June 19, 2012

Review: Queen of the Dead, by Stacey Kade

Author: Stacey Kade
Title:  Queen of the Dead
Series: The Ghost and the Goth (#2)
ISBN: 9781423134671
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (May 31st 2011)

Buy your copy: Hardcover | Paperback

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“After being sent back from the light, Alona Dare - former homecoming queen, current Queen of the Dead - finds herself doing something she never expected: working. Instead of spending days perfecting her tan by the pool (her typical summer routine when she was, you know, alive), Alona must now cater to the needs of other lost spirits. By her side for all of this - ugh - “helping of others” is Will Killian: social outcast, seer of the dead, and someone Alona cares about more than she’d like.

Before Alona can make a final ruling on Will’s “friend” or “more” status, though, she discovers trouble at home. Her mom is tossing out Alona’s most valuable possessions, and her dad is expecting a new daughter with his wicked wife. Is it possible her family is already moving on? Hello! She’s only been dead for two months! Thankfully, Alona knows just the guy who can put a stop to this mess.

Unfortunately for Alona, Will has other stuff on his mind, and Mina, a young (and beautiful) seer, is at the top of the list. She’s the first ghost-talker Will’s ever met—aside from his father—and she may hold answers to Will’s troubled past. But can she be trusted? Alona immediately puts a check mark in the “clearly not” column. But Will is - ahem - willing to find out, even if it means leaving a hurt and angry Alona to her own devices, which is never a good idea.

Packed with romance, lovable characters, and a killer cliffhanger, Queen of the Dead is the out-of-this-world sequel to The Ghost and the Goth”
GoodReads’ blurb

Living up to The Ghost and the Goth wasn’t easy at all, and I think Queen of the Dead suffered from some middle-book syndrome, but I still loved getting back to Will and Alona. Even though half the time I wanted to smack Will over the head, and though I couldn’t help siding with Alona this time.

Anyway, let’s try to explain things a little.

Pace. This novel was as fast as the previous one, in that it just kept me reading until there was no book left and I didn’t check the page count once. Things were constantly happening, and while I almost screamed with frustration, the truth is that Will hardly gets a minute’s respite here.

Characters. Exactly as sweet (wait, can Alona be called sweet? I think not... but I like her anyway!) as ever. They still fit their archetypes, right after graduation, but they are as layered as any. The thing I like about this series is, of course, the characters and their chemistry. They are just what they should be if a real person were in their shoes, no extra drama and no superfluous angst. They are so real!

Will also turned out to have a major case of... identity crisis? When Mina stomps in stage, he burns with the need to find out more. He doesn’t really stop to think things through, he just pushes forth hoping to find answers. This would be understandable... but leaving Alona behind because of those answers? I think not. Whatever the new seers tell him, it won’t define him. His spirit guide (and girlfriend?) should have come first!

Taking that into account, I can absolutely see Alone taking the measures she took, and I can kind of understand her. She’s now in one hell of a mess, and I honestly don’t know how the other seers are going to react, what might happen now for her, for them. I really want to read the last book to find out!

I guess I didn’t like this title as much as the previous one because it had less “fun” moments, and because, while the pace was great, at the end I closed the book, thought “what happened here?” and came up with a very short answer. That’s why I think this is a bit of a “middle book”.

That said, it completely did its job: pushing me into reading final book, and fast.


  1. I have been wanting to read this series for some time. I'm glad to hear how fast paced they are and that you are wanting to get to the last one. I have read so many authors that say the middle book is the hardest.

    1. You totally should give this a try. The first one was better for me, but even then, the whole series is shaping up great! :)

  2. I think what i liked most about this book is that Kade didn't fall into the love triangle trap, although she totally could have, and when Mina showed up, I was convinced she would. Clean, simple and fun is how I would describe these books. They relax me.I agree with you that it suffers from a middle book syndrome, and that Will made some stupid decisions, but they were all understandable, which saved it for me.
    Anyway, I own book three, but I didn't find the time for it yet.

    I obviously found you on your new address, but I can't add it to my blogroll just yet because it says that there's no feed. Did you change your RSS settings? I'll try again later, and I'll change the button when you do, it still has the old URL in it. Anyway, congrats, I LOVE that you now have an author page.

    1. Understandable decisions, but I still wanted to grab hisneck and shake some sense into him *laughs* Still, I think that sentence is the best definition for the books ever: clean, simple and fun. I like it!

      And... *rolls eyes* I knew it couldn't be that easy, the whole migration thing. I'll change the button now and then start worrying about the RSS... I didn't touch a thing and it should be set up from the "parent" address, aka the blogspot subdirectory, but... Who knows?

      Did you visit the author page? *grins* What did you think?