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Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
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True love . . . and an undying obsession
Catlyn Youngblood has a secret life. Despite being a natural-born vampire hunter like her two older brothers, Cat has fallen for Jesse--an ageless boy from a centuries-old vampire clan.
Cat's job cataloguing rare, mystical texts at a bookstore allows her to meet with Jesse alone every evening. But when girls who look disturbingly similar to Cat start disappearing from town, Cat and Jesse discover frightening clues to their whereabouts within the book collection. Together, they must stop a crazed man from realizing his dark scheme-- one that would claim Cat's life.
Note: I did not realize until several pages into the book, after references were made that I did not get, that this was the second book in a series. Netgalley didn't tell me, nor did the Goodreads page for the book when I first checked it (that, or I neglected to check it because Netgalley provides the synopsis). Except for the initial references, I was able to get through this book without trouble; however, I would not recommend trying to read this without reading book one. It would help so much.
Cat is a strong, independent female lead. A descendant of the Van Helsings with vampire blood in her, Cat is a natural-born vampire killer and lives with her two brothers Trick and Gray. Despite being a vampire killer, however, she lives in hiding with her brothers, as it was their parents' dying wish that they avoid the fate of their ancestors. However, Cat is in love with an almost vampire: Jesse. Cat is wild and rebellious. She hasn't had decades to get through the hot-headed teenage years. While I admire the decisiveness with which Cat makes decisions, she tends to come off as reckless. She dives into situations without considering the consequences to herself. If she does, she brushes them off and does what her moral conscience tells her to do. She also tends to get into a lot of fights with her brothers, as much as she loves them sometimes. Their biggest source of conflict is vampires, specifically one called Jesse.
I love how Cat calls Jesse "my dark boy." It's a great way to help the reader remember Jesse's general appearance; more importantly, it's a sweet, albeit possessive description that shows just how much of Cat's heart and soul belongs to Jesse. (That came off a bit creepy, but it's true!) Jesse is by far my favorite character. While he's a pretty static character and is mostly in the book as a support for Cat, that is also why I like him. He is a sweet guy, there for Cat when she needs him, and protective in a kind but not overbearing way. That's the guy you can introduce to your parents (while conveniently neglecting to mention that he's immortal and pints away from becoming a full vampire).
It took me a while to get into the story, some of it being Cat but mostly because I hadn't read book one. Nevertheless, the story is so compelling and absorbing that I found myself wrapped up in the plot about halfway through the book. I love the mystery behind the disappearing girls. It had me on the edge of a mental seat guessing at what was happening and how Cat would resolve the various problems that popped up. Cat never really loses her rebellious ways; however, she does come to terms with her Van Helsing abilities and reaches somewhat of a truce with her brothers that involved some blackmailing, which I didn't approve of. I don't know what kind of peace can be formed with blackmailing, though it may have been required to encourage Trick to reach a compromise instead of using his abilities to solve all his problems.
Just when you think peace has come, however, Viehl delivers a surprise at the end that promises a third book with more adventure. I enjoyed this book overall and am looking forward to seeing what else she has in store for us!
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher. No payment was received in return for a review. The receipt of the book had no influence on the opinions expressed in my review.