Genre: Urban fantasy / Vampire fiction
Target audience: 12+
Book 1: Glass Houses - My review here.
Book 2: Dead Girls' Dance - My review here.
Summary from Amazon:Review:
Morganville is such a nice place to live...and die. If you don't mind that sort of thing. When Claire Danvers learnt that her college town was run by vampires, she did what any intelligent, self-preserving student would do: she applied for a transfer and stocked up on garlic. The transfer is no longer an option, but that garlic may come in handy. Now Claire has pledged herself to Amelie, the most powerful vampire in town. The protection her contract secures does little to reassure her friends. All of a sudden, people are turning up dead, a stalker resurfaces from Claire's past, and an ancient bloodsucker extends a chilling invitation for private lessons in his secluded home.
My experience of reading Midnight Alley was the book equivalent of wearing my favourite pyjamas and drinking hot chocolate. It was soothing in a way that only a good vampire series can be. In this novel, Claire has to live with the consequences of her actions from the previous book. I'm desperately trying not to give spoilers here. Eve's evil brother (you know the heebie jeebie guy?) Jason finally stepped out of the alleyways and showed himself to be shudder-worthy. Shane (as usual) got himself into a pickle in his attemtpts to do the heroic thing. Michael is busy being, well, Michael. Just a normal couple of days in Morganville and I really enjoyed reading about them.
Rachel Caine continues to impress me with her characterisation. Claire is still a thoroughly irritating good girl who is destined to save the day. Shane is still adorable. He is perhaps more brawn than brain but it works for me. Michael is as mysterious as ever and Eve is simply likeable. Somehow, this merry band of anti-Morganville-authority kids draw me into the story which doesn't really seem to have much depth to it. The plot moved at a fast pace and kept me turning the pages but it was very superficial. In a way, it reminded me of watching an episode of Poirot. It had that "who dun it?" feel to it. The end fell in to place just a little too perfectly. It was too contrived for my taste.
In Midnight Alley we continue to learn about the history of Morganville and how the vampires came to make their home there. Of course by the end of the book we are still left wondering about many details, particularly concerning Amelie. I can't decide whether I like this vampire leader. I certainly do not trust her. The only person in Morganville I do trust is Shane and that's because he is one of those great people with what you see is what you get.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading this mediocre vampire novel. I love spending whole afternoons reading about Morganville. This series is turning into one of my reading guilty pleasures like House of Night. It has the quality that makes me want to read despite its flaws. Read this if you can't get enough of those pale characters who have fangs and a fetish for human blood.
P.S. I apologise for the silliness I partook of in this review. I guess I was letting my hair down after writing two series and important ones. I was reading this book just for me and it felt good!