Review Detail

4.0 2
Young Adult Fiction 4814
Genre-blending mystery
Overall rating
Writing Style
When Breezy wakes up, it isn’t from a normal night’s sleep. Instead, she wakes up from the ground, after a year of being dead, and the first thing she does is touch a man and unexpectedly kills him. Not knowing what has happened to her, she wanders and struggles to piece together her previous life while being thrown into a world of magic, creatures she never thought could exist, and a fate she may never escape.

What I Loved:

Breezy is an unapologetic main character who knows who she is (if not what) and makes no excuses for her actions. She is tough and rough around the edges, never striving to be perfect or even terribly concerned with being good. Her opening narrative provides an incredible hook immediately, and the premise is intriguing and mysterious. Diversity is also a wonderful and natural part of the story, featuring a bisexual woman of color protagonist to a plethora of diverse secondary characters.

What Left Me Wanting More:

Though the premise is fascinating, the story line often derails into seemingly directionless areas. The mystery behind Breezy’s murder only surfaces occasionally between a sort of cult community take down. However, readers who enjoy genre-bending stories may find that part the most invigorating. Likewise, the story hints at many deep and complex themes from humanity to murder, yet they are only seldom explored given their weight in plot progression.

While the secondary characters are interesting, they have a tendency to feel flat and often little time and dialogue are given to get to know them. Even so, this does make Breezy’s character a strong focus and opens her primary narrative to more detail and development.

Final Verdict:

Though Shallow Graves isn’t the best fit for me, the layers of diversity, intriguing premise, and unapologetic heroine make this book a lovely selection for those who desire magic, murder, and the unusual in their stories.
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