Fantasy – Fiction Book Review: Balthazar

Balthazar by Claudia Gray

When Skye is attacked while riding her horse in the woods, Balthazar appears just as suddenly to rescue her from a blood-thirsty vampire. Skye has a new psychic power after she let a ghost possess her back at Evernight Academy. And Redgrave, the ancient vampire who turned Balthazar, is pursuing Skye and seems to know something about her gift and wants to use it for his own gain. As Balthazar vows to protect Skye from the person he hates most, Balthazar and Skye begin to develop feelings for each other that go beyond just their immediate attraction.

This offshoot story follows events in the last Evernight novel, Afterlife, and Evernight Academy is no more. The charming and ever-gallant Balthazar has been a fascinating character in Gray’s former novels, so I was excited that he got his own story. Balthazar’s backstory is told in a jumble of flashbacks, bouncing around in time till we finally see the whole of his tragic past. With diverse and intriguing characters and an intense plot, this book was completely riveting. This vampire novel involves situations for a mature young adult readership, following a similar vein as the previous novels in the series. Dark and suspenseful, with plenty of violence, mystery, and romance – this standalone novel is a must for Claudia Gray fans.

Balthazar will release from HarperTeen on March 6, 2012.

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