Reviewing from This Side of the Grave

book cover of This Side of the Grave  (Night Huntress, book 5)byJeaniene FrostYes, it’s true I’m still alive. I have not been run over in a random – or not so random – bus accident. Nor have I been staked by a Twihard fan for all the Edward bashing I do on this blog. (Luckily, I won’t have to do any of my own Edward bashing in this blog, Bones is going to do it for me. Yes, that Bones.)

I thought I’d kick off my return to blogland with a review of  Jeaniene Frost’s This Side of the Grave, the latest in the Night Huntress series:

Danger waits on both sides of the grave. . .

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire husband Bones have fought for their lives, as well as for their relationship. But just when they’ve triumphed over the latest battle, Cat’s new and unexpected abilities threaten to upset a long-standing balance.

With the mysterious disappearance of vampires, rumors abound that a species war is brewing. A zealot is inciting tensions between the vampires and ghouls, and if these two powerful groups clash, innocent mortals could become collateral damage. Now Cat and Bones are forced to seek help from a dangerous ”ally”–the ghoul queen of New Orleans herself. But the price of her assistance may prove more treacherous than even the threat of a supernatural war–to say nothing of the repercussions Cat never imagined.

(Note: For readers who are new to the Night Huntress series, I’ll give you a fair warning that this is book 5 and there may be spoilers in this review.)

With all that emphasis on “danger” in the summary and an appearance from the ghoul queen, I knew this novel was going to be good but I couldn’t help but think that this novel was the calm before the storm. Yes, there are a lot of developments in the novel, including Cat’s new power source, Don’s illness and Apollyon but overall everything happened a closed off a little too neatly and knowing that there’s going to be another novel in the series, I can’t help but think that the real action has been put off.

Don’t get me wrong, a lot of heads – literally! – roll in this novel, but not with the same amount at stake as in the last novel, the fight between Bones and Gregor, etc. Plus, Ms. Frost writing is great as always and Cat and Bones have some great and funny scenes.

There are two notably awesome scenes in this novel. One, when Bones teaches Cat to fly. Two, when Bones bashes Edward. (Yes, this was AWESOME!):

Timmie gave Bones and me a speculative glance. “Before I go, I gotta know: if mind reading abilities are real, there’s something else I wonder if fiction got right about vampire –“

“Ask me if I sparkle and I will kill you where you stand,” Bones cut him off with utmost seriousness. (Page 82)

LOL! (Yeah, I had fun reading that.)

That said, I also liked that the ghosts of the Night Huntress world are getting a little more credit. Who doesn’t love Fabian and his undying loyalty to Cat? Plus, I love how he talks back to Vlad. It was my favourite I-wish-I-was-there-and-could-see-his-face moment.

Speaking of Vlad, I think Ms. Frost is subtling laying the groundwork for his series in this novel as well.

But I have to say, I missed Ian and his slutty ways. Bones’ sire makes a very small appearance in this novel and his role is delegated solely to backup in the big fight scene. (My poor, poor Ian.)

Finally, we have Cat and Bones. As always they are a fabulous pair. I love how Ms. Frost didn’t go through that whole “are they going to be or not” scenario” and pairs these two lovebirds off fairly quickly. But I’m a little afraid with how things are going to turn out, namely because this novel had an entire scene where Cat dwells on the fact that someday one of the other of them is going to die. (Please, please, please let this not be foreshadowing!)

My current mantra is “Bones and Cat to infinity and beyond” and I’m hoping it stays that way forever.

Jeaniene Frost's pictureOverall, I did like the book even though it was slower that the other novels in the series. This Side of the Grave was more about developing the world. I learned a lot more about ghosts and Cat’s powers in this novel than the previous ones, so the slower pace gave me more time to swallow that info. Plus, it was nice to see that Kira and Mencheres got such a big role in this novel. (I’m biased because they’re my second favourite pairing.) I look forward to reading what Ms. Frost has in store for Cat and Bones in the upcoming One Grave at a Time (August 2011).

So my grade for this latest novel in the Night Huntress series is a 7 out of 10.


3 responses

  1. Bones is awesome. Of course, he doesn’t sparkle. Lol


    April 27, 2011 at 8:21 pm

  2. Illiana Cruz

    Welcome back to blogland! 😀

    Lol, when I read that scene with Bones in the book, I immediately thought of you. How awesome is it that you posted it! (I must be psychic!)

    I have to disagree though, I thought this book had plenty of action and I was happy that Bones and Cat were happy. (But I was sad when you know what happened to Don.)


    April 28, 2011 at 2:52 pm

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