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Publisher's Summary

At 10 years old, Hadley Dixon's life changed forever. Since those few tragic weeks, she's tried to keep the past buried, but old bones have a way of rising up.

Grown now, Hadley can't hide any longer.

Haunted by a boy who never made it home, a woman who sings in moonlight and dances in flames, and the strange, scarred recluse who watches it all from the shadow of the pines, the time has come for Hadley to pay for her sins.

They say the truth will set you free, but sometimes it extracts a terrible price along the way. Is it a price Hadley's willing to pay?

A darkly moving mystery, with a southern gothic feel, The Grave Tender is the story of a family where no one is who they seem, the women at the heart of that family, and the extraordinary lengths they're willing to go to protect the ones they love.

©2015 Eliza Maxwell (P)2015 Eliza Maxwell

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kindle Customer
  • 15-06-2016

a great listen!

This audiobook had me from the very first to the very end. Great writing and great narration. I found the narrator very soothing to listen to - a good storyteller's voice. The relationships between the characters feels real as does the small-town southern setting. I could almost smell the jambalaya!
There was an awful lot of tragedy and I think the reactions to them could have been meshed out a bit more but then it might teeter on macabre. I did appreciate that it did not dwell on the different tragedies nor did it give gory details. I really enjoyed this book!
I was gifted this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Katherine
  • 18-12-2017

Strange Narration and Audio Problems

Is there anything you would change about this book?

It is such a sad book, although after having listened to a few books from this author, I suppose I should come to expect that. No one really makes it out unscathed.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Although I knew the inevitable conclusion was approaching, I was drawn to keep listening regardless. It was well-plotted with intriguing characters whom I cared about.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Homer V. Jones?

Yes. The narrator was a strange choice, given that the book is told from the point of view of a young girl, and later the same girl as she grows into a woman. The older male narrators voice seemed really incongruent with the "voice" of the book.

Do you think The Grave Tender needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No, I think the book ended on a satisfactory note. It ended about as I'd expected, but I still found it worthwhile to listen to the end.

Any additional comments?

The book seemed plagued with audio problems, apart from the narrator. On some sections, it seemed like they edited the tempo of his narration so the sentences were almost on top of one another without a break between, even when it wasn't a tense part of the book. Other times, a sentence or two would sound like he was far away from the microphone, then suddenly his voice would jump back in to normal range. Also, the audio quality often seemed different, like parts had been re-recorded and cut into the original. All of these incidents really took me out of the story, unfortunately. It had me focusing more on the narration that the plot at times, which was unfortunate.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Elizabeth
  • 01-12-2017

VERY DEPRESSING

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

I really didn't enjoy the story at all so not really anything

What was most disappointing about Eliza Maxwell’s story?

I did not feel there was any actual point to the story and it was a very difficult listen because of the nature of the dark subjects. I am not put off by books with heavy material, but I feel like there does need to be some kind of "point" to all of it.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Homer V. Jones?

I would have preferred a female, but I just didn't like this narrator at all. I felt that the narrator often emphasized words or sentences in a strange way, and I felt that he "overacted" a lot of the dialogue. I found that I would just barely catch some of the reading because he would also read in run-on sentences. Just NOT a good narrator for me all around!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Gothic_Potato
  • 09-09-2017

Not your usual little town book. Excellent read.

You think you know what's going on, but once you figure it out, it is terrifying. Questions that the characters have to make decisions about make you ask yourself what you would do. Very good

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Deedra
  • 15-08-2017

The Grave Tender

I absolutely LOVED this book!Hadleys mom is 'crazy'.When Hadley finds out why her life has changed for the worst.Her odd uncle lives in a shack in the woods.He gets blamed for a lot.Things are not what they seem in this family.It is fascinating.Homer V Jones is a terrific narrator.I was provided this book by the author, narrator or publisher for review.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Luelala
  • 22-03-2018

Thought Provoking , Engaging, A Must Read

I read and listen to a lot of audiobooks usually finishing a book between every one to three days at most and I can tell this book is one that will stay fresh in my memory for a long time. I do believe a lot people didn't care for this book much saying it is "too dark", unfortunately life can be dark, very dark. This book is about a family and their past with what I believe is to be as happy of a ending as could be unlike real life. Now there are some dark scary topics in this book from rape to abuse but I think it is well written and loved the surprise twist, (I often have most plots figured out well in advance) although I had figured some of it out I definitely didn't guess all of it. I read this through in one day, listening to it on audiobook, I have a bad bug and was laying in bed most of the time so I fully expected to drift off to sleep like I do with so many books no matter the genre. My favorite genres being horror and also mystery. I didn't fall asleep listening to this book and that is great, instead it kept me engaged in the story the whole time. I wasn't going to get this book because of some of the negative reviews but in the end I got it, I hope you will give it a read and decide for yourself if you also liked it. Oh as a added note although there are some bad things that happen I did appreciate the lack of bad language, sex scenes, and also that even though there is rape etc it isn't descriptive for those type of scenes. Yet you still are right there as it is all happening.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-02-2018

Great book.

Loved the mystery of the story. It was full of surprises. I would definitely purchase more books by Eliza Maxwell.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Reg
  • 23-01-2018

Family Secrets...

Can destroy lives in this listen that is fully developed, complex and richly textured with generations of southern family ties. The progression is timely and will leave you with a surprise and new insights into the characters each time there is a jog in the timeline. When Hadley returns home after leaving her Texas home to start a career, marry and have a family, she has no idea that she is starting a chain of events that will finally lift the curtain on the veil of mystery that surrounded her childhood and impacted everyone she ever knew.

There is a haunting quality to the writing that is captured perfectly by Homer Jones' narration. He does fine work with the women's voices and an excellent job with the male voices. His inflection, cadence and intonation is perfect for the material. If you are not afraid to hear about childhood trauma, this is an excellent listen! I listened on 1.5 speed.

I received this audiobook for free through Audiobook Boom! in exchange for an honest review.

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  • A. Elliott
  • 25-07-2016

Not to Be Missed

I fell head over heels in love with this book. Eliza Maxwell is a very gifted writer. She has a way of writing that makes you feel what the characters are feeling , and the narration by Homer V. Jones was the perfect choice for this story. He conveyed the characters emotions to a tee. The story itself deals with some very hard subject matter, but it is not done in a distasteful way. That aside, the rest of the story has funny and touching moments too. I think this would make an awesome movie. I can't wait to read more from Eliza, and I hope I am lucky enough to find more books narrated by Homer. This is such a great book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • jean doe
  • 18-06-2016

An Emotional Read..

Any additional comments?


This story is about Hadley Dixon who had a "disturbing" childhood.

Twenty three years later she returns to her childhood home and learns things (about her childhood friend, her uncle, and her mother).

Its an emotional read and sad in several scenes.

Homer V. Jones has a nice calming voice that added to the story.

Note:
"This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast."

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  • Tez
  • 03-09-2017

ok

i normally read a book from start finish however i found the pace a bit slow and cast difficult to remember