Night's Edge

Night's Edge - Barbara Hambly, Maggie Shayne, Charlaine Harris I started reading this book over the weekend and I really enjoyed the first story, Her Best Enemy by Maggie Shayne. I'd always thought of Ms. Shayne as somewhat of a fluffy-bunny, happily-ever-after type of romance writer, especially after the first story I read by her from the Out of this World anthology. Not in a bad way per se, just more in the way that romance novels bore me. In any case, Her Best Enemy was a wonderful haunted house story, and though parts of the story were fairly predictable (the gal and the guy DID hook up of course), the rest of the story was intriguing right up until the very end. Bravo! I wanted to write this while the story was still fresh in my mind, but I'm going to hold off on giving a rating for the book itself until I've read the other two stories. However, if I were to rate the book on this story alone, I'd probably give it a 9. :)

The last story in this book, Dancers in the Dark by Charlaine Harris, was probably the best in this anthology, but then again, I have loved all four of Charlaine's Southern Vampire books (the Sookie Stackhouse ones) so it's not surprising that I'd really enjoy her contribution to this anthology as well.

Anyway, Dancers in the Dark, while it would probably be considered a romance, had enough intrigue and danger in the story to make it far from the usual *yawn* boring romance. Though it has different characters, it takes place in the same world as the Sookie Vampire books. If you've read those books, you'll recognize the symmetry in the handling of vampires in this story. Of the three books in this anthology, this was the only one of the three that had anything to do with vampires, though that wasn't probably the primary reason I liked it best. I believe it was more because I have really come to like Charlaine Harris' writing.

The mystery is compounded by the fact that Charlaine doesn't give everything away right up front. For instance, she starts by only hinting at some of the horrors in Layla's past instead of spelling things out in the first chapter, which tends to pique the reader's interest. Same goes for Sean, the lead Vampire. Of course, you know things are going to work out in the end, for they nearly always do in anthology stories, but I certainly couldn't have predicted everything that happened in the story.

I should probably mention something about the second story, Someone Else's Shadow by Barbara Hambly, too, since that was also fairly good. Not as good as numbers 1 and 3, but interesting enough, probably a 6. This was the first story I've read by Barbara Hambly, and using this story as a basis, I'd say that I'd definitely read something else by her in the future. This story was also a romance, but contained the supernatural element of ghosts like the Her Best Enemy, the first story. It was a bit more predictable than the others, though the story was interesting enough to keep me reading. :)