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Graveminder Kindle Edition
“No one builds worlds like Melissa Marr.”
“Welcome to the return of the great American gothic.”
—Del Howison, Bram Stoker Award-winning editor of Dark Delicacies
“A deliciously creepy tale that is as skillfully wrought as it is spellbindingly imagined.”
Anyone who adores dark fantasy, horror, and paranormal suspense is going to love Graveminder, a hauntingly atmospheric tale of the walking dead—and the living who are charged with keeping them at rest—from Melissa Marr, the New York Times bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely series. A young woman returns to the rural small town of her adolescence only to discover it is cursed ground bordering the land of the dead in this spectacularly imagined supernatural tale that will appeal to fans of Charlaine Harris, Joe Hill, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Neil Gaiman, and Carol Goodman.
The New York Times bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely series delivers her first novel for adults, a story about the living, the dead, and a curse that binds them.
Rebekkah Barrow never forgot the tender attention her grandmother, Maylene, bestowed upon the dead of Claysville, the town where Bek spent her adolescence. There wasn't a funeral that Maylene didn't attend, and at each Rebekkah watched as Maylene performed the same unusual ritual: three sips from a small silver flask followed by the words "Sleep well, and stay where I put you."
Now Maylene is dead and Bek must go back to the place--and the man--she left a decade ago. But what she soon discovers is that Maylene was murdered and that there was good reason for her odd traditions. It turns out that in placid Claysville, the worlds of the living and the dead are dangerously connected. Beneath the town lies a shadowy, lawless land ruled by the enigmatic Charles, aka Mr. D--a place from which the dead will return if their graves are not properly minded. Only the Graveminder, a Barrow woman, and the current Undertaker, Byron, can set things to right once the dead begin to walk.
A Q&A with Author Melissa Marr
Q: What inspires you as a writer?
Marr: Music, travel, and lore. Graveminder began in 2007 on a trip to Ireland during which I’d read a paragraph or so on the “hungry dead.” Wicked Lovely sparked from Scottish folklore. The YA novel I just wrote, Carnival of Souls, was a combination of a phrase from a song and an article on demonology.
Q: Where did the story in Graveminder come from? Did something in particular spark the characters or the plot?
Marr: Once I had the general concept (“mind your dead lest they come back hungry”), I looked to my own life. I enjoy cemeteries, and I’m fascinated by lore/myth of Death. I added a small town, a ghost-town-esque land of the dead, and various other things I like. This is actually the novel closest to my roots in many ways.
Q: The characters in Graveminder discover they have had a destiny to fulfill since they were born. Can you talk about putting characters into that situation and what it brings out in them?Marr: Between the Wicked Lovely series and this, it’s pretty obvious I’m fascinated by the idea of fate and choice. I think we are all born with advantages and disadvantages because of so many things beyond our control (family, economics, culture, religion, country, genetic factors). People can be defined by those factors, revise their fate—or opt for some combination of the two. That choice is what makes our stories as people unique.
Q: How did you go about building the Graveminder mythology? Is it based on any folklore or mythology itself?
Marr: Around the world there are all sorts of traditions of ancestor regard and duty to the dead. Some traditions dictate how the dead are taken to the grave to keep them from finding their way back if they wake; some traditions include speaking (or not speaking) of them. There are myriad traditions I’d have loved to explore, but the one I used at base is that the dead must be nourished with food, drink, and story for a set time. Failure results in the dead coming back to get a different manifestation of the nourishment they need—flesh, blood, and breath.
Q: In Graveminder the dead walk among the living and the living can even walk among the dead. What are your thoughts about these two worlds you’ve created?
Marr: I like liminality, borders and those who exist on and because of the lines. Much of the real world is defined by a series of in/out groupings. We are either a or b; things are good or bad; and everything is pro or con. The reality, I believe, is that there are often gradations—degrees of right and wrong, measures of beautiful and horrible. By juxtaposing worlds, I have characters who are always “strangers in a strange land.” Plus, well, it’s just more fun to write.--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B004GB1XCI
- Publisher : HarperCollins e-books (May 17, 2011)
- Publication date : May 17, 2011
- Language : English
- File size : 924 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 341 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #556,474 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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Claysville is small and quaint, the type of town where everyone knows everyone and nothing is a secret...or maybe there are secrets, BIG secrets. A town where the peculiar habits of a little old lady just seem normal and harmless, but there's so much more to the story, so much more.
