Daylighters by Rachel Caine
My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Okay, let’s get the obvious out of the way right up front. Yes, this is a Young Adult series. Yes, it is about vampires. And yes, there are some teenagers involved. But that’s where the similarities to other teen vampire books ends. First of all, the premise of the book stands alone in its unique wierdness…a town controlled by vampires, hiding in our midst, and keeping the human population of the town inside the city limits to be used as willing, or unwilling, donors to the local blood bank. This is handled so well, it becomes entirely believable in the very first book of the series, and you never question that it could really be happening.
Second, there’s the cast of characters. Claire Danvers, the 16-year old anchor of the story, comes to town to attend the local college, and finds herself in a world that will change her life forever. She is always clever, resourceful, kind, and filled with integrity. All the things you want in a main character. And she is the center of this particular universe, with all the other characters revolving around her, interacting with her, and touching her heart in unexpected ways. Everyone from the often daft but lovable Shane, who steals her heart, to the always daft but also lovable, sometimes scary, and totally insane vampire, Myrnin, who eventually becomes Claire’s boss and mentor in her scientific studies. There’s Goth chick, Eve, who becomes her best friend, and who exhibits amazing courage and strength when necessary, and Eve’s boyfriend, Michael, a rock star turned ghost turned vampire turned…well, that would be giving away too much. Suffice it to say, he’s all the beautiful things Eve could want. Round that out with rogues and villains and heroes, all struggling with fear and hatred and misunderstanding, and you have a drama that has played out beautifully over the course of 15 books. And guess what? I’m really sad to see the series end.
Yep. Fifteen books, and I could read more and more. Which brings me to point Three. The writing. Rachel Caine is a terrific writer. I fell in love with her Weather Warden series, which will remain among my top Urban Fantasy series forever, and thought I would give her Young Adult series a try. Since I believe Young Adult should work fine for OLD adults, too, only with less sex, violence, and language, why not? And it did. Her writing was just as strong and compelling as it was in the Weather Warden books. I was hooked from the first book of the series, Glass Houses, and I loved each and every one that followed. Daylighters is no exception. I’m not going to go into how this saga was wrapped up, but it was a humdinger of an ending, and had plenty of surprises, along with the action and drama. My only regret is that the ride is over. I just might have to start from the beginning and give it all one more go.
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