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I recently picked up Rachel Caine's series, the Morganville Vampires, for a bargainous £3 for 6 books from the Book People as a little treat for myself for my birthday. I had read a few great reviews about the series, and after reading the first book, Glass Houses, I realised that this was a series that was well written and a little addictive.
'The Dead Girls' Dance' is book two in the series, and the action picks up pretty much immediately after Glass Houses finishes. I recommend reading Glass Houses first so you are familiar with the main characters as the action picks up quickly and it would be pretty confusing otherwise.
This series fits quite nicely into the Young Adult genre, however I do tend to feel that this series is a little more risque than something like Twilight. There is more violence, and more sexual tension running through the plot, though the relationships between the characters is still a little PG - for example, reference to taking the relationship to second base. A bit of an American term there.
The main characters are the same as the first book in the series. Claire Danvers, a 16 year old in college, is left in a predicament when her boyfriend Shane is taking into custody. This would be bad enough in any town, but in Morganville which is run by vampires, Shane is being held in a cage above the town square, and they have till dawn to save him before he will be killed.
Claire works with her housemates, Michael (the half vampire and half ghost) and Eve (the goth girl who works as a waitress in the coffee shop) to save him.
The plot in this story is well written. The action flows quickly and nicely from one scene to the next and covering just a few days in time. The tension is pretty intense, as the girls face a race against time to save Shane and also rescue Claire's mortal enemy Monica before dawn breaks. Morganville is a pretty fearful place at night, with vampires prowling the street, and most people would avoid going out, but in this case, Shane's life really does depend on it.
There were some nice little plot twists that I didn't see coming, and although the relationships are fairly PG there is a lot of passion underneath the surface that kept me reading.
As in Glass Houses, there was a diary excerpt from Eve's diary at the end of the novel. This showed events slightly differently from what we had seen in the novel as it was from Claire's perspective. I understood now why Shane ended up being in custody, which had not been entirely clear to me from reading the story alone. It also padded out a bit more the character of Eve's younger brother, Jason. I am predicting he will be a more important character in book 3 of the series, though I will have to read it to find out.
My impression of this book is it is an involving read. Aimed at the young adult market, it is a bit tamer than it could be, but as an adult I still appreciated the plot and got a lot out of the novel. It is a highly involving and engaging series, and I can't help but recommend it. I enjoy filling in round the plot in my head with where I think it should or will go, and find the pace is enough to keep me engaged till the end. I can't wait to see what happens to Claire next, because this one left a nice cliffhanger for me to want more.
There seems to be an explosion of paranormal and fantasy fiction for young adults lately after the massive popularity of Twilight. This is an example of one of them, although the Morganville vampires books seem to have more longevity in them since the author is up to about the tenth book now I think!
This is more vampires that you would expect, the vampires in Morganville aren't afraid to bite and this is one of the problems that the protagonist Claire is having since the vampires have taken an interest in her and her friends since they aren't protected by signing their soul over to a vampire; Morganville is a very complex place and this is only one of the rules that the humans in it have to follow in order to avoid being drained. The books chart her relationship with the vampires and struggle in the town, in this book the main plot line is how she gets on the wrong side of the vampires when her friend's Dad returns to town and he starts on an anti vampire crusade.
I have to say that I really like this series of books, I find them quite original and am looking forward to reading the next 8 books that come after and even hoping for the possibility of a film! It just seems like the author has so much to say about Claire and her friends, there will always be a little twist in store for her that no one was really expecting. The world that they are in is definitely one of the best points about these novels as well, Caine has created a totally new world with so many different rules and regulations in the way that it is set up, for example when you leave the town you forget about the vampires. With this we often get the odd subtle reminder about how things work so it doesn't get confusing. I'd recommend it, and its available cheaply on amazon!
