January 28, 2011

Review: Sunrise to Sunset by Laurie Bowler

Sunrise to Sunset
Author: Laurie Bowler
Publisher: Esquire Publications
Series: Moon Rising, Book 2
ISBN: 1453835873
Purchase Information:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble

*Novel provided by the author for a honest review.

For more information please visit Laurie Bowler's website.

Nessy wakes from her unconscious state to find she can no longer remember who she is or her purpose in life. Charles battles to try and tell her as much information as he can about her former life, and eventually submits to telling Nessy her true immortal state.

Hera takes Nessy back to the past in the form of the Gulon, where she meets the other Gulon packs who have come to aid them while the covens have gathered hoping to glimpse their new queen and ruler of the underworld, little does Nessy realise that person is her!

The continuing threat from the detested sinister Tellis coven fight back with the remaining members and they join forces with another coven that have long since been known for their massacres and barbaric ways for feeding.
Nessy has to battle to protect the human race from extinction and to protect her title for the good of races, the immortal race and the mortals that surround her, with Charles and the Gulon they must succeed.


Sunrise to Sunset is the second novel in Laurie Bowler's quaint paranormal romance series, Moon Rising. Once again, we follow Nessy on her journey to self discovery and true love in a world that is still stacked against her depite the death of her murderous and nefarious maker Hervidor. Now a full fledged vampire with unique DNA allowing her to retain her Gulon heritage as well as her humanity, she still finds herself the oddity among her kind. But, now the situation is made worse by the fact that she is the Queen of the Underworld and thus ruler of the Vampires, and not everyone is happy about this elevation. Covens plotting and manipulating their way closer to usurping her throne adds a nice twist of adventure while the alliance between Vampire and Gulon sparks some interesting controversy amongst the different races. Again, Bowler creates an interesting world with a sort of fairy tale flair that is interesting and unique.

The characters are nicely written, with great care given to their thoughts and motivations. However, they still felt a little one dimensional to me and the emotional connection that I hoped would grow in this novel was still oddly lacking. What I did really enjoy about this novel though was the deeper exploration into the Gulon culture and heritage. More is found out about their legends, rules and society and we get to see the various clans coming together and showing the varying attitudes and prejudices about the Vampire race. The bonds created by the allegiance of Gulon and Vampire, united under Nessy, are interesting to see as it is seemingly shrugged off by many as not being a big deal. In fact, despite the animosity between the two cultures, most aren't that perturbed by Nessy's mixed heritage. In fact, her unique mix of Human, Vampire and Gulon seem to unite the covens with a sense of goodwill and hope not seen under her villainous predecessor Hervidor. In truth, I found this novel to be more focused on the growing relationships between the species  with little snippets given to the main threat of the attacking Tellis/Cassis covens.

The world building is once again nicely done as Bowler explores lots of different angles throughout the novel. From the Gulon society, to what it means to be the Queen of the Vampires and even exploring new ground with addition of witches. The feeling of once again being thrust in to a fairy tale realm instead of a paranormal romance was once again plainly evident. And again the ever expanding of this universe is lovely to see as we explore more and more of the cultural differences between the species.

But, once again I also saw things that drew down the novel from what it could have been. Again, the dialogue often takes on an almost simplistic tone with the various characters' voices not being all that different from one another. Also, there is a lot of repetition in both the characters' thoughts and speech and often times the explanations get a bit confusing because they aren't boiled down to the simplest terms. Pacing can be a bit of a problem as well at times which paired with the repetition of thoughts and speech can be monotonous. However,  I found that I could look past these things and still enjoy the story.

In the end, I found that I really enjoyed this novel more then the previous in the series and am still captivated by the whimsical quality embodied within these pages. Bowler has quite a unique voice as an author, one I am more aptly able to describe using the term 'story teller', a quality that I feel is often over looked and under appreciated in today's literary circles. If you enjoyed Moon Rising then you will certainly adore this adventurous follow up!

My Rating: 3 out of 5 Scars

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