Tag Archives: the Harper Connelly Series

Grave Secret

This is a review of the novel “Grave Secret” by Charlaine Harris. It is the fourth novel in the Harper Connelly Series. It follows on from “An Ice Cold Grave“.

As this book is a part of a series, the following review may reveal some details of the previous novel/s. Do not read if you intend to read this series in the future and don’t want to know of any potential plot spoilers.

Harper has been hired by a wealthy rancher family in Texas. Lizzie Joyce isn’t too specific about what it is that she wants. She’s intrigued by Harper, so just about any reason to hire her will do. So she decides to get Harper to confirm that her grandfather did indeed die of a heart attack. Harper explores the family grave sites, and discovers that old man Joyce, was surprised nastily before his fatal episode of cardiac arrest, and that another person interred there died rather differently than what has been accepted as the explanation for her death for years.

While the Joyce family gets to the bottom of their mystery, Harper has her own family mystery to deal with. There’s been a reported sighting of Cameron. Could it really be her? And if not, will they ever find out what happened to her missing sister Cameron?

I enjoyed this book. It was nice to get closure on the Cameron issue. I feel like Harper and Tolliver are going to have a nice life from here on out. I do wish that there were more Harper Connelly novels, but I understand that Harris is finished writing them. Who knows, maybe Harper will pop up again like Harris’ other characters do (for example: Lily Bard’s appearance in the Sookie Stackhouse novels, or the reappearance of other characters in Charlaine’s newest novel “Midnight Crossroad”).

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Grave Surprise

This is a review of the novel “Grave Surprise” by Charlaine Harris. It is the second novel in the Harper Connelly Series. It follows on from “Grave Sight“.

As this book is a part of a series, the following review may reveal some details of the previous novel/s. Do not read if you intend to read this series in the future and don’t want to know of any potential plot spoilers.

Harper Connelly and her brother Tolliver Lang are back on the road, finding the dead, and/or determining the cause of death for those that they find. They have been invited to Bingham College in Memphis Tennessee, by Dr Clive Nunley as special guests for his “An Open Mind: Experiences Outside the Box” class. It’s obvious that he is hoping to expose Harper as the shady fraud he believes her to be. Pity for him, he’s wrong. But he’s not the only one that gets a shock during Harper’s guest appearance. Dr Clive Nunley has asked Harper to tour the old cemetery on campus grounds, and list the cause of death for those interred there. The Professor has only just discovered the untouched records of the cemetery, and Harper has no way of obtaining any helpful information before her appearance. It’s clear that Dr Nunley considers this to be a perfect test of Harper’s “abilities”.

He’s sorely disappointed when Harper passes his test. However, Harper has found something unexpected. On her examination of an old grave, she’s discovered two bodies as opposed to the expected single body. There’s the grave’s original occupant and there’s fresher remains. Even more surprising is the fact the Harper has recognized them as the remains of a child that she was hired to find years earlier. Tabitha Morgenstern went missing in Nashville, and she’s been presumed dead for all this time. Who murdered Tabitha? It seems too much of a coincidence that Harper is the one who finally located her. Tolliver and Harper find themselves embroiled in mystery again.

I really, really love the way that Charlaine Harris writes mystery. I will never tire of her writing style. Also to be admired, is the way she creates her characters. All of them have such personality and are so individual. I enjoyed this novel. I liked how it highlighted another part of Harper’s life and work, how she dealt with clients, media and skeptics.

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Grave Sight

This is a review of the novel “Grave Sight” by Charlaine Harris. It is the first novel in the Harper Connelly Series.

Harper possesses a rare ability that connects her with the dead. She can locate bodies and determine the cause of death. She can see why they’ve died, but in the case of a murder or foul play, she cannot see the killer, just the dead person’s last moments. This ability was bestowed on Harper after she was struck by lightning as a teen. She’s made a living out of her strange ability, helping people find the bodies of their lost loved ones and providing them with closure. Her brother Tolliver Lang (they’re step siblings) travels around with her and helps her with her searches and provides support (finding the dead can be very draining).

Harper and Tolliver find themselves in the small town of Sarne in the Ozarks. Harper has been tasked with finding the body of the missing (and presumed dead) teenaged girl Teenie Hopkins. She and her boyfriend, Dell Teague, both went missing. Dell was found dead, and Teenie was just presumed to be a runaway. But then ugly rumours began to spread. It’s been said that Dell murdered Teenie and then committed suicide. His mother Sybil would like to put a stop to these rumours, so she’s hired Harper.

But when Harper finds Teenie, she finds a whole lot more, and the deaths of the two teenagers become a mystery that sorely needs to be solved.

Running in the background is the deeper mystery of Harper’s missing sister Cameron, who vanished when they were teens. Harper believes that Cameron is dead, and hopes that someday she will find her. But she and Tolliver may never discover what happened to Cameron Connelly.

I first read this book some time ago, and loved it then. Re-reading it, I still love it. Like anything I’ve read of Charlaine Harris’ it’s compelling and very hard to put down. The Harper Connelly Series is darker and more somber than the Sookie Stackhouse Series (Trueblood), but just as intriguing. I love the way that Harris writes her mysteries. I am always wanting to continue reading and I like the pace of her novels.

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