How to Save an Undead Life: Beginner's Guide to Necromancy Series, Book 1 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
Grier Woolworth spends her nights weaving spooky tales of lost souls and tragedies for tourists on the streets of downtown Savannah. Hoop skirt and parasol aside, it's not a bad gig. The pay is crap, but the tips keep the lights on in her personal haunted mansion and her pantry stocked with ramen.
Life is about as normal as it gets for an ex-necromancer hiding among humans - until the society that excommunicated Grier offers her a second chance at being more than ordinary. Too bad no one warned her the trouble with being extraordinary is it can get you killed.
Contains mature themes.
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|Listening Length||8 hours and 11 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||July 31, 2018|
|Best Sellers Rank||
#61,654 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals)
#973 in Urban Fantasy
#1,693 in Paranormal Fantasy
#13,251 in Paranormal & Urban Fantasy (Books)
Top reviews from the United States
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But my biggest issue was that the whole book is predicated on the fact that Grier was supposed to have just gotten out of prison (a horrible, supernatural prison that she was never expected to leave). But the reader is just told this. It's so remote that you forget about it. How to Save an Undead Life felt very much like a second book. As if there should be a first book that addresses how and why Grier went to prison. The whole thing felt very anchorless and baseless. I get that it's supposed to be the mystery in the next book (or books), but the reader REALLY feels the lack of explanation in this book.
A last small gripe, the title makes no sense to the book (as for as I can see).
The writing and narration was technically competent. The grammar and such is sound. No complaints on that front. All in all, others may like this more than me. But I'm glad to be finished with it.
Edit: I've just realized I've read another book by this author and in re-reading my review of it, I find that I had almost identical complaints. If I can help it, I won't be making the mistake a third time.
Grier Woolworth has recently been released from a prison for magical offenders. She's reclaimed her home aka Woolly a sentient house that she inherited from her guardian. Now that she's home, she has to start to reclaim the other pieces of her life including finding her place in a world that showed her no mercy or support when she most needed it.
Helping her with this seemingly impossible journey is her best friend, Amelie, a member of Low Society, and Amelie's brother, Boaz, Grier's longtime unrequited (though maybe not anymore) crush.
I thought the Pritchard siblings were fun supporting characters. Boaz is a ladies' man with no shame about his past. He shamelessly flirts with Grier, and the banter between the two of them is fun, flirty, and lets us see a lighter side of Grier.
It was surprising how much personality Woolly had, and I thought it was a pretty cool concept for the house to have a full-fledged sentience. Woolly worries about Grier and even has her own relationships and attachments to the other people in her owner's life. That was a bit of creativity that made the series stand out for me against others I had recently read.
I've looked at a few of the other reviews, and I can't help but agree that the worldbuilding would probably be my biggest negative. There were definitely times when I felt a little confused about how their Necromantic society worked, and I was wondering if I had missed some kind of short prequel that should have plugged in some of the blanks about Grier's imprisonment and what happened to her guardian.
Overall, a lot of the blanks about how their world works gradually get filled. A lot of those questions were answered enough that I wasn't distracted by any confusion. There's still a lot left to learn about Grier's past and imprisonment, but those blanks are still there because Grier is, in part, an unreliable narrator. Due to circumstances beyond her control, she's had cause to doubt her own mind and memories. Despite my curiosity, I'm willing to learn along with Grier.
Definitely give the book a read and make sure you check out the sequel (it gets better)!
We meet Grier Woolworth a twenty-something ex-necromancer who owns her childhood home. Wait until you meet her house! Grier has had quite a complicated life but I admired her spunk. Edwards enlightens us on her troubled past as she shares Grier’s struggles and her passionate love of local history.
Grier works nights as a haunted tour guide. Right away I liked this damaged soul and moved right in. The past five years have been a nightmare and she suffers PTSD but the house and her childhood friends are there for support.
This first book reveals the reasons the society that imprisoned her set her free and sets up the series. We learn Grier is far from ordinary and I am excited to see her growth as she gains skills.
Edwards’ writing style has an easy, addictive flow as she fleshed out characters, explained the paranormal society and revealed Grier to us. The story has a nice balance of magic and humor. It delivered a side romance that has me curious. A zombie parakeet, temperamental house and things that bite in the night rounded out the tale.
We see plenty of suspense and danger as news of what Grier is was leaked to the paranormal community. This thread allowed us to see how resourceful and powerful Grier can be. Once she comes into her powers and harnesses her magic, I have a feeling she will be unstoppable.
Top reviews from other countries
Grier is a disgraced necromancer who was thrown in the worst prison for all the supernaturals for supposedly committing a murder. At a tender age of 21, she is inexplicably let out and is trying to get back to some sort of normal life. Normal for Grier is living in a haunted house named Woolly, working as a ghost tour guide with her best friend Amelie and generally keeping a low profile while she is battling her PTSD.
From one moment to the next she goes from nobody to someone extremely important. Someone who is wanted by necromancers and vampires alike. She doesn't know whom to trust, her new vampire friend Volkov or her formidable, scary aunt, who sent her to the prison in the first place. All she's got is Amelie, her brother Boaz, and her dead parakeet, whom she accidentally turned into a psychopomp at a tender age of nine.
Grier is also deliciously stubborn, full of sassy comebacks and a beautiful if slightly naive urban fantasy heroine. I loved her Woolly, who could make conversations with flickering lights or sliding draws and who fiercely protected people it loved, and I really liked her friends.
The world-building is solid without being overwhelming and the pace is brisk without too much violence. I predict a long and beautiful friendship between me and this series. It feels comforting and charming. Very much recommended.
The only reason I knocked a star off this was because I often felt confused with the world building, not knowing how things worked, what did the public know, what role does the Society play, and the time scale often left me searching back in the book. However I can forgive all this for a first in series, and it totally held my attention. I will certainly be looking out for the next in this series.
While I'm talking about characters, those of you who have read my reviews before will know that I crave heroines who are intelligent, resilient, resourceful and have plenty of gumption. Grier Woolworth ticked every box and more.
As this is the first book in a completed 6 book series, we are left with more unanswered questions than you can swing a bat at but nothing is life-or-death-peril-cliffhanger-esque so that's a good thing. I will be popping over to my Kindle Unlimited account and downloading the next book as soon as I finish typing this review.
While reading I kept stubbing my mental toe on silly usage/ grammar issues such as “stepped foot in” - you may step into a room or set foot in it but never step(ped) foot into anywhere.
That aside I did enjoy the story but it loses a star because of my sore virtual toe.