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Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Book Review: The Vampire Trick (Dark World: The Vampire Wish #3)

Release Date: September 7, 2017
Author: Michelle Madow
Publisher: Dreamscape Publishing
Length: 242 pages
Source: Review Copy from Author

In a kingdom full of secrets, no one can be trusted.

Annika’s life was flipped upside down when she was kidnapped by vampires to become a blood slave in their hidden kingdom of the Vale. Now, the powerful witch Geneva has disguised her as a vampire princess, and Annika’s living in the palace to compete for Prince Jacen’s hand in marriage. But her quest to become his bride is just a facade. Her real goal? Kill the vampire queen Laila so the kingdom crumbles and she can set the human blood slaves free. 

When rebellious wolves attack the town, they leave a trail of vampire corpses in their wake, declaring war upon the Vale. But the wolves didn’t act alone. Someone on the inside is helping them, making everyone a suspect. And one major player won’t make it out alive.

Return to the mysterious, magical world of the Vale in The Vampire Trick and get ready for a major twist you’ll never see coming!

  

Review:

Characters: As the selection for Jacen's hand heats up these characters are in for a wild ride. Karina, still helping the wolves drive away the vampires on the Vale, wants nothing more than to be reunited with her one true love Peter, not knowing that Geneva's ring can never bring him back. Annika's life has been upended by vampires and she's still out for revenge but things are moving quickly and she might miss her one opening. Jacen doesn't really want this selection, he's just looking for someone who might help him take down Laila and bring a modicum of peace the Vale, but ousting Laila will be harder than he ever imagined. Finally, there's Camelia, still, on the path to immortality she prepares to meet with the fae, but what if they ask too much of her? I can't believe I'm saying this but I really love all of these characters, now that doesn't mean that some of these characters aren't evil and deserve to meet their end(s), but they are all written pretty well, and there's even a scene or two where I felt some modicum of sympathy for Camelia.

Romance: Another thing I wasn't quite expecting was for there to be some real romance between Annika and Jacen in this book. There's obviously the tricky aspect of Anikka's true identity to deal with, but I feel as though the author did a fantastic job with making me start rooting for this couple all over again. Now there are parts of this romance that did grate on me quite a bit, mainly that these two characters are pretty much the densest beings when it comes to each other. I mean Jacen keeps seeing bits of Annika in the alluring Princess Ana and even after he notes that their kiss felt familiar he still doesn't get it, and Annika doesn't realize that Jacen's cold demeanor is all an act, even when given nearly every shred of evidence needed. Even still they have a great chemistry and I'll be interested to see how much that will develop before the end of the series.

World-Building: Now this is what I'm talking about! After the previous installment, I was a bit worried going into this story. The Vampire Prince is almost entirely set up for the rest of (I assume) the series, and so not all that much happened in that book, but this book has all of the needed pay off of the previous installment. If it weren't for the fact that some of the stuff that happens in this book would feel too soon in the second book, I'd say that books 2 & 3 should have been combined. In this story, there's a lot that not only moves the plot of this story along further but also reveals a great deal about the world and still finds time to set up some pretty incredible stuff for the final installments. I really want to talk more and go into what about the world building was amazing and why, but to avoid spoilers I can't all I'll say is that if you thought about abandoning the series after the previous book, this book makes up for it and more.

Predictability: I honestly thought I knew what was going to happen in this book. I thought I knew how it would end, and a good idea of how it would be resolved, but nope. While I was able to predict a good chunk of this story it was mainly the obvious parts where the author never even attempted to be subtle with the foreshadowing. No, the really big stuff comes later, however, while I'll agree there is a twist I never saw coming, I don't think it's the twist the author was thinking of when writing the synopsis.

Ending: As much as I love this book and, in all honesty, the ending, it was a bit anticlimactic. There's something that happens at the end that while I wouldn't call it foreshadowing, practically gives arguably the biggest twist of this book away. Now, everything that happens after that anticlimactic climax is pretty fast paced and there's a definite cliffhanger here. I mean, the cliffhanger is the twist I never saw coming because there's never really any foreshadowing for it, and I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. Book 4 can't come soon enough!

Rating:


Don't get me wrong, there's a part of me that really wants to give this book 5 stars. I mean it's so good and in comparison to book 2 it's astronomically better, but I just can't get over how, as much as I love them, these characters can be really dumb sometimes, and how the ending just fell flat and anticlimactic for me.

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