I used to be ordinary Samantha Day, but that’s changed. Now, after one dark kiss from a dangerous boy, I can steal someone’s soul…or their life. If I give in to the constant hunger inside me, I hurt anyone I kiss. If I don’t…I hurt myself.
Bishop is the one whose kiss I crave most, but if I kiss him, I’ll kill him. Then there’s another boy, one I can’t hurt. One whose kiss seems to miraculously quell my hunger. They’re both part of a team of angels and demons that’s joined forces in my city to fight a mysterious rising darkness, an evil that threatens everyone I know and love. I just wonder if I’ll be able to help Bishop-or if I’m just another part of the darkness he’s sworn to destroy….
When angels and demons must work together, something beyond evil is rising…
Frustration abounds in Wicked Kiss, the sophomore effort of Michelle Rowan’s Nightwatchers series – frustration for both the characters and the reader. Wicked Kiss opens with Sam and Bishop in the same place we left them at the end of book one: Sam’s hunger for souls is growing and Bishop’s grasp on his sanity is slipping away.
The team (Bishop, Kraven, Roth, etc.) is still stationed in the old church and struggling to fulfill their mission as well as struggling with one another. Added to the mix is a new angel, Cassandra who has been sent to Trinity to “help” the team; oh, and she is going to live with Sam in order to keep an eye on her. Oh, goody! For the most part, the bulk of the read is devoted to the team running around like a multi-headed chicken with its multiple heads cut off trying to contain the growing gray problem and not kill one another in the process. There is so much in-fighting and secret-keeping among the members of the team that they can barely function as a unit thus making it virtually impossible to do their respective jobs.
As for Sam, in order to keep her growing hunger under control, she has elected to angrily remove herself from the team and go about taking care of business on her own. While attempting to track down Stephen and retrieve her soul, Sam runs into Jordan (aka the Queen B*tch of the Universe or high school) and after a tragic event, the two girls realize they have to work together if they hope to unravel what’s going on in Trinity. Though they have a very, very rough start, Sam and Jordan begin to put the clues together and discover the rash of recent suicides plaguing Trinity are not related to the gray problem but are related to the supernatural. To Jordan’s credit, not only does she not freak out over all the supernatural business but she dives right in and does her best to help. She’s still an unholy, wretched human with a snarly attitude but I won’t lie, I kind of like her.
Wicked Kiss is full of well-developed characters but a few are becoming tiresome and those that are more interesting are not (yet?) playing a large enough role in the long-term plot line. Here’s the skinny:
Sam: I have a distinct love/hate relationship with Sam. On the one hand she is strong and unwilling to give up on her goals yet on the other hand she is very fickle where Bishop is concerned. She convinces herself she loves Bishop then learns something new about his (awesomely surprising!) past and decides she can’t be with him – the cycle becomes tiresome quickly.
Bishop: I still like Bishop but truly wish he would stop pulling some of the bonehead stunts he is constantly pulling. He is struggling to keep it together long enough to complete his mission and return to Heaven so his pesky soul can once again be removed and he go back to business as usual. Did I mention he is an angel of Death? How sweet is that?
Kraven: I am really starting too really like Kraven. Kraven is one of the few Nightwatcher characters who is absolutely straight-forward and honest about his goals, intentions, and motivations. He hates his brother but refuses to allow anyone else to kill Bishop; Kraven believes the right to kill his brother is all his own. There is no subterfuge with Kraven, he is evil though sometimes chooses to do a good deed, he owns his actions, and I like it! This is one of two characters I really want to see playing a much larger role in the series.
Jordan: now that she has stopped being quite so wretched toward Sam she is growing on me. In Wicked Kiss we learn a lot more, though not nearly enough about Jordan and she is certainly more than she appears to be. This becomes evident the moment everyone realizes Jordan can’t be hit with the angelic mind-wipe whammy! I truly believe Jordan has a larger role to play in the series and am quite impatient to see how her role plays out.
The Bottom Line: For now, I am still committed to the Nightwatchers series and I genuinely liked the short-term plot of this novel but found myself becoming more and more frustrated as the novel reached its end. The constant secret-keeping among all the characters, the way too late to help revealing of those secrets, and the multiple just in the nick of time miraculous saves became a bit too much. Even Sam comments on how all the secrets have done nothing but hurt the team L There are no major plot problems, the writing style is still smooth and easy to read and the characters are still interesting but the frustrating things are beginning to out weight the positive elements of the series. For me, the third book in the Nightwatchers series will decide the fate of the series as a whole for me as a reader.
Want to know about Dark Kiss (Nightwatchers #1)?
Check out my review here
Want to buy Wicked Kiss (Nightwatchers #2)?