Book Review: This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress #5) by Jeaniene Frost


Danger waits on both sides of the grave.  

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire husband Bones have fought for their lives, as well as for their relationship. But just when they've triumphed over the latest battle, Cat's new and unexpected abilities threaten to upset a long-standing balance . . .

With the mysterious disappearance of vampires, rumors abound that a species war is brewing. A zealot is inciting tensions between the vampires and ghouls, and if these two powerful groups clash, innocent mortals could become collateral damage. Now Cat and Bones are forced to seek help from a dangerous "ally"—the ghoul queen of New Orleans herself. But the price of her assistance may prove more treacherous than even the threat of a supernatural war . . . to say nothing of the repercussions Cat never imagined.

Ahh, Jeaniene Frost.  You are the perfect antidote to the book slump and the book depression.  You even break me out of nesting mode.  I had a hard time putting This Side of the Grave down, it was that good!  I think it's hard to keep a series interesting after five books, but Frost does a great job.  Her books are not short, quick reads like Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse novels, which I love.  I don't mind waiting a year or so for an installment in a series if it's going to be a nice thick read like Frost's novels.  I read it slowly to make it last, but it was still over too fast. 

This Side of the Grave was definitely racier than Destined for an Early Grave (Night Huntress #4).  It seems like the romance factor in Frost's books varies from book to book.  I'm no fan of romances, so I tend to really prefer the books without all of the sex.  However, it did not keep me from enjoying every bit of the layered plot and excellent writing. 

Attention all Night Huntress fans---do you like Cat better as a human or a vampire?  I'm voting human, but vampire Cat is growing on me.

The ending left things open for One Grave at a Time (Night Huntress #6), but not so open that there is a big cliffhanger---kudos to Frost for leaving things at a perfect end where I'm excited to keep reading but not mad that you left me hanging for months!

Just One Gripe: 
If, like me, you have not read the Night Huntress spin off series, please be aware that this book contains spoilers for the Night Huntress World books.  I now know how both books in the Night Huntress World end, which is a huge disappointment for me.  There's no way to read this book without spoiling First Drop of Crimson or Eternal Kiss of Darkness, so I would recommend reading those books before reading This Side of the Grave

The Best Thing About This Book: 
The layered plot keeps things so interesting and makes me excited about the rest of the series.  I think that this is one of those series that's going to just keep getting better and better with each book. 

Appropriate for a younger audience: 

Characters: 5/5
Plot: 5/5
Setting/Imagery: 5/5
Originality: 5/5
Ending: 5/5
Total Score:  25/25


  1. I'm glad you liked it so much! I still need to read this one, then I'll let you know if I like human-Cat or Vamp-Cat better :)

  2. I gotta say, I like Vamp Cat. She did lose some of her stubbornness so that has made her lose some of her charm too, but I still think the world of her.

    And you know, I didn't even stop to consider how this book really spoils the NHW books, but your are absolutely right, especially with FDoC. Bum deal. I read them in order so I didn't even notice, but I will certainly keep that in mind when I'm recommending the books.

    Yay for Frost antidote!

  3. In this 5th book of the series, we find a more mature Cat, learning to reflect before acting given the catastrophic results in the previous two books because of her leaping before looking. She and Bones are settling into their marriage, becoming more comfortable with their relationship but still keeping the steam in it!


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