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Girl at the Grave

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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 unco 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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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 unco 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.

30 review for Girl at the Grave

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kerri

    Absolutely fantastic! Official/fangirling review coming soon 😊

  2. 5 out of 5

    Christie«SHBBblogger»

    Title: Girl at the Grave Series: Standalone Author: Teri Bailey Black Release date: August 7, 2018 Cliffhanger: No HEA(view spoiler)[Yes (hide spoiler)] Girl at the Grave doesn't have any ghosts or scenes I would describe as horror filled. It's a pure murder mystery-suspense with a strong love triangle subplot. I'm not a fan of that romance trope, in fact I avoid it at all costs if possible. I can't say that I loved that aspect here and how it lingered for much of the book, but my enjoyment of the tw Title: Girl at the Grave Series: Standalone Author: Teri Bailey Black Release date: August 7, 2018 Cliffhanger: No HEA(view spoiler)[Yes (hide spoiler)] Girl at the Grave doesn't have any ghosts or scenes I would describe as horror filled. It's a pure murder mystery-suspense with a strong love triangle subplot. I'm not a fan of that romance trope, in fact I avoid it at all costs if possible. I can't say that I loved that aspect here and how it lingered for much of the book, but my enjoyment of the twisty and unpredictable mystery took center stage, winning me over. Early on I guessed a major twist in the book which made me think this would be pretty predictable. I was pleasantly surprised how much more there was in store, and how many pieces of the plot would be neatly tied by the end. When she was six years old, Valentine's mother was hanged for murder. The town of Feavers Crossing turned their backs on her, not wanting to be tarnished by her now black reputation. People she once considered to be friends didn't hesitate to snub or insult her, so it was easier to retreat into her own private world. Though she and her father are poor, a mysterious benefactor has paid for her education at the exclusive school in town. She's grateful for the opportunity to attend and doesn't squander it, but she has no friends except a boy who works there named Sam. Her best friend comes from a family with arguably an even worse reputation than hers, and maybe that's why they felt so comfortable around each other. There was no fear of judgement or hurt, and they accept one another unconditionally. Valentine hasn't had the easiest of lives, but that has only molded her into the self-reliant and mature teen that she is. I really enjoyed her character's sense of morality, courage, and determination to find answers. There were times when anyone else would have cracked under the pressure she was under, but it seemed to only harden her resolve. The murder than altered her life is only the first of many, and if she doesn't dig up the truth that has long been buried, she could suffer the same fate as her mother. She comes to realize that the town is loaded with secrets and lies, hidden like a land mine waiting to detonate with one wrong step. The question is...who can she trust? Who will trust her when everyone is prejudiced and quick to point fingers? A good murder mystery will make you guess and then second guess every character's intentions, looking for a possible sinister motivation. Girl at the Grave accomplished that, and managed to pull the rug out from under me when the big reveal came. I can honestly say that I never could have anticipated how the . There wasn't much angst in the romance department because you pretty much realize from the start who she will end up with, only how it will manage to work itself out. There are huge and seemingly insurmountable roadblocks thrown in their way, and at times I wondered how they would find their happy ending. There was a fear that one or both of them would have to choose between their dreams and being together, but I was very satisfied by how it played out in the final pages. If you're looking for a good atmospheric historical mystery, look no further. This was a big departure from what I normally read, but in a good way. It was refreshing, well plotted, and really fast paced. I will definitely be seeing what this fresh new author has to offer in the future. FOLLOW SMOKIN HOT BOOK BLOG ON:

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Brigid

    “The whole head is sick. And the whole heart is faint.” This book isn’t as exciting as I presumed. It’s a solid novel with a pleasant blend of murder and romance, but not much more. Although there is a love triangle, it’s executed well, and each character is fleshed out and realistic. The slow-pacing of the story is a tad tiring at times, but the simplistic writing is charming. Overall, I was quite satisfied with the ending of this novel, and admired the consistency and development of all thr “The whole head is sick. And the whole heart is faint.” This book isn’t as exciting as I presumed. It’s a solid novel with a pleasant blend of murder and romance, but not much more. Although there is a love triangle, it’s executed well, and each character is fleshed out and realistic. The slow-pacing of the story is a tad tiring at times, but the simplistic writing is charming. Overall, I was quite satisfied with the ending of this novel, and admired the consistency and development of all three main characters. None of them are perfect and it’s nice how they each acknowledge one another’s mistakes and discuss how it affects their current relationship stances. A love triangle with two valid contenders? Perhaps it was just me, but I thought it was blatantly obvious which male lead would steal her heart in the end. Although both interests and Valentine had moments where I wished nothing more than to sock them in the jaw, I didn’t mind the love triangle. The romance does intrude on the mystery more times than I would’ve liked, but this is the primary focus on the novel, so I suppose its understandable. The murders and mystery are founded on a sea of love and betrayal, so it’s befitting how the characters place an importance on where their heart is leading them. Nevertheless, the drama did feel periodically needless. I admired how all three of them were multi-dimensional and expressed genuine human emotions. My favorite of the bunch is Rowan, and I thought he was the sweetest pea ever. At first glance, I imagined I would dislike him, but this proved not to be the case as the story progressed. The Gothic atmosphere is palpable. The best aspect of this book in my opinion, is the setting. Historical Fiction is a genre that has truly grown on me as of late. I love the way authors can forge their stories around historical events, or simply install them in previous time periods. I love the setting Black crafts, and the eerie tone to the story is tangible. How the atmosphere often changes to reflect the characters’ moods and excursions is also a nice addition to the writing. The pacing did drag a few times, but the writing is so amiable that I never felt bored. Ultimately, this is a pretty satisfactory debut. The mystery, though it could’ve been less predictable and delved on more than the romance, is enticing enough. Valentine and her love interests are quite dynamic and the sinister atmosphere is engrossing. All the elements could have been executed a bit better, but none of them fell completely flat. I will definitely be looking out for future works by Black! I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review! Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Bloglovin

  4. 5 out of 5

    Shelley

    *Source* NetGalley *Genre* Young Adult / Historical / United States / 19Th Century *Rating* 3.5 *Thoughts* Girl at the Grave is the debut novel from author Teri Bailey Black. It is a Gothic tale of murder and romance set to the backdrop of 1850s New England (Feavers Crossing, Connecticut). The story's protagonist is 17 year old Valentine Barron Deluca. Val has spent 11 years trying to outrun her mother's legacy. When she was 6 years old, Isabella Deluca was charged with murdering a man and quickly h *Source* NetGalley *Genre* Young Adult / Historical / United States / 19Th Century *Rating* 3.5 *Thoughts* Girl at the Grave is the debut novel from author Teri Bailey Black. It is a Gothic tale of murder and romance set to the backdrop of 1850s New England (Feavers Crossing, Connecticut). The story's protagonist is 17 year old Valentine Barron Deluca. Val has spent 11 years trying to outrun her mother's legacy. When she was 6 years old, Isabella Deluca was charged with murdering a man and quickly hung after being found guilty. *Full Review @ Gizmos Reviews* http://gizmosreviews.blogspot.com/201...

