Wednesday, October 20, 2021

ARC Review: Grave Reservations by Cherie Priest

Grave Reservations

Cherie Priest
Publication: Atria Books (October 26, 2021)

Description: A psychic travel agent and a Seattle PD detective solve a murder in this quirky mystery in the vein of Lisa Lutz’s The Spellman Files and Charlaine Harris’s Aurora Teagarden series.

Meet Leda Foley: devoted friend, struggling travel agent, and inconsistent psychic. When Leda, sole proprietor of Foley's Flights of Fancy, impulsively re-books Seattle PD detective Grady Merritt’s flight, her life changes in ways she couldn’t have predicted.

After watching his original plane blow up from the safety of the airport, Grady realizes that Leda’s special abilities could help him with a cold case he just can’t crack.

Despite her scattershot premonitions, she agrees for a secret reason: her fiancé’s murder remains unsolved. Leda’s psychic abilities couldn’t help the case several years before, but she’s been honing her skills and drawing a crowd at her favorite bar’s open-mic nights, where she performs Klairvoyant Karaoke—singing whatever song comes to mind when she holds people’s personal effects. Now joined by a rag-tag group of bar patrons and pals alike, Leda and Grady set out to catch a killer—and learn how the two cases that haunt them have more in common than they ever suspected.

My Thoughts: Leda Foley is a travel agent (currently) and an inconsistent psychic. She is also still deeply grieving the murder of her fiancé - which she didn't see coming. When she rebooks a flight for police detective Grady Merritt which keeps him off a plane that slides off the runway and catches fire, Grady begins to think that Leda could be helpful in solving a cold case that is driving him crazy.

Leda and her best friend Niki are willing to help but Leda isn't confident in her abilities to actually be useful. As the two - and sometimes three of them - interview witnesses and explore crime scenes, Leda comes to believe that there is a connection between her fiancé's unsolved murder and the case that Grady is working on.

This was a very engaging story. I couldn't put it down. Leda is a wonderful, well-rounded character. I liked that she is honing her skills as a psychic by doing Klairvoyant Karaoke at her favorite bar which is managed by Niki's boyfriend. Currently, she's being paid in free drinks but as her reputation grows - in part because of publicity by the bar owner - she's going to be getting a cut of the night's receipts when she performs. 

I liked Grady too, He's a widower and a great parent to his seventeen-year-old daughter. He's also willing to stretch the bounds of what he previously believed and bring in Leda and her psychic insights if that is what it takes to solve crimes. 

This is the first book I've read by the author and a new direction for her writing according to her Acknowledgments. I hope she continues with more stories like this one which was thoroughly enjoyable.

Favorite Quote:
Niki knew Leda was only talking. Her friend had learned the hard way that warning people about tragic misfortune could lead to restraining orders, at best -- and at worst (just the one time), a ride in the back seat of a cop car. Because sometimes a frantic heads-up sounds like a threat. Apparently.
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

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