Author: L.J. Smith
Genre: YA Paranormal
Series: Night World (Books 1-3)
Publication Date: June 3, 2008
Format: Paperback, Omnibus, 729 Pages
ISBN-10: 146974504 (SimonPulse)
ISBN-13: 978-1416974505 (SimonPulse)
Reviewed by: Anjelica
Book 1 – Secret Vampire
Book 2 – Daughters of Darkness
Book 3 – Spellbinder
Vampires, werewolves, witches, shapeshifters — they live among us without our knowledge. Night World is their secret society, a secret society with very strict rules. And falling in love breaks all the laws of the Night World.
In Secret Vampire, Poppy thought the summer would last forever. Then she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Now Poppy’s only hope for survival is James, her friend and secret love. A vampire in the Night World, James can make Poppy immortal. But first they both must risk everything to go against the laws of Night World.
Fugitives from Night World, three vampire sisters leave their isolated home to live among humans in Daughters of Darkness. Their brother, Ash, is sent to bring the girls back, but he falls in love with their beautiful friend.
Two witch cousins fight over their high school crush. It’s a battle between black magic and white magic in Spellbinder.
Quick & Dirty: A slow but exciting plot supports the dynamic development of a forbidden relationship.
Opening Sentence: “Rowan, Kestrel, and Jade,” Mary-Lynnette said as she and Mark passed the old Victorian farmhouse.
It’s not uncommon for me to be unsure of how I feel about a book before I finish it. This is one of those instances because looking back, I don’t actually remember feeling one way or another about what was happening. All I know is, I could’t stop reading. It wasn’t the murder mystery that kept me inticed. It wasn’t the need for Mary-Lynnette, a simple astronomy loving girl, to get to the truth about the three mysterious sisters that moved into the home near hers that kept me turning pages. I kept reading this story because the whole thing just flowed so smoothly from one point to the next that I never felt like there was an appropriate place for me to walk away. So I didn’t, I kept right on reading happily.
The biggest saving grace for this story has to be the characters. The three sisters, Rowan, Kestrel, and Jade have very different, very defined personalities which don’t actually change at all with the development of the story. They are the characters that readers can kind of choose to side with in a way. Rowan is described as gentle and wise, where Kestrel is fierce and intimidating, while Jade is young and innocent. These girls speak to all the teenagers out there who just want to see if they can make it out in the world alone. They have to make a lot of decisions that could determine the rest of their lives, but they don’t actually develop in any way. Usually their lack of growth would bother me a lot, but their brother Ash goes through enough change to pacify me.
Ash Redfern is the usual vampire bad-boy type with the better than everyone mentality and the usual predjudices against humans and other creatures of the night. He’s a loner who only uses human girls for food and whatever else he wants from them. However, his whole personality is challenged when he meets Mary-Lynnette, a human girl with a fighting spirit he’s never seen before. The development between these two is fast but realistic. At first, they hate each other pretty completely. She hates cocky guys who appear to get by only on their looks, and he hates girls who are…well…human. So naturally their relationship is tense, but then we are introduced to the Soulmate principle. The principle comes up in this story’s prequel, but it is far more exciting in this situation. It describes the feeling of love as shocking and intense. Soulmates recognize each other through the instant electricity they feel at contact. If two souls accept this “forever love” the feeling can cause extreme ecstacy and warmth, but if the two try to fight it, it becomes a bit terrifying with lightning errupting within each of them as they fight what’s meant to be. I doubt I’m the only one who thinks this, but watching a sexy man struggle to protect the woman he loves from not only himself but also the evils of the world while trying to also keep her at a distance to protect is own heart, is possibly one of the hottest things ever.
Anyone who loves watching a forbidden romance grow without dominating the storyline will enjoy this book. And everyone who enjoys reading about hot guys should take heart and know that Ash shows up again later as the series continues.
Rowan and Kestrel were looking at each other, and then at Mark and Mary-Lynnette. And their expressions made Mary-Lynnette’s throat close.
“You shouldn’t have followed us,” Rowan said. She looked grave and sad.
“They shouldn’t have been able to,” Kestrel said. She looked grim.
“It’s because they smell like goats,” Jade said.
“What are you doing?” Mark shouted again, almost sobbing. Mary-Lynnette wanted to reach for him, but she couldn’t move.
Jade wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. “Well, can’t you tell?” she turned to her sisters. “Now what are we supposed to do?”
There was a silence. Then Kestrel said, “We don’t have a choice. We have to kill them.”
Night World Series:
1. Night World, No. 1: Secret Vampire, Daughters of Darkness & Spellbinder
2. Night World, No. 2: Dark Angel, The Chosen & Soulmate
3. Night World, No. 3: Huntress, Black Dawn & Witchlight
4. Strange Fate
FTC Advisory: I purchased my own copy of Night World, Vol. 1. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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