Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Masquerade by Melissa De La Cruz

Schuyler Van Alen wants an explanation for the mysterious deaths of young vampires. With her best friend, Oliver, Schuyler travels to Italy in the hope of finding the one man who can help—her grandfather. Meanwhile, back in New York, preparations are feverishly under way for the Four Hundred Ball, an exclusive gala hosted by the city’s wealthy, powerful, and unhuman—a true Blue Blood affair.

But it’s at the after-party, a masquerade ball thrown by the cunning Mimi Force, that the real danger lurks. Hidden behind the masks is a revelation that will forever change the course of a young vampire’s destiny. [description from inside cover]

After taking months to get into the first book in this series, Blue Bloods, I jumped right in to Masquerade. The new plot developments were much more interesting in comparison, and the suspense was built up to extremes. Not only did the characters become more developed and have stronger emotions, but the vampire lore became more developed and had a past. Everything about the Blue Bloods that you couldn’t figure out in the first novel was very well explained in the second.

For example:

Once Schuyler finds her grandfather, he decides she needs to be trained to use her powers—something The Committee is no longer doing with new vampires. In his training, he teaches Schuyler about the four factors of the glom, or mind control. This is just one of the many new introductions to vampire lore in Masquerade.

Despite the lack of many Silver Blood attacks in this novel, it is surprisingly more suspenseful than the first. I was flipping pages fervently as it got later and later into the night—I just couldn’t put it down. The romance between Schuyler and Jack (and Oliver) becomes part of the story, as does the romance between Jack and Mimi, Bliss and a new character, Kingsley, and Charles and Allegra.

If you’ve read the first and are skeptic about the second, I encourage you to go pick it up now. It will not disappoint.

Or even if you haven’t read the series at all, I encourage you to start it—and don’t worry, if you can’t get into Blue Bloods, it ends up turning into a great series.

4 cups of coffee for this one.


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