Author: Melissa Marr
Release Date: May 17, 2011
Publisher: William Morrow (HC imprint)
In the small town of Claysville, the dead walk unless their graves are tended to. Returning to a town filled with memories she doesn't want to confront, Rebekkah Barrow wants to know what happened to her grandmother, not expecting to be thrown into a secret world, a world underneath Claysville, a world populated by the dead.
An interesting book. I agree that the world-building was spectacular. Melissa Marr can create like no one else I've come across. The overall pacing was slow as the plot built, revealing secret after secret, detail after detail, until the end is reached and the reader is left wanting more, wanting more Bek and Byron, more Graveminder and Undertaker, maybe even more Mr. D (if you like the spooky stuff). This book should be read on Hallowe'en night, under the covers with a flashlight, along with Brenna Yovanoff's The Graveminder, Tessa Gratton's Blood Magic, and Victoria Schwab's The Near Witch.
Rebekkah was interesting, an example of the very reluctant heroine. Family is important to her, but she refuses to put pressure on Byron, she can't forget the past and what it led to. But she has to, she has to move on and make a choice and continue living her life because if she doesn't she's nothing but a shell.
Melissa Marr is wonderful at third person prose. She can move from character to character, chapter to chapter, so seamlessly you lose nothing. You believe that it's all happening at the same time, which it is, in the world of the book. Rebekkah and Byron are the main characters, but so is Amity, and Mr. D, and the mayor, and Cissy, and Alicia, and Maylene, and someone who will remain nameless because it would give it away and this person is so important. And Claysville. The town is so amazing, so weird and creepy, so dead but so alive.
For Melissa Marr fans, for urban fantasy fans, for readers of great fiction, and for those who don't mind a dead body or two.