Hunter (Chosen at Nightfall, 2013, etc.) returns to the supernatural school/camp Shadow Falls, switching protagonist from Kylie to Della—there’s a love triangle, naturally.
Della’s efforts to conceal her vampire status have led her family to suspect her of drug use, alienating her from their esteem and affections. An offhand remark leads Della toward a family mystery and a missing uncle (possibly a fellow vampire). Back at Shadow Falls, Della has run-ins with a (hot, mysterious) new vampire, Chase, who competes with Steve, the sexy shape-shifter, for her affections. When Della catches the scent of a killer vampire after a double homicide, she begs the Fallen Research Unit (sort of a supernatural FBI) agent who runs the camp to work the case—it is her dream to work for the FRU. Complicating things, Chase is investigating too. Additional mysteries involve a ghost, Della’s cousin and Della’s health problems (a strange cold that causes her vampire senses to wax and wane—usually in ways that help the mystery plots). The many plotlines don’t overwhelm as they’re all predictable, and many eventually consolidate. Although the worldbuilding assumes readers are familiar with Hunter’s earlier novels, snatches of narration sometimes repeat themselves. The strongest elements are the friendship among Della, Kylie and Miranda and their hilarious (and sometimes-naughty) girl-talk sessions.
This is great for readers wanting to return to Shadow Falls, but it won’t attract new audience members. (Paranormal romance. 14 & up)