Shades of Midnight
Grade : B

I’m very picky when it comes to vampire romances – not just anything will do. Lara Adrian is a paranormal author who usually delivers for me and she continues to do so with Shades of Midnight, the latest installment in her Midnight Breed series.

Alexandra Maguire is an Alaskan bush pilot recovering from the loss of her father by keeping busy running supplies. Unfortunately, her complacency is disturbed when she discovers the gruesome murders of the local Toms family. Unfortunately for Alex, those murders trigger unwanted, forgotten memories of impossible images from the past. They make her fear things that she and her father left behind a lifetime ago. She finds herself even more unsettled by the arrival of a stranger to town who is also looking into the murders.

For a vampire newly sworn in to an order created to protect the secrecy of the race from exposure by rogue vampires, the last place Kade wants to be is Alaska – a place that holds far too many memories and ties for him. When he is chosen to investigate the murder of a family of humans – likely the work of a rogue vampire in the thrall of bloodlust – he fears what he will find and what it will mean for his own family. However, Alaska does hold one major surprise for him in the form of Alex Maguire.

Together, the two uncover secrets that can affect them both. For Alex, it’s the truth of her past, the existence of a race of which she was unaware, and the discovery of her place in that world as a rare and special breedmate. For Kade, the mystery goes even deeper than family and involves a plot that has the potential to affect all vampires and something he alone isn’t strong enough to fight. His biggest fear, however, is whether he’ll be strong enough to let Alex go.

There are many things to like about this installment, as well as the series itself. It’s a dark book, with a little hint of gruesome, which is as it should be since it’s a story involving vampires. For me, it never reaches the point of disturbing – something I don’t enjoy and won’t read. Also, it’s action packed with a well developed plot and complications that are well thought out and multifaceted, without creating a need to constantly backtrack for clarification.

However, I wish less time were spent on the action of the story. Though the romance is an important aspect of this book, I found it lacking when compared to the action of the story. It simply lacks the necessary sizzle of a great romance.

Shades of Midnight is a solid, enjoyable romance. Like the series, it’s comprised of believable world-building and strong, interesting characters, but pleasingly toned down in comparison to other vampire romances.

Reviewed by Heather Brooks

Grade: B

Book Type: Vampire Romance

Sensuality: Hot

Review Date : March 4, 2010

Publication Date: 2010

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