Maura has come a long way since Rising Tide: Dark Innocence book 1 in the Maura DeLuca Trilogy where she found love and acceptance, but also experienced some new confounding side effects of her “condition”. In book 2 Undertow: Death's Twilight, Maura is in a new city, finds her father, gains a sister, and learns the truth about who and more to the point what she is, a Born vampire. Maura is guided by her heart wanting her family to all be together forever but forever is a long time especially when the people you love are still keeping secrets. With the arrival of Christmas, Maura feels happy and hopeful. Her family is back together, her best friend and now sister is healing from tragedy, and Ron, her heart’s desire, is visiting…what could go wrong?
Well Maura, it seems, should always be waiting for the other shoe to drop. Her parents are gone, Ron is missing, she has no idea how to be a vampire or deal with what is happening to her, and to top it off her friend/sister proposes a very scary prospect. Maura and Susie decide the best course of action is to find another vampire a to help them, but knowing next to nothing about her kind Maura follows Susie in what she thinks is a futile attempt to locate someone like her. Valdamir was young, good looking, and dangerously sarcastic and he knew Maura was a vampire and to her surprise she instinctively knew he was too.
Valdamir’s knowledge is what she needs to unlock those secrets her father has kept from her and the ticket to putting her and Susie’s plan into action. Valdamir isn’t helping out of the kindness of his own heart either, he is intent on making Ron’s absence permanent and having Maura all to himself. Maura being well aware of his attempts builds a friendship that only serves to make him want her even more. Maura, Susie, and Valdamir delve deep into plans that should have been left to only seasoned vampires. That mistake will have Maura left alone to reflect on the horrific consequences of her actions, stripped of her friends at the command of her own father and sentenced to loneliness, heartbreak, and despair like she has never known.
Claudette Melanson has created a vampire story that sparkles rather than vampires that do and that has made all the difference. A story I would be proud to share with my daughter; this is a great series to read with your teens or just for yourself. I loved the story line and the new fresh take on a popular theme. I enjoyed that Claudette creates characters that are easy to connect to. The main character reminds me of my own teenage daughter. Claudette's storytelling is endearing to me as a mother and lover of this genre because she creates internal conflicts, that while supernatural, parallel how I know teens feel in the adolescent push and pull of their everyday lives, feeling lost, different, and volatile. Claudette cultivates friendships on the page that I can only wish follow my daughter through her own life. Refreshing and fun, I recommend you get to know Maura for yourself in this Indie award winner.