Review: A Grave Prediction by Victoria Laurie

A Grave Prediction by Victoria Laurie is the 14th book in the Psychic Eye Mystery series, filled with humor, threatening situations, and the spot-on sixth sense of a crime-solving psychic.

Bestselling author Victoria Laurie begins her latest book by loaning out her protagonist, Abby Cooper, a cold case consultant for the Austin, Texas division of the FBI, to the Los Angeles division. There, she is greeted by hardnosed detectives that are highly skeptical of what they refer to as her “so-called abilities.” But, her abilities are real and on-target—as she proves to Special Agent Hart during an elevator ride where she details certain personal info about the agent that she has no way of knowing except psychically.

Still, Abby has her own concerns about her predictions, as evidenced in her thoughts about the future.

The thing I hate about the future is that it’s so freaking unpredictable. I know, I know-that’s not something you usually hear from a psychic. But it’s a fact. Yep. It’s a stinky, irritating, frustrating, annoying fact that the future is far less predictable than even I like to admit.

Still, as much as I may whine about how hard it is to nail down what’s coming up in the next few months for a client, it’s always supercool when something I say will happen…actually does.

I suspect that the reason the future is so nebulous—even for those of us well practiced at predicting it—is that destiny itself isn’t something that’s set in stone, and on some levels, that’s pretty counterintuitive.

I know most people who believe in psychic ability might think the future is a direct path forward—like a paved road. The truth is that the future looks and feels more like a flowing river with lots of twists and turns, surprise tributaries, calming pools, a few beaver dams, and even more waterfalls.

A series of bank robberies sets the scene for Abby’s new case. It seems it’s a slam dunk for the thieves; they made off with enormous amounts of cash and left virtually no clues.

Her psychic ability sends her and her team to a tract of land that was recently cleared for development. However, once there, Abby, instead of finding clues to the robberies, gets a vision of four buried bodies. While the site search only turns up artifacts and bones from a local Native American tribe, it is more than enough to delay any construction for a long while. Though her ability is beginning to be more and more doubted, Abby knows that her visons are rarely wrong. If the bodies aren’t there yet, it simply means that it is still possible to change the future and stop four people from being murdered.

Luckily, Abby has her best friend, Candice Fusco, by her side to help with the case. Not officially on the case (she has been warned to stay away and not interfere in LA by her own husband Brice, who runs the Austin office), she surprises Abby by showing up anyway. Smart, protective, and taking nothing at face value, Candice is the type of friend that everyone should have.

Her skills are especially important as this duo faces an evil sociopath and a very dysfunctional family. Abby and Candice may not play by all the rules, but when it comes to protecting those that need it most, they will do what it takes.

The characters in the story are likeable and interesting. The friendship between Abby and Candice is genuine. I liked the way they play off each other like “Sundance and Huckleberry,” nicknames they have for each other in the story. It’s a nice turn by Victoria Laurie, showing smart, strong women, whose friendship enhances both their personal and professional lives.

Given the choice, one hundred percent of the time I’d rather investigate a case with Candice at my side. Unless of course we were getting shot at. Or attacked with knives. Or are falsely imprisoned. Pulled into raging rivers, rammed off the edge of bridges, kidnapped, strangled, or strapped to a bomb, or are running from serial killers, the nob, the law, and/or our husbands…

Pause…

Pause…

Hmmm, allow me to amend. Given the choice, ten percent of the time I’d rather investigate any case with Candice. The other ninety percent I’d rather be at the Taco Shack enjoying a giant wet burrito, but why split hairs? The point is that I was glad to be out from under the FBI’m a Dumble-dumb’s scrutiny and advancing the case with my bestest bud at my side…

As with all good cozy mysteries, there is less sex and violence than in other “hardcore” mysteries, but enough to add a new interest to the story’s characters, making them very relatable. That’s what makes this book and series so satisfying and readable. The end result of this mystery is good solid read that will make you want to read all the books in the series and become friends with Abby and Candice.

 

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Kristen Houghton is the author of nine top-selling novels, including For I Have Sinned and Grave Misgivings, books 1 and 2 in the bestselling new series, A Cate Harlow Private Investigation. Book 3 in the series, Unrepentant: Pray for Us Sinners, will be published in the fall of 2016. She is hard at work on a new series that features a paranormal investigator with distinct powers of her own.

Houghton is also the author of two non-fiction books and numerous short stories.

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