First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1) – Darynda Jones

First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1) – Darynda JonesTitle: First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1) by Darynda Jones
Publishing Info: February 1, 2011 by Macmillan
Genres: Adult, Paranormal
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: November 15, 2012

    Charley Davidson is a part-time private investigator and full-time grim reaper. Meaning, she sees dead people. Really. And it's her job to convince them to "go into the light." But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (like murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she's been having about an entity who has been following her all her life...and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely. But what does he want with Charley? And why can't she seem to resist him? And what does she have to lose by giving in?
With scorching-hot tension and high-octane humor, First Grave on the Right is your signpost to paranormal suspense of the highest order.


FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT was definitely a laugh a minute! Charley Davidson is snarky and witty and a whole lot of fun. I really enjoyed her character and found her talents interesting. I haven’t really read any reaper/grim reaper stories so that was a new idea for me and I liked learning how Charley was able to communicate and interact with the dead. It also made for quite a few funny moments since the other characters weren’t able to see what she could!

What I never really got on board with was the whole Reyes story line. I was interested in finding out “what he was” — and I wasn’t disappointed when I found out — I just didn’t like how he was integrated in the story. The whole not-in-corporeal-form-but-still-having-steamy-hot-sex-scenes? Yikes. For some reason that just kind of bothered me. I guess I could see how the author was making it possible, but I still didn’t feel like it was possible. I also found it rather disturbing that Charley took away an attraction from her first encounter with Reyes in which he (mildy) physically assaulted her and threatened to rape her. So yeah, I was creeped out by that.

While I enjoyed the first book, I’m not sure I’ll pick up the second. I was let down with how the book ended and I’m not sure I’m interested in picking up the story line again. It was interesting to find out about, but I’m sure the Reyes story line will continue and we’ll delve further into that, but I don’t like his relationship with Charley and I think it’s kind of weird so I might pass on reading more of these books.


Lorelei King did a pretty great job! She was really fun and her tone suited Charley’s character perfectly. Some of her male voices sounded the same, but shoot, it’s hard for a woman to make any male voices different when there are so many! The book breezed by with her narration though and she was a lot of fun to listen to.

character_breakdown1Charley: Charley was a hoot! She’s very sarcastic, witty — you name it — she’s a fireball! I actually had a lot of fun getting to know her character though she did get on my nerves a few times, but mostly when dealing with Reyes.
Reyes: A mystery wrapped in an enigma. I’m glad we finally find out “what he is” at the end of the book and I wasn’t disappointed by the reveal, but I still don’t like how Darynda Jones wove his character in the story. The immediate and awkward-for-me-to-listen-to romance between him and Charley felt almost forced sometimes, like she knew that’s what she wanted it to be so why not throw it in all at once? I didn’t like how a lot of his character felt forced (at least to me). A lot of things felt like there were placed here and there and it didn’t make a lot of sense sometimes. Just my personal opinion!


Library read

It was fun! I don’t know if I’d go out and buy it and I’m not sure if I want to continue the series (just so many other things to read) but if this sounds like your kind of book, worth picking up!


Hi, I'm Brittany!
Hi, I'm Brittany!

I'm an avid reader, candle-maker, and audiobook lover! Here you'll find book reviews, fun blog posts, and my other loves of photography & craft beer!

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12 thoughts on “First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1) – Darynda Jones

  1. ocdreader/Elisa

    hmmm, I have books 1 & 2 on my bookshelf (from a swap site) and I was thinking about picking them up soon. I am looking forward to the humor, but not so much the weird relationship now! I wonder if I will be bugged the same way – will be interesting to see! Lovely review.

  2. Kara

    I was kind of so-so on this series myself. My library had all three a while back, so I picked them up. Fun yet the Reyes storyline disappointed me also. Although I have to admit that I’m curious how the author is going to finish up everything.

  3. Mary @ My Sister's Bookshelf

    Why oh why are there these creepy initial contacts? Or parts where characters find borderline sexual assault super hot?! Grave Mercy was a major offender in my book for that. I have ZERO wish to be dominated by a male, sexually or otherwise. But apparently much of the reading public must! Or just writers? I don’t get it at all.

  4. Livvy @Nerdy Book Reviews

    Shame you didn’t enjoy this book that much, but I think I might give it a shot, but borrow it from the library! 🙂 Lovely review.

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