Another great book by Caine, more depth added to Eve and Shanes characters than in the first and some very important decisions for characters to make toward the end that really shape the structures of the next books. Were introduced to a new vampire, Sam Glass- Michaels grandfather, who is the one vampire in town that seems truly good and was at one time in love with the founder Amelie. We get a glimpse of how Eve and Shane grew up with both Eves brother Jason Rosser and Shanes father Frank Collins being introduced with Jason being an alleged murderer who was sent to jail after Eve was a witness against him. And Frank being an alcoholic biker who abuses Shane until he goes along with Franks ideals. This book also shows how Claire is a little too fooled by first impressions as she meets a guy named Ian who seems nice but turns out being worse than some vampires. A lot of Michaels personality is shown in this book as the relationship between him and Eve grows, but towards the end of the book he has a very hard choice to make. Amelie and Oliver play a very big part in this book making desicions that give the book its structure. Altogether this book is another winner by Rachel Caine that should be a lot mre popular.
The Dead Girls Dance - Rachel Caine
I have been a fantasy novel fan for many years and have read a wide range of books on this genre. One particular type of story I find myself drawn to is vampire novels, and so when looking for a new set of books to read, I came across The Morganville Saga by Rachel Caine which began with 'Glass Houses' which I have also reviewed. Before reading Glass Houses, I had not read or even heard of Rachel Caine, though she came with high recommendations by a friend and I was pleasantly surprised with the first book, and hooked in enough to race straight out and purchase the second book (So addicted actually, that I purchased the whole set as of yet which is ten books!).
I won't list the whole set here, though you are able to find the set titles and synopsis' on Rachel Caine's website.
VIP'S: VAMPIRE IMPORTANT PERSONS
"Good news girls, your dates are here...bad news girls, they're dead"
A/N: The Dead Girls Dance is the second book in the Morganville Vampires collection.
Morganville is a small town filled with unusual characters, and when the sun goes down, these characters emerge in force. There is an evil which lurks in every shadow, and soon, the inhabitants of Morganville realize that even the light of day will not protect them for long.
Clare Danvers has had her fair share of challenges such as being a genius at a school that favors beauty over brains, dealing with murderous girls in her dorm and, above all, finding out that her college town is overrun with blood-sucking vampires. Luckily, she has a close group of friends who have taken her under their wing, though soon they find that their temporary peace in at risk of collapsing. After surviving getting on the wrong side of some very important vampires, they come face-to-face with Clare's boyfriend's scary and dangerous father and his vampire-fighting supporters who are intent of ridding the world of all evil blood-suckers, and they do not care who gets in the way.
Clare soon realizes that there might just be something more scarier than vampires, and it may be time to start trusting a few of the blood-suckers before they are burnt to a crisp, though with everything going on, there is hardly any time to register some huge changes within her own home, and these changes might just be the end of the friendship which has formed between the four house mates.
I realized that from the first book that the synopsis' of this saga really does underestimate the actual excitement found within the pages. Even when I am typing out the above brief description, I have to remind myself that there is so much more within this book than the write-up allows. I did not want to give too much away, especially if readers have not even picked up the first book yet (which is a must!), though I feel that I must mention that this book, like the first, is not like any other vampire series. True, there are many similarities to other fictional stories of this nature, though I feel that these books take on a whole new level. On a whole, this book, like the first, is very tame compared to many books in this genre, though with that said, there is also a large amount of darkness that creeps in to the story, and that is not only from the vampires. Some very human issues also creep into the pages, some of which may touch readers to a degree such as death and murder, abusive families and some mild sexual discussions. One particular scene some people may find very sensitive. This scene deals with an attempted rape. I feel that this scene stands out as very well written in both reality and sensitivity; though it is still a scene I felt I needed to point out. Whilst we are on the subject of certain issues found within a book, I feel I should mention that the choice language does appear more so in this book compared to the first book and pops up throughout from start to finish. It does not stand out in the ways of placing a word where a word need not be, though at some points, the language does get quite strong.
There are some books in some series in which you are able to pick up a book mid-series and start reading without any confusion. This book is certainly not one of them. It continues straight off from where the first book ended without even a time for a breath and, although there is a slight recap in the memory of Claire, this is not nearly enough to fill a new reader of the series in.
