of them were flawed, but I found Sam kind of abusive at times and Rowan came across as quite a weak character. I think I would have liked the book more if it had had less romance in it.
I did think there were times this book dragged a bit; and while I did really like Valentine as a character, I really couldn’t have said the same for the rest of the people in her town. The more I read, the more it seemed like everyone there had an ulterior motive.
I would have liked to see more of the secondary characters who weren’t central to the storyline. At times, I found myself confused about which characters were which, as many of them didn’t seem to have much of a life outside of their interactions with Valentine.
I did think it was good to learn more about the secrets of the different townspeople as the book went on and I couldn’t help but feel really bad for Birdy. She was definitely one of those characters I felt had a really raw deal through the book.
I did think the author did a good job of keeping to the kinds of thoughts and opinions people had at that time, even though I found myself getting irritated on behalf of the people who had a raw deal due to the way society saw them.
I did find some of the thoughts and feelings a bit hard to get behind and it seemed there were very few truly ‘good’ characters in this book. I liked seeing that both Rowan and Valentine had dreams and goals outside of each other, but I would have liked to see more of that when it came to other characters too, like Sam.
I did enjoy reading this book and it was a quick and easy read. In the future, I would definitely be interested in reading more books by this author.
About The Author
Bailey Black grew up near the beach in southern California in a large, quirky family with no television or junk food, but an abundance of books and art supplies. She’s happiest when she’s creating things, whether it’s with words, fabric, or digging in the garden. She makes an amazing chocolate cherry cake—frequently. She and her husband have four children and live in Orange County, California
Wonderland Book Beau, size XL for a standard hardcover