Friday, January 9, 2015

Review: Gravediggers by Cindy M. Hogan


Gravediggers by Cindy M. Hogan
Paperback, 342 pages
Published 2013 by O'neal Publishing 
Source: I received a copy in exchange for an honest review
Winner of best YA novel of the year 2013.

Seventeen-year-old Billy thinks his father’s murder will never be solved—until he stumbles across an old ammo box while digging a grave in his small-town Tennessee cemetery.

What he finds leads him to question everything he knows, and his search for answers will uncover more than he bargained for: lies, secrets, and conspiracies—and behind them all, a dangerous truth.

Young Adults, teens, and adults will love this exciting suspenseful mystery with a dash of romance. You won't want to put it down.

My Review:
I have really enjoyed everything I've read by this author, but I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed this one. Was Ms. Hogan a teenage boy in a former life? I was amazed at how well she was able to write the feelings of a young man. 
Billy is a very hardworking, mature, Southern boy with excellent manners. I only wish I could get my kids to be as obedient as Billy. His father was killed when he was young, but Billy is learning that there's more to the accident than he thought. He and his best friend, Henry, work as gravediggers in the local cemetery and the discovery of an old ammo box holds clues that lead to a lot of unanswered questions. 
Henry is a very big support to Billy. I loved the camaraderie these two share--they have their ups and downs, but they are loyal. When Henry's cousin, Amanda, comes for the summer, she adds a new dimension to the friendship and to the unofficial investigation, bringing up things they'd never thought of. 
Billy is a great character and I've mentioned some qualities before. I really enjoyed watching him mature even more and put the pieces to this puzzle together. The emotions that he went through-- dealing with his dad's death, unraveling secrets, discovering truths he never would have guessed, and his new romantic feelings--were very real and engaging. I liked Henry and Amanda, too. 

This one is a fun, suspenseful, mystery with some romance thrown in.

Content: 2-3 mild cuss words; murders, death, one fight, but nothing is too graphic; mild romance; very mild references to religion. Clean.

Amazon  *  B&N

About the Author:
Cindy M. Hogan graduated with a BA in education and is inspired by the unpredictable teenagers she teaches. More than anything she loves the time she has with her own teenage daughters and wishes she could freeze them at this fun age. If she's not reading or writing, you'll find her snuggled up with the love of her life watching a great movie or planning their next party. Most of all, she loves to laugh.

She is the bestselling and award winning author of the Watched trilogy, a YA suspense series with a dash of romance. She has since branched off to write a mystery, Gravediggers, that won Best YA novel of 2013, a contemporary romance, Confessions of a 16-Year-Old Virgin Lips, and two in a spy series, Adrenaline Rush and Hotwire.