Series: Stand Alone
Genre: Mystery, Romance
Publisher: Blazer + Bray
Release Date: 13 May 2014
Summary: Growing up in a house of female morticians, Lily Graves knows all about buried secrets. She knows that perfect senior-class president Erin Donohue isn’t what she seems. She knows why
Review: I fell in love with a cover and got a little bit burned. I should probably preface that I went into this book cold. Normally before I buy a book I check goodreads, and ask for second and third opinions, sometimes consulting Kirkus, and even then I usually sit debating for a while, but I saw this cover and thought, "Oh my heck! I had that haircut for years! I should buy this book!" (Don't question my logic, it cannot stand up to reason.) I read the back, it sounded reasonable, like something I might be interested in, and it seemed quick. I've been dying for a quick read.
Well, I got what I was asking for - The Secrets of Lily Graves was a very quick read. It was also very "surface" and I kept waiting for something deeper, something more. . .I dunno, gratifying? I really liked Lily, and although it churned by stomach, I liked the attention to detail and how normal it seemed to grow up in a mortuary. I liked the process, and how Lily's family seemed normal and lovable, I even liked Lily doing her detective work (though this is NOT Veronica Mars style, like, say, Bethany Fantasky's Buzz Kill - it's definitely closer to Nancy Clancy.)
I didn't guess the ending until about 1/2 way through the book (but take from that what you will, although I love mysteries, I rarely read them), but Erin's unflinching ability to keep a narrow mindset, especially towards the end read gnawed on my nerves. The ending was also incredibly rushed. I wish that is had been drawn out a little bit.
If you're looking for a mystery that also gives you a pretty in depth view on the life of your average mortician, check this out. If you're looking for a fun, gratifying mystery, I would recommend Buzz Kill (Beth Fantasky), The Prince of Venice Beach ( ), and the new Veronica Mars series (Rob Thomas and Co.)