Book Review: Rises the Night (The Gardella Vampire Hunters Book 2) by Colleen Gleason

Victoria is back to slaying vampires after a much needed leave of absence, but this time her duty as a Venator takes her to Italy where a powerful vampire is working create his own army of the dead using, something that will have disastrous consequences if he succeeds. But turning to Sebastian of all people for help is not something Victoria is happy about, especially as she uncovers more secrets and betrayals and doesn't know who to trust anymore.

Book Review: Rises the Night (The Gardella Vampire Hunters Book 2) by Colleen Gleason | books, reading, book covers, book reviews, fantasy, historical fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, vampires
Title: Rises the Night
Book Number: Book 2
Pages: 300
My Rating: 4.5 Stars
More Info: Goodreads, Amazon


*I received an ecopy of this book via Edelweiss. This has not influenced my review.*

I went into this book fully expecting to have my heart ripped out after how painful the first book in the series was. Instead, I ended up on this rollercoaster of deceit, lies, subterfuge, and betrayal… and I loved it. Seriously, if ever there were a book that perfectly compares to a rollercoaster, it’s this one. Right from the beginning I was hooked, then everything kept building up and my anticipation built right up with it, and then suddenly there were all these twists and turns and loops as betrayals popped up everywhere until I didn’t know who to trust or which way was up. I don’t even know how to organize my review or explain why I loved it so much—it was just so good!

I think, however, that this book had three main things going for it…

1) The book was juicy. There was still that underlying pain from the events of Book 1, and those events were not forgotten or overlooked, something I appreciated, but this book was also filled with romance and suitors and sexual tension and all the head games Sebastian played. I know we live vicariously through every character we read about, but it felt like more with Victoria because the romantic aspects were the kinds of things you would sit around talking about with your girlfriends. One relationship in particular (I’m using the term loosely) was so realistic and well-written that I swear I could feel the tension myself. I mean, I hated *SPOILER* (Sebastian) *END SPOILER* in Book 1, but even I couldn’t help but see why Victoria was attracted to him this time.

2) The book was funny! But not in an obvious way. It was my favorite kind of humor, the kind that built up as things continually got worse and more absurd and crazier until finally there was just kind of chaos and the character herself even reached that moment of, “If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry,” because of course he would show up here and of course that particular thing would happen and of course it would happen at the worst time possible because that’s just how life has been going. But Victoria also got more and more sarcastic in this book, apparently the events of the first book made her more jaded and less naive, and I loved her more with each thought and remark. I think I felt a bit distanced from her in Book 1, but this time she was so relatable.

3) As I mentioned briefly, this book was full of deceit, lies, intrigue, subterfuge, and betrayal. It was like every character was playing on the same board, but they were all playing a different game. And I couldn’t figure out who was on the same team, but it didn’t matter since they were all too busy keeping secrets and lying to work together anyway. Just when I thought I could trust someone, he’d turn around and prove me wrong, or vice versa.

There was also still some emotion in the book, though it wasn’t heart-squeezing in the way the last one was. I felt for Victoria and her pain, but for me, a lot of the emotion actually came from putting myself into another character’s head. *MAJOR SPOILER* Even though I couldn’t figure out why he broke contact the way he did, and even when he did that terrible thing, I never lost my faith in Max. I even figured he might not have wanted to do what he did but that Eustacia told him to. And in keeping that faith, I kept imagining how terrible it must’ve been for him to spend so many months being so deep in cover and so alone, pretending to be someone and something he HATED, having to pretend to betray everyone he cared about, and having to do what he did. *END SPOILER*

Also, one issue I had with the first book was that it took a while to really get going, but I didn’t have that problem with this one. Yes, it was slow-paced, but it was deliciously slow-paced, the kind that sucks you in and wraps you up in it. As I mentioned already, I was hooked from the very start. And the historical-flavored writing has grown on me. I loved the writing style and the amazing way with words that Colleen Gleason has, especially when it comes to portraying emotions and sexual tension.

Wow, ok, I didn’t mean for my review to get this long, but there were just a lot of great things about this book. So I’ll just wrap this up by saying I loved the twists and turns, I loved the characters, I loved the writing, and I look forward to seeing what will happen next!


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  1. Daniela Ark

    A FUNNY rollercoaster of lies, intrigue, and betrayal??? wow! this sounds like a winner πŸ™‚ I guess I’ll have to check this series out. Though since I’m a professional DNFer now I wonder if I’ll be able to get through book one, since you said it takes a while to get going πŸ˜›

    1. Kristen Burns

      Hahaha, “I’m a professional DNFer now,” is killing me. But if you like the things I talked about in my reviews of the books, don’t DNF it! It picks up eventually and then stays at that good level, so it was definitely worth a bit of slowness in the beginning, at least for me (clearly, since I love the series now lol).

  2. Bookworm Brandee

    Dang! I have to, have to, have to read this series!! I’m excited that this one was a roller coaster ride. Seriously. And it seems like it was certainly evocative even if it wasn’t ripping your heart out. I really like it when an author can surprise me and it seems Gleason kept you on your toes with the subterfuge, etc. This sounds sooo good!

    So, you’re making it very difficult to decide which of the books you’ve recommended, and really appealed to me, to read first! πŸ˜‰

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yes! I’ll make it easy for you: You should totally start with this one! I’ve only read three books in it so far, but I love it, and I think you’ll like it too. Plus it’s a finished series (at least Victoria’s story), which means no waiting for the next book! I’m kind of cursing all the review copies I have at the moment because they’re keeping me from my Gardella books lol.

  3. Greg

    “too busy keeping secrets and lying to work together anyway.” I love books like that. The twistier the better, I like it when you’re not sure who to trust or who is lying. Glad this one is so good! I know in her other series she keeps the romance to a slow burn, sounds like maybe the same thing here. And I can kinda see your #2 also because I’ve noticed when she gets her plot going developments do seem to pile up and the characters better be on their toes. πŸ™‚

    Anyway nice that this is so good and hope the next one is too.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah, not knowing who to trust in books is actually pretty fun. Maybe it’s because books are often so predictable, but this makes them feel more real. The romance in this series is just… really complicated lol. But I love that about it. And don’t you love when all those things pile up?! I will have to look into the other series you mentioned since they have some of these similarities. Thanks, I’m really enjoying the series πŸ™‚