The action begins immediately, from the very first sentence and continues full thrust throughout the whole of the book. At times, I feel as though I was being consumed by the action as when one thing simmers slightly, another thing will hit you on the very next page. There is barely a moment to collect your thoughts, though this is not necessarily a bad thing in this book, and as I had read the first book, I was already familiar with this style. The readability is also very simple to follow so you are able to jump from one situation to another extremely easily even if it does take your breath away at times. The flow was very relaxed and inviting and the storyline was exciting and packed full of interesting and exhilarating situations. Like with the first book, the back cover has a review by SFX Magazine which relates this book to the Twilight series, though as with the first book, and even more so with the second, I felt as though this book broke far away from the Twilight feel. In the first book, I found a number of small similarities, though this second book seemed to find its footing and really take off in a world of its own.
One aspect which stood out for me is a slightly annoying way was some of the grammar. I only just noticed this in the first book, though this second book seemed to fall into this trap more so. The book is written from Claire's point of view, though not from her first person perspective (ie: not using the 'I did this' but rather 'Claire did this'). Many a time, though, I felt as though the author forgot exactly what style she was writing as it seemed to slip quite often into Claire's perspective as said from her own mouth. This became very off-putting, though due to the great storyline which pulled me right in, I was eventually able to overlook this poor, disjointed fashion.
This story is largely about vampires, and if this genre does not appeal to you, then I doubt that you would be interested, though there are also many other aspects within the pages such as different kinds of love and friendship, family issues and life in general. One annoying part for me, though, is that as Claire is a teenager you have to put up with her 'feelings' about her male friends. There is one in particular who becomes close to Claire, though quite often you see her finding another character 'hot'. This, I think, becomes a little over-used especially for the more mature reader and I found myself skimming the pages a few times when this situation occurred. Teenage hormone alert is certainly needed for this book which is such a shame as otherwise this is a great read.
I believe that this book is part of the young adult range, though it is also suitable for older adults like myself who are wanting a simple and relaxing read. The genre is of light horror, though like many young adult books of this kind, I certainly did not find myself hiding behind a cushion to read. Obviously, the above teenage hormone part may be off putting for the older more mature reader, though I do recommend trying to look past this as these books are worth a little frustration.
In the first book I found myself with mixed feelings about the characters within this story as they were, in the main, well thought out with distinct personalities, though we were given a miniscule amount of background information about them, making some of them very difficult to get to grips with. I am happy to report that this second book tooks a number of characters a little further and some extra history was explored. In saying this, though, many characters still had a hidden background, though this book painted many of these in a more mysterious manner so that the lack of history about them seemed more appealing and sat a little better on the page. From what I can tell between the first and second book, this is perhaps done on purpose and I hope to find out much more as the series progresses.
So what makes this book any different to other vampire novels?
I am not entirely sure if I can really put my finger on just what makes this book, and the set (the two I have read so far) different to other vampire novels. Whilst the general concept is similar to many other novels, there are certainly new concepts hidden throughout the pages. The characters are enticing and the action is fluid and exhilarating from cover to cover. The fact that everything which happens in the book happens in this one town is also very similar to many other genre specific books, though the way that this situation occurs is very different and really pulls you into the story.
One thing which I find very important in a book is the ending. A story can be written perfectly, though if the ending is wrong, then it gives me a really terrible feel to the whole book, almost as though I feel my time was wasted reading it, even if I did enjoy the rest of the story.
So how does the ending of this book compare?
The fast, consistent action continues from beginning to end, and although something is happening on every single page, I was still left guessing as to where the ending would take me. I had a slight idea of what would happen, though I was very surprised at exactly what occurred. It was almost as though I had not taken chance to breathe before I reached the ending and I felt rather exhausted from taking in everything which happened. I partially expected it to slow down a little to round the story up, though the fast pace action, as mentioned, just kept going.
The story of the second book rounded itself up perfectly, though there was certainly an open end to the book which, I would gather, would work the same way as the first book did with the second; the continuation right from where the last book ended up. Leaving the story here with a large cliffhanger is certainly a great way to entice the reader to go out and purchase the next book straight away, and as all of the books right up to book ten are already out, I found myself purchasing the whole set at once!
