Monday, February 11, 2013

Review: The Dead and Buried


The Dead and BuriedAuthor: Kim Harrington
Release date: January 1st 2013
Publisher: Scholastic Point
Hardcover, 304 pages
Buy: The Book Depository

There are several things you can count on when you pick up one of Kim Harrington’s books. First, that it’ll be entertaining, if a bit predictable. Second, that the main character will be likeable enough and that she won’t make incredibly stupid choices at every turn. Third, that there’s a decently plotted mystery at the center. Fourth, that she knows how to write sweet and believable romances. And last, that you’ll forget all the details in about a month or so.

I’ll tackle this (more or less) in order, shall I?

Like Clarity and Perception before it, The Dead and Buried is a read-in-one-sitting book. It’s rather short, you see, but more importantly, it’s well-paced and quite engaging. Because of its shortness, there are no filler chapters, everything that happens is pertinent to the mystery and Harrington gives you no time to relax. If you are to guess, or even just speculate the identity of Kayla Sloane’s murderer, your eyes must be wide open at all times. Even the smallest thing might be relevant.

Jade was a great main character, mature and organized, very self-aware. She was never careless or ignorant and she knew how to stand up for herself. I expected no less from Kim Harrington, especially since she didn’t need cheap tricks to further complicate the plot. Two boys were interested in Jade, but although she interacted with both, the love triangle never reared its ugly head. It was never a question who she’d end up with, only when and how. I liked how Jade handled that entire situation, and I especially liked how she treated both Donovan and Kane. She was attracted to Donovan from the first time she saw him and she was very much aware of it the entire time. For his part, Donovan was very sweet and outspoken about his feelings. His girlfriend died only six months before Jade moved into her house so of course he had a few issues, but I thought he handled them well overall and I really liked him.

The mystery was a tiny bit predictable, I admit, but whenever I started thinking that Harrington would fall into a painfully predictable pattern, Jade did something gutsy and unexpected that surprised me and put my mind at ease. I suppose there are worse things than an easy-to-guess murderer, especially if the main character is interesting enough and the book is tightly paced.

Lastly, the fact remains that I couldn’t remember the details of Clarity to save my life (although I do remember the basic plot and some of the characters) and I have a feeling it will be even worse with The Dead and Buried. It’s not a book meant to stay with you, but that’s something I can occasionally appreciate.

 

27 comments:

  1. Oh I haven't read any Kim Harrington's books but now for sure I know what to expect. I can't say that the books sounds really promising it's like an interesting read but nothing more. Maybe I'll give it a try one day. Great review Maja :)

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  2. I love your opening paragraph :D Since I haven't read ANY of Kim's books..I was nodding along with each point until I got to the fourth and when I read "You'll forget the details in a month or so" I cracked up laughing! I'm really interested in the mystery...although the fact that it's a little predictable has me a tad disappointed. I hope you'll be able to remember this a bit better than Clarity though :) Lovely review, Maja<3

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  3. I do like Kim's books just for those reasons. They're not drop-everything-you-have-to-read-this-now but they are cute and fun and the romance is generally well done. Sounds like a good little mystery!

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  4. Great review Maja and despite a little predictability I do like that you read this in one sitting, sometimes that is the perfect escape.

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  5. I read "Clarity" and I thought it was just okay. I didn't really care for the characters and the writing so I skipped this one and I'm glad that I did. I need something a bit more meaty with my mysteries. Glad you enjoyed it though!

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  6. "It was never a question who she’d end up with, only when and how."

    Yes! I really loved that about the romantic situation in this book as well. I was worried for a while at the beginning that we'd get a full-fledged triangle, but that never really happened and I really enjoyed Jade as a character. I agree this isn't a book that will stick with me forever and ever, but it was fun and entertaining and I need those types of books to counteract all the really heavy ones:) Beautiful review Maja!

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  7. I've never read a Harrington book, but she sounds like an author who you can rely on for a solid read and that has good elements whilst not totally blowing you away.

    I like the sound of Dead and Buried being concise, so I shall definitely have to think about picking it up.

    Great review! :)

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  8. I haven't read any of Kim's books yet but I have heard good things. This and Clarity are both on my TBR. I'm glad to hear that Jade is a likeable and interesting character and that thankfully, there isn't a love triangle. Great review Maja, I look forward to this one now :)

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  9. Sometimes I can completely overlook the predictability of books too, as long as the book is able to keep my attention riveted and overall my reading experience is fun I don't mind at all. Also with the amount of books we devour it's getting hard to find ones that really blow you away and remain with you days afterwards. Just the other day my cousin was asking me about my current read and the mc's name and for the life of me I couldn't remember! But I'm glad that you still enjoyed this book Maja! Lovely review! :)

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  10. It's great that the characters were developed so well and the plot was nice and quick. Too bad that the mystery was a bit predictable. I haven't read anything by Harrington but I have been seeing this one around a lot and think I'll be adding some of her books to my TBR. Great review!

