Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Break Of Dawn - Chris Marie Green


Break Of Dawn
Vampire Babylon, Book 3
Chris Marie Green
Ace

Urban Fantasy

This novel picks up just after the second book’s conclusion. Those who haven’t read the first two books in the series (I haven’t) may feel a bit lost for a while, until the characters provide some background. Even then, it’s more than clear that new readers have missed a lot by starting at this point. And, unfortunately, some of the major plot points here necessarily have less resonance for new readers than they would for those who’ve been reading from the beginning.

Dawn Madison, onetime stuntwoman in Hollywood, and the rest of her team are recuperating from an epic battle that left them wounded in more than body. They’ve lost one of the team, Dawn’s father has been kidnapped by someone she trusted, and it’s clear that the ‘big battle’ is coming, soon, to a reality near you. The team, led by the mysterious Jonah, is trying to find and root out an Underground vampire lair, led by a dangerous Master. It’s becoming more and more clear to Dawn that there’s plenty Jonah hasn’t told her, despite their oddly close relationship.

At the moment, the only person she feels she can trust is Matt Lonigan, a human PI. But she’s not even sure about that. As the team reassembles, more information about Jonah and his past comes to light. This information does nothing to quell Dawn’s rising distrust. The team feels that she’s the “key” to defeating the vampires, but no one can tell her for sure just how she’s supposed to do that. And, after learning more about past events and present company, she’s not even sure she wants to be involved. She’s going to have to make a decision, and fast.

If you’re a longtime reader, this novel develops several characters in ways that are unexpected. It’s clear that these revelations rock the long-held beliefs of many of the characters, but new readers may feel a bit excluded from the proceedings. This is not really the fault of the author, who clearly intended these books to be read as a trilogy, and not as standalones. The vampire mythos presented here contains a lot of interesting twists, and urban fantasy fans should be excited to find this author. While this concludes the story arc for the trilogy, the door is clearly open for a planned new trilogy.

Rating: 7 ½
September 2008
ISBN# 978-0-441-01629-7 (trade paperback)

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