Book Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3/5 stars)
Imagine that for two months that you had the same dream over and over again. It’s a simple dream: a dark man standing in the corner of the room, watching you. Nothing happens, he’s just there. But it turns out these “dreams” aren’t dreams; no, this man is actually there…and you’re able to control him.
By the way, he is also the Grim Reaper.
Sorry. Keeper of Souls.
This is exactly what happens to Emma. After having these dreams for months, fueling her constant anxiety over a potential stalker, she discovers she has the power to summon Blake, the Grim Reaper (err…Keeper of Souls) at will. Her soul is drawn to him, and he is drawn to her. But Blake isn’t familiar with being human. He only just learned what garlic tastes like and how to sit properly on a chair. As their romance buds, both Emma and Blake need to learn how to adapt. Or spend most of their time bickering.
Personally, I am a sucker for any story that focuses on a “Grim Reaper” like being (or Keeper of Souls, Gatekeeper to the Afterlife, Death, or whatever this being wants to be called). Blake is unintentionally hilarious, attempting to adapt to his new “corporeal” abilities while under Emma’s sphere of influence. The concept of the Keeper of Souls in A Grim Affair, coupled with the way Emma and Blake’s souls are bound, makes for a unique story not told before.
That being said, I have never been one for “dream romances/connections” or “literal soulmate” story lines. This is a personal preference, but I felt that using these mechanisms as a cop out allowed for Emma and Blake’s romance to move at a very fast pace. Emma’s own skepticism over Blake didn’t last long, and without much to back it up at first, the fact that he was the Grim Reaper seemed like a second thought. I would have loved to spend more time seeing Emma’s feelings and inner-conflicts about this revelation. The narrative also repeats itself quite often, recanting about events that took place a few chapters earlier. I’d rather spend that time examining more of Emma and Blake’s relationship and possibly building out some of the revelations around their soul connection.
Nevertheless, A Grim Affair is a fun read, and I found myself giggling as Blake learns to navigate the corporeal world. “I am sat” Blake tells Emma with pride as he learns to sit in a chair. It is almost impossible to not find that amusing and adorable!
So if you want a quick fun read, definitely check out A Grim Affair.
What’s it about?
Wait! What? The Grim Reaper’s real?
I most definitely did not believe in the supernatural. Until the Grim Reaper showed up in my bedroom demanding to know why I’ve been controlling him. Which, of course, I haven’t. He also said that I am the only one who’s seen him in around about a thousand years. Which, of course, can’t possibly be true. Something peculiar is most definitely going on…
Emma lives a normal life, so normal that her own mother has been known to accuse her of being boring. But then she sees a mysterious stranger, one that no-one else admits to seeing, and her life changes forever. Emma becomes convinced she is being stalked but the Grim Reaper says it’s not him. And if it isn’t him, who is it?
Unbeknownst to Emma her life is in danger. Can she find the answers she so desperately needs before it is too late?