Plot: Maya’s world was turned upside down when she discovered that the small research town where she grew up might actually have been researching the town’s teens. Because Maya is a skin-walker with the power to turn into a cougar and it quickly becomes apparent that she isn’t the only young supernatural in Salmon Creek. A fire forces Maya and her friends to flee by helicopter but they aren’t out of danger. The fire was a ploy by an organization that wants to kidnap the young supernaturals. They must escape into the forest and figure out who they can trust if they want to have any chance of getting out of this situation alive and free.
This is the second book in the Darkness Rising trilogy. I have reviewed the first book, The Gathering, here.
The new book hits the ground running. The teens face helicopter crashes, wilderness survival, pursuits and traps. Maya and her friends never get a chance to catch their breaths and the cost of their freedom is painfully high. It is non-stop excitement and loss. The teens survive by working together, using their brains and their wilderness skills… and occasionally Maya’s cool cougar powers.
Maya and Daniel are my favorite characters. Maya is proud, capable and practical with a deep love for nature. Daniel is a genuinely kind and caring person who is impossible to dislike. They have a wonderful, trusting relationship; they support and complement each other. Litterature needs more boys and girls who are just friends, because yes, it can happen. We unfortunately do not see enough of Rafe, Maya’s bad-boy love interest from the first book, in this book but we do learn a lot about the other teens. Sam, Hayley, Nicole and Corey are not what they first appeared and hints of their powers are starting to show. I can’t wait to learn more about them!
This volume is a bit light on the romance compared to the first book but there are several hot scenes toward the end that will wet your apetite for what is no doubt to come.
If I had one complaint, it’s that Armstrong explains too much. It is a second book and a certain amount of explanation is necessary to situate the reader, to remind us of the characters and their histories. I have no problem with that but I am capable of making connections by myself, it is not necessary to explain every thought process, every emotion. I felt like I was being led along by the hand at times. The feeling lessened, however, as the novel progressed.
In the third and final book, Maya and her friends will meet up with the characters of the Darkest Powers trilogy. I’m really excited, I’ve missed Chloe, Simon and Derek!