The story was 368 pages long with a surprising addition to the end which read almost like a different take on the main story. It was not an epilogue, though seemed as though it was attempting to take on that form in some small way, though instead of adding an extra bit on to the end of the story line, it took it back to the beginning almost, and covered certain points from another characters point of view in a form of a diary. I do not think I can really say that this part was an asset to the story, especially as it seemed very out of place, though it was a unique way to round that last part off, and the very last page of this 'epilogue' gave some insight as to what we may expect in the next book, which simply added to the excitement.
The Dead Girls Dance was a fantastic second installment to what already seems like a promising set of books. If anything, I think I preferred this second book to the first, even though I have read a few reviews stating that the second book was a let down compared to the first. The story was more unique than the first, and there was something compelling about the contents of the pages and added its own twist to a familiar genre. It is certainly not without its flaws, though these can be overlooked quite easily as once the story gets going, you really get sucked into the pages. The characters were able to grow further in this book which really helped with the readability and I found myself unwilling to put the book down. I can not quite put my finger on just why this book appealed to me so strongly, and perhaps by reading the following books I may have an answer, though I would certainly recommend this book to those who love this type of story. I have already bought the next lot of books in the set and am looking forward to seeing where this story will go as it ended with a lot of possibilities.
The Dead Girls Dance is, in the main, a tame horror fantasy book which is an international best seller. It is listed as a young adult read, though I personally found it very compelling a read and I have long since left my teen years!
The RRP on this book is £6.99 which is an average and very reasonable price for such a great book, though as with many books these days (especially those which have been out a while!) there are many ways of getting your hands on a book for much less. I had to purchase this book on Amazon for £3.75 though if you have 'The Works' shop near you, each book of the series (except this one as they seem to always be out) is priced at an amazing £1.99, and to place the cherry on the top, they have the deal of three for £5 which is really great, especially as there are so many books in this series and I guarantee that if you like these sorts of books then you will certainly want to keep reading!
Claire Danvers has had her fair share of problems. Not only has she been fast tracked a couple of years into high school due to her being so clever, she then found that the girls at her new school were not as pleasant as they could have been, so bad they had decided that she needs teaching a lesson!
After having discovered that many of the residents of Morganville (the town the book is set in) are actually vampires, she feels that she has found three kindred spirits in her house mates, Eve, Michael and Shane, all of which look out for her after being on the wrong end of the leader of the all girl school group Monica Morrell.
Things seem reasonably normal (well as normal as a town full of bloodsuckers can be!), this is until a bigger problem arises, this being in the form of Shane's psychotic Dad, returning to avenge the death of his wife and small daughter, who was murdered years before by Monica in a house fire.
The question is who will finish the three off first, Shane's Dad or the vampires?
After being able to come to grips with the main characters in the first book (glass houses) this felt more like the story was allowed to develop, even introducing a couple more big characters to the list, without it feeling like I was being over swamped with detail,
After the book had concentrated on the story from Claire's point of view, it was nice to get some background information on Eve and of course Shane and his family, with there being plenty of "flash back" scene's to explain previous events.
This certainly feels quite different from may of the vampire books i have read before, with this have a real feeling of terror behind it, almost an anticipation of what could potentially happen rather than what is actually happening, though there is plenty of action during the book, you know that much worse could be taking place.
The characters are written and act just as you would expect them to act in that situation, with three of them being long timers of Morganville, but with Claire being one of the many kids shipped in to the school as "snacks", she finds it increasingly harder to deal with the politics of the town, and how she should deal with certain individuals.
I get the impression this and the previous book in this series, have been written in anticipation of the teenagers market, with there being very little (so far!) in the way of sex and gratuitous violence, but still leaving it accessible an interesting enough for adult readers, with that being easily achieved!
Price wise this is available via www.amazon.co.uk for around the £4.99 mark.
This was an enjoyable enough read, which certainly has left me ready to read the next book in the series, recommended!
Thanks for reading x
The Dead Girls Dance is the 2nd in The Morganville vampire series and sees us return to The Glass House where Claire has now settled in gained a boyfriend in Shane and found out some interesting things about the others who live in the house. She has also found something that the vampires in the town want but refuses to hand it over which leads to head vampire Amelie putting the glass house and everyone who lives there under her protection.
