Carpe Corpus (Morganville Vampires) by Rachel Caine

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Carpe Corpus (Morganville Vampires) by Rachel Caine

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Category: Teens
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: John Lloyd
Reviewed by John Lloyd
Summary: An interesting further volume in the continuing saga of the vampire-riddled Texan town and the inhabitants Claire interacts with. It redresses the twist in balance of book five, if nothing else.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: October 2009
Publisher: Allison and Busby
ISBN: 978-0749007775

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If you haven't already, meet Claire. She is beholden to Mr Bishop, the horrid evil vampire that is ruling the town of Morganville, even more so than the other human, and vampire, inhabitants are, now that he has taken over things from Claire's former ruler Amelie. She is caught in a struggle between the two warring vampire factions, especially over an unusual form of disease among the undead - Amelie's side definitely trying to cure it, Bishop somehow trying to provoke it and profit from it. Not only that, her boyfriend is imprisoned, along with his father, one of the world's least subtle vampire hunters. Can she have enough quality time with him? Can she and her captured-and-turned ex-housemate Michael survive the horrid things asked of them? And who is Ada?

There are a lot more questions to be covered in these pages, but with this being book six I can't relate them all, certainly, for risk of spoiling some other volumes for other people. I'd certainly recommend reading up before hitting this book - I'm sure you could get involved in the town and Claire's moral quandaries in the opening pages here, but there's not a lot of exposition and I can't think of many reasons to not start in the proper place with book one.

So to speak instead to the converted, this chapter in the saga is more of the same - Claire and Shane getting friskier still, contrasting nicely with the depth of depravity Bishop can come up with. All the while things bubble under, with the plans of Amelie being developed, and a stronger sense of counter-insurgency involved. Not only that, but we see new strands to the mythology Rachel Caine is using, with more supernatural entities being met.

This is neither one of the dark, intimate, moral and 'political' titles in the series, nor is it the more gung-ho all-action piece we were gifted from this gifted author last time out. Instead, it hits a medium of them all. New characters are introduced, and new elements are proving to be more important as we go along.

I've spoken before of how Caine is great at giving us a false sense of things. I spent the first half thinking any great strides we were making towards the summation of it all would be undermined later, only for a sudden ending. Now, I'd have loved this for a wonderful surprise, except it's once again based on a melee at a Bishop ceremonial, and didn't instil much confidence in the ultimate conclusion, as it was surprisingly mild.

Still, there was always the benefit of knowing there are more books to come, with volume seven published in the USA this very month of my writing - November 2009. But I'll go out on a limb to say the publishers might be making a slight mistake here. It's recently been announced that the ten book series will now be twelve volumes. If this is a midway pause, then fine. If this is the ultimate stop sign providing closure to one hexalogy (or whatever the word might be), oh dear.

Don't get me wrong, I have no intention of stopping reading these books for one false step. Many I am sure will maintain the ride alongside me. The plot-lines are ever surprising, the characterisation spot on, whether we are concerning ageless vampire evil in its vengeance or teenage worrying American student gal, and the mood of Morganville is still coming across vividly through the skills of the writing. We also get a short story flagged as a UK exclusive in my edition, which was a nice twist as regards the narrator, and very enjoyable is not essential. There is still a lot of scope in this world, and I know I'll have many page-turning adventures to come.

I must thank the publishers for my review copy.

We can see fans of this series enjoying the supernatural, romantic and thriller factors that are all wrapped up in Wake by Lisa McMann. You might also like The Vampire of Highgate by Asa Bailey.

Rachel Caine's Morganville Vampires books in chronological order

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