by Kalayna Price
Series: Alex Craft #2
Pub. Date: July 5, 2011
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Narrator: Emily Durante
Length: 12 hrs 50 min
Whoever said dead men tell no tales obviously never met Alex Craft.
After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L” word confession from Death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.
The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses, only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end—her own.
This review may have spoilers for the previous book, Grave Witch. It won't be super spoilery, but I just through I would throw that out there just in case.
Grave Dance picks up about a month after Grave Witch ends. We now know that our heroine, Alex Craft, is faekin. Apparently there is a distinction between fae with human blood vs. human with fae blood. I believe Alex falls into the former category, having a full fae father and faekin mother. So she's like, three-quarters fae I guess - which could explain why her powers seem to be unique and evolving.
Alex is throw right back into a police investigation at the beginning of the story - this time the case involves a bunch of severed left feet. As we have come to expect from Alex, involving her in the case has her bumbling into unforeseen circumstances and situations. This time the case draws her into the Faery spotlight, and she is getting attention from the Winter Queen and the Shadow King. She has also inherited property in Faery after defeating the big bad in the last book. I loved that this installment was more fae-involved. I really enjoy the fae world and characters, and we have a wide range of them in this series. You can expect Green Men, Brownies, Kelpies, Barghest, Cù-Sìth, members of the fae courts, etc. I have to say that Faery is my favorite fantastical world.
The love triangle from the first book is ongoing. After Alex learned Falin was the Winter Queen's lover, he disappeared for a month without a word. Death still comes and goes at random. However they both tend to end up with Alex at the same place, and she is like a pull toy between them. There is actually less romance in this installment than there was in Grave Witch, which was a little disappointing. We don't get anything more than a smooch or two here, when I was really hoping to see her start leaning more toward one hero to start carrying the series forward at her side.
I continue to love all the secondary characters in the series. They are always getting drawn into the danger with Alex's involvement, and they are truly her weak spot. All the baddies can easily tell that the way to keep her in line is to threaten one of her friends. Now that Alex has property in Faery and has visited the courts (briefly), I hope the future books allow us a more expansive peak into that realm.