  5. 5 out of 5

    mith

    find my review on my blog as well! --- There are few things as disappointing as disliking a book that you’ve been anticipating. Especially one with murder! Girl at the Grave, I feel, had a lot of potential, and yet… Here I am. Here we are. I am sad. There are a few good things about Grave. The main character, Valentine, was well written. I liked her most times. The love interest—the main one—(take that how you will)—Rowan, was super sweet and I enjoyed the scenes he and Valentine shared. There was find my review on my blog as well! --- There are few things as disappointing as disliking a book that you’ve been anticipating. Especially one with murder! Girl at the Grave, I feel, had a lot of potential, and yet… Here I am. Here we are. I am sad. There are a few good things about Grave. The main character, Valentine, was well written. I liked her most times. The love interest—the main one—(take that how you will)—Rowan, was super sweet and I enjoyed the scenes he and Valentine shared. There was a convoluted history in their town that was messy and confusing and totally appropriate for a small town, and it really worked for the setting. There are more bad things about Grave, which is unfortunate. First being the romance. There is a love triangle, so I’m just getting that out of the way. There is boy one, Rowan, whose name—his full name—was said approximately four or five times in the first two pages of the kindle file. (So. You kind of knew who the love interest would be right away, if you didn’t read the synopsis.) There is boy two, Sam, who is Valentine’s best friend and in love with Valentine. I’ll be honest, I don’t really mind love triangles. Shocker, since I complain about them all the time. What bothered me about this one was that, a lot of the romance, between… uh both? guys? happens during the middle of the book, at which just completely drags the novel. Hardly anything happens with the case or the murder midway. Instead, Valentine and Rowan spend time together. They get involved in romantic drama. Sam and Valentine get together. There’s that drama. It was a lot of back and forth and second guessing. I’m just— It’s a lot of fucking drama and all of it is so annoying and so pointless. To add insult to injury: it’s quite obvious Rowan was going to be the guy, anyway. But then Sam was added to the pot, and instead of making him a kind guy who would stick with Valentine despite everything going on, he was a jealous asshole who never had Valentine’s best interests at heart. He said cruel things because she wouldn’t be with him when their drama was going down, so forgive me for not being really forthcoming. The first murder created some action in the beginning, but it was slow going. I let that slide, because as I said in the beginning: there’s a complicated, messy history surrounding Valentine and some of that needed to be introduced. With what happened in the middle, the entire book suddenly felt less murder mystery and more modern contemporary with the relationship drama. When the other murders were discovered, there was just… no suspense. There was no danger or anything that really kept me hooked. By the end, the reveal was so lukewarm that I didn’t really care. Overall, this was just a miss for me. I had high hopes for Girl at the Grave but alas. 2.5 stars.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Stoolfire

    I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. No matter what Valentine does she cannot get away from her mother's grim legacy. When a new string of murders occurs in her small town, all signs seemingly point to the daughter of a murderer. Interestingly enough the son of her mother's victim is the only person on Valentine's side. Valentine plans on uncovering the real killer, but when she discovers the truth she will have to come to terms with her own secrets, even if it means I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. No matter what Valentine does she cannot get away from her mother's grim legacy. When a new string of murders occurs in her small town, all signs seemingly point to the daughter of a murderer. Interestingly enough the son of her mother's victim is the only person on Valentine's side. Valentine plans on uncovering the real killer, but when she discovers the truth she will have to come to terms with her own secrets, even if it means losing those she cares about. Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black is a debut Gothic-tinged YA historical mystery thriller. It was one of my more anticipated books of the season and while it was decent, it didn't quite live up to my expectations. My favorite aspect of the novel is Valentine herself. She hasn't exactly had an easy life, but that's shaped her into the independent and decisive character that she is. The only thing that she isn't decisive about is boys. There is a love triangle, which if you know me I'm not usually a fan. I preferred Rowan from the start - beyond that the drama with Sam is just too wishy-washy in my personal opinion. I will say though that the author does a very good job of creating drama in terms of the murders and the core mystery, especially with all the twists and turns to keep us guessing. Learning about the town history was also interesting, but sometimes things got bogged down with the details and complexities. The story is a decent murder mystery, but honestly I was hoping there was going to be more of a horror or paranormal element as well. Overall, this debut thriller by Teri Bailey Black is a more than serviceable YA historical mystery thriller. There were a few elements that didn't quite work for me, but I still enjoyed following Valentine's atmospheric story. Personally, I was expecting a little more murder mystery and a little less love story, but maybe that's just me.

