Published by Katherine Tegen Books on January 26th 2016
Genres: paranormal, Fantasy, Young Adult
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For fans of Holly Black and Nova Ren Suma, a gripping, hauntingly atmospheric novel about murder, revenge, and a world where monstersÂ—human and otherwiseÂ—lurk at the fringes.
When seventeen-year-old Breezy Lin wakes up in a shallow grave one year after her death, she doesnÂ’t remember who killed her or why. All she knows is that sheÂ’s somehow consciousÂ—and not only that, sheÂ’s able to sense who around her is hiding a murderous past. In life, Breezy was always drawn to the elegance of the universe and the mystery of the stars. Now she must set out to find answers and discover what is to become of her in the gritty, dangerous world to which she now belongsÂ—where killers hide in plain sight and a sinister cult is hunting for strange creatures like her. What she finds is at once empowering, redemptive, and dangerous.
Tense, complex, and wholly engaging, Shallow Graves is a stunning first novel from Kali Wallace.
The biggest problem with this book is that the synopsis absolutely doesn’t do this book justice. I’m not sure what I was expecting after reading the back but this book is 1000 times better than the synopsis makes it sound. I think the synopsis isn’t specific enough. It doesn’t include so many awesome facts that make this book really great. There are simple things that don’t spoil the story that I can’t share because they aren’t in the blurb and I don’t want to ruin anything for you. It’s such a catch 22 because I think the summary leaves a lot to be desired but I don’t want to give anything away.
The summary compares Kali Wallace to Holly Black. I know tons of people love Holly Black so its an honor. However, I’m not sure it’s a great comparison. I would compare Kali Wallace to Patricia Briggs, Seanan McGuire, Illona Andrews, Kat Richardson. All of these people write some of my favorite Urban Fantasy series. These are all books with kickass heroines. In all of these series, they fight not for personal reasons but to protect people who can’t protect themselves.
Shallow Graves fits into these themes perfectly. Breezy wakes up alone and in the dark. She has to claw her way out of her own grave, a year after her death. Not only is she awake and walking around but she can sense a darkness in the people around her. She knows when a person is a murderer. From there she goes on a cross country road trip, looking for answers. Along the way she meets other people who aren’t quite human and she discovers that not everyone is on the same side.
I just loved this book. I loved everything about it. The only complaint that I had was that when I asked Kali Wallace on twitter she said that right now, it’s a stand alone. This book was the perfect set up for a series. I wish and hope and pray that it’s continued on in the future. I want more!
Kali Wallace studied geology and geophysics before she decided she enjoyed inventing imaginary worlds as much as she liked researching the real one. Her short fiction has appeared in Clarkesworld, F&SF, Asimov’s, Lightspeed Magazine, and Tor.com. Her first novel will be published by Katherine Tegen Books in 2016. She lives in southern California.
Prize: Win (1) hardcopy of SHALLOW GRAVES by Kali Wallace (US Only)