cover image The Last Grave

The Last Grave

Debbie Viguié. Signet, $7.99 mass market (368p) ISBN 978-0-451-23957-0

The second installment of Viguié’s paranormal Witch Hunt series (after The Thirteenth Sacrifice) finds police detective Samantha Ryan working in San Francisco and doing her best to forget the horrific events of her last case: taking down a murderous coven of witches in Boston. Raised in an ill-fated coven herself, Sam has vowed to be a good Christian and never to use her own magical powers—a vow she’ll have to break if she wants to solve the murder of Santa Cruz historian Winona Lightfoot. Sam’s senses tell her a witch was involved, and soon she uncovers evidence of a coven deep in the Santa Cruz mountains. She investigates, despite being haunted by incomplete childhood memories and taunted by an inner voice urging her to use her magic. The plot occasionally stumbles under the weight of its clichéd backstory, but the troubled protagonist and sense of brooding danger are enough to seduce paranormal fans. Agent: Howard Morhaim, Howard Morhaim Literary Agency. (Mar.)