  7. 4 out of 5

    The Captain

    Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this young adult gothic fiction eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . . The beginning of this novel was promising but it ended up being not to me taste.  The positive things that made me finish the book were two-fold: 1. I liked the main character, Valentine.  She was smart and resourceful. 2. I wanted to know how Valentine was going to prove her mother's innocence and find the true killer. Unfortunately, there were Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this young adult gothic fiction eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . . The beginning of this novel was promising but it ended up being not to me taste.  The positive things that made me finish the book were two-fold: 1. I liked the main character, Valentine.  She was smart and resourceful. 2. I wanted to know how Valentine was going to prove her mother's innocence and find the true killer. Unfortunately, there were several plot issues that made this an unlikable read for me. 1. The love triangle.  This was the primary plot of the story.  Who was Val going to pick?  The angst drove me bonkers even though I liked both love interests for once.  I just honestly didn't care who she chose. 2. The murders.  Val did not really use her brain for solving the crime.  She was too busy trying to decide who she loved.  The "clues" were lackluster and Val admits to herself in the book that she was focused on boy problems and willfully ignored everything else. 3. The killer.  The who-dunnit was so boring and not really fun.  In fact I just sighed in exasperation about how reveal happened. 4. The scariness.  Well there wasn't really any.  I didn't really feel there was any suspense or danger or excitement. 5. The ending.  It had a convenient plot "twist" to make Val's life magically get better in an instant. Though the Gothic elements were technically there, the novel itself really had no Gothic feel in either writing style or plot.  Most of it felt like a typical teen romance novel with a historical fiction veneer.  I was disappointed in the plot in terms of the murder mystery element.  The true version of events just felt convoluted and unexciting.  Shame because I wanted to like this one.  Unfortunately it must walk the plank!  Arrrr! So lastly . . . Thank you Macmillian-Tor/Forge! Check out me other reviews at https://thecaptainsquartersblog.wordp...

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kristi Housman Confessions of a YA Reader

    Going back and forth on 4 or 4 1/2 stars. RTC a bit closer to release date. I did really like this one. Thank you to TorTeen and Netgalley for my copy for review.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer Jimenez

    I'm not gonna lie, I'm actually surprised by how much I liked this book. I was uncertain in the beginning, finding some things a little too coincidental, and the writing just ok. But then the story and the writing found its way, and I found myself not wanting to stop! *NOTE: neither the description nor the copy on the book (and not even the title!) really tells you what this is. It's a YA historical fiction novel with a little bit of a love triangle and a murder mystery. (AKA RIGHT UP MY ALLEY) I'm not gonna lie, I'm actually surprised by how much I liked this book. I was uncertain in the beginning, finding some things a little too coincidental, and the writing just ok. But then the story and the writing found its way, and I found myself not wanting to stop! *NOTE: neither the description nor the copy on the book (and not even the title!) really tells you what this is. It's a YA historical fiction novel with a little bit of a love triangle and a murder mystery. (AKA RIGHT UP MY ALLEY) LIKED: This was a fast read, which also surprised me. Even though the text is a bit small and it's 336 pages, It took me a little over a day to read this. The story is intriguing, and there are a lot of surprises and scandals within that held my interest. The characters are good, although I would have liked a little more from Sam. Also, one very important thing for me, although the love stories happened quickly, it wasn't the "meet and declare love on the same day" kind of quickly. I enjoyed how the stories were built, and gives a credibility to Valentine and her feelings. DISLIKED: The writing was good, could have been a little better. Sometimes the plot lines felt a little too convenient. Overall, this was a great read. I'd recommend it to anyone who likes mysteries, family dramas, love stories, and period stories. I'd read a sequel of this if there ever was one!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Heather (The Sassy Book Geek)

    Review Originally Posted On The Sassy Book Geek **** Thank you to Tor Teen for providing me with a copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review **** **** Trigger Warnings: Violence, Death & Murder, Brief Mention of Physical Abuse, and Death of a Parent **** Actual Rating 3.5 Stars I was expecting something very different given the synopsis but overall I was pleasantly surprised by how much I ended up enjoying this one. Was it perfect? No. But it was an enjoyable read especially since Review Originally Posted On The Sassy Book Geek **** Thank you to Tor Teen for providing me with a copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review **** **** Trigger Warnings: Violence, Death & Murder, Brief Mention of Physical Abuse, and Death of a Parent **** Actual Rating 3.5 Stars I was expecting something very different given the synopsis but overall I was pleasantly surprised by how much I ended up enjoying this one. Was it perfect? No. But it was an enjoyable read especially since I normally don’t enjoy historical fiction! Plot The story didn’t actually focus on the murders as much as I thought it would, which was slightly disappointing to me. It’s actually more of a character study than anything else so at times it felt slow but overall I was pretty hooked while reading so I would say the pacing was pretty in the middle. It also stayed consistent throughout the book as well. There were also quite a few twists along the way that I was NOT expecting so that was really fun. I think there was a lot more focus on Valentine’s love life than anything but really the mystery was well done too, just not as present as I would have liked. There’s also some bits of family drama added in that kept things pretty interesting. I really never felt that there any dull moments will reading, everything kept my attention very well. The writing was also very nice, as I’ve already said it kept me interested and never bored. Which is actually pretty impressive since I don’t normally enjoy historical fiction and tend to get bored while reading it. I’m definitely curious to see what else Teri Bailey Black will be coming up with! There is a bit of a feminist undertone to the entire story as well. Valentine, the MC, works very hard in order to make her attendance at a prestigious, formerly boys only, private school worth it. She believes women should be able to go to college and have the some of the same rights as men. There are side characters that feel the same way and work to help further women’s rights. I thought this was a nice touch to the book, personally, and I thought it was done very well. Overall I felt it was a story that flowed very well, nothing ever felt abrupt or rushed. The dialogue also never felt forced or choppy. Characters As I already briefly mentioned this is very much a character driven story with a focus on Valentine and her two love interests: Rowan and Sam. I actually thought everyone was very complex and well fleshed out, everyone had their flaws and grew as a character throughout the course of the book too. Sure there were some decisions that were made that may have not been the smartest but I felt this was more so due to the character’s realistic flaws than just a character being….well, dumb or annoying. I actually really enjoyed all three of these characters, they’re all extremely sweet and adorable. Valentine is just one of those heroines you can’t help but root for, she’s just so down to earth and very caring towards others. I really enjoyed her friendship with her childhood friend, Sam. I kind of wished he hadn’t turned into a love interest but in the end I wasn’t complaining, he’s just so cute, although his temper was pretty unruly at times. Rowan’s character was a bit of a surprise to me, he definitely wasn’t how I thought he would be. He’s the most popular guy at school and all the girls moon after him, however, he wasn’t arrogant in the least bit and I loved how hard he tries to help Valentine fit in and make her feel comfortable. He’s pretty swoon-worthy! There are many side characters that get a lot of page time as well, I liked how in depth some of their roles were in the story. Especially where you weren’t expecting it! Romance Another thing I briefly mentioned, the romance. “Girl at the Grave” is a little more focused on romance than murder and mystery, which most of the time would bother me to no end. However, I could not help but be invested in the story regardless! There IS a love triangle in this book between Valentine, Sam her childhood friend, and Rowan the popular guy. This is one of the few exceptions I’ve made for the love triangle trope, I can handle one if I feel both love interests are genuinely fitting for the main character. Boy, oh boy, were these two fitting for Valentine! I couldn’t make up my mind half the time about which boy she should choose, it was madness! They were both so wonderful! Although one thing I didn’t like was how Valentine kind of “settled” for Sam at one point, that’s just not fair to either party but especially him. I also didn’t really like how pushy Sam could be at times, let her decide in her own time! In Conclusion What I Loved: Some nice, surprising plot twists Evenly paced Held my attention throughout very well The writing was very good Feminist plot elements Everything flowed nicely Characters were well developed and realistic Love triangle that I didn’t mind Love interests that were actually swoon-worthy! What I Didn’t Love: Plot focused more on the romance than the mystery Valentine and Sam’s treatment of each other at times throughout Recommend? I know that this is more positive than negative and it seems like it should be a 4 or 5 star read but overall I walked away from this book feeling like it’s a 3.5. There wasn’t anything truly remarkable about the story but it was just an enjoyable read. I do recommend this to fans of historical fiction romances with a mystery twist!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Mogsy (MMOGC)

