Book Review: Night’s Surrender by Amanda Ashley

Posted August 28, 2015 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Book Review: Night’s Surrender by Amanda Ashley

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Night's Surrender Published by Zebra on August 25, 2015
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley

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Aspiring actress Abbey Marie Cordova knows more than most people do about vampires—she was born among them, the only human child in a centuries-old family of the undead, and determined to stay that way. But a chance encounter with dark, mysterious Niccola Desanto rocks her to the core. Nick is a vampire, and he’s the only man who has ever made her feel so beautiful, so cherished, and so passionately desired …

Nick has spent hundreds of years on his own, and the decadent pleasures of the world have lost their appeal. Rumor has it the vampire who made him has regained her humanity—the temptation to find her and demand to know the secret is overwhelming. But one glance at innocently alluring Abbey changes everything. Drawn to her with dangerous, consuming passion, Nick will need more than a lifetime to love her…

Seventh in the Children of the Night paranormal romance series and revolving around the Cordova-DeLongpre family of vampires and humans. The couple focus is on Abbey Cordova and Nick Desanto. Based in Northern California.

This ARC was sent to me by NetGalley and Zebra for an honest review.

My Take

It’s a cozy read and feels like the 1950s with its doting, concerned parents. While it’s a fun read, it is not an A-quality read as Ashley doesn’t develop the romance smoothly, the writing itself is lacking in grace, and there’s no real depth to the story. Be warned, it’s also insta-love.

It’s age, how one looks and a feeling of not belonging that drives Abbey’s worries while Nick is bored, fed up with having lived too long. It doesn’t take much for Nick to change his mind about living, and the real question, for him, devolves to how he wants to live: as a vampire or a human. As for Abbey, the story becomes a vehicle for Ashley to explore the pluses and minuses of being either human or vampire. To explore that human yearning for wherever the grass is greener.

Savannah’s thoughts about becoming a vampire are poignant, making me feel how important the little things in life really are. On the other hand, Nick’s musings about what he misses about being a vampire are also sweet. It’s a two-way street with whatever you’ve become accustomed to over the years (and years and years and years, lol) seeming the proper way to do things.

Oh, boy, the dreaded she-deserves-better trope…*eye roll*…

“A man who wouldn’t look at eleven helpless humans and think of them as lunch.”

Oh, brother. Logan’s jealousy is so contrived. He should be feeling secure about her love for him, and that scene with Mara licking some blood from Nick’s lip is a definite eye-roller with yet more eye rolls needed when Abbey confronts Nick about the lipstick. Sure, you’d think Logan’s and Abbey’s reactions are reasonable…but just wait until you read the scenes, though…*eyes rolling like a one-armed bandit*…

Two issues I’m wondering about include Ashley stating that Rane is a born vampire and then later she says that he was turned vampire when he and Rafe turned thirteen. So, which is it? Born means when you’re born, doesn’t it? Then there are all these “uncles”. If Rane is her dad, shouldn’t some of those “uncles” be “grandfathers” and “great-grands”?

Aww, the new setting for Pearl and Edna is so sweet. And quite fortuitous.

I suspect I’d have gotten more out of the story if I’d read the previous installments. There is a lot in here that’s implied and assumes that you know about past incidents.

The Story

It’s computers once Abbey flips through the list of her abilities with every job seeming to require computer literacy, and it’s that visit to the computer store that will change everything for her.

Nick is tired. Alive for better than 2,000 years, he wants to end it. To experience a real death.

The Characters

Abbey Marie Cordova is a wanna-be actress struggling in New York City. Rane Cordova, a former magician and vampire, is her adoptive father. Savannah was her human mother who chose the Dark Gift after Abbey graduated from high school. (Savannah’s father is William Gentry, and she’s a direct descendant of Abraham Van Helsing through her vampire-hunter mother, Barbara Gentry.) Freckles is the horse her parents give Abbey. Serenity is the very high-strung horse Savannah usually rides.

Niccola “Nick” Desanto is over 2,000 years old, but still younger than Mara, the vampire who turned him. He was her first.

Uncle Logan Blackwood, a.k.a., Hektor, is an Oscar-winning director, married to Mara, Queen of the Vampires who is better than 2,000 years old, about whom rumors flew that she was human again. Derek, Mara’s son and a werewolf, got married last month to Sheree. Mara is godmother to Abbey, Rane, and Rane’s twin brother, Rafe, whose parents are Uncle Vince Cordova and his wife, Cara. Uncle Rafe is married to Kathy. Cara is Uncle Roshan (vampire) and Aunt Brenna (witch) DeLongpre‘s daughter.

Pearl Jackson, a.k.a., Anita, might have a cure for what ails an old vampire. Edna Mae Turner, a.k.a., Brittany, is her partner and completely unable to keep a secret. (Uncle Rafe turned these two hunters during the War.) James Harkness and his friend, Monroe Taylor, take Anita and Brittany out on a date. Al, the bartender, is a vampire, and Diane is a waitress there.

Dendar is the vampire who turned Mara. Kyle Bowden, a werewolf, had once been married to Mara. Father Lanzoni, a vampire priest, has married many of the Cordova-DeLongpre vampires. (He was a priest when he was turned.)

The hunters include…
Louise McDonald and Cindy McDonald Meloni, sisters, were legendary hunters who have been killed. F. Meloni is Cindy’s daughter. Thad Rivers is a hunter who kidnaps Pearl and Edna. Cal. Clary and Berta are part of the kidnapping party.

Peter Abbott is Abbey’s agent. Zendeya is a witch descended from Zara, the witch who did some altering in the Van Helsing book. Miles Jay Cunningham, an accountant, was the sperm donor with several aliases: Miles Novotny, a warlock in New Orleans; Miles Lightner, a self-proclaimed psychic and healer in Boston; Ace Lightner in Santa Fe; and, a dealer in Atlantic City.

The Cover and Title

The cover has the most gorgeous man on it, or should I say 2,000-plus-year-old vampire? Dark hair, stubble on his chin, naked from the waist up with a background of silhouetted trees against a blazing yellow sunset — who wouldn’t fall in love? A gorgeous scroll flows across the bottom with the author’s name in a serif font and a smaller swirl for the title in a sunset yellow-orange with the name of the series in white.

The title is all about Abbey and her metaphorical capitulation to Night’s Surrender.

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