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  11. It's true that she makes you think and double guess everything but I had sort of guessed who the culprit was pretty early on. I was never 100% sure but it was my first guess. I felt about the same with this book, it was fun and very well paced, never boring and short so the predictability wasn't an end all, but it wasn't mind blowing either. Great review, lady!

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  12. It's hard when books just don't stay with you...especially in a series. I refuse to re-read certain books but sometimes I feel like I need to. I haven't read any of this series yet. Sigh!

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  13. Jade sounds great being self aware. THough I hate it when I can't remember details from a first book.
    Happy reading,
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

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  14. I'm not really sure this is the book for me but I can see why some people liked the book. Thanks for the honest review! :)
    World of Books

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  15. I enjoyed this one a bit better than you, but I agree it had problems. I did not like the romance at all, it just felt icky. I did though really like the journal that totally made the book for me.

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  16. I have Clarity but haven't read it yet. Not happy that it doesn't stay with you, but that is good to know so that I can read these books veery close together. I'm am happy that Jade sounds like a great character and that there is no triangle. Two big pluses from me! :) Brilly review!

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  17. You hit the nail on the head with this, Maja. I don't like Harrington precisely because everything is so forgettable and I turn to other authors for a fun read. I love that you're so honest about her novels, despite enjoying them to pieces - it's such an amazing quality. Fantastic review as always, dear!

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  18. Your first paragraph is essentially why I didn't bother finishing this one. It seemed decent, I was pretty sure I'd rate it 3 stars, but it also just didn't seem like something worth investing my time in when I wasn't going to really get into it, could see stuff coming, and would forget it in a few days.

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  19. I really enjoy Kim's books and I actually DO remember them pretty well. I haven't read this one yet, but I remember both Clarity books pretty well, and it's been ages since I read them. Which is unusual, I usually forget books pretty quickly and that's why I hate the year long wait for the next one. But I have been thinking about reading this. I think it's one I would really enjoy even if it doesn't blow me away, it's worth the read. I'm glad you mostly enjoyed it.

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  20. I haven't read this one but I did read her Clarity series and remember being entertained while reading them. Lol, like you though, I can't remember much of the details anymore. I've read Harrington's books when I need a break from blogging/reviewing books because they have a nice mystery and cute romance and will probably continue that trend with this one then, Maja.

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  21. I can deal with a little predictability if I like the characters (and the rest of it) well enough. Funnily enough, I can't recall much about Clarity either, though I did like it a lot at the time. I suppose Harrington is an author whose books I will never regret reading, even if they do fall short of becoming favourites. Lovely review, Maja!

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  22. I can deal with a little predictability if I like the characters (and the rest of it) well enough. Funnily enough, I can't recall much about Clarity either, though I did like it a lot at the time. I suppose Harrington is an author whose books I will never regret reading, even if they do fall short of becoming favourites. Lovely review, Maja!

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  23. This sounds like a fun read, despite it being rather forgettable. I'm SO glad to hear you say that you have Kim Harrington amnesia, because I also cannot remember ANYTHING about Clarity. I feel really bad, because I remember enjoying it! I'm sure if I read this book, I'd have a similar experience.

    Still, I'm very pleased to hear that there is no love triangle, and that the writing is quick and engaging. I also don't mind a sort of predictable murderer as long as I'm entertained. Wonderful review, as usual! :-)

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  24. I'm shamed to say I've not read any of her books yet. But this sounds like a neat little read. I think this is the first I've seen it around the blogs too. So thanks for sharing it.

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  25. You're right about this book, Maja. It's enjoyable but not memorable. Just the fix you need when you don't want to do too much thinking but want to be entertained. Wonderful review. :)

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  26. I just received this one for review and have never read anything by Kim Harrington, so it's interesting to read your summary of her as an author. It all sounds good to me, even if none of it is particularly mind-blowing. That's okay though - I don't need a wow-factor necessarily, I just need to be kept entertained for a short period and it sounds like this one delivers on that. Even if it is a bit predictable and forgettable.

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  27. I really enjoyed this book. It had all the right elements for me: kick-ass heroine, creepy ghost, dreamy guy!!!! Even if I enjoyed it a wee bit more, I'm glad you liked it!

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