The Rift Walker
Vampire Empire, Book #2
By Clay and Susan Griffith
ISBN # 978-1-61614-523-1
Brought to you by guest reviewer Erin
Princess Adele struggles with a life of marriage and obligation as her Equatorian Empire and their American Republic allies stand on the brink of war against the vampire clans of the north. However, the alliance’s horrific strategy for total victory drives Adele to abandon her duty and embark on a desperate quest to keep her nation from staining its hands with genocide. Reunited with her great love, the mysterious adventurer known to the world as the Greyfriar, Adele is pursued by her own people as well as her vengeful husband, Senator Clark. With the human alliance in disarray, Prince Cesare, lord of the British vampire clan, seizes the initiative and strikes at the very heart of Equatoria.
As Adele labors to bring order to her world, she learns more about the strange powers she exhibited in the north. Her teacher, Mamoru, leads a secret cabal of geomancers who believe Adele is the one who can touch the vast power of the Earth that surges through ley lines and wells up at the rifts where the lines meet. These energies are the key to defeating the enemy of mankind, and if Princess Adele could ever bring this power under her command, she could be death to vampires. But such a victory will also cost the life of Adele’s beloved Greyfriar. (Amazon)
This had more of the world building I was hoping for. More details about Geomancy and the effect religion has on the vampires. We get to see the desert and the interior of Africa, and different vampire groups (including the nocturnal desert djinns and mountain ndoki).
I was happiest to see Adele become such a strong character. One of the things that bugged me about the first book was how often Greyfriar described her face as that of a little girl, or fearful. After getting back to Equatoria she goes from a fearful, sometimes damsel-in-distress to a full-fledged royal, in charge of herself and her destiny. She even rescues Greyfriar this time around.
It still has its Errol-Flynn swashbuckling moments, and the action is on par with the first. There are more humans fighting humans this time around though, as the politics are changing. There aren’t a lot of clear characters that are absolutely “good guys” and “bad guys”. There are a few characters that I expect to switch sides before the end of the third book. There are a few already that through their actions have done more to benefit their opponents. But that’s why this book works so well; even though it’s a love story between a woman and a vampire, the characters are believable, and you can’t help but get attached.