Girl At the Grave by Teri Bailey Black [Review + Giveaway]

Posted November 1, 2018 by ohheyboo in Book Tour, Fiction, Giveaways, Historical, Mystery, Review, Romance, Suspense, Young Adult / 6 Comments

Girl At the Grave by Teri Bailey Black [Review + Giveaway]Girl At the Grave by Teri Bailey Black
Published by Tor Teen on August 7, 2018
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Mystery
Pages: 336
Format: Hardcover
Source: Fantastic Flying Book Club
Buy on Amazon

Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother's legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer.

Only one person believes Valentine is innocent—Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed all those years ago. Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.

Hey guys! Welcome to my stop on the Girl at the Grave book tour. I am super excited to share with you all my review along with a few favorite quotes for this amazing new debut novel.

Starting from the very beginning of the book – Girl at the Grave – very interesting title. It grabs your attention and makes you think – why is this girl at the grave for? Kinda spooky. Read the synopsis, “Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother’s legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer.” Seems okay so far. We have a daughter of a murderer, and apparently there is a guy who believes she is innocent. However the real kicker that made me say “yes please, give me more” – “Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.

Fast forward to actually opening the book and turning to page one, I read – Feaver Crossing, Connecticut 1849 – if I had picked this book up based on the title and synopsis I would not have known it would have been a historical fiction. I am normally not a fan of HF, but I am so glad I could step out of my comfort zone and enjoy the read.

Pretty much in the beginning of the story Valentine is sitting in an assembly at a private school that has recently started to allow girls to attend, however boys are historically created as a higher sex. While the assembly drones on Valentine slowly lets us in on a few of her secrets. Apparently her mom shot some rich man because she was a mad woman and was hanged quickly after a speedy three day trail. Sure Valentine was only six years old at the time and can barely remember the accident, but that doesn’t stop the whole town from making her life a living hell. She has been looked down upon from the moment her mom killed the man, or did she?

Valentine may appear less than average to her peers, but she is nothing short of extraordinary in the eyes of Sam and Rowan. She is beautiful, smart, a quick thinker and the perfect wifey material. Sam Frye is a good ol’ country boy who has stuck by Valentine’s side and helped her survive after her mother’s death. Since then they have been inseparable, even though it is strictly a “friendzone” relationship, whereas Sam wants more. Rowan Blackshaw is the complete opposite of Sam, he is educated, wealthy, clean, and full of new excitement for Valentine. How can she ever choose from the love of the past and the possible love of the future? Will they still love her after they find out what she did? Can they love a daughter of a murderer?

As the story progress we of course see the struggles of a love triangle. Sam is ready to fight for Valentine’s hand in marriage while Rowan wants them to elope and run away from his tight fisted grandmother who wants him to take over the family bank and marry a lovely lady in town. All while this is happening Valentine is trying to find out why her mother killed Mr. Blackshaw {Rowan’s father}, why and who is going around town murdering those who want to expose the secret plus trying to escape the ties of a noose herself. As you can see she has a lot on her plate.

What will happen once truth comes to light? Will she be restored in the community? Will she be with Sam or Rowan? Will she end up alone? Will she be the next one to hang?


Sorry for my long ranting, but honestly, this book had me on the edge of my seat. I kept looking up Teri Black on Google to make sure she wasn’t some already acclaimed, experienced author, because this was just too good to be true. I normally struggle with historical fiction because I hate the fact that humans use to be so low in life. With lesser genders, slaves, hangings, witch trials, genocide and all the other horrific themes of history. With that being said I can say that Black did a marvelous job at giving us a little bit of history with a lot of mystery. I enjoyed each and every character [maybe not their personalities, but definitely the way they were depicted], the twist and turns, the thrill and the love story. This book taught me to always fight for what you believe in and to never give in to the peer pressure and rumors of life.

Favorite Quotes

“The whole head is sick,” the Reverend Mr. Oliver read with gravity. “And the whole heart faint.”

“Today, I felt like a wet cat brought indoors-and smelled like one with my damp wool dress.”

“The girl looked monstrous. Her cheek scarred by a slash. One eye blinded. Her neck severed and pieced back together. But it was something to hold on to, a remembrance of what I’d almost had. And what I would never have.”

“He smelled like freshly turned soil and split-rail fences and a log cabin with smoke curling from its chimney, like always. His hair was the color of summer straw, his face tanned and handsome, his lips quick to smile. His eyes were an unearthly shade of green. Sam was seventeen, but I still saw a freckled ten-year-old when I looked at him-the ten-year-old that who’d taught me how to fish and chop wood and kill a chicken. The friend who helped me survive after my mother died.” – um YUM! Sam sounds amazing. Ha. Can I get a man friend like that?

“Sam’s strong arms rubbed gently around mine, and my bones started to melt. His chest always felt as solid as stone, yet moldable as clay. One of his hands slid behind my neck, and every part of me wanted to look up.” – swoon.

“-strong and steady and hardworking, with a heart as golden and soft as butter.”

Those are just a few of my favorite quotes, but to be completely honest. I stopped keeping track around page 69. I became so entwined with the story that I forgot I was suppose to be “working”. Black is sure to keep you on your toes and always grasping for the next page.

Here are a few snippet of reviews that I found and thought – yes! that is exactly the best way to describe it.

“A searing Gothic story of love and murder that will burn in readers’ hearts and minds long after reading.” – #1 NYT Bestselling Author Kerri Maniscalco

“Kept me up late at night with its non-stop secrets, twists, and scandals. An entertaining homage to classic Gothic romances that will keep readers guessing until the very last chapter.” – Cat Winters, Morris nominated author of ODD & TRUE

I hereby rate this book: five-stars


Teri Bailey Black grew up near the beach in southern California in a large, quirky family with no television or junk food, but an abundance of books and art supplies. She’s happiest when she’s creating things, whether it’s with words, fabric, or digging in the garden. She makes an amazing chocolate cherry cake—frequently. She and her husband have four children and live in Orange County, California.

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Giveaway Prize: Wonderland Book Beau, size XL for a hardcover (USA only)

Starts: 10/25/18
Ends:  11/2/18

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6 responses to “Girl At the Grave by Teri Bailey Black [Review + Giveaway]

  1. star.chaser176

    There really aren’t enough mystery stories in the YA genre. I can’t wait to read this one. Thank you for the lovely review.

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