Review: Midnight's Daughter by Karen Chance ★★★★

Midnight's Daughter by Karen Chance
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Dorina Basarab #1
Publication Date: 2008
ISBN: 9780451412621
Page Count: 373 Rating: ★★★★
Review Copy: Audiobook
Synopsis: Basarab is a dhampir-half human, half vampire. Subject to uncontrollable rages, most dhampirs live very short, very violent lives. So far Dory has managed to maintain her sanity by unleashing her anger on those demons and vampires who deserve killing.

Now Dory's vampire father has come back into her life. Her Uncle Dracula (yes, the Dracula), infamous even among vampires for his cruelty and murderous ways, has escaped his prison. And her father wants Dory to work with gorgeous master vampire Louis-Cesare to put him back there.

Vampires and dhampirs are mortal enemies, and Dory prefers to work alone. But Dracula is the only thing on Earth that truly scares her, so when Dory has to go up against him, she'll take all the help she can get… ..


You know what's weird? Considering how many reviews I've written—especially this year after I set it as my New Year's Resolution to review every single book I read—what's weird is that most of my all-time favourite books don't even have a review at all because I read them waaaay before I discovered the joys of reviewing or having a virtual Goodreads/Shelfari bookshelf to keep a record of my books and ratings. So my favourites, like this one, just got slapped with an automatic 5-star rating based on hazy memories of awesomeness, and that was that.

So, it's a bit sad that I am, then, to find that after my recent re-read of this book, 3 years and around 600 books after my first go, I find I can't in all honesty still give it 5 stars, so I've dropped it down to 4. I still really enjoyed it, don't get me wrong. But I'd be blind not to see that, although I love Chance's writing for its fast pacing and action-filled plots, a lot of it can be too chaotic and confusing with too much going on from too many directions and not enough exposition. For much of the book I was just waiting and hoping that any minute now I'd be told why Dory was doing what she was doing, or going where she was going, and who the heck are those people firing stuff at her now and why are they doing it?

I imagine it all makes perfect sense in Karen Chance's head, but it doesn't always translate perfectly to her audience. It's kind of a double-edged sword, though, because the confusion is a side effect of having such intricate, complex, multi-layered, thought-provoking and detailed plots. She literally fits more plotting, world-building and characterisation into one page than some authors manage in three chapters (or whole books in the worst cases). But unless you're paying absolute, 100% focused attention (which admittedly I probably wasn't this time as I did the re-read as an audiobook) then you'll blink and miss something vital and be all "What the hell just happened?"

But that's enough negativity!

This is my favourite urban fantasy 'world' after all, (although I do prefer the main Cassandra Palmer series over this, the spin-off). So let's get on to what I still loved—The world, the setting, the magic, Dory, the real historical characters, Louis Cesare, the complex and strained relationships, Stinky, the sexual tension, the funny dialogue, Radu, the hot vamps, the hot smexy times, Dory's house that won't let her redecorate or move anything, the intelligent writing, Louis Cesare in a towel.

That's quite a lot still to love, eh?

Dory is a great main character. She has a bit of a bad attitude due to being a misfit and held in contempt by almost all supernatural factions AND humans, and she suffers rage episodes and has a dry, sarcastic sense of humour.

Louis Cesare on the other hand is cool, suave, laconic, honourable and protective. They make a great fighting team, as long as Louis Cesare can keep up, and I look forward to re-visiting them in the next book, which I believe, if memory serves, is slightly less hectic than this one.

Recommended to read after books 1&2 of the Cassandra Palmer series.
Click here for the series timeline.
4 Stars ★★★★


  1. Really like Karen Chance, and love the sound of a house that won't let you redecorate! Sorry this one wasn't as good as you remembered, but a 4 is still a pretty good rating!

  2. It certainly is, particularly for the first book in a series! :)



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