    2.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/09/16/... It is the mid-1800s in the small New England town of Feavers Crossing, and Valentine Deluca is a teenager who has grown up with the stigma of being a murderer’s daughter. It didn’t matter that Valentine was only six years old when her mother was hanged for the killing of Nigel Blackshaw, a local man from a wealthy and prominent family; towns like Feavers Crossing don’t forgive and forget easily, and people in power have 2.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/09/16/... It is the mid-1800s in the small New England town of Feavers Crossing, and Valentine Deluca is a teenager who has grown up with the stigma of being a murderer’s daughter. It didn’t matter that Valentine was only six years old when her mother was hanged for the killing of Nigel Blackshaw, a local man from a wealthy and prominent family; towns like Feavers Crossing don’t forgive and forget easily, and people in power have a way of holding a grudge. Still, thanks to the financial support provided by a mysterious benefactor, Valentine is able to attend the most prestigious school in the area, even if her presence there is met with scorn and severe backlash. Valentine finds it hard to mix with her fellow students, who whisper vicious things behind her back. Even more awkward is that Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed, is also enrolled at the school. Shockingly though, instead of blaming her for her mother’s crimes, Rowan sees in Valentine a kindred spirit. As graduation approaches, their friendship deepens into something more, much to the dismay of Rowan’s grandmother, the indomitable Mrs. Blackshaw, as well as Sam Frye, Valentine’s best friend who has loved her since they were both children. But then one day, new information comes to light on the murder of Nigel Blackshaw, turning Valentine’s world upside down. With equal parts terror and excitement, our protagonist realizes that what she has discovered may help clear her mother’s name, but fears that it might also mean the end of her relationship with Rowan, because surely the truth would break his heart. I won’t lie; this book started off with a lot of promise, but sadly I felt that most of it was negated by the contrived storytelling and some really poor decisions on the main character’s part. Let’s start off with the elephant in the room: the dreaded love triangle. I know this is a contentious topic for a lot of readers. Some love them, others can’t stand them. Personally, I’ve had my issues with love triangles in the past, but for the most part, I can deal with (and even enjoy) them as long as 1) they are well written, and 2) they don’t get in the way of the main story. Bearing these two points in mind, when it comes to Girl at the Grave, I truly cannot think of a book that needed a love triangle less. And it’s a shame, because it single-handedly sabotaged what I believe could have been a great YA mystery suspense. What I wanted was more examples of Valentine being strong, clever, and steadfast as she sought for answers and worked tirelessly towards getting to the bottom of her mother’s history. What I got instead was her bouncing between Rowan and Sam like some deranged ping-pong ball. Her character ended up embodying everything I despise about indecisive female leads, especially those who can only think about boys and kissing while other lives are at stake. In all fairness though, our lovesick Valentine did manage to pull herself together by the third act, but by then an undue amount of time had already been wasted dwelling on the love triangle theatrics. To the novel’s credit, when you take away all the unnecessary romantic drama, the author does write a compelling mystery plot. The twists are slightly ill-timed and inelegant, but they work well in spite of that. A couple of the major reveals genuinely surprised me, which incidentally made me all the more eager to get past the love triangle and right back into the main story. The writing was also solid, though some word choices, descriptions, and dialogue probably could have been polished up or reworked to better reflect the setting in a historical context. The gothic-style atmosphere didn’t always come through, and sometimes the mid-nineteenth century setting felt only like a thin cloth draped over a modern teen novel. In sum, Girl at the Grave held some true potential, and really, for a debut, it’s not bad. However, too many missteps and plot banalities like an annoying love triangle ultimately made this one a disappointment.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard

    Okay I legit actually freaking LOVED this ending. Really good mystery and my guests were ALL wrong. The setting had some really wonderful dark elements and the story had some good use of mob mentality. I honestly thoroughly enjoyed the characters. Only draw back is that its pacing was sometimes too slow for my personal taste.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Bethany

    Girl at the Grave is an atmospheric YA mystery set in the late 1800's. Reminiscent of Wuthering Heights and The Scarlet Letter, it evokes gothic sensibilities, an underlying sense of unease, and the terrors of rural small-mindedness for women and those who were different. Valentine has spent her life being known as the daughter of a murderess and, despite her success in school, she can't seem to outrun her past or her poverty. New murders shine a spotlight on her as a suspect, but she is determi Girl at the Grave is an atmospheric YA mystery set in the late 1800's. Reminiscent of Wuthering Heights and The Scarlet Letter, it evokes gothic sensibilities, an underlying sense of unease, and the terrors of rural small-mindedness for women and those who were different. Valentine has spent her life being known as the daughter of a murderess and, despite her success in school, she can't seem to outrun her past or her poverty. New murders shine a spotlight on her as a suspect, but she is determined to find the truth. Meanwhile, Valentine is caught between her childhood friend and hopeful admirer - Sam, and the handsome, wealthy son of the man her mother killed- Rowan- who seems to be unexpectedly falling for her. Love triangles are not always my favorite, but I actually thought this one was well-written and warranted given the circumstances. Valentine doesn't always make the best choices, but she wants to find the truth and do what is right. As the tension builds, things get creepier and I felt very scared for Valentine as things close in around her. Valentine lives in a small, gossipy town full of dark secrets. We get some wonderful consideration of how people with differences are treated. Our heroine befriends a woman with mental differences and sees her value when everyone else assumes the worst of her. Women, especially poor women, are often not treated well and we discover that during this time, women could not attend universities and married women could not own property. These threads added depth and tackled important issues, without feeling separate from the main plot. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book and definitely recommend it if you want an atmospheric historical YA mystery. It's an impressive debut and I would definitely read more from this author. I agreed to review an early copy of this book received via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Aly

