A.N Willis’s Byrne House duology became an absolute favorite series of mine after I requested the ARC on a whim. And ever since, I had wanted to check her Penny Wright series but never did get the chance. Grave Lies is book #1 in the Mercury Mediums series with Penny as one of the leads. Penny is the one who can see and interact with ghosts but it is Zandra who had my full attention in this novel. Zandra is a medium with the ability to read emotions and thereby becomes more or less a human lie detector and it made for some fascinating reading.
Both of them are in Coldwater at a call from Heather Davenport who has returned to her hometown and wants to give one last chance to discover the identities of the dead bodies discovered in her backyard 40 -odd years ago. The author mixes up the paranormal elements and the mystery of the killer with panache as the multiple threads of inquiries pop up and each of them leading them to more puzzles all centered around the town and a cult that was formed years ago.
Penny and Zandra are a good team and the adventure in this establishes the support system they form for each other and with Zandra, I guess the author has held a lot of her past as an enigma, for it to be fleshed out completely later down in the series and I am looking forward to that. If you are a fan of paranormal mysteries, then Grave Lies by A N Willis would be right up your alley. I did wish for a tighter plotting in the middle segment of the story coz some parts of it felt like repeating in circles though I enjoyed the final reveal and the revenge of the ghosts.
Many thanks to Book Sirens and the author for a chance to read and review this book. All opinions are expressed voluntarily.
Dark secrets haunt the town of Coldwater…
Almost forty years ago, Heather Davenport unearthed two bodies in a shallow grave on her grandmother’s ranch. The killer arranged his victims in an embrace. Now retired from the FBI and still haunted by the “bride and groom” murders, Heather returns to tackle the cold case. When the investigation stalls, she’s willing to do anything—even beg the help of the mysterious Mercury Group. No matter the cost.
Mercury agent Penny Wright sees the dead, while her partner Zandra Mendes reads the living. Their unusual methods could finally lead to a breakthrough in the case.
But the killer is closer than anyone thinks.
The residents of Coldwater will stop at nothing to keep their secrets hidden. A killer stalks the innocent, waiting for the moment to strike. And in a town built on this many lies, no one will be safe when the dark truth comes to the surface.