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Midnight Reign: Vampire Babylon, Book 2 by Chris Marie Green
Edited by Ginjer Buchanan
Cover Artist: Larry Rostant
Review by Beth Slater
Ace Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780441015603
Date: 05 February 2008 List Price $14.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

Dawn Madison is back. With her she brings her new friends -- or family, as she is coming to think of them -- to search for her missing father, Frank. But Los Angeles has a secret: vampires. Lots and lots of vampires. Dawn has become a vampire hunter, preparing to use her skills as a stuntwoman to delve into the Underground to find her lost father. Kiko, the psychic midget actor, is still recovering from his back-breaking encounter with the last vampire they found, and his psychic powers don't seem to work well with the pain meds -- especially, Dawn suspects, if he's become addicted to them. Breisi, Frank's girlfriend, seems to be accepting Dawn little by little, but the three of them have to trust one another in order to survive the search. But what about The Voice?

The Voice, or Jonah, runs the show. But Dawn has difficulty simply trusting everyone because they tell her to, so her relationship with Jonah is extremely complicated. Jonah has taken her in (by using Frank to bring her to LA) and given her work and even manages to help her contain her addiction to sex as an outlet for her anger and frustration. Breisi is learning to see her as a co-worker and possible stepdaughter, and the two of them seem to be more comfortable around one another, and their mutual concern for their partner Kiko has helped with that a lot. Kiko and Dawn have become like brother and sister, which means a lot to Dawn, but she's still not used to having so many people to answer to. So when a new vampire killing is announced and the perpetrator caught after the first one is still locked up, Dawn and the team are back to a lot of footwork after a quiet month.

The mysterious Matt appears on the scene again once news of the murder leaks out, and while Dawn finds him persuasive and attractive, she tries to trust her instincts. When it appears that what Matt wants isn't Dawn, she leaves despite not getting any new information from him. Hurt by that incident, she nevertheless can't help but listen to Matt's request: question Jonah and his motives.

The Underground is seething with activity but is trying to stay low-key so as not to reveal themselves to anyone set on destroying their Eden-like existence. This new murder was not sanctioned and is drawing unwanted attention, so they must investigate the circumstances without drawing the attention of the vampire hunters.

It's difficult for me to describe my interest in this series. Yes, I like the paranormal, which originally drew me to it. But it is supposed to take place in this world, in this time, which throws me off track a little, I think. But Dawn is a compelling character who has insecurities and faults like everyone else. We watch her struggle with her loyalties and desires as she tries to find the father she loves but doesn't like very much. But the storyline is deepening, with twists, so I think that I will be on the lookout for Break of Dawn when it comes out next year. The vampire followers will enjoy the books, and a little romance is thrown in to confuse things.

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