I read/listen to drown out the nonsense.
I began reading this book and really liked it. It was engaging and entertaining. It was also written well enough to keep me interested. However I ran out of time to finish it and switched to a recorded audible copy. After that I lost interest and the main character Alex began to really get on my nerves. Additionally I really didn't like the number of times she was called stupid. That maybe just me, but it seemed like a lot. Later I realized it was the way the reader was interpreting the story that made a huge difference. Her performance put me off purchasing the next book, whereas if I had just read it I might have.
Grave Witch is the first book of the urban fantasy series featuring Alex Craft, who is, indeed, a grave witch with magical abilities is closely tied to the dead. What I like most about the book is that Alex is not a tough girl, like so many urban fantasy characters. She is unable to stifle her magical nature, so she makes the best of it by carving a niche for herself as a detective who retrieves information from the dead. She is not trying to be heroic, just helpful. However, in this book, trouble seems to find her.
The book has a light tone, with slight humor, that makes it a quick and easy read. The plot is well-paced with good action intermingled between discovery scenes. The characters are interesting, if a tad bit on the shallow side, but not badly drawn for the start to a series.
My favorite character has to be Death. He has this cool aura of mystery about him, implying deeper layers, yet the author does not reveal much about him. He is one of those characters that is distinctive, but whose purpose seems to be to help move the plot forward.
It is an enjoyable read, but I am forced to limit my rating to three stars due to the author falling into the annoying trope trap. First, there is the start of another silly love triangle. Gag. Then, there the heroine rushes heedlessly into danger despite having other options. Alex is not quite as stupid as some UF heroines, but she does make her share of poor choices.
Regardless, there is just enough here to hold my interest. I look forward to the next book and hope that the series will mature as it continues.
I've listened to this story before and I think the same thing now as I did then. Its pretty good with plot twists that will keep you on your toes. It also has a very original story. The narrator also did a wonderful job, it didn't seem like she was just reading off of a script. All in all it was a great book, even though I think books numbers #2 and #3 are a bit better, its still makes for a very good first of the series.
You ever buy a book and then forget you bought it? And then when you do remember you bought it, you forget why? Well, that’s what happened with Grave Witch. And as a result, it sat in my Audible library for about a year and a half, unread. I can’t tell you how frustrated I am with myself for letting that happen, because Grave Witch was everything I love in Urban Fantasy – a solid world with fascinating, unique and well explained magical systems. A strong, gets-herself-into-loads-of-trouble heroine, good friends, great mystery, and the fae!
I was pretty much instantly hooked on Grave Witch. When the story opens, Alex Craft has just finished raising a shade – a person’s memory that remains attached to the body after death without their soul and emotions – for a client. A client who is unhappy with how the ritual went and doesn’t want to pay her. As she’s trying to get her fee, she sees Death – at least that’s what she calls the Soul Collector she’s had a crush on since she was a young girl – and yeah, he’s there to collect the soul of the man she’s trying to get her money from. That’s the kind of luck Alex has. The bad kind.
So yeah, I kind of loved Alex immediately. A girl who’s splitting a pickle – the only food left in her fridge – with her dog is the sort of girl I can totally relate to and would love to be friends with. That she calls her dog P.C., short for “Prince Charming” is just another sign I’d love her. And we haven’t even gotten to her abilities.
Alex is what’s called a Weird Witch – she has abilities that aren’t about casting spells, but are natural and unavoidable. The majority of witches are just humans with the ability to harness magic and perform spells. Alex actually kinda sucks at that kind of magic. But she’s a bad ass grave witch and sensitive. Being a sensitive just means she can see through spells – she knows when someone is wearing a charm and what it’s for. She can feel and SEE (with her other sight) magic. Being a grave witch allows Alex to SEE the world of the dead. She can SEE ghosts. She can SEE soul collectors (like Death) and she can raise shades. She happens to have some extraordinary abilities even for a grave witch, but I’ll let you read to figure those out.
But Alex is not really your kick ass heroine. She’s very vulnerable because her magic takes a toll. The more time she spends SEEING the land of the dead, letting her grave essence work, the colder her body temperature gets and the longer it will take her to fully recover her eyesight. She’s always almost completely night-blind and after rituals she at least needs glasses to see clearly, and that’s on a good day. I love this kind of complexity in my magic systems and it totally carried over to the world building. I never felt like I was getting an info dump, but I also never felt lost about this world. Everything is constructed to so well and seamlessly into the plot. In this world, about 70 years ago the Fae came “out of the Mushroom Ring” – that is, told humans about their existence – because humans had stopped believing in the Fae. Without belief, they were ceasing to exist. Them coming out led to discoveries of other magic users as well as whole areas of the world that had been hidden because of disbelief/fae glamour. Freaking cool right? There’s lots of little details, but you just need to read it to savor them all. Trust me!
