Saturday, February 9, 2013

CHEAT THE GRAVE by Vicki Pettersson

The Fifth Sign of the Zodiac Series
May 25th, 2010
Urban Fantasy/Paranormal
Mass Market Paperback
Reviewed by Dawn (
Obtained by Publisher


For Joanna Archer, giving up her powers to save a child and a city was a no brainer. It altered her destiny and now her former friends are now her enemies and the bad guys are not afraid of her anymore. But Joanna’s part in a prophecy is still in play and something deadly is stalking her in the plane where nightmares exist, where the line of good and evil blur. For if Joanna doesn’t get her former friends and allies behind her, she will lose much more than her life this time around.

In the Signs of the Zodiac series, we met Joanna Archer, a socialite by day and an agent of the light by night. With special powers, she battles the evil darkness along side her other fellow agents. In the beginning of the series, she was a bitter, tough, cynical woman but through the course of the series, we have seen Joanna grow as a character, soften her hard edges and let people come close to her. But in this fifth installment, we find Joanna beaten down, vulnerable and afraid. This is a story of more than good vs. evil, light vs. the dark but of a woman who finds herself at a crossroads. When the fourth book ended, I was shocked and dismayed. The author’s surprising twist had me reeling and in this fifth book, we find Joanna still dealing with everything that has happened to her, to her city, Las Vegas. The author does a wonderful job in creating flawed characters and Joanna is a perfect example of it. She is unsure of her place in the world and as she tries to figure things out, the author delivers a few twists and turns that leave you speechless until the very end. The part where Joanna wallows in self-pity, doing the whole ‘poor me’ routine made me wish the storyline went a little faster as it dragged on at times. But once the author got past that, the story rocked. It was fast paced, kept me glued to the edge of my seat and I was eager to see what would happen next.

This is an author who is a master at world building and storytelling. The world building alone for this series rocked and the storylines were delightful as each book capitalized on the last one and the characters grew with each book. Ms. Pettersson delivers another hit in her fifth book of the zodiac series and I look forward to seeing where Joanna goes from here. If you are looking for enjoyable characters and great world building along with the grittiness of an urban fantasy, then try the Signs of the Zodiac series and be prepared to fall in love with this series and with the author.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement


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