Her nightmare is back. Evil. It’s alive, and it’s back for her.
Six months ago Leslee’s life was turned upside down when she was hunted by the Cruor Imbibo. Now, they’re back and no one knows why. But it’s clear – they’re out for blood.
Working for the Concilium, Miller was assigned to protect Leslee the first time the Imbibo entered her life. He saved her life and stole her heart. But when the Imbibo left, so did Miller, ripping apart Leslee's dream of a happily-ever-after. Now Miller’s back to protect Leslee and rekindle their romance. But she makes it clear, she wants no part of him or his romantic gestures.
Thrown together despite their tense and sometimes hostile relationship, Leslee and Miller fight to uncover the reason the Imbibo have returned and end their killing spree. Because if they fail, Leslee is next on the Imbibo’s hit list.
Stay out of the dark. The Imbibo are back.
In my review for the first book (read here), my chief complaint was that Pickett didn't let the reader figure things out. If it was important, she told us it was which sometimes made for redundant reading. Wonderfully I can report that's not the case this time around. But hey guess what is back? Pickett's ability to completely terrify me with the Imbibo. Look I really don't care if they're fictitious these things have me curling up underneath my covers and clutching my tablet close every time I hear a sound outside my room.
Les' life basically took a nosedive after Miller left--she kind of was living, but was a useless shell of a person. Miller for his part (we get a number of chapters from his point of view!) barely seemed any better, though he mainly stayed functional through his will power and need to keep his mother safe. I was initially unhappy with Les' decision making process, but the more the book went on the more I came to understand she wasn't so much manically depressed over just Miller. When Miller walked out it hurt, but she also lost four other guys who had become her family. For her it wasn't just a guy leaving her--it was like being abandoned by her family.
I have to wonder at the Big Bad's logic and intelligence at times. The answer to getting what you want is not to kill everything or everyone in your way. Especially not in a small town that recently had an inordinately large amount of murders. In one year they lost at least 4 dozen people (possibly closer to 5 dozen) to gruesome, gory and terrifying deaths. I rationalized it that the Concilium are way better at PR then anyone gives them credit for, so they've got folk working to keep it all covered up, but every day for what seemed like every hour they ran a new story about a new person being torn apart and yet the times that Les or the guys went outside town no one commented on it. Quite frankly I'd love to know why the FBI or SWAT or hell the National Guard weren't swarming that town.
Pickett didn't make the reunion of Les and Miller easy. While there were moments of jealousy clouding their real problems, all in all Pickett made them talk and work through their issues together. Les didn't just accept Miller's "I'm sorry I had to" and Miller didn't try to bully his way back into Les' good graces. Les however seemed hellbent on being Employee of the Year despite the risk to her life (which only got more risky as time went on, hey sometimes knowledge is not something you should want or seek).
There's a couple instances where a reader could guess at the underlying mysteries--why the Imbibo are back and who their target is--with relatively little effort. I was surprised at the reveal as to the motivation of the Big Bad, but it made sense.
Overall this was a fine conclusion to the duology, though I wouldn't have been crying if there had been more books.