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Nightwalker (Dark Days, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – July 29, 2008
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“NIGHTWALKER is an action-packed, stellar debut. Jocelynn Drake will have you coming back for more.” (Jeaniene Frost, New York Times bestselling author of Halfway to the Grave)
About the Author
Jocelynn Drake is the New York Times bestselling author of the Dark Days series and lives in Florida. When not at her desk, she is most likely to be found playing video games, watching movies, or hanging with her family.
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Top customer reviews
What makes Nightwalker unique is the main character. Have you ever read a vampire book where a secondary character in the novel was an ancient vampire and you thought to yourself FINALLY! an ancient vampire that actually acts his or her age! So many times we see 100-1000 year old immortals acting like 20 year olds, and that just doesn't sit well with me. An ancient vampire should feel alien. It would be impossible to live that many years, loose that many friends, and retain your humanity. Mira is 600 years old, and she acts her age. She's powerful, sometimes cold, often brutal, and mostly disconnected from her humanity. In short, she's very different from the normal vampire protagonist. Most authors choose to write fledgling vampire protagonists because they know we'll identify with them more. Mira is likeable from page one, but it's hard to connect with her initially.
I think it was easy for me to make assumptions about Mira's character in the beginning. Much like her nemesis-turned-ally Danaus, I assumed she was somewhat morally destitute, or at least morally grey. She seems to view humans as nothing but cattle, and appears to enjoy playing games with the lives of others. This isn't to say she's unlikeable, but what I appreciated about her was her strength. It took me a while to finally start to see her intrinsic goodness. As the story progressed, I realized Mira is incredibly honorable. She avoids killing while feeding, strives to make peace with other supernaturals, and refuses to take part in the cruel games of the immortals. She protects the weak, keeps her word, and does her duty, no matter what the cost. She always tries to do the right thing. In short, she's an amazing character.
Danaus also walks a fine line between being likeable and vexing in the beginning. He is a complete mystery. He's a powerful vampire hunter, and seems human, but isn't. In fact, he's ancient, centuries older than Mira. But we don't know how he's stayed alive so long, or what he is. He starts the story as a close minded zealot. In his mind, vampires are evil. Period. A vampire could have the kindness of Mother Teresa and he'd still condemn them. He is frequently critical of Mira, making snap judgments of her based on pre-conceived notions instead of facts. There were times I wanted to jump through the pages of the book and smack him upside the head. Close mindedness is not an attractive trait in anyone. But what makes Danaus work with Mira is the connection they have with one another. They hate each other, and are forced to work with one another early on in the story, but what keeps them working side by side is more than just obligation, it's a deep understanding and similarity of spirit. They grow together through the novel. Since the story is told from Mira's perspective, and we're never in Danaus' head, this growth is seen mostly in the way he slowly softens towards her. He starts off distrustful and hateful, but slowly becomes increasingly more kind and even protective of Mira.
Including such an old and powerful vampire heroine also ups the stakes on the whole story. The villains she's pitted against must be equally as powerful, which makes the battles in this book epic. When Mia and Danaus fight together, they are taken on dozens of foes. I've never seen battles written quite on this scale before, and it makes for a very exciting read.
While there is romantic tension between Danaus and Mira, there is almost no romance in this novel. In fact, you won't get any actual romance until book five of the series. The thrill you'll get from the Dark Days series comes from the world building, character development, political intrigue, and most importantly, the action of the story. There is hardly a dull moment in any of the novels. You'll see each of the characters grow and learn, becoming more than what they were in the beginning. You'll see them change their pre-conceived notions. You'll see enemies becomes friends, and friends become enemies. Alliances will be made and broken. More than any other series I've read lately, the characters in Nightwalker and the books that follow felt like friends. They started off flawed, and even unlikeable in many ways, but seeing them grow allowed me to connect with them. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the rest of the series, and recommend it to anyone that enjoys good action packed urban fantasy series.
Mira is the oldest vampire in America (but certainly not in the world, she's only 603) and thus the leader of the domain. Since the naturi have appeared on her turf, she took it upon herself to round up the ancient triad of vampires who can reseal the door between worlds. Luckily, a powerful vampire hunter sought her out who doesn't want to kill her, but instead shares the common enemy and the uncanny ability to sense them. Danaus and Mira travel the world to seek out these ancient vampires and kick a lot of ass along the way!
Being the first in a series, Nightwalker contains a lot of world building. It never felt info-dumpy, but there is a lot of information. I loved how the author managed to fit in all kinds of supernaturals into the world without it feeling crowded. They each have their own place within society and have unique abilities and weaknesses. Nightwalkers are the typical vampires, but of course, Mira is special. She can control fire which is the one thing that kills them. Naturi are the oldest race and the enemies of everyone else, and can only be destroyed by nightwalkers although their blood is lethal to them. Naturi also have the ability to enslave and control the werewolves due to their connection to nature. Witches also played a small role, but we'll be seeing much more of them later. There's also a lot of history about this war that's going on, and Mira's personal history which plays an integral role in everything.
It's hard to review Nightwalker without giving anything away, but know that I did really enjoy it. It's action packed, and a whole lot more bloody than I expected. Some gruesome stuff goes down on Mira's journey. I definitely love this set up for a supernatural war, and couldn't wait to see how it all plays out!
Most recent customer reviews
Unlike every other vampire book this one has the heroine as the dark, brooding, intelligent, "wicked"...Read more