Sixth Grave on the Edge uses the typical Charley Davidson formula of mysteries to be solved (standard and paranormal) using detective skills (also standard and paranormal) combined with a little romance. I'm not going to talk about those mysteries today. What I am going to talk about is Charley and her co-conspirators. The characters in Sixth Grave are people/ghosts/dogs/supernatural beings we've grown fond of over the series. Each has her/his part in advancing the story and each grows a little in this installment of the Charley Davidson series.
First up - Charley Davidson herself. One line from Sixth Grave on the Edge sums up one of my all time favorite fictional characters. Who said it? The kid ghost – Angel. Kids can be so wise.
“You never listen. You're like those kids who poke forks in electrical outlets.”
And that is the essence of Charley Davidson. Always looking for the facts, Charley will poke into any outlet that might help her solve her case forward. And a few outlets that just happen to get in her way. Charley has a delightful, snarky sense of humor. She is willing to dive headlong into any situation to solve the case, save a soul or prevent the end of the world. Or whatever other good cause happens to land in her caseload. She always thinks she is ready for what will happen on these dives, but sometimes, help from her friends is the only thing that keeps her alive. Thank God for Garrett, Ubie, Cookie, Reyes, and Angel.
Oh, and Artemis. Love Artemis! The ghostly Rottweiler is both lovable and scary. But only demons need fear her. She protects Charley and Charley lets a Artemis sleep next to her.
Lets get back to Angel. He is a kid, but he is not. He has been around a long time. In Sixth Grave, more of the story of Angel comes out. It brought tears to my eyes. I blame that on both Darynda Jones storytelling and on narrator Lorelei King's interpretation.
Since I am discussing Charley's friends, I guess should include Reyes. Reyes has been pretty much an ass in previous books, but he is working on that. His character was pretty sedate in Sixth Grave. I am not sure if that is good or that is bad. He is more interesting as an ass. In Sixth Grave, Reyes is a better person, continues to watch out for Charley and comes to her aid if needed. But as far as I am concerned, he is a secondary character. Perhaps he will rise in importance a later chapter.
Ubie and Cookie are truly Charley's best friends. Cookie is always there when she needs a shoulder to cry on - or coffee. In the past, Ubie has had a tendency to save the day. Is it any wonder that the people that take care of Charley should be attracted to each other? The attraction has been going on for a while and Charley has had enough. Charley's antics to get them together are devious and complex. So complex, they just might backfire.
Then there is Garrett. Once dead, but resurrected, Garrett has been studying the prophecies concerning the son of Satan and Charley. Maybe. It is prophecy and you know how prophets are. They speak in mystery and allegory and code and gibberish. So who knows what they are really about. Or if they will come about. If we knew, there would not be a need for any other books. I like Garrett. He has gone to hell and back for Charley. He needs a bigger roll and more appreciation!
Once again, I was lucky to be able to listen to the audiobook version of this Charley Davidson installment. Honestly, I can't imagine experiencing the Charley Davidson series any way other than through the narration of Lorelei King. Her voice conveys Charley's sense of humor, compassion and heroics and make the character and the series memorable!