This book sees Shanes father return to Morganville wanting revenge on the vampires for the death of his wife and daughter and just as the recidents of the glass house think life is getting back to normal all hell breaks loose again. When one of the vampires is found dead the finger is pointed at Shane who is sentenced to death leaving the others trying to figure out how to save him before its to late. This book introduces more characters both human and vampire whilst also developing the characters from the previous book.
This book picks up where Glass Houses left off and is packed with action all the way through at some points I felt like my head was spinning so much was going on but I still really enjoyed its a brilliant follow on from the 1st book and leaves you again wanting more.
The Dead Girls' Dance is the second book in The Morganville Vampires series by Rachel Caine.
Here's what has happened so far.
In Glass Houses (the first book), 16year old Claire Danvers had moved to Morganville to go to college. After being bullied in the dorms, Claire went to live with Michael, Shane and Eve at Glass House to be safer but it was then that she found out that the whole town was being run by vampires. Claire found something that the vampires desperately wanted but refused to hand it over, resulting in head vampire, Amelie promising her and her friends protection in exchange. Just when they thought everything was going back to normal, as normal as they can be in Morganville, Shane's crazy Dad arrives wanting revenge.
The Dead Girls' Dance
Claire, Michael, Shane and Eve just want a bit of peace and quiet around Glass House. They thought that when Amelie gave them protection, everything would be ok, but that was until Shane's Dad, Frank, turned up. Amelie's deal was that no more trouble would be caused but Frank is trouble with a capital T. He doesn't mess around with stating his intentions, he wants revenge on the vampires or anyone who looks remotely like one for the deaths of his daughter and wife. Unfortunately for Michael, being a ghost doesn't do him any favours.
With Frank threatening Amelie's protection, Claire and her friends must figure out a way to stop Frank and his thug sidekicks before he ruins everything that they have worked for. They manage to stay out of trouble for a couple of days but then Brandon, a well known vampire is found dead and all fingers point to Shane and his Dad (who is no where to be seen) so Shane ends up taking the rap for the whole thing, being sentenced to death by fire.
Claire, Michael and Eve need to think of a way to save Shane and fast. In two days he's going up in flames. Will they be able to do it?
What I thought.
After reading Glass Houses, I was hooked to this series and I picked up Dead Girls' Dance immediately. I couldn't wait to find out what happened due to the cliff-hanger at the end of the first book.
Dead Girls' Dance wastes no time in getting straight back into the action of the story. I really liked the fact that it picked up straight from where the first book left off. Other series' that I have read seem to have some time missing between books and I always feel like I've missed out on the important, but small things that go on in-between books. Again, there were a lot of things that I didn't see coming with enough plot twists to keep me guessing all of the time. Sometimes I felt like there was a little too much going on and the plot could have been simpler. The mix of vampires and humans, who owns who and what is going on is confusing enough sometimes but then Shane's Dad was thrown in there as well. Luckily, the way Rachel Caine writes makes everything quite easy to follow most of the time.
Rachel Caine leaves us again with a really big cliff-hanger, making me want to start book 3 straight away (which I couldn't do as it was 3am). Some people may hate this though, especially if they don't have the next book waiting but I loved being left wanting a whole lot more.
There are quite a few new characters introduced in this book and they are all well tied to someone else. The connections were explained really well so I was never unsure of who came from where or what they were doing. There was a good mix of both good and bad guys, old and new and this time, the bad doesn't only comes from the vampires. Frank on his own was utterly terrifying and I couldn't help but feel sorry for Shane for having to deal with that, although I could also understand why Frank was doing what he was. The scariest thing about Frank was the fact that he was only out to do what he wanted and didn't care about anything or anyone that got in his way, including Shane. He was one of my favourites from the first book so I really didn't want to see anything bad happen to him.
I said in my review of Glass Houses that the character development wasn't quite there for me but I definitely cannot say the same about this book. So much happens to all four of the main characters that I would have been extremely upset if certain things about them didn't change.
