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Up From the Grave: A Night Huntress Novel Mass Market Paperback – 30 Jan 2014
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“I always open a Frost book with happy anticipation.” (Charlaine Harris)
Praise for: Once Burned “A stay-up-until-sunrise read… There are many Draculas out there, but only one Vlad, and you owe it to yourself to meet him.” (Ilona Andrews, New York Times bestselling author of the Kate Daniels series)
“...rambunctious series debut...” (Publishers Weekly on ONCE BURNED)
A breathtaking conclusion. Frost has taken her legion of loyal fans on an amazing thrill ride that has been loaded with plenty of emotional peaks and valleys as well as kick-butt action. (Romantic Times BOOKclub, 4 1/2 stars)
Emotional stakes and body counts are high in Frost’s exciting and dramatic seventh Night Huntress novel. (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“Leavened with strong emotion and dark humor, and featuring superior writing as well as a thoughtfully structured plot, Cat and Bones’s final adventure is appropriately splendid and satisfying.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
About the Author
Jeaniene Frost is the New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of the Night Huntress series and the Night Huntress World novels. To date, foreign rights for her novels have sold to nineteen different countries. Jeaniene lives in North Carolina with her husband Matthew, who long ago accepted that she rarely cooks and always sleeps in on the weekends. Aside from writing, Jeaniene enjoys reading, poetry, watching movies with her husband, exploring old cemeteries, spelunking and traveling—by car. Airplanes, children, and cookbooks frighten her.
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Life has been pretty quiet and peaceful for Cat and Bones lately, and Cat's come to enjoy it. But when the Don's ghost pays her a visit to say her old team mates and friends have gone missing, Cat will put aside her peaceful life to find out what's going on. Turns out Madigan, Don's replacement, has been conducting experiments on her friends behind the scenes. He wants to create a species that are human, vampire and ghoul all at once to create an unbeatable army for humans. Knowing neither vampire nor ghoul will let something like that slide, Cat and Bones are racing against time to stop Madigan and save her friends. But revelations throw a spanner in the works, and Cat discovers more than she bargained for.
Up From the Grave is a really sweet novel. As I said, there's excitement and danger throughout, and some of the things Madigan has done are atrocious. You're still on the edge of your seat, dying to know what happens. But you can feel it's the end of the series as you go along. Cat comments frequently about how she misses the peace they had, and wanting to go back to that. There's also several instances of Cat truly realising what she wants from life, and that's to spend it with Bones. She accepted how she felt about Bones a long time ago - they're married now, even - but I think in Up From the Grave she discovers just how deep her feelings go, just how much she loves him, and what her life would be without him - nothing. There's also a time or two when we get similar comments from Bones. There's a very strong feel that their life together is more important than anything else, which is part of the winding down of the series. They're going to focus on their own little world when everything has calmed down.
Cat and Bones mentioned things that had happend in previous books quite a number of times. This was probably meant to be a nod to the series ending - showing how far Cat and Bones have come, and the things they've gone through together - but I didn't always remember what was being discussed. There have been two Prince of Darkness books since the last Night Huntress Novel, and a few Night Huntress World books interspersed between the others. It's been a long time since those other Night Huntress books came out, and I simply couldn't remember what they were talking about, but there wasn't enough recap to jog my memory. So sadly, most of the references went over my head.
I did find Up From the Grave kind of predictable in places, though. There were some extremely emotional times in this book, but there were always hints as to what would happen, so I couldn't get as anguished as Cat, because I didn't believe what was happening. I think the predictability is what let me down a bit; I knew what was coming for certain parts of the books, and so although it was exciting and had me on the edge of my seat, I wasn't surprised. And the big, big reveal? Really obvious. So obvious. I couldn't work out how things are as they are, but I gathered really on what the outcome would be. It was just glaringly obvious. And although it fits in with the plot completely, it feels a little too conveniant. It seems like Frost decided how she wanted the series to end for Cat and Bones, and then wrote a story to fit that, one that works, one that's plausible and completely in vein with the other books, but still feels a little... self-gratifying? Or maybe a little too generous to the characters? I don't know, but I'm dubious about it. Not only has the series ended, but it's ended wrapped up in a pretty ribbon too. It's not necessarily a bad thing to do - serious kudos to Frost for creating a great story to get this ending without it seeming like an after thought, "Oh, and by the way..." - it was just surprising that Frost chose to. With all that Frost has put her characters through, it just seems a little out of character for things to be so nice and neat. It left me thinking, "Really?"
On the whole, not the best in the series, but still a pretty good book. A nice way to end the series, even if it I have some misgivings about it. I still consider Frost to be one of my favourite authors, and I'm super excited to read more from her in the future!
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