Genre: Paranormal Fantasy Age Range: YA Star Rating: 3 stars Series: yes - second book of duology
*SPOILER ALERT: contains SPOILERS for SLAYER*
Now that Nina has turned the Watcher’s Castle into a utopia for hurt and lonely demons, she’s still waiting for the utopia part to kick in. With her sister Artemis gone and only a few people remaining at the castle—including her still-distant mother—Nina has her hands full. Plus, though she gained back her Slayer powers from Leo, they’re not feeling quite right after being held by the seriously evil succubus Eve, a.k.a. fake Watcher’s Council member and Leo’s mom.
And while Nina is dealing with the darkness inside, there’s also a new threat on the outside, portended by an odd triangle symbol that seems to be popping up everywhere, in connection with Sean’s demon drug ring as well as someone a bit closer to home. Because one near-apocalypse just isn’t enough, right?
The darkness always finds you. And once again, it’s coming for the Slayer.
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
This is definitely a book that I’ve just aged and my taste has changed too much since I read the previous book about 2 years ago. I could see why others would like it, but I found my attention wandering a fair bit when I read the first one (more than on the re-read of the first, which is rare, as knowing what happens can reduce my interest.)
The voice in this series is brilliant. Kiersten White really nails the teenage voice, full of frustration and “this is stupid but I guess we’ve got to roll about it” about the more bizarre aspects of the world. That attitude also helps you just roll with the oddities of the world, and just take that these things are real and part of it. There are lots of pop culture references and silliness that helps sell the characters as teenagers in our world.
I still haven’t watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer, so I’m sure I’m still missing a lot of references. However, the major facts (I think) are explained. I was able to work out why Buffy is important but frustrating, and who the main “non-page characters” are who are mention.
Artemis left Nina at the end of the previous book, and now is just completely at odds with her. I didn’t quite understand why she was working against her sister quite so absolutely. It felt like it needed more explanation, because it honestly did feel like “they’re against each other to add tension” in the absence of more concrete information.
The inclusion of a few Artemis chapters also knocks off the pacing, because her chapters were so confusing. The use of third person present didn’t really help either, as it took a while to get used to the change in narrative style from Nina’s chapters. Third present is the hardest POV to write, in my opinion, as it has the odd mix of distance (3rd) and immediacy (present) that needs to be balanced and fit the feeling. I don’t think it was quite reached here.
Read my reviews of other books by Kiersten White:
Slayer (this series):
- SLAYER (#1)
- THE GUINEVERE DECEPTION (#1)
- THE CAMELOT BETRAYAL (#2)