Claire really grew in this book from being a quite naïve 16 year old to being more mature and sure of herself. She still isn't extremely confident but has a quiet strength about her which was really nice to see. Living away from her parents and with people of similar age really does Claire a lot of good because she has to learn to fend for and look after herself. Shane is the first boyfriend she has ever had (I think. It isn't stated otherwise) and she obviously cares about him a lot, which shows very clearly when he is put in prison. Claire's intelligence is also shown a lot more this time around which was something that I found quite interesting. Her being as clever as she is, is the whole reason why she is in Morganville in the first place so for her to not be able to think and plan out well just wouldn't have made much sense.
Due to Shane being in prison for a good amount of the story, I missed him. His personality and banter with Michael brings a lot of humour when there is so much seriousness going on and it was a shame that this was missing for such a long time. The small amount of time that he does get though shows a lot about where his character is going. Although Shane seemed like the typical, moody teenage boy to begin with, I can see that there is a lot more depth to him, largely due to things that have happened in his past. He does think that he has a certain image to uphold though and doesn't want anyone else to see what is really underneath.
I was glad to see the relationships between Shane and Claire and Eve and Michael progress a little more but some parts just didn't make sense to me. As Claire is under the legal age (17), Shane has decided and made a promise that they wont have sex, even though it is obvious that they both really want to. I know that this is supposed to make him look like the gentleman and be all chivalrous but I just didn't believe it. So many teenage couples have sex before it is legal and this is why it didn't feel all that real to me. I do understand though that the author is probably trying to teach young people a lesson in this department and also wanted to make Shane be the good guy. I have to say though that there was quite a lot of built up tension between the two and it left me wondering how long it is going to be before anything really happens between the two.
Even though this is a YA novel, there were some parts that I didn't think very suitable for anyone under the age of at least 15 or so. The aspects of violence, date rape and sex were quite large parts of the story and something that I don't think anyone too young should be reading about. I do think that this series is aimed at a slightly older audience than most YA fantasy novels. There is also some swearing but I would expect that from teenagers in a situation such as Claire, Shane, Michael and Eve's. The swearing isn't overdone though and it is in context to what is going on in the story.
To even have a chance of following this book, you will need to have read Glass Houses otherwise you will be incredibly lost. I don't think that any of these books are going to be able to stand on their own but it isn't something that bothers me. I like having to read the characters background and have the chance to really get to know and feel for them.
Dead Girls' Dance is a fantastic sequel in this series and was everything and more than what I was expecting. If you haven't read this series yet then you need to go out and buy book one ASAP!! I can't recommend them highly enough
After enjoying the first book in the Morganville Vampire series called 'Glass Houses' I decided to continue and read the second book called 'Dead Girls Dance'. Just to give a quick recap of the story so far
Claire is 16 and is skipped ahead a year and is going to college in a new town, Morganville. She gets on the wrong side of bullies at her dorm and so moves in with 3 unusual people off campus (Shane, Eve and Michael) where she finds out that the whole town is run by Vampires. Unfortunately for Claire she finds that she has attracted a Vampire named Brandon's attention and it is up to her and her new friends to get her out of trouble.
There may be some spoilers
At the end of Glass Houses, Shane's father had shown up after Shane had phoned him for help in dealing with the Vampires. In Dead Girls Dance we can see that Shane's father is a hard man who hates Vampire's due to the fact that they wronged him in the past and all he cares about is revenge.
Previously, Claire and friends received protection from a powerful Vampire named Amelie, but only if they didn't cause anymore trouble so it is vital that they get Shane's dad out of their house as he planning attacks on Vampires.
They manage this but a few days later a powerful Vampire Brandon turns up dead, a Vampire that had often hassled Claire and had molested Eve and her younger brother. Was it Shane's father who killed this Vampire? Unable to find Shane's father they arrest Shane for the crime and place him in a cage and say that he will be set alight in two days. Can Claire and friends find any information that will save Shane and is there something even more mysterious going on?.....