Relationships play a really big part in Grave Wtich as well – from family ties, to friendships, and of course the men. I have to say I loved every single aspect of each relationship dynamic. The family situation is truly complex – but basically, Alex was disowned by her father when she couldn’t hide her abilities. She was shipped off to witch school and eventually changed her name from Alexis Crane to Alex Craft. Oh and for shits and giggles, her father is Lt. Governor of Necros (where they live, one of those rediscovered areas) and a representative of the Humans First Party —> READ: The party that doesn’t like Fae or Witches. So yeah, lots of warm family feelings. The friends are Alex’s TRUE family and I just love seeing those kinds of friendships in my books. There’s disagreement but there’s also solidarity and trust that just makes me smile.
The men… okay, so we do have a dreaded love triangle going on here, but to tell you the truth, it doesn’t bother me one bit. You’ve got Death – soul collector – and Falin Andrews – annoying new-to-Necros cop that won’t leave Alex alone. They’re both bad boys in their own ways, which is fun. They’re both full of secrets. They’re both sexy as hell. And as of right now, I’m kinda rooting more for Falin, but really wouldn’t be disappointed either way.
I haven’t even talked about the mystery and action – but if you’ve read any of The Hollows by Kim Harrison, you get the feel these books have. There’s a couple of sub-plots carrying Grave Witch forward, but there’s also layers upon layers of problems and mysteries to solve that we have barely scraped the surface of.
The narrator, Emily Durante, only added to my enjoyment of Grave Witch. She nailed the voices for everyone – including the men. I can’t imagine reading the books now, but I’m sure that if I do, I’ll hear her voices. A definite for your audio wish list!
Needless to say I’m hooked and jumped immediately into book 2 – Grave Dance – as soon as I finished Grave Witch. I highly recommend this series for fans of Urban Fantasy and the Fae (though we haven’t gotten THAT into the Fae yet, we will)!
Witches and Fey have come out of the caldron, so to speak. What does one call a private investigator who is also a witch? Well a Magic Eye, of course.
Seriously this was a pretty decent whodunit where the main character is a witch and some of the friends are human some are fey and they are all fun.
I don't know why I purchased this first in a series. It must have been on sale because almost all the reviewers felt the same way that I did. The narrator actually reads it like text to speech and so stilted that I could not get through the first chapter.
Other reviewers have said that story picks up, but I'm not waiting.
This book had so much potential but in my opinion the narrator completely ruined it for me. I almost turned it off because of her but because I like the premise of the book, I kept going. It did get better towards the end.
I honestly wasn't sure about this story when I read the synopsis, it seemed kind of questionable. And even the first hour or two I figured I would listen to it and move on it wasn't bad, it wasn't good. And then I got hooked, what started off as kind of ify, became enthralling such that if I was doing other things and I missed something I was rewinding it to hear what I missed. The story and the use of the magic / different types of magic, blended with the Fae world into a cohesive whole was unique and well done. They detective storyline that led through out the books was well done and suspenseful. The romantic triangle that pops up in the story adds a bit for the romantic type and also tosses in some amusing scenes as well. I ended up enjoying it so much that I actually stared at my phone that it was over and immediately started book 2.
First I hate a weak main character , this girl just can't stand whinnying-ness ..bought all three book and didn't even finish book one, returning.... As far as narrator, it was passable, can't say for sure it it was her voice or the words that made me dislike the story..
The story is OK, and I'm pretty sure I would like it much better if I had read it myself.
The narrator destroys this entirely. She adopts this voice for the main character that's coarse, old, and ignorant sounding. She seems to have no real idea where to put emphasis. She mispronounces things. She tries to put what I assume she feels is 'drama' into the performance and it's really amateurish and stilted.
The main character is supposed to be a bright younger woman and this read makes you think she's crabby old trash. Other characters, while read poorly, don't all sound so plain old coarse so I don't get it. Maybe she's trying to give her a hard-bitten edge? Baaaaad.
I have not checked but I hope to heaven the other books in the series are read by someone else.
It's maybe a little cliche. However, the narration really gets in the way of fair judgement.
It just needs someone else entirely. Narration is not for everyone.
I think the premise is good, and could develop well over time.