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Posted by on Nov 6, 2012 in Review | 62 comments

Death and the Girl Next Door by Darynda Jones

Death and the Girl Next Door by Darynda Jones
Death and the Girl Next Door
by Darynda Jones
Series:
Published by: St. Martin
on October 2, 2012
Genres: Paranormal
Source: Publisher
Purchase: Amazon

Goodreads
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Ten years ago, Lorelei's parents disappeared without a trace. Raised by her grandparents and leaning on the support of her best friends, Lorelei is finally beginning to accept the fact that her parents are never coming home. For Lorelei, life goes on. High school is not quite as painful as she thinks it will be, and things are as normal as they can be. Until the day the school's designated loner, Cameron Lusk, begins to stalk her, turning up where she least expects it, standing outside her house in the dark, night after night. Things get even more complicated when a new guy—terrifying, tough, sexy Jared Kovach—comes to school. Cameron and Jared instantly despise each other and Lorelei seems to be the reason for their animosity. What does Jared know about her parents? Why does Cameron tell Jared he can't have Lorelei? And what will any of them do when Death comes knocking for real? Thrilling, sassy, sexy, and inventive, Darynda Jones's first foray into the world of teens will leave readers eager for the next installment.

I was excited to get my hands on a copy of Death and the Girl Next Door because Darynda Jones is one of my favorite adult authors and I was anxious to see what she would bring to her new young adult series. As the first book in the Darklight series Jones introduces us to some interesting characters, a couple of swoon worthy guys and um -death.

It has been ten years since the McAllister’s disappears that left their six year old daughter behind. We meet Lorelei McAllister and her sidekicks Glitch and Brooklyn as they enjoy coffee at the only place in their small New Mexico town to hang out. Right away I liked the three of them and their banter was hilarious. When Lorelei goes to wash her hands she accidentally brushed up against a handsome stranger, and immediately has one of her visions. In it this boy is fighting a monster that claws his chest. The premonition scares her and she tries to warn him but he’s gone. The tale that unfolds was humorous, romantic, and action packed. It laid the groundwork for an exciting new series.

Jones has an incredible talent for bringing characters to life. I really liked Lorelei, Glitch and Brooklyn. This trio was so funny, and I found myself highlighting snarky things they said. I loved how they stood up for each other and supported one another. The language, notes and comments Lorelei and Brooklyn used to describe people (guys) had me giggling. Jared and Cameron two swoon-worthy boys are both looking to protect Lorelei. I know you just shivered. Didn’t you? You were thinking, “Oh, no not the dreaded love triangle!” Well guess what…there isn’t one! We do kind of get an insta-love type thing but I survived and you probably will too. Cameron and Jared were likeable; despite some Neanderthal tendencies and an abundance of testosterone. I loved Lorelei’s grandparents and appreciated that Jones involved them in the tale. A nosey reporter and people searching for clues shake things up and add suspense to the tale.

The world-building was fascinating, from the strange disappearance of Lorelei’s parents, to the mystery surrounded her premonitions and the boys. The tale started off slowly and felt a bit awkward to me, but it quickly picked up and I found myself swept up in the action. I like how Jones’s slowly reveals things and then throws in twists and turns keeping me enthralled. The story is not without issues but as the first book in a series, I am hoping these loose threads and unanswered questions are revealed in the next book. The romance was sweet and gooey and I am sure it will have many of you swooning. The ending was fast and furious and ohh the things that were revealed. EEP! While there is no cliffhanger, we are left with a glimmer of things to come and I look forward to reading more.

I recommend Death and the Girl Next Door to fans of supernatural suspense and snarky characters. Darynda Jones is on my auto-buy list and I look forward to Death, Doom, and Detention which is scheduled to be released in March 5, 2013. The third book Death and the Girl He Loves is also scheduled for a 2013 release but no date has been set.

Copyright (c) 2011-2013 Caffeinated Book Reviewer

62 Comments

  1. I normally don’t read much in the YA genre, but I love Daynda Jones so I gave this novel a chance. I wasn’t disappointed. Darynda Jones is just amazing and I love the way she incorporates humor into all her novels . So to answer the question, I guess I like the sense of wonder and youthful love. Doesn’t touch on the awesomeness of the Charley Davidson series, but I liked it.

  2. I read YA books because of the authors and because I work with school age children and it is nice to be able to talk about books with them.

  3. LOVE this book!

  4. I love Darynda Jones and want to share her with my teen but her adult books have some inapporpriate scenes for my kiddo…this sounds perfect…what age do you think this is appopriate for? Any sex?

