The Restorer (Graveyard Queen #1)The Restorer by Amanda Stevens

My rating: 4 of 5 flames

I started this with just the intention of flipping through and seeing what it was about. Next thing I know I’m so into the writing, that I put this one on hold, found and read the prequel The Abandoned (Graveyard Queen #0.5) and then dove back into this one. review for The Abandoned

While the prequel is a paranormal romance, this one is definitely more of an Urban Fantasy. The writing is spooky, and vivid, and dark. But I liked it. It’s hard not to get drawn into this tale.

Amelia is an archaeologist and a cemetery restorer. She is very good at what she does, and gets called in to work on a cemetery near the university in Charleston. She begins by taking photographs of the cemetery and creating a site map. But unfortunately someone dumps a body there and Amelia’s photographs may have caught something.

Oh, and did I mention that Amelia sees dead people? No? Well, she does.

When she was 9, she saw her first ghost, and her father (who is her adopted father) sees them too. He taught her how to get by without giving away that you see them. See, what they want is attention. They are drawn to the living and want our energy and our heat. Most go away if they can’t get that attention, but if one attaches itself to you? It’s like an energy vampire-it will drain you dry until you’re a walking husk of your former self.

Amelia’s father gave her rules to live by. But the detective in this investigation has her breaking rules left and right. Devlin is haunted. Literally. The ghosts of his dead wife and daughter never leave him. And he’s looking worse for the wear.

Meanwhile, Amelia is trying to just get by without the ghosts noticing that she can see them, when something…different…finds her. Not a ghost, this is much more sinister, and this scares the crap out of Amelia. Her father calls it “Other” but why hasn’t he ever told her any of this before? He knows a lot more than he’s letting on.

The murders begin to pile up, some new, some old. Amelia’s blog Grave Digging seems to be how the murderer is communicating his intentions, and it’s scaring Amelia more than the ghosts! btw I was wrong on the actual killer. It’s a good mystery. Very good.

I don’t think we’ve seen the last of Devlin, nor of his ghosts. And I think Amelia will be drawn again and again to that cemetery. But not in the next book, because I’m already reading that one, and it’s in a different place.

A very well-written (if slow at times) book that I am so intrigued by that I’ll be finishing the series as fast as I can.

Dark and spooky, seductive and ghostly, The Restorer has hooked me and I can’t stop reading.

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