Series: Graveyard Queen #2
Publication Date: March 27th 2012
Book Source: Harlequin/Mira & NetGalley
Synopsis: Deep in the shadowy foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains lies a dying town ...
My name is Amelia Gray. They call me The Graveyard Queen. I’ve been commissioned to restore an old cemetery in Asher Falls, South Carolina, but I’m coming to think I have another purpose here.
Why is there a cemetery at the bottom of Bell Lake? Why am I drawn time and again to a hidden grave I’ve discovered in the woods? Something is eating away at the soul of this town - this withering kingdom - and it will only be restored if I can uncover the truth.
I loved the first book in the Graveyard Queen series The Restorer and Amanda Stevens follows through with another chilling installment with book 2. The Kingdom follows a similar vein to The Restorer, a gothic, sinister read, wonderfully atmospheric, but this one has a real sense of evil permeating the pages, like mist rolling in from the mountains.
Amelia Gray has taken on a commission in the isolated town of Asher Falls, restoring Thorngate Cemetry, but her escape from Charleston is as much about escaping her feelings for police detective John Devlin. I thought Angus was a welcome addition to the cast of characters, Amelia's new furry friend, a rescued 'bait dog'. It was lovely to see their relationship develop; they need each other, they're both in need of a little unconditional love and loyalty.
In The Kingdom we're introduced to Thane Asher, heir to the Asher empire. Amelia is strangely drawn to him and whilst I missed the presence of the brooding Devlin, Thane grew on me. However as the pages closed on The Kingdom my hopes were heightened for more ... Devlin.
Two things I just have to rave about:
We discover much about Amelia's past in this installment, it's all intertwined with Asher Falls. Long held secrets are exposed and it's all very twisty and unexpected and awesome. But none of the awesome stuff stopped me wanting to slap Amelia the 3rd, 4th and probably 5th time she put herself in danger ... stoopid!!
The palpable creepiness, the undercurrent of foreboding. The kind of creepy that leaves you with goosebumps, your scalp prickling, the hair rising on the back of your neck and starting at things that go bump in the night ... or day for that matter. It's creepy good, I literally couldn't put this one down.
I'm enjoying this series so much I'm continuing straight on with The Prophet which is due to be released April 24th.
Visit Amanda's awesome website to find out more about the author and her work.