Title: Shadow of Night
Author: Deborah Harkness
Series: All Souls Trilogy Book 2
Year published: 2012
Time It Took To Read: Two afternoons
After reading the first of this series, I compulsively bought the second. Then I remembered how horrendously behind on uni work I was and made myself forsake it until my last TMA was in. My last TMA was submitted on Sunday and I picked this book up yesterday. AND DEVOURED IT.
Now, I don't want to give away any major plot twists, but the story thus far is that a witch has fallen in love with a vampire (as you do) and now they're hiding in time from the Congregation - a scary collection of witches, vampires and daemons who keep order. The witch, Diana, has a very shaky grasp of her power, and is trying to find a teacher. The vampire, Matthew, has his finger in every possible historical pie.He is omnipresent, friends with every luminary of the 1590s, and exceptionally politically powerful. Diana has to cover up her 21st century origins, and Matthew has to try and cover up several hundred years of changing ethics and politics. And then they have to try and get what they came for, and then get home again.
There are, as mentioned before, lots of parallels with the godawful Twilight series. The biggest differences are that Diana is a fully rounded character, not a melancholy teenage idiot, and the author really knows her historical stuff. The book falls down slightly in some of the dialogue, but more than makes up for it in invoking the atmosphere of 16th century Britain. It did slightly rankle at how quickly Diana dropped her modern behaviour, though this is explained away by her learned background.
Also, my useless vasovagal response kicked in when there was biting of chest arteries, and I nearly passed out. It is no good being triggered by venepuncture, when enamored of vampire fiction.
There will be a third in this series, but Deborah Harkness hasn't BLOODY WRITTEN IT YET. I feel slightly like going a bit Misery to force her to write it faster, but that way madness lies ;-). It really is quite a compulsive read. I am not a patient person, but will certainly be reading it when it finally emerges.In the mean time, if you are a fan of vampire books, or supernatural books, or alternative history books, or just historical fiction, I really recommend this particular book. But read the first one first, or it won't make all that much sense.
Book count: 26/50