    4/5 stars I found myself to really enjoy this book, despite not being the biggest fan of historical fiction. Despite that, I was actually glued to the book and couldn't stop reading. There was just so much mysery involving all the characters, where you think you understand them, but there's just a shred of doubt in each one. There were some moments that I felt were completely unnecessary or just too long of a scene, like when there's just so much angst or naivety happening where I just audibly sa 4/5 stars I found myself to really enjoy this book, despite not being the biggest fan of historical fiction. Despite that, I was actually glued to the book and couldn't stop reading. There was just so much mysery involving all the characters, where you think you understand them, but there's just a shred of doubt in each one. There were some moments that I felt were completely unnecessary or just too long of a scene, like when there's just so much angst or naivety happening where I just audibly say "oh come on". Luckily, there isn't too much of that, so I quickly got over it. I felt the plot was constucted amazingly, and it definitely didn't give itself away too easily. All in all, I thought this was really enjoyable and fun to read. If you're not into historical fiction, I would still give it a try because I was surprised myself at how much I enjoyed it. I feel like this is the type of novel that a lot of people can enjoy without having to be in love with this specific genre. Definitely recommended. This is my voluntary and honest review. I was provided this ARC by NetGalley for my honest opinion. In no way have I been biased or persuaded in this review.

  15. 4 out of 5

    All Things Urban Fantasy

    GIRL AT THE GRAVE is a small town, atmospheric novel full of dreary days and mysterious murders. While the title may imply a supernatural element, the only monsters in this story are human ones. Valentine, isolated because of her mother's alleged actions and largely left alone by her father, has two love interests and no other friends. As such, the majority of the book is focused on developing her relationship with Sam and with Rowan. I would have loved for the mysterious deaths to take center st GIRL AT THE GRAVE is a small town, atmospheric novel full of dreary days and mysterious murders. While the title may imply a supernatural element, the only monsters in this story are human ones. Valentine, isolated because of her mother's alleged actions and largely left alone by her father, has two love interests and no other friends. As such, the majority of the book is focused on developing her relationship with Sam and with Rowan. I would have loved for the mysterious deaths to take center stage. Instead GIRL AT THE GRAVE largely depends on relationship drama to pad out the pages; however, it's quickly determined which of the two boys is meant to be Valentine's true love. In the end, I wanted more from GIRL AT THE GRAVE. While I was initially drawn in by Valentine's character, I quickly lost interest as Valentine remained passive and indecisive until the last pages. Readers who enjoy characters agonizing over the right love choice and gothic atmospheres will find more to like in GIRL AT THE GRAVE.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Toni

    Girl at the Grave is different than what I had hoped for after reading the synopsis, but still a pretty good read. I appreciate the fact that the characters are well written, as is the history of the town and Valentine’s mom. The mystery is really what I loved about this book; I just wish there was more of it. The story starts out very strong, full of mystery and intrigue, and then wanders off the beaten path a bit. I feel like too much of the book is centered around the love triangle subplot and Girl at the Grave is different than what I had hoped for after reading the synopsis, but still a pretty good read. I appreciate the fact that the characters are well written, as is the history of the town and Valentine’s mom. The mystery is really what I loved about this book; I just wish there was more of it. The story starts out very strong, full of mystery and intrigue, and then wanders off the beaten path a bit. I feel like too much of the book is centered around the love triangle subplot and not the murder mystery aspect, but that’s just my opinion. As many YA books are structured, there is a whole lot of drama mixed in with the main plot and storyline. Overall, Girl at the Grave was a decent debut novel that I’m glad I was given the chance to experience.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nicole (FearYourEx)

    Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me an e-galley through netgalley! Holy crap. This book was so freaking good. Part romance, part cautionary tale. All mystery. One little thing spurred so much in this story. Just when I thought it all figured out I'd be thrown through a loop again. This was probably one of the best books I've read this year. I set all my other books aside to read this one. I stayed up until 1 am knowing I had to be at work at 8 am. Why? Because I could not stop! Se Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me an e-galley through netgalley! Holy crap. This book was so freaking good. Part romance, part cautionary tale. All mystery. One little thing spurred so much in this story. Just when I thought it all figured out I'd be thrown through a loop again. This was probably one of the best books I've read this year. I set all my other books aside to read this one. I stayed up until 1 am knowing I had to be at work at 8 am. Why? Because I could not stop! Seriously add this to your TBR.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Carol Burniston

    Girl at the Grave is engrossing and atmospheric, it will keep you guessing until the very last page!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jessica (HighFantasyFanatic)

    I'm always a little wary when it comes to debut's because I have been burned in the past. I have a little section on my shelf of beautiful hardback debut's that were all meh but I refuse to get rid of because bitch they were expensive. So when i saw Kerri Maniscalco recommending this on twitter (and blurbing it) I was not about to be burned again. So... I requested my library to buy it when it came in and low and behold they bought it. And it was fucking amazing and I am mad I didn't follow my o I'm always a little wary when it comes to debut's because I have been burned in the past. I have a little section on my shelf of beautiful hardback debut's that were all meh but I refuse to get rid of because bitch they were expensive. So when i saw Kerri Maniscalco recommending this on twitter (and blurbing it) I was not about to be burned again. So... I requested my library to buy it when it came in and low and behold they bought it. And it was fucking amazing and I am mad I didn't follow my old ways and just buy it! This wasn't really a review of the book but trust me just buy it or you will regret it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    After some thinking about this book I decided to change my review. The first quarter of this book did a lot of building up which can be boring at times. This is all about a girl whose mom was hung for murder. So many more deaths happened in relationship to her mother but why? It was shocking as to why! There are 2 boys in love with our lovely main character. One rich, one poor. Which will she choose? This is a fantastic book. I’m so glad I took time to think about this and give it a proper revie After some thinking about this book I decided to change my review. The first quarter of this book did a lot of building up which can be boring at times. This is all about a girl whose mom was hung for murder. So many more deaths happened in relationship to her mother but why? It was shocking as to why! There are 2 boys in love with our lovely main character. One rich, one poor. Which will she choose? This is a fantastic book. I’m so glad I took time to think about this and give it a proper review

