GETTING TO KNOW DAD
Sophie has been waiting at Hex Hall for six months to go to London for the Removal, a permanent extraction of her demon-based powers. When her father, who is the head of the Prodigium Council, finally comes to fetch her, he gets her to agree to a summer respite with him at Thorne Abbey and to rethink her decision. He also informs her that Cal will be coming with them, as he is her contractual betrothed. Surprise! Surprise! Yet another lie of omission to shatter Sophie’s world
When Sophie, Jenna and Cal arrive at Thorne, they are overwhelmed by its size and magnificence and considerably underwhelmed to find that Thorne is inhabited by the Council and two teenage demons of unknown origin. They learn that, in an attack supposedly orchestrated by the Eye, seven of the 12 council members have recently been murdered. After that, it takes only two days for the two demons to trick Sophie into traveling to a Prodigium club. The Eye attacks the club and Sophie finds herself face to face with Archer Cross. Protecting her from his teammates, Archer slips her a coin, a type of magical GPS, and tells her to keep it on her person so that he can contact her later.
And thus begins Sophie’s journey into the mysteries that are Thorne Abbey, two demons with no memory of their earlier lives, two sisters who ceded their right to inherit the Council leadership from their father in favor of Sophie’s father, and Archer Cross. And we cannot forget Elodie’s ghost, either. While our main protagonists are teenagers, to say that this is simply a YA read would be to shortchange the work. While the dialog between Sophie, Archer, Jenna, Cal and Elodie is full of sarcasm and the colloquialisms of today’s youth, it is a focused dialog. These kids aren’t discussing the latest rock star or current fashion; they are discussing situations that could mean life or death for any of them on a daily basis.
This work is a paranormal romantic suspense that just happens to involve teenagers as well as adults, with good guys and villains in both age categories. And, as the second book in a planned trilogy, it ends as most second books do – with a cliffhanger. Fortunately, it is a mild one compared to how it could have been written. In fact, the twenty-five pages prior to the short last chapter were far more terrifying than the end. Had Hawkins chose to stop during that section, there would have been more than ample reason for weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth and considerable throwing of books across rooms.
Rachel Hawkins has set the hook for the third and final novel in the series. We may not know who is now dead or who will yet die, but we have a really good idea who the villain is.
Cover Art from Goodreads