Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black
Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother’s legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer.
Only one person believes Valentine is innocent—Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed all those years ago. Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.
I’m not normally a fan of historical fiction, but I knew I had to read this one. Anything with a murder mystery grabs my attention quickly.
This story isn’t fast paced, but I still had a hard time putting it down at times. I really liked Valentine and wanted good things to happen for her.
Valentine’s mom died by hanging for killing Rowan’s dad. She remembers a little from that night, but not much. Valentine goes to a nice school, paid for by a secret benefactor. Her only real friend is Sam, who dropped out of school at 12 years old. Most of the other kids shun her because of her mother.
Rowan doesn’t remember much about his dad and lives with his grandmother. She doesn’t like Valentine’s family for her own personal reasons. So she is not happy when Rowan starts spending time with Valentine. Mrs Blackshaw is great at manipulating everyone to get what she wants. I wanted to like her because she pushes for women’s rights, but she’s not a good person.
There is a love triangle. Just a warning if that’s not your thing. I thought it was well done though. Sam is the best friend, but I honestly didn’t like him. He did love Valentine, but he had such a temper and bad attitude. I adored Rowan though.
Valentine is told that a witness came forward and said her mother didn’t kill Nigel Blackshaw. But then other people are murdered and Valentine is the obvious suspect. She spends a lot of the book trying to figure out who had motive and she wants to clear her mother’s name. A lot of secrets come out and there are quite a few people who look guilty.
Girl at the Grave is a mystery with a heavy focus on the love story/triangle. Valentine is a strong female character that I think a lot of people will like. She’s smart and determined, but very torn between Sam and Rowan.
I’m still a bit torn between 4 and 4 1/2 stars on this one. For now, I’m rating it 4. I really liked it a lot, but the story did drag a bit at times. The last part of the book went quickly though.
Thank you to Tor Teen and Netgalley for the chance to read this one early.
Have you read Girl at the Grave yet? What did you think?