  21. 5 out of 5

    Carol Suraci

    Teri Bailey Black's YA debut novel, GIRL AT THE GRAVE, is a delightful blend of historical mystery and Gothic romance. Murder, intrigue, a decrepit mansion,a love triangle, scandals and secrets fill the pages of this page-turner! I will be looking forward to Ms. Black's next book. For the record, I read this book once, but my computer is being temperamental and will not let me edit the review. My five-star rating, however, is accurate. :)

  22. 5 out of 5

    Erin Arkin

    4.5 stars... really enjoyed this one and there are so many twists!! Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black was one of my most anticipated reads for this summer and I’m so happy I had the opportunity to get my hands on a review copy. This book is the perfect mix of historical and gothic mystery that I didn’t want to put it down from the moment I turned to the first page. No spoilers here because I don’t want to ruin this story for anyone so apologies in advance if anything sounds vague. Valentine D 4.5 stars... really enjoyed this one and there are so many twists!! Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black was one of my most anticipated reads for this summer and I’m so happy I had the opportunity to get my hands on a review copy. This book is the perfect mix of historical and gothic mystery that I didn’t want to put it down from the moment I turned to the first page. No spoilers here because I don’t want to ruin this story for anyone so apologies in advance if anything sounds vague. Valentine Deluca is the main character and her family is central to the story. See, years ago, her mother was hanged for murder and since then, Valentine has been a bit of an outcast in her town, Fevers Crossing because the man her mother murdered was the son of the most prominent family, the Blackshaws. In addition to that, her father isn’t around too much due to his job. As the story begins, we find out that Valentine has had a mysterious benefactor pay her way through school at the most prestigious school in the area, Drake Academy. Valentine has worked hard but because of her past, hasn’t made many friends. It just happens to be the same school that Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man Valentine’s mother killed, goes to as well. When Valentine is finally recognized for her hard work, things begin to change for her. She can’t just hide in the shadows and this prompts some changes in her normal day to day life. I really liked Valentine. She is kind and like a normal teenager, doesn’t have everything figured out. Unfortunately for her, some pretty heavy things have happened in her family and now that she is pretty much on her own, she is determined to find out what exactly happened to put her mother in a position to kill someone. As Valentine digs into everything, she finds out a lot of unexpected things. Not only with her parents but also with some of the other families in Fevers Crossing. I liked the friendship that Valentine had with Sam. He has been her rock for a long time and while he doesn’t come from the best family in town, he is there for her when she needs him. I could sense Sam’s frustration with Valentine putting him off all the time and definitely didn’t love the way he responded to her hesitation – especially when he realized he wasn’t going to be the one. With that said, I also didn’t like that Valentine basically looked to settle (in my opinion) with Sam at one point. It wasn’t fair to him and I’m glad she came to her senses. The romance portion of this story revolves around the one boy that Valentine never would have thought to consider, Rowan Blackshaw. Rowan is the popular guy at school and comes from the richest family in town but somehow Valentine has caught his attention and as the story progresses, we learn more about him and his life with his grandmother. I loved seeing a different side to him than what I originally thought he would be and I can understand why Valentine falls for him because he’s pretty swoony. One of the other great things about this book is the setting of the story. This takes place in 1849 and in Connecticut and it’s the small town feel of Fevers Crossing that helped to make the family histories impactful. I had this feeling that it was a “everyone knows everyone else’s business” type of situation…or at least they thought they did. I’ll admit the mystery part of the story had me guessing until the very end and I love that! That’s it! I can’t say anything more as I don’t want to give away anything. Just know that I really enjoyed this book and it kept me turning the pages. There is mystery, romance, and a bit of danger here so if you are looking for something to read that ticks all those boxes, check this one out. I will definitely be checking out whatever is next for Teri Bailey Black and can’t wait until I have a finished copy of this on my shelves. Thank you to the publisher for the early copy in exchange for an honest review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Vicky Who Reads

    4 stars This was such a solid debut and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone who loves Stalking Jack the Ripper. It's literally the best comp title for this novel, and so accurate. The novels share a lot of similarities, but Girl at the Grave still remains very distinct and unique. It's a gothic romance murder mystery and it's set in America (not London) and definitely has a lot of mystery involved in the past as well as the present. I thought the atmosphere was very similar to Stalking Jack the 4 stars This was such a solid debut and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone who loves Stalking Jack the Ripper. It's literally the best comp title for this novel, and so accurate. The novels share a lot of similarities, but Girl at the Grave still remains very distinct and unique. It's a gothic romance murder mystery and it's set in America (not London) and definitely has a lot of mystery involved in the past as well as the present. I thought the atmosphere was very similar to Stalking Jack the Ripper, which I enjoyed immensely. There's just something about that 1800s time period that you can't help but feel nostalgia about. Valentine was definitely a cool character and seeing her struggles to unearth the truth were interesting and something I did feel invested in. I wanted her to find out about her mother and the circumstances that she died under. The human mind can be deceiving, and seeing it trick Valentine led to this mystery being twisty. My main critique is that I felt like it took a very long time for us to get the "present day" murders to happen. It was about halfway when people were actively being murdered by a killer and Valentine was hunting them down, and I feel like if that element was introduced earlier, I would have been a little more hooked. But I ended up totally not expecting the killer and was definitely taken by surprise! (Although it doesn't say much because I'm pretty easy to surprise & deceive.) So even though the active murder plot didn't start until kind of late, I did think Black filled up the first half well with the exposition and hinting at different occurrences and building character relationships. I liked Valentine but I wasn't super into the romance. I always feel bad about these sort of love triangles (and it is a love triangle) where the nice, good boy always gets left in the dust. Oof. I definitely think we didn't get enough resolution with this storyline, but I didn't completely oppose Valentine's decision. I opposed it on the basis that the good boy should get picked more often, though I admit Valentine and Rowan (the mysterious boy) were a good match. Black did a really good job of just building up the character relationships and the backstory in the first half. Valentine's backstory is super important for the novel, and I think Black did a good job of establishing that and integrating the backstory in. Plus, the blackmail sort of element was so fun. It created a lot of tension that really hooked me until we got to the physical murders. Valentine is in the middle of a web of lies and I loved reading how she tried to navigate her way out of it without hurting the other people in the web. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this and if you are a fan of Stalking Jack the Ripper and other 1800s set novels feat. murder mystery, I definitely recommend you check out Girl at the Grave! It might not be identical, but it's very strong and stands out in its own way. Thank you so much to Tor Teen and Jean Book Nerd for sending me an advance reader's copy in exchange for an honest review! Blog | Instagram | Twitter