Grave Minder is a small town story with an element of fright. It's written softly, without being too dramatic or fluffy, but it's definitely not your cliche "ghost in the attic" horror story; it's refreshingly unique and captivating. I wasn't hiding under the covers afraid to peer outside the safety of my reading nook, but I did get goose bumps quite a few times throughout the book.
Even though Grave Minder is not a standalone, I don't know that I will be reaching for the sequels any time soon. It certainly wasn't a bad book; in fact I really enjoyed it, but it ends in such a way that didn't have me on the edge of my seat itching to start the next book. In fact, I don't think Melissa Marr intended for it to become the first in a series either, but it is!
P.S. - I am itching for cool temps and brisk fall days, pumpkin spice and scary (but corny) Halloween movies. Hence the reason why I picked up Grave Minder in the first place! Happy reading!
For more of my review, visit my blog! [...]
I was surprised by how much I really didn't care about Graveminder. Marr is a writer that I typically adore because she writes awesome plots featuring difficult, complex choices. She doesn't shy away from unpopular, un-pretty decisions. Things happen, the options suck, and the result is that the characters lives are changed for the better, for the worse, and in ways we don't necessarily want to see happen. Happy Ever After isn't necessarily a guarantee (or at least they don't seem to be in the beginning). Although Graveminder gives our Hero and Heroine a hefty dilemma to deal with there are no real resolutions beyond the rather minor introduction plot that establishes who the Graveminder and the Undertaker are supposed to be. That may seem like it should be plenty, but unfortunately it wasn't really enough to fill up this novel. The set-up was dragged out and the ending of the story felt too compacted and too packaged. As the beginning for a series, I can see the layout, but I would have liked to read a more complex, more integrated story. There's a lot that just seems like it will be filled in later on in other books.
Graveminder was also less "adult" then I thought it would be. Ink Exchange, my favorite in the Wicked Lovely series, was thematically darker than Graveminder but totally without the "adult" tag. So, yeah, kind of a disappointment, but because it's Melissa Marr I'm expecting that the series will pick up steam and take off.
The dead are rising and attacking the living but why?
I had a hard time finishing this book. The main characters act like the worse kind of angst ridden YA novel characters. I have to keep reminding myself they are adults because don't come off as adults. They are immature one dimensional characters. It makes me wonder if the author meant it to be a YA book but either the editor suggested she should make it an adult novel or the author decided to change it at the last minute.
Since the romance between Rebekkah and Byron is so important to the plot you would think they would have chemistry right? Wrong! The romance feels forced and takes way to much time away from the plot so the acceptance of their fate and the wrap up of the plot seems rushed.
I gave it two stars because the plot was original it just was poorly executed.
I don't feel that the story moved slowly - I felt that things were always happening. I sometimes felt frustrated at not knowing what was really going on with the town of Claysville, but then the main characters were discovering these facts for themselves. By the end of the book I understood. To me, this was the unraveling of a mystery. I must add that I was pretty surprised at the ending - I didn't see that coming!
I also feel that there were characters that were not fully fleshed out, but I see that as providing material for future books in this series...if Ms. Marr decides to continue with the Graveminder theme.
I really liked the whole Graveminder / Undertaker theme - it was new and different to me. I appreciate the creativity that went into setting up this "world". It was a refreshing break from the vampires and werewolves that seem to be almost overused.
So while I understand some reviewers not liking the story or the pace, there are those like me who did enjoy the story. I won't criticize them, and I would hope that I, and those like me, aren't criticized. I wanted to share my view so that others can evaluate for themselves whether they'd like to read this book. If you like mysteries, and don't mind if the action is less hectic as long as the main characters are making their way through to the final truth, you might find that you like this book.
This is the first book I've read from Ms. Marr - but I'm now looking for another. I came back to this book's page in order to see if there was a followup to Graveminder - I would have purchased it. I felt I couldn't leave without sharing my opinion.
Top reviews from other countries
But as the story developed I became more intrigued and engrossed.
Whilst the 'love story' is a key element of the plot I did feel that too much time was spent on this aspect. I got that the Graveminder was scared to commit and did't need reminding endlessly.
Nevertheless, great story well written.