cover image Eighth Grave After Dark

Eighth Grave After Dark

Darynda Jones. St. Martin's, $25.99 (352p) ISBN 978-1-250-04565-2

The eighth entry in Jones's tongue-in-cheek supernatural soap opera with ever escalating stakes (after 2014's Seventh Grave and No Body) finds Charlie Davidson and her super-sexy, literally-from-hell husband, Reyes, hiding from hellhounds in a convent while awaiting the birth of their daughter, Beep. Somehow they're still doing bits of ghost-supported detective work despite these desperate circumstances. Series followers will appreciate significant turns in the many ongoing characters' stories as well as Jones's signature fiery sex and some surprisingly spicy soul-devouring scenes. But while Charlie attempts to find a missing teenager, understand a ghost nun, and stay on the trail of her father's killer, fans of the sleuthing side may find that work gets lost amid all the personal drama. The series' biggest problem is that the widening gap between the characters' power level and their concerns, which puts humor at odds with plot: though Charlie is a god preparing to interfere with Lucifer's takeover of the Earth, she's worried about whether pregnancy makes her look like a blimp. Agent: Alexandra Machinist, Janklow & Nesbit. (May)