The Restorer (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

The Restorer by Amanda Stevens
The Graveyard Queen #1

My name is Amelia Gray. I’m a cemetery restorer who sees ghosts. In order to protect myself from the parasitic nature of the dead, I’ve always held fast to the rules passed down from my father. But now a haunted police detective has entered my world and everything is changing, including the rules that have always kept me safe.

It started with the discovery of a young woman’s brutalized body in an old Charleston graveyard I’ve been hired to restore. The clues to the killer—and to his other victims— lie in the headstone symbolism that only I can interpret. Devlin needs my help, but his ghosts shadow his every move, feeding off his warmth, sustaining their presence with his energy. To warn him would be to invite them into my life. I’ve vowed to keep my distance, but the pull of his magnetism grows ever stronger even as the symbols lead me closer to the killer and to the gossamer veil that separates this world from the next.

Ever since the day she saw her first ghost at the age of nine, Amelia has lived by a very strict set of rules. Never look at them, stay away from the haunted, the list goes on. However all her rules and walls come crashing down when she crosses paths with the sexy police detective Devlin, as he is one of the haunted. He needs her help to solve a case about bodies turning up in the cemetery she was hired to restore. She wants to warn him of the ghosts that are leeching away his life, but to do so would only transfer them to her. She knows she should stay away, but finds her inexplicably drawn to him, pulling her further down the rabbit hole than she ever wanted to be.

This book caught me off guard as I was expecting an urban fantasy that involved ghosts. It actually turned out to be a very chilling mystery full of creepiness and that "something is behind you" feeling. The descriptions are so vivid that you literally feel everything that is happening to Amelia and you continually count your lucky stars that while it may feel realistic, it isn't actually happening to you. It amazes me the self discipline Amelia must have had in order to train herself not to react to such terrifying presences. Of all the supernatural abilities to have, I think I would least like to have her's as I would have long crumbled under the pressure of my life always being at stake. Her nerves must be made of steel. Sure she gets scared plenty, but what is important is that she never once crumbles under the pressure.

There is some major mojo going on between Devlin and Amelia. For someone as sensible as Amelia, it should seem odd that she should be so "foolish" when it came to decisions involving him. However, you can really feel the magnetism that seems to pull them together, and as she has never felt so drawn to anyone it is no wonder she can't stay away. While it wasn't specifically stated in the book, part of me wonders if the ghost of his wife is somehow largely responsible for this pull. I sense somehow in the future more will come about in just how much she is able to influence Amelia, and what she actually wants. To be honest, the wife's ghost creeped me out more than anything else that happened, as I got the sense that whatever her end game was, it would be all consuming.
I am not usually a big fan of horror books, or well anything scary for that matter. However, that being said this book was the perfect blend of suspense and creepiness to keep me utterly enthralled without wanting to run for the hills. It never once stepped over that edge of biting my nails to something too overwhelmingly scary. Granted I did read this in the middle of the day, so I can't say I would have fared so well at night while home alone. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good suspense that will suck you in and and not let go until the very end. Definitely a compelling and chilling read that you will not want to miss.

(Received from Netgalley)


Pre-order at Amazon:
The Restorer (Graveyard Queen)

Challenge Categories:
Outdo Yourself
Horror and Urban Fantasy
New Author 


  1. I actually like the sound of this book. Is it aimed at adults? Or is it YA? Whatever it is, it sounds scary as hell! I think I might give it a try though... but I'll be sure only to read it during the daytime, when I'm not alone!
    Thanks for the heads up on this book.

  2. I'm not usually a fan of horror books either, but this one sounds really interesting. Great review. I think I will have to give this one a look.

  3. Great review!! I loved this book so much, my review is also on my blog! I totally get what you mean about Devlin's wife...there's something going on there for sure!

  4. Really Great Review.
    I love the sound of this book. I just downloaded the prequel, and cannot wait to read it!

  5. تعتبر شركة النسر الذهبى مناولى شركات نقل العفش والاثاث بالدمام والجبيل والخبر التي تستخدم ونش ورفع الاثاث والعفش الايطالي فنحن شركة نقل اثاث بالدمام والخبر والجبيل والقطيف اول من قام باستخدام تكنولوجيا حديثة في نقل عفش بالرياض شركة نقل اثاث بالدمام
    شركة نقل اثاث بالخبر
    باستخدام أحدث الآليات في النقل لضمان أمان خدمة النقل في اقل وقت واقل تكاليف.بالاضافه انه نقدم خدمات أخرى كتغليف الاثاث قبل عملية نقله فنحن بدورنا ك شركة نقل اثاث بالدمام والخبر نراعى جميع معاير الجودة التى تحفظ لعملائنا سلامة عفشه أثناء عملية النقل شركة نقل اثاث بالجبيل
    شركة نقل اثاث بالقطيف
    إن النقل عندنا فى شركة نقل اثاث بالدمام والخبر أمر بسيط وليس معقدا. مهمتنا هي تبسيط خدمة النقل بضمان الحفاظ على منقولاتك دون عناء شركة نقل اثاث بالاحساء

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