Fifth Grave Past the Light Review
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Unabridged Audiobook: 8 CDs (9 hours)
Read by Lorelei King


Whether you’re heading to work or heading out on a road trip, the miles tend to fly by if you’ve got a light and entertaining read playing over your car stereo’s speakers. So, before you hit the road, you might want to pick up the audio version of Fifth Grave Past the Light, the latest Charley Davidson mystery by Darynda Jones (and narrated by the delightful Lorelei King).

Private investigator and grim reaper Charley Davidson is one busy woman. Not only does she solve private cases and assist her uncle with cases for the Albuquerque Police Department, but she also has her share of paranormal problems—not the least of which is Reyes Farrow, the drop-dead gorgeous son of Satan, who just moved in next door. Charley is—and always has been—madly in love with him, but she worries that he might be responsible for a string of recent arsons.

  
 
To complicate matters even more, Charley is living in an apartment full of the departed. The troubled spirits of blonde women keep showing up in the strangest places, prompting Charley to investigate their murders.

In her fifth Charley Davidson novel, Jones gets back to basics. Though she tends to juggle a multitude of storylines in each new mystery, she trims it back a bit this time around, focusing on just a few main plotlines—a couple of key cases and a couple of ongoing stories. Earlier novels in the series were never intolerably complex—but, especially if you’re listening while driving, the simpler plotlines make it a little easier to follow.

At the same time, the story also shifts its focus back to the supernatural—to Charley’s abilities to see and speak to the departed. Instead of focusing on the living, she spends more time dealing with the dead. She tries to solve the murders of the departed women in her apartment, she makes a few more departed friends, and she even calls in a favor from a departed client from a past mystery. And since Charley’s supernatural abilities make the series stand out in the whodunit crowd, the change is a welcome one.

Of course, now that Reyes is living next door to Charley, the story is also a whole lot steamier than before. That’s not to say that their relationship wasn’t steamy in the past—but his physical proximity definitely kicks it up a notch. Let’s just say that you probably shouldn’t listen to this one with the kids.

Loaded with mystery, romance, and supernatural suspense—and written with a healthy sense of humor—Fifth Grave Past the Light is the strongest Charley Davidson adventure in a while. If you’ve got a summer road trip in the works, this supernatural thriller will help you survive those long stretches of open road. Or, if you just need to add some entertainment value to your daily commute, it’s sure to make rush-hour traffic just a little less daunting.


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