First Impressions: Claudia Gray (or Amy Vincent) is one of my favorite Young Adult writers. I loved her Evernight series, especially her character, Balthazar. I was so excited to have the chance to review this new series and find out more about my own personal favorite Evernight character.
My Review: I'm not going to give a big lengthy review for this one. If you loved the Evernight series as much as I did, you are going to love reading Balthazar's story. In the Evernight books, you learn a lot about Bianca and Lucas and their love story. What about Balthazar? I always kind of felt bad for him and wanted to know his story, his background, and hopefully, his love interest. I was a little worried I wouldn't like this new series only because I usually find the spin-off stories are almost never as good as the original. Once I began to read it became apparent to me that Balthazar would be as good, if not better, then the original series.
Claudia Gray continues her easy to follow writing style in Balthazar. Each of the characters in this book has their own unique voice. However, unlike the Evernight series which is told by Bianca's point of view, this book is told by alternating POV's between Balthazar and Skye in the third person. This was a nice change-up for me because I'm not the biggest fan of first-person style of writing.
As I have already noted, Balthazar is one of my favorite characters. He is kind, sweet, very loyal and totally swoon worthy. This character was always a mystery to me in the Evernight books. In this book, we learn a lot about his past: how he was turned into a vampire, what his life was like before he was a vampire, and how his killed one particular character, Charity. He is a total kick-butt vampire, but he has this human-like quality about him and it is apparent that he sometimes struggles to create a balance between his vampire nature and what he was like before as a human.
Skye was also an enjoyable character to get to know more about. I honestly didn't remember much about her from the Evernight books but she makes much more of an appearance in Balthazar, since you know, she is Balthazar's lover. There is a lot happening when it comes to Skye and this character is what makes the book move forward. Skye is human and goes through a lot of trying times. She has to deal with a new school she doesn't really like, parents who do not really understand her, and encounters with the dead. Lovely right? Not so much. Redgrave who is Balthazar's sire, learns of Skye's unique abilities and intends on using Skye for his on advantages. That is, if he can get past Balthazar first.
I won't say much about Balthazar and Skye's star-crossed relationship. I'm excited to see how it will play out. I'm happy to report that their relationship grew over the course of the story and it didn't feel rushed. I think there will be so much more to tell in the next book and I'm really looking forward to learning more about Skye and her very unique abilities.
Final Thoughts: I can totally see this series flying off and being wonderful. I still have so many questions left unanswered and by reading this first book it has me hungry for more! Characters from the Evernight series make cameo appearance in Balthazar, but I honestly don't think you have to of read those books in order to understand this book. It works very well by itself. I would definitely recommend picking up Balthazar when it comes out. It's really wonderful!