Like 'Glass Houses' 'Dead Girls Dance' is written entirely from Claire's perspective. I would say that since the first book the character of Claire has become less timid, often standing up to her bully Monica and bravely dealing with the Vampire's. I would say that one problem that this book had, that stopped me from really liking any of the characters is the fact that the characters are incredibly moody, being angry one minute and then laughing the next. You might think that this is realistic (well, as realistic as a Vampire novel is going to get!!) given the stress that the characters are going through, but it feels like the book is wasting your time when a character has a temper tantrum for two pages and then on the next page everyone forgives and forgets. If this happened once or twice I would accept it, but this happens a lot through out the course of this book. I also get the feeling that by doing this the author is trying to show her range and ability to write in all emotions, but to me it just made me feel that the characters were inconsistent. If I had to pick a favourite character I would say Sam a kindly Vampire that was newly introduced in this book and if I had to pick the worst character I would say Eve as I got tired of her arguments and I would say along with Shane Eve was probably the moodiest character in this book.
On the whole I couldn't really predict what was going to happen in this book, but I think this was because the author added far to many twists, even more than the first book which I didn't think was actually possible. I found most of these plot twists slightly confusing and repetitive, with most of the characters seeming to spend most of the book running from one location to the other...and then back again!
I would also say that there are too many magical goings on in this book that seem to be in the book to cover plot holes and maybe to add excitement. For example in the first book there was a chapter where Claire's parents show up and insist that she comes home in two days as they are not happy that she is living with boys....well guess what, when you leave town your memory is magically wiped and you cannot remember much and so in this book Claire's parents had forgotten that they had asked her to come home!!
The memory wiping idea was briefly introduced in the first book but I had hoped that the author wouldn't keep using it as a plot device, but it seems that she couldn't come up with anything else.
Another annoying development in this book is the fact that when Claire goes into certain rooms she finds that she is magically transported to other places, mainly to a room with the powerful Vampire Amelie. I am not sure why the author added this element to the story as to me it just seems completely random and not connected to Vampire's. I know these days Vampire stories have moved on from the original legends, but it is getting to the point in this book, where you say that the author shouldn't have made the book about Vampire's at all, but rather just made it about dangerous magical people, I mean I don't think anyone even had their blood sucked in this book!
So overall I was quite disappointed with this book as I just felt there was too much going on. Probably the only good point in this book was the fact that the romantic goings on developed better than I expected them too. I will continue on to the third book, but I think that if I find it to be as disappointing as this book, I will abandon the series as it isn't particularly satisfying and there are 8 books in the series!
The dead Girls Dance is book two in the Morganville Vampires series.
The book follows on immediately from the story in book one and unlike other series books the first chapter is not just a catch up of the previous book although there are small references to the story so far as you read through the entire book. The most refreshing thing for me is that these catch up's are done in such a way they you do not feel you are re reading portions of the story from the other book. It is more subtle and more in keeping with the story line.
I often find the story line in second books of a series to be slightly more obvious and predictable as you get a feel of how the story will unfold but this is not the case with this book which has a whole new individual twist to the story and had me just as gripped as the first book.
I definately recommend this series of books and cannot wait to read on to the next.
This book is the second in the Morganville Vampires series, written by Rachel Caine .
The Story So Far
In the first book, Claire Danvers had just started college, but it didn't prove to be the busy life of studying, making new friends and socialising she was exapecting . Already standing out like a sore thumb because she was younger than the majority of students , she quickly made things worse by getting on the wrong side of Monica Morrell, and her equally messed up harpies Gina and Jennifer . After some extremely visious and violent incidents , she decided to move off campus, and into the Glass House, owned by Michael Glass , who is now a ghost after Oliver tried and failed to turn him into a vampire, and also homw to Eve and Shane .
She soon learns that the town in controlled by vampires, and despite apparently being rather smart academically, she manages to get on their bad side pretty quickly- especially when she finds something they want and refuses to hand it over . After a stand off, many threats, and a fire , the situation seems to be resolved when Lead vampire Amelie offers the inmates of the Glass House her protection - Provided that Claire and her friends do nothing to disturb this fragile peace .
Of course ----- this is the exact moment when Shanes crazy dad turns up, hell bent on getting revenge on the vampires for the death of his daughter and wife!
