Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris

The basics

Title: Grave Surprise


Series: Harper Connelly #2

- Grave Sight (2005)
- Grave Surprise (2006)
- An Ice Cold Grave (2007)
- Grave Secret (2009)

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Goodreads Summary:

At the request of anthropology professor Dr. Clyde Nunley, Harper Connelly and her stepbrother Tolliver come to Memphis to give a demonstration of Harper's unique talent. And what better place to have that demonstration than in a very old cemetery?

Dr. Nunley doesn't bother to hide his skepticism, especially when Harper stands atop a grave and senses two bodies beneath her - one of a centuries-dead man and the other of a young girl, recently deceased. When the grave is opened, Harper's claim is proven true. The dead girl is Tabitha Morgenstern, an eleven-year-old abducted from Nashville two years previously - a child whom Harper had tried, and failed, to find. The coincidence raises suspicions about her among the police - so she and Tolliver undertake their own hunt to find the killer. They make a nocturnal visit to the cemetery, hoping that Harper can sense something further about the murder.

And then, the next morning, a third dead body is found in the grave...

Read a full summary of Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris below. If you can’t remember what happened in Grave Sight and you need a refresher, then you’re in the right place.

what happened in Grave Surprise?

  • Harper and Tolliver have gone to Memphis. Harper has been asked to put on a show for Dr Clyde Nunley’s university class.
  • Harper goes to the old cemetery and identifies some bodies. She also finds the body of Tabitha Morgenstern, an eleven year old girl who she was hired to find eighteen months ago.
  • Harper reports this and is asked to stay in Memphis for the time being.
  • The Morgenstern family are currently in Memphis, having moved there to be closer to Grandma and Grandpa Mogenstern. Diane, Tabitha’s mother, is currently pregnant. Felicia – Tabitha’s step aunt – is also hanging around even though her only connection to the Morgensterns is from Mr Morgenstern’s first marriage. Bit weird.
  • Xylda, a local psychic, tells Harper that Tabitha was killed a few hours after her abduction.
  • Harper and Tolliver go to check out the cemetery again. They find Nunley’s body in the grave that Tabitha (and Josiah) had been buried in.
  • Agent Koenig asks Harper and Tolliver some questions. He’s not in charge of the case so it’s weird that he’s hanging around.
  • Koenig admits he was involved in Tabitha’s case to begin with but he wasn’t able to find anything. He knows Tolliver and Harper were at the cemetery. He wants Harper to see Nunley’s body and see what readings she can get.
  • Harper agrees, but she also wants to see Tabitha.
  • Harper also learns that Nunley’s car was at the cemetery that morning, except it wasn’t there when they were last night. Meaning someone has driven his car around.
  • Harper speaks to Frank Hart, Felicia’s father, and he gets drunk and starts letting some things slip.
  • Felicia calls Tolliver and asks him to come over.
  • Harper gets vibes and goes over to rescue Tolliver. Felicia is pointing a gun at him. Harper calls the cops and Felicia is arrested.
  • Turns out Felicia is behind everything because she was jealous and wanted Joel Morgenstern to herself. She wanted to get with him when her sister died but he married Diane, so she killed Tabitha to get Joel and Diane to break up. Instead, they were having another baby.
  • Harper now has to deal with her feelings for Tolliver, but that’ll wait until the next book.

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