  5. Thanks for the awesome post and giveaway! I’m dying to read this book :) I’m just starting on the Charley Davidson series so I figured this book has got to be as good, considering all the pretty positive reviews I’ve read so far.

  6. I love that you said the characters come to life and that there is snarky humor. Sign me up! I need to read this book

    Thanks for the great review, Kimba :)

  7. No one likes cliffhangers..especially if the next book is a year out :)

  8. This is on my TBR list. I like real, fleshed out characters…sounds like you enjoyed this one. I actually don’t like cliffhangers in books.

  9. What’s not to love about YA novels, they are just good. I enjoy the characters and the emotion behind the stories.

  10. I love YA because, overall, it is exciting and dramatic and the characters are so interesting! Thanks for the giveaway!

  11. I am anxious to see how things develop in book two.

  12. Love this book! Thanks for sharing!

  13. I can’t wait to read this book! Haven’t had a chance to grab a copy yet but I will have it this weekend. I love YA because I can still feel that bit of innocence in there from when I was younger. Or maybe it’s just me wishing I was younger! LOL

  14. I was so relieved there wasn’t actually a love triangle in this. Brooke and Glitch made me laugh too! I can’t wait for the next book! Wonderful review, Kimba. :)

  15. Great review! I’m glad you enjoyed this, despite the slow start.

    I love YA b/c of the great character growth.

  16. The ya genre has some great books.. im not a young adult but they appeal to me and grab my attention..i read some adult but not as much..

  17. Yay..so happy you loved it and I am looking forward to reading it too!

  18. I LOVE LOVE LOVED this booK! Can’t wait to see where they go in Death, Doom, and Detention!!

  19. O.o you need to read her adult series..The Charley Davidson series!

  20. I’m not familiar with this author but it sounds like a good book. Glad to hear that she succeeded in making the transition from Adult to YA!

  21. I love that Darynda Jones has written a YA book! I can’t wait to read it! Thanks for the post and for the chance to win!

  22. there are some YA books that you just can’t help but check out and read. They are great and keep me feeling young.

  23. I’m still young at heart so I guess that’s why I like them. Great review as always!

  24. I have teens too, and we love discussing them :)

  25. Oh Michelle you read my review wrong..there is NO triangle!

  26. I already have the book, and I can’t wait until I get a chance to actually read it!

  27. You’re totally correct on the awkwardness and slight slowness at the beginning of the book but then it just took off and I forgot all about it. Silly me!! The best part of Darynda is that she brought her snarky banter from her adult series down to the YA sector and did it to that level and succeeded so much so that you were highlighting stuff – Love the E-reader for that!!!

    And oh, yeah, her grandparents rock!! I really hope we find out what happened to her ma and pa :(

  28. i second the genius. lol thanks for the giveaway.

  29. First off, great post! You can tell how much you really and truly enjoyed this book as well as the author’s previous works…fab job! Second….what do I love about YA books? The variety of stories. The chance to use imagination freely without necessarily getting TOO deep. The lighter side of romance. Shall I continue? ^_^

  30. Awesome review! I’ve heard so much about this author! What I love about YA is that feeling of young, innocent love. The kind that gives you butterflies and curls your toes. *sigh* Thank you for the giveaway! <3

  31. Yes you soooooooo need to read the Charley Davidson series..they rock!

  32. I love YA, because honestly…every so often I need a good snarky read, and I can almost always find that in a YA book . ;) Thanks so much for giving us all this opportunity!

  33. Darynda usually does international ..so I think you are fine. The tour didn’t specify and gave me link. I am glad I make ya snicker. I think the biggest thing for me is this feels very young adult, especially up against Charley.

  34. Haha, your reviews always make me snicker, especially those exclamations and side comments. Our ratings of this one are the same. It’s a good book, we just happen to know that Darynda can do better.
    Great review, Kimba!
    I don’t know whether the giveaway is INT so I’ll just enter and you remove my entries if it’s not. :)

  35. Ya know I cannot say enough about her adult series. This was fun, cute..but all YA.

  36. I love her Charley series but haven’t yet decided if I will give this one a whirl. I am on the fence but we will see. I am glad to hear her signature snark is alive and well though :)

  37. I’ve seen this book around and want to read it bad. I love YA because it makes me feel young again, weird right?

  38. I do love her other series…still, hm. I am just very unsure

  39. I prefer her adult, but this was a fun read.