Book Review: Children of the Night by Zan Safra
Venice, 1865: Sixteen-year-old Ayanda Draculesti doesn't remember her early life—all she knows is that she was found as a small child, wandering the streets of Venice with an intricate medallion and a mangled left arm. But Ayanda is unique--even though she's alive, she has the powers of a vampire. She has the strength and speed to battle them, and most importantly, the will. She won't let another child die.
Ayanda isn't the only young Unnatural in Venice. Ghostly Yurei is in hiding, fleeing the captors determined to turn him into an assassin. Jette Jekyll and Belle Frankenstein are on the run from alchemists who want them dead and dissected. Their paths and Ayanda's collide when a brutal enemy surfaces that threatens them all: one of the Greater Dead, a vampire that slithers through Venice murdering everyone she encounters.
Ayanda is determined to stop this Dead creature before she kills again. Yurei, Jette and Belle aren't. Why should they risk their lives to save people who see them as monsters? All they’ve ever known is hate and fear. They owe the world nothing.
But Ayanda can't defeat a Dead creature alone.
Firstly, can we talk about that cover?! I met Zan on Twitter as a result of us sharing the same cover artist as Guns & Smoke, and, man, did Stef knock it out of the park!
Onward, to the review!
What do you get when you cross historical Venice with science fiction? This was definitely a mash up that I never knew I needed. Each of the main cast of characters appears to have been inspired by classic horror characters like Dracula, Frankenstein, and even the Phantom of the Opera. Add a dash of Vampire Hunting and you've got Children of the Night! I loved the subtle homage to classic horror. Safra has a way with words that, at times, I stopped just to appreciate the imagery. If you enjoy supernatural, slightly historical, and a lot of sci-fi, definitely check this one out!