The Dirt on the Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones

Posted January 9, 2016 by Literati Lovers in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

The Dirt on the Ninth Grave by Darynda JonesThe Dirt on Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones
Also by this author: Eighth Grave After Dark, The Curse of Tenth Grave, First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1), Eleventh Grave in Moonlight
Series: Charley Davidson #9
Also in this series: Eighth Grave After Dark, First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1)
Published by St. Martin's Press on January 12th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, Women Sleuths, Fantasy, Paranormal, Private Investigators
Pages: 352
Format: ARC
ISBN: 9781466886155

In a small village in New York lives Jane Doe, a girl with no memory of who she is or where she came from. So when she is working at a diner and slowly begins to realize she can see dead people, she's more than a little taken aback. Stranger still are the people entering her life. They seem to know things about her. Things they hide with lies and half-truths. Soon, she senses something far darker. A force that wants to cause her harm, she is sure of it. Her saving grace comes in the form of a new friend she feels she can confide in and the fry cook, a devastatingly handsome man whose smile is breathtaking and touch is scalding. He stays close, and she almost feels safe with him around.
But no one can outrun their past, and the more lies that swirl around her-even from her new and trusted friends-the more disoriented she becomes, until she is confronted by a man who claims to have been sent to kill her. Sent by the darkest force in the universe. A force that absolutely will not stop until she is dead. Thankfully, she has a Rottweiler. But that doesn't help in her quest to find her identity and recover what she's lost. That will take all her courage and a touch of the power she feels flowing like electricity through her veins. She almost feels sorry for him. The devil in blue jeans. The disarming fry cook who lies with every breath he takes. She will get to the bottom of what he knows if it kills her. Or him. Either way.

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View Spoiler »Karen’s Review of The Dirt on the Ninth Grave


If you haven’t read The Dirt on the Ninth Grave and you need to put this book on your radar.  If you are a fan of Charley Davidson, then you will find the witty and snarky Charley working as a waitress in Sleepy Hollow New York.  If you have never read a Charley Davidson book then you need to jump right over to Amazon and buy Darynda Jones’s first Davidson book First Grave on the Right, you will never find a more witty, sarcastic and hilarious coffee addicted paranormal female protagonist.  All the Charley Davidson books are written in the first person point of view, with the exception of a novella entitled Brighter Than the Sun.  All the books in the series need to be read in order to understand the over all series arc.   One other little tidbit,  there is a character named Reyes Fallows that is so utterly yummy he is worth ever dime spent on the book.  I have never used this term in any review, but he is utterly panty melting.

The Dirt on the Ninth Grave is a hard book for me to review. As you can tell by my previous rant, I adore this series and Darynda Jones’s writing.  As a continuation of the series it gets five stars, as Darynda Jones is able to keep the series fresh and moving forward with an overall book series arc.  It’s as an individual book I am giving this book three and half to four stars as it felt too much like old home week and it did not move the characters forward, except to introduce a new set of baddies into the mix.  If you have not read the book stop reading the review as it contains minor plot spoilers. Charley as Janey Doerr, because Jane Doe is so last year,  stumbles around Sleepy Hollow New York and bumps into trouble, but the trouble falls in a cascading effect. This is Charley Davidson ‘trouble magnet’ compared to the trouble she gets into normally, nothing in her life as Janey Doerr even compares to her everyday getting out of bed trouble.   For someone who can’t remember who she is, her personality is intact and she is the same Charley but with just a different name. I felt the amnesia was used to change the series location more than a plot device to expand the characters stories.   I don’t go into a book with preconceived wants for a character or series, but with this book I really did think I would  get to see a different Charley.  A girl who was more vulnerable and broken since the events of book eight.  Charley has had me in tears multiple times during this series, but in this book Charley feels a haunting emptiness. Everyone including Reyes is in Janey’s new life, and again I expected to have Charley and Reyes fall in love all over again, but it was instant attraction. Reyes was pissed and didn’t really interact with Charley for the first part of the book.  Charley wakes up with a huge diamond on her finger and just waits around to be found. She gains a stalker, as only Charley would get a stalker and amnesia.  She wonders about a husband but that doesn’t stop her from jumping Reyes.  Yes, we all know he is her man, but ‘big ring’ usually means your world is waiting for you.  Despite the huge ring on her finger and her not know what her life holds, she is still jumping the broody sexy guy.  Bad Charley, but who can blame her, he is Reyes! Jones writing is always great, but for me she missed an opportune time for Charley to be human for awhile.  To meet everyone in her life without the cloud of supernatural surrounding her. For her to discover who she is as a person without her godhood and possibly grieve for the lose of what could have been if she could have raised Beep. To see how Reyes would have reacted to Charley without her light. The light that saved him from death so many times.  I wanted a darker book than the one that Jones wrote, which falls squarely on my shoulders as a reader going into a book the hidden preconceived notions.  I also didn’t understand why everyone and their brother needed to be in Sleepy Hollow, especially Gemma, as there was not interaction between the two. For being a professional in the field of the mind, Gemma was more window dressing than anything else.  After Jones spectacular novella Brighter than the Sun, I really thought I would see Charley and Reyes both raw, after having to sacrifice Beep to save her.  I adore Jones and the characters she writes.  I needed to feel Charley’s pain at loosing Beep, and to an extent herself, but except for a minor few lapses, she settled into her new life too easily for me.

In closing this is a book that series regulars will love, but it did fall short of my expectations of Ms. Jones character development. It just could have been so much more.  So with all my emotional ups and downs, my final star rating is four, as this book does set up Charley and the gang as they move forward.

Yes I feel like I have pinged ponged all over with this review, but that is my conflicting emotions about this book coming through.

If you read this one, what do you think?



About Darynda Jones

NYTimes and USA Today Bestselling Author Darynda Jones has won numerous awards for her work, including a prestigious RITA, a Golden Heart, and a Daphne du Maurier. As a born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. She currently has two series with St. Martin’s Press, the Charley Davidson Series and the Darklight Trilogy. Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband of more than 25 years and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

Rating Report
Overall: four-stars

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