Girl at the Grave

336p. Tor. Aug. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780765399489.
Gr 7–10—A compelling gothic romance filled with generational secrets and blackmail. After her mother is hanged for the death of a rich man, Valentine begins attending a prominent school through the support of an anonymous benefactor. Unfortunately, she must encounter daily gossip and take classes alongside Rowan, the son of the man her mother murdered. When the local reverend indicates that her mother was actually innocent, Valentine commits to learning the truth. With someone attempting to suppress her discovery, more and more people are vanishing—including her barely present father. Unfolding mysteries are juxtaposed with Valentine's conflicted heart. Valentine shares a close bond with a working class, childhood friend. Everyone seems to expect that they will eventually marry, but Valentine becomes aware of growing affections from Rowan. The tragedy between both families becomes an overwhelming burden to any possibility of a relationship. While the plot transpires with unforseen turns, the romantic tension Black crafts between Valentine and Rowan pushes the pace, holding readers' attention until the last page.
VERDICT Purchase where there are avid fans of gothic romance, historical fiction, and mystery.

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