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Dang, that was actually a really amazing story.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Anna Jackson

    Whelp...I didn't see the ending coming. I'll give the book that much. Unfortunately, that is about all I can give. Honestly, I was a little disappointed in this book. To quote the back cover of the book: "Girl at the Grave kept me up late at night with its nonstop secrets, twists, and scandals." And while I will admit that this was a rather compelling read at times, I definitely feel that this was not the thriller that the reviews and synopsis lead me to believe. I did not feel compelled to figu Whelp...I didn't see the ending coming. I'll give the book that much. Unfortunately, that is about all I can give. Honestly, I was a little disappointed in this book. To quote the back cover of the book: "Girl at the Grave kept me up late at night with its nonstop secrets, twists, and scandals." And while I will admit that this was a rather compelling read at times, I definitely feel that this was not the thriller that the reviews and synopsis lead me to believe. I did not feel compelled to figure out the murderer, in fact, I barely registered that there was a murderer to be discovered! Yes there was a murder, yes there was quite a bit of mistaken identity drama whilst uncovering the murderer. But a good 2/3 of the book was dedicated to a stupid love triangle! It wasn't even difficult to figure out which guy the main character would pick in the end. The murder took back stage to romance and social drama, and even though the main character kept insisting that she needed to solve the murder, she did absolutely nothing about it until the last 1/10 of the book! At which point she completely misses the mark, accuses the wrong person, and accidentally stumbles upon the truth by no talent of her own! I can't even say the ending was good. No, I didn't peg the murderer. Yes, I did figure out which boy she would choose. (view spoiler)[However, the way it ended between Valentine and Rowan, if this story were real life, they would never actually end up back together. She will grow and change in NY, he will grow and change in Europe, and they will never come back together in the end. It's nice that they are both following their dreams, but don't make it out that they will magically get back together and live happily ever after in two years! Please! And in real life, I'm not sure I'd want them to! The author just wanted to give the semblance of a happy romantic ending for all the fangirls. (hide spoiler)] All loose ends were tied up, and every truth laid bare. The thing I'll end with, though, is that this author did do one thing well. I feel like she was an expert at evoking emotions. Maybe it was an accident or it's that time of the month, but I finished this book last night, and I'm still feeling melancholy this morning. Most of the characters had hard, very difficult lives. I felt sad for literally every character in the book. (view spoiler)[ No one really got a happy ending, despite what the author tried to accomplish. (hide spoiler)] And I felt like this was probably gothic revision at its best. I'm giving this book 3/5 stars for good evocative setting and mood, but a disappointing plot that didn't live up to the thriller and mystery that the title and synopsis would lead one to expect.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Raven_Blake (dreamy addictions)

    Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars! Same Review Also Posted On My Blog: Dreamy Addictions Girl At The Girl is a stand-alone YA debut novel by Teri Bailey Black. Well, this book has a great potential but sadly it falls short of perfection. To be honest, I enjoyed the story-line, but it was disappointing that the plot focused more on the romance and less on the murder mystery. This would've make a good YA murder mystery novel if there isn't an annoying triangle and some unnecessary school drama in the plot. W Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars! Same Review Also Posted On My Blog: Dreamy Addictions Girl At The Girl is a stand-alone YA debut novel by Teri Bailey Black. Well, this book has a great potential but sadly it falls short of perfection. To be honest, I enjoyed the story-line, but it was disappointing that the plot focused more on the romance and less on the murder mystery. This would've make a good YA murder mystery novel if there isn't an annoying triangle and some unnecessary school drama in the plot. When I first read the title and synopsis, I was actually expecting a dark and horror filled novel, but this one turns out to be a decent historical murder mystery novel. It was nothing spooky like Stalking Jack the Ripper. The main character Valentine was a likable character. She's smart, caring, and sweet. Her mother was hanged for murder when she was only six years old. Being a killer's daughter sealed her fate forever in her town. Everyone treated her like an outsider. After her mother's death she grew up in poverty and hardship. I really felt bad for her poor situation and how she was bullied in the school. I really liked Rowan Blackshaw, Valentine's love interest and the son of the man her mother killed. He was pretty sweet and fun, and unlike others he never insulted her even though she deserved his hate. I enjoyed the sweet romance between Val and Rowan. Their love was forbidden but they can't deny the attraction between them. Sam is Valentine's childhood best friend and her second love interest. I enjoyed the friendship between Sam and Val but it was kinda ruined when he turned into a love interest. I think the triangle is unnecessary because it was pretty obvious who she's going to choose in the end. As for the secondary characters, no one intrigued me. They were somewhat okay but not memorable enough.    The plot was interesting and suspenseful, but it lacked tension. The story moved in a medium pace. I wish the plot was focused more on the mystery and less on the love story. I was quite annoyed with how Valentine sidetracked from the murder mystery by involving herself in a romance drama. I liked the family drama aspect in the book. The surprising twists and turns in the plot are the only thing that kept me turning the pages and when the final big reveal came, I was left a little bit disappointed. It was like dropping a bomb with a very low impact. I think no one would guess the suspect for the murders because the author didn't leave any breadcrumbs that lead to that particular character. However, I'm glad it at-least had a satisfying ending. The writing style of the author was okay. The book was told in Valentine's first person POV. The historical setting was nice. Although it was a gothic mystery novel, the story didn't give strong gothic vibes.   Despite all the issues, this book still makes an enjoyable read. So overall, it was a decent debut and I'll definitely look forward to what the author brings us next.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ruthsic

