Rises the Night
Published 2007 376 pages
Reviewed by Katherine Petersen
Summary (from book jacket)
In Italy a powerful vampire is amassing the power to control the souls of the dead. Lady Victoria Gardella de Lacy - a vampire slayer for just over a year - races across Europe to stop what could be the most deadly army the Gardellas have ever faced. She is accompanied by Sebastian Vioget, a man as tempting as he is untrustworthy.
But when Victoria discovers that she has been betrayed by one of her most trusted allies, the truth will challenge all of her powers as a Venator - and as a woman.
I think series often hinge on the second book: sometimes a writer will have an amazing first book, but the first book might not quite stack up. The opposite is true in this case. Rises the Night, the second book in Colleen Gleason’s Gardella Vampire Chronicles surpasses the first in my opinion. We already know the basics, so she doesn’t have to spend much time with background. While the book has a darker aura, it overflows with action, adventure, betrayal, fear, fighting and passion. In The Rest Falls Away, Victoria had backup in the form of Max, but he returned to Italy shortly after her husband’s death, so she faces much of her battles on her own.
She grows a great deal in this book, struggling with inner conflict of who to believe and trust, trying to channel her emotions and understanding the difference between her personal needs and the overall good of the Venator community. Tough lessons to tangle with at 20. Plus, the evil she faces has much grimmer implications that give the tale an extra injection of darkness. Fans of dark fantasy will feast on the impending sense of evil as the vampires drink their blood.
Gleason masters pacing in this novel with every chapter ending in such a way that you must read the next. I read it in 24 hours, managing to find time to eat and take out my dogs but not a whole lot else. We also get to know more about Sebastian, the devilishly handsome, but oh-so-untrustworthy man who makes Victoria tingle but who knows a lot more about vampires than a mortal should.
With intricate twists and an artful complexity in both scene description and overall content, Gleason’s second book is a must-read for fans of vampire fiction. If you like historical fiction as well, then it’s even more of a treat as Gleason’s language, scene setting, characters and costumes show she has done her research well on regency-era England and Italy. She keeps you on the edge of your seat, and just when you think you’ve figured how what will happen, she throws in another surprise. I look forward to the third installment, The Bleeding Dusk, which is already available.
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