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How to Save an Undead Life (The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy Book 1) Kindle Edition
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"Lots of unexpected twists and turns. I love the complex world which has been built outside of normal human awareness. There is a serious mystery at the heart of this and I can't wait to see how it unfolds. I also think the potential love interest is very intriguing." (E_bookpushers)
"Well done urban fantasy - the heroine is a necromancer and there is a nice take on vampires. She lives in a haunted house - and the house itself kind of talks to her. Well-paced with a great heroine. The world building is well done - twists and turns. I laughed, but there are also darker moments. I really enjoyed this one. First time I've read this author. Ready for book two." (Mandi @ Smexy Books)
"I absolutely loved this book. I have read many books from Hailey Edwards and this book did not disappoint. We get taken into a story that is fantastically written about a necromancer and the world she lives in. I cannot wait for the next book."
"This series is going on my "must read" list."
"I love anything Edwards writes, and this new series presents another interesting character mixed with great worldbuilding."
"...it has all the requisite parts for me; a strong female protagonist, a time-tested "family" support system, banter-lovely lovely banter, plenty of rocks needing to be turned over, mysterious others and unknown agendas... I'm shamelessly carrying around my iPad and inventing reasons to take breaks between every task."
From the Author
If you're a real stickler, the chronological order for reading these connected series is as follows:
- The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy
- The Potentate of Atlanta
- The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy: The Epilogues
But you'll be fine rolling straight into The Epilogues after finishing The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy series.
The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy
- How to Save an Undead Life
- How to Claim an Undead Soul
- How to Break an Undead Heart
- How to Dance an Undead Waltz
- How to Live an Undead Lie
- How to Wake an Undead City
The Potentate of Atlanta
- Shadow of Doubt
- Pack of Lies
- Change of Heart
- Proof of Life
- Moment of Truth
The Beginner's Guide to Necromancy: The Epilogues
- How to Kiss an Undead Bride
- How to Survive an Undead Honeymoon
- How to Rattle an Undead Couple
- ASIN : B074YDTNBS
- Publisher : Black Dog Books, LLC (August 18, 2017)
- Publication date : August 18, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 6043 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 240 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #14,589 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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.