The Awakening by Amanda StevensThe Awakening by Amanda Stevens
Series: Graveyard Queen #6
Published by MIRA on March 28, 2017
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 416
Format: select
Source: Advance Reader Copy
Buy on Amazon

Shush…lest she awaken…

My name is Amelia Gray, a cemetery restorer who lives with the dead. An anonymous donor has hired me to restore Woodbine Cemetery, a place where the rich and powerful bury their secrets. Forty years ago, a child disappeared without a trace and now her ghost has awakened, demanding that I find out the truth about her death. Only I know that she was murdered. Only I can bring her killer to justice. But the clues that I follow—a haunting melody and an unnamed baby's grave—lead me to a series of disturbing suspects.

For generations, The Devlins have been members of Charleston's elite. John Devlin once turned his back on the traditions and expectations that came with his birthright, but now he has seemingly accepted his rightful place. His family's secrets make him a questionable ally. When my investigation brings me to the gates of his family's palatial home, I have to wonder if he is about to become my mortal enemy.

Holy cannoli you guys the new Graveyard Queen is here!

I love this series, and it’s so creepy, and good, and interesting! In this book, we’re taken back to Amelia Gray’s Charleston, and so many secrets are coming to light. (speaking of light, read this one with the lights on! *shudder*)

Amelia’s family is close-knit, her mother, her father, and her mother’s sister, they’re a loving family. But she begins to realize that she doesn’t know them at all. Some not-so-ancient family history is showing itself and she doesn’t know what to do about it.

It all begins when she starts her latest job restoring an old cemetery near Charleston. She’s drawn to a certain headstone, a crib for a two year old baby. But for some reason a ten year old girl is attached to the grave. She not only can’t get the girl out of her head, but the girl keeps calling for “mercy.” And while Amelia’s home is built on hallowed ground, this girl is able to follow her home.

***small spoiler from the last book***

She’s at the point in her life where she’s got a good grip on her newer powers, she thinks she’s gotten over the love of her life John Devlin (he left in the last book, she thought for her own good, but maybe not…) and she’s okay being alone. But now each night while she’s alone, something bangs on her door. It wants in. It might be the presence from the last book has followed her home. And she is still connecting the dots from her family, to this new cemetery, to the Devlin family.

There’s a lot going on with John Devlin and his family. The Devlin family traces back to early settlers of Charleston, and his grandfather still has high standing in the area, but with that elite social status comes a lot of secrets. When his grandfather asks to meet with Amelia, she isn’t sure whether it’s a trap, or not. And if it is a trap, should she still go?

Amelia’s family isn’t the only one withholding the truth from her, and by the time she’s connected all the dots, she’s starting to see connections she’d never dreamed of. With the ghost girl’s identity uncovered, things become all the more dangerous for Amelia. Of course that doesn’t stop her investigating. She doesn’t know if Devlin will be on her side, or if he’s now the enemy, but she’s still in love with him, and decides to take her chances. But even if he is on her side, will it be enough?

This author’s style resonates with me. I don’t know what it is about her voice and her tone, but it works for me. It’s haunting, eerily beautiful, and lingers long after you’ve put the book down.

***ARC courtesy of MIRA