The Kingdom – Amanda Stevens, 2012. Rating 3.5/5
Only hallowed ground can keep the ghosts away from Amelia Gray, but even that can’t protect her from her past in this spooky sequel to The Restorer.
Glad for the chance to leave Charleston and distance herself from memories of the dark, handsome, and haunted cop she fell hard for, Amelia takes on the job of restoring the Thorngate cemetery.
From the moment of her arrival in all-but deserted Asher Falls, Amelia senses something is wrong. And it’s not just the ghosts that she has the dubious gift of seeing: here she senses pure evil.
As she uncovers and repairs the old cemetery, she also unearths secrets the town has kept buried for a long time–including secrets of Amelia’s own past.
The Kingdom is one of those guilty pleasure reads, kind of like eating a piece of chocolate: quick and tasty. The story flies along, the supernatural elements and truly eerie imagery have a fresh feel to them, and the romance—which borders on hot and heavy—is enjoyable. The graveyard restoration aspect of this series is fascinating. Stevens weaves in old cemetery symbolism, burial traditions, and regional superstitions to make this series unique.
Intrigue, black magic, ghosts, hidden graves, and a handsome heir make The Kingdom a scary-fun read. Amelia is a gutsy heroine and while her interior monologue sometimes feels a bit repetitious, the story moves along to a breakneck climax that will leave you eager for the next installment.