Book Two - Dead Girls Dance
After all the drama so far, you'd think Claire and her housemates would be well overdue for a cup of tea, a bit of a lie down, and some peace and quiet. Of course, that would make for an incredibly dull sequal, and this book starts with a bang, opening to a scene just after Shanes biker father (Frank) shoots Michael (the ghost) dead . Well, dead again, anyway - before proceeding to stake him through the heart, and stuff his mouth full of garlic.
You see, Frank is not a man who makes distinctions - he's here for revenge on the Vampires, and if anyone looks like a vampire or acts like one, it's a case of kill first, ask questions later .
Of course, Frank being here threatens the fragile protection the Amelie has offered Claire and her friends - especially when a vampire turns up dead, hideously tortured, and Shane and one of his dads biker buddies are found with the corpse. The vampires don't like to ask too many questions either, and after a token hearing, Shane and the biker are sentanced to die by fire - but first, they are displayed in the public square in the centre of the vampire district for two days .
Add to this the fact that Queen Bitch Monica and her sidekicks are still sniffing around waiting to cause trouble, that Eves violent brother Jason has just been released from prison, and that bodies are showing up that have been clearly killed by human hands, and it's still all drama!
Is two days enough for Claire and Eve to save their friend ? Is Michael really dead? And how many more vampire murders will Frank arrange.
I praised the first book to the skies for making vampires bad and scary again, and I'm glad to see this continues in this book, although we see different kinds of scary - and also, we have Frank, the crazy, undoubtedly very nasty, but human character out for revenge on the vampires - at any cost, even if that cost might be his sons life . This made the book very interesting, and there were characters on both side that I could sympathise with, and characters on both sides that I hated .
I really liked having both sides being bad and yet good at the same time, and I liked the dilemmas this story threw up for the main character Claire, who since the beginning of the last book has really grown in confidence - she's no longer quite as reliant on her housemates for help, and has developed into a really well rounded strong character .
I also like that we get to see some demonstration of her intelligence (the reason she is in college early is because she is academically brilliant) which was mentioned often in the first book, but didn't really materialise in the character. In this book, she faces repeated challenges, and it's nice to see her thought processes.
We don't see as much of Monica in this book as we did in the last one, which is something of a shame as she was such a horrible character that I felled entralled by the evil actions she took . In this book, she's still just as evil, and one particular plan subtly masterminded by her in the book is truly the work of a malevolent genius . We also get to see much more of her family - her father the Mayor, and particularly her brother Richard .
Shane, by virtue of being in a cage for much of the book, is not so much a main player in this book, although he is of course the force behind most of the plotlines, and a couple of scenes in this book help to give an indication into his character which show him as more than the typical jock teenager he seemed to be in the last book .
Michaels character, as ever, has some unusual twists and turns, one in particular that changes his relationships with many people , whilst Eve, the last housemate, demonstrates a surprising level of intelligence and foresight .
Frank is a brilliant character though . While there is no arguing that he is crazy, violent, and definitely a bad guy , we know enough from the book to see reasons why he became so, and a tiny part of me did sympathise with him .
The book isn't particularly long, roughly 350 pages, but it does manage to introduce a fair amount of new characters surprisingly well. Usually when a book brings in as many new characters as this one, it can be problematic as you don't get to know enough about them to really care - but this book uses past events to tie in these new characters and mesh them with the lives of those already present in the first book .
It also allowed me to see many different sides to the characters I already new- to see how they faced up to different situations and challenges, and I definitely changed my opinion on a few people in this book .
The storyline itself I enjoyed, there were several plot twists, as well as subtle side plots I really didn't expect , and I love that the action and danger started on the very first page of the book and just didn't stop - with the end, once again, being left right on the point of action .
However, I don't think this book would work well as a stand-alone story . While it does recap a few significant events from the last book, I don;t think it's enough that the book would make a great deal of sense on it's own, and I think reading the first book is essential to understand many of the relationships and reactions going on .
I would recommend this book, as I thoroughly enjoyed it, but you need to read the first one 'Glass Houses' really in order to fully understand what it going on . The plot line is strong, and quite unpredictable at times, the characters are multi-faceted and interesting, and the action never lets up .
The Morganville Vampires is shaping up to be a great series - I can't wait to read the next book!