I don’t think it’s any secret that I love, love, love these books. They are some of the best vampire novels out there, in my opinion, and everybody knows that these days, vampire books are everywhere. To me, these books stand out not just because of the engaging characters and the snarky sense of humor on every page, but because they feel real. I think if vampires really did exist, they would exist in this fashion. I was especially excited to get Of Shadow Born because the cliffhanger from Shadow’s Fall nearly drove me insane. I can’t speak properly of Of Shadow Born without giving away a huge spoiler, so like before, the complete spoiler-filled review will be below the cover art.
Still with me? Good. Moving on.
I was so upset at the end of Shadow’s Fall. David Solomon is one of my favorite characters ever, vampire or not, so to see him killed in such a brutal manner was heartrending. It was clear, though, that he may not be quite as dead as you think, and I was dying to find out what exactly that meant.
Miranda’s grief is palpable throughout the pages as she tries to move on after David’s death. A Queen is not supposed to outlive her Prime. When one dies, the other dies too – it’s part of the magic of the Signets. Now she has to try and hold everything together, despite her despair. She is an unbelievably strong woman.
There are a lot of things in this book that I can’t even do justice to in this review. David has not died, but has been reborn in a way. We learn a little bit more about vampire mythology, at least how it works in this particular series, including their connections with the goddess Persephone. We also learn a bit of their history, with the first vampires being the Firstborn, and current day vampires being the Secondborn. David is now a Thirdborn, which has a lot of benefits, but also a lot of consequences. For one thing, he has lost the telepathic link he has always had with Miranda. There is also a strange connection between David, Miranda, Deven, Jonathan, Jacob and Cora. They can sense when something is happening to one of the others. It’s a strange twist.
There’s also still political drama. Prime Hart is still causing trouble, and there is a mysterious group, the Morningstar, that is trying to take out all non-humans. And then there’s Jeremy, the vampire who was responsible for David’s death/transformation, and let me just say that his motives are as twisted and tangled as his story line.
There are several new characters that I also enjoyed, or old characters that got a lot more screentime (pagetime?). Stella, the daughter of the chief of police, who also happens to be a witch. Olivia, a vampire who was once a Second, but who is now living on the fringes of society (until a near-unconscious David ends up on her doorstep). We also learn a lot more about Deven, whose mysterious past includes not being entirely vampire or human.
Like I said, I can’t do this book justice, and it’s very hard to explain why I liked it without going into tons of detail about the first three books. Let me just say this – I loved this book so much. I love this series so much. If you haven’t read them, and you like urban fantasy and vampires, then you need to go read them. Now. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.00.