Season One is complete and definitely ended with a bang. Episode 5 is full of emotion and was the best so far. From Goodreads: “All is not well in the Socoli world. Vanora is on the cusp of adulthood and preparing to move way to attend college. Used to their sibling being their anchor to the mortal world, Roman and Alisha are already feeling adrift in their dark world. Meanwhile, the mysterious Armando, shrouded in all his secrets, draws ever closer to Vanora as her feelings for him deepen. Soon their small world will explode into chaos, leaving Vanora to wonder if all she believed to be true were lies.”
SPOILER ALERT – consider yourself warned:
Roman and Alisha did not do well while Vanora was out-of-town. It’s hard for them to hold onto their humanity without her there to remind them of why it is so important. It doesn’t help that they are surrounded by other vampires now that Roman has his ‘fan club’. For most of the season, I’ve felt that Roman was the moral compass of the family and have expected him to remain one of the good guys. Alisha, I wasn’t so sure about.
The Halloween party was the turning point for all of the major relationships. Armando and Vanora finally give in to each other and become intimate. It was perfect – sweet, passionate and unavoidable. I was heartbroken that their time together was ruined by what happened next. Turns out there is a pedophile at work in the area (dressed as a clown – ick!) The vampires decide to take matters into their own hands to protect the children and they hunt the predator(s) down. Vampire adrenaline got the best of the them and they rip them to shreds. Yes, the other vamps started it but Alisha and Roman took part as well. And, Vanora saw it. She feels she can no longer trust them – including Armando. After seeing the brutalization of these men (yes, they were monsters themselves but…), she decides it’s best for her to leave them all. While reading this scene, I had some pretty major concerns. It was Halloween and they pull in two guys dressed as clowns. What if they weren’t the real pedophiles but just a couple of dads out with the kids? Or, just a couple of harmless losers dressed as clowns on Halloween. Luckily, it does seem that they were the ‘bad guys’ but what if they hadn’t been?
The final scene between Vanora and Armando almost took my breath away. She is on a plane leaving town and he is standing outside trying to communicate with her. Both of them feel a sadness that came through the pages. I think we all knew it was unavoidable but that didn’t make it any easier. We do briefly meet Armando’s master, Aeron, and start to learn more about his master plan. And there is another potentially crazy female vamp in his life, Lorelai.
There are so many questions I still have unanswered. (What really happened to Vanora’s mom? How will Vanora’s powers continue to manifest? How will Armando deal with his split loyalties? What happens to Roman and Alisha now?) Season 2 cannot come soon enough.
5/5 stars for the Episode and the Season.
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Thank you to the author for providing an ARC through the readalong in exchange for an honest review.