    Girl at the Grave is a decent enough historical mystery that spends too much time on its romantic subplot. When I first started it, I did not even know that it was historical fiction (there is no such indication in the blurb) and the setting was also a little confusing. Small town in 19th century US with a co-ed high school (even if the classes were separate, they do share a campus) was weird enough, but a lot of the times, it doesn't even become apparent that it is set in that time. The story is Girl at the Grave is a decent enough historical mystery that spends too much time on its romantic subplot. When I first started it, I did not even know that it was historical fiction (there is no such indication in the blurb) and the setting was also a little confusing. Small town in 19th century US with a co-ed high school (even if the classes were separate, they do share a campus) was weird enough, but a lot of the times, it doesn't even become apparent that it is set in that time. The story is simple but makes an effort to be layered and complicated - Valentine's mother was hanged for a murder, and now that new murders have happened again, she (as the daughter of a murderer) is being seen as the prime suspect. But the son of her mother's victim, Rowan Blackshaw, doesn't believe in the rumors, and they start to grow close. But, to add a wrench in their romance, there is Valentine's childhood friend/crush Sam, who is jealous most of the time, and partly resents her education. While the plot begins with a murder and the mystery about it, by the time we reach the midpoint of the book, all that is forgotten to develop this unnecessary love triangle, as Valentine keeps going back and forth deciding which boy to pick. When the mystery picks up again, it is still Valentine pointing fingers at whoever would have motive, not how they would do it. She suspects everyone from her father, to Rowan, to his grandmother, the judge presiding over her mother's case; it is smart to not trust anyone, it is paranoid to doubt everyone. Needless to say, there are a lot of red herrings, and a whole lot of deliberate effort to make red herrings. At one point, Birdy, who was a witness to the first murder, unnecessarily uses 'they' pronouns, even though it would be weird for her to do so. (Keep in mind she was speaking of only one person, and this wasn't a time where non-binary individuals were a part of the plot) When finally the murderer was revealed, the only satisfaction was in this convoluted mystery to end, to be honest. The one good thing about this book is that Valentine, for all her indecisiveness when it comes to the boys, is still thinking of her future when she tries to decide what to do after graduation. She has dreams of going to New York and joining another woman rights' activist and she also recognizes the need for Rowan to fulfill his dreams. This part actually felt anachronistic, to be honest - her thinking about what they personally want out of life, (even if Rowan's dream to go hobo-backpacking about Europe is as modern as it gets) but it was a good addition anyway to a book that did not feel entirely rooted in its time. Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Tor Teen, via Netgalley.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    Girl at the Grave started off strong with suspense, mystery, and action, and then fell flat with little happening until well after the 50% mark. The middle was filled with Valentine getting to know her love interest Rowan as four months passed. Their time together was a plus since the instant love factor was nonexistent, but on the other hand, Valentine spent the majority of the novel in love with two guys and went back and forth between them. Her best friend Sam was extremely possessive and jea Girl at the Grave started off strong with suspense, mystery, and action, and then fell flat with little happening until well after the 50% mark. The middle was filled with Valentine getting to know her love interest Rowan as four months passed. Their time together was a plus since the instant love factor was nonexistent, but on the other hand, Valentine spent the majority of the novel in love with two guys and went back and forth between them. Her best friend Sam was extremely possessive and jealous when it came to her and he lacked respect for what Valentine really wanted. The story kept me intrigued, but the reveals weren't satisfying since there was a lack of suspense and mystery. The title has nothing to do with the story and it should have been renamed to something like "Girl in the middle of Blackmail" since it seemed like everyone in this tiny New England town had blackmail on multiple people while dealing with blackmail against themselves. The whole mystery aspect was figuring out who was blackmailing who and why and by the end the whole blackmail factor was a tangled web that made my head hurt. It was still a good read, just not as wonderful as I had hoped for it to be. Thank you NetGalley for an ARC.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jen Solak

    I wasn’t sure about the premise of this book, it sounded interesting so I decided to read it. I’m SO glad I did because I absolutely loved it!!! Our main character, Valentine is a young woman who is easy to feel like she is your friend. Learning about her difficult life you feel for her, but she never whines or complains about the hand dealt to her. There is romance in this novel, but the main driving force of the novel is the mystery or mysteries that are unraveled throughout. Just when you thi I wasn’t sure about the premise of this book, it sounded interesting so I decided to read it. I’m SO glad I did because I absolutely loved it!!! Our main character, Valentine is a young woman who is easy to feel like she is your friend. Learning about her difficult life you feel for her, but she never whines or complains about the hand dealt to her. There is romance in this novel, but the main driving force of the novel is the mystery or mysteries that are unraveled throughout. Just when you think that you, and Valentine, have figured out who is a murderer you are thrown a twist that changes everything. The novel left me wondering about the futures of our main characters and hoping for the best for them, which to me is always the sign of characters I really loved. Speaking of love, the love(s) in this novel are not instant love but are real relationships and you can see the motivation of each character through the ups and downs. One thing is for sure, I can’t wait to read more by Teri Bailey Black! Thank you NetGalley for an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for an unbiased review,

  30. 4 out of 5

    Leah

    Colour me disappointed. I just did not get excited about this book. It was good, don't get me wrong, but not what I wanted to read. With a title like that, I for some reason was expecting a story involving ghosts. No ghosts, but murder! Cool! Awesome! A Victorian era YA thriller! Lies. 10% of the book was focused on murder, and the rest was school drama and some unexpected love triangle that I didn't really care for. I'm just kind of left with the feeling that this was a book I read, and that was Colour me disappointed. I just did not get excited about this book. It was good, don't get me wrong, but not what I wanted to read. With a title like that, I for some reason was expecting a story involving ghosts. No ghosts, but murder! Cool! Awesome! A Victorian era YA thriller! Lies. 10% of the book was focused on murder, and the rest was school drama and some unexpected love triangle that I didn't really care for. I'm just kind of left with the feeling that this was a book I read, and that was all. I finished it eight hours ago and I've already forgotten how it ends. All I remember is everything was wrapped up nice and neat and conveniently, and whatever stakes there were were downplayed too fast to be of any concern. It may be generous, but 2.5/5

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