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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 17 October 2012
This was a re-read, and it's a bit sad that I am to find that after 3 years and around 600 books since my first go, I find I can't in all honesty still give it 5 stars, so I've dropped it down to 4. I still really enjoyed it, don't get me wrong. But I'd be blind not to see that, although I love Chance's writing for its fast pacing and action-filled plts, a lot of it can be too chaotic and confusing with too much going on from too many directions and not enough exposition. For much of the book I was just waiting and hoping that any minute now I'd be told why Dory was doing what she was doing, or going where she was going, and who the heck are those people firing stuff at her now and why are they doing it?

I imagine it all makes perfect sense in Karen Chance's head, but it doesn't always translate perfectly to her audience. It's kind of a double-edged sword, though, because the confusion is a side effect of having such intricate, complex, multi-layered, thought-provoking and detailed plots. She literally fits more plotting, world-building and characterisation into one page than some authors manage in three chapters (or whole books in the worst cases). But unless you're paying absolute, 100% focused attention (which admittedly I probably wasn't this time as I did the re-read as an audiobook) then you'll blink and miss something vital and be all "What the hell just happened?"

But that's enough negativity!

This is my favourite urban fantasy 'world' after all, (although I do prefer the main Cassandra Palmer series over this, the spin-off). So let's get on to what I still loved--The world, the setting, the magic, Dory, the real historical characters, Louis Cesare, the complex and strained relationships, Stinky, the sexual tension, the funny dialogue, Radu, the hot vamps, the hot smexy times, Dory's house that won't let her redecorate or move anything, the intelligent writing, Louis Cesare in a towel.

That's quite a lot still to love, eh?

Dory is a great main character. She has a bit of a bad attitude due to being a misfit and held in contempt by almost all supernatural factions AND humans, and she suffers rage episodes and has a dry, sarcastic sense of humour.

Louis Cesare on the other hand is cool, suave, laconic, honourable and protective. They make a great fighting team, as long as Louis Cesare can keep up, and I look forward to re-visiting them in the next book, which I believe, if memory serves, is slightly less hectic than this one.

Recommended to read after books 1&2 of the Cassandra Palmer series.
4 Stars ★★★★
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on 18 October 2014
Rereading these books as they were written crossing timelines with cassie Palmer. I've read them before but this time there is more to them. Dorina is mircea`s daughter, who she believes was forgotten and abandoned.
She was conceived at the point he became a vampire and didn't know. Dorina has made her way in life as a vampire killer for hire and meets up with daddy and Louis Caesar. Dracula is on the loose again and mircea wants her to track and trap him. She wants him dead as he has cut her to ribbons before. This book is funny in places, the Fay wine in Claire`s basement produces lingering affects and we discover exactly who Christine is!
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on 29 May 2017
Excellent
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on 12 November 2014
Loved the Cassie Palmer novels but I actually prefer Dorina's. Awesome!
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Dhampir Dorina (she prefers Dory) is desperate to find her BFF Claire; a witch who has been missing for over a month. She has little choice but to take on a job for her father Mircea; a powerful vampire with the resources to find her friend. The job; capture Vlad aka Dracula. He’s a tough opponent who wants Dory dead, but hey every family has problems. Uncle Vlad deserves to be taken out, and since her father seems unwilling to do it, then Dory will step up.

There’s plenty of action as Dory arms herself with a variety of nasty spells, lands unwanted help from master vampire Louis-Cesare and the interest of some powerful Fae; some who inexplicably want to kill her. They’ll have to wait in line because Uncle Vlad has started to make his moves against Dory and he’s proving despicably cunning. There’s also some romance, although this does take a while to brew as Louis-Cesare is somewhat prejudiced against Dhampirs. This is a kick-a** start to this dark urban fantasy series and I’m delighted to discover there are another 4 books to explore.
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on 26 June 2009
I really enjoyed this book, it's a spinoff from the Cassie Palmer series by the same author and ties in nicely with the events that occur in those books. It focuses on Dory who is half vampire, a Dhampir. They're a rare breed who live very short and violent lives; as the reader learns pretty quickly with the amount of fighting Dory gets upto! Trouble seems to follow her around, hee. We open to find Dory searching for her BFF Claire who despite having a penchant for note leaving has neglected to tell her where she is, and is thus, as Dory concludes, missing. This is the main thread of the plot and is interwoven with another arc that reach a pretty satisfying conclusion... which was a gratifying change seeing as how involved and open ended the plots are in the Cassie books.

Whilst I liked the more narrow storytelling in play here and adored Dory as the protagonist, I didn't think this book was quite as good as the Cassie Palmer series -- but that might well be just personal taste. Indeed, I found Dory delightful in her cynicism and deadpan wit. I also loved that she apparently hates Mircea... I can't stand him personally, so I enjoyed that she totally saw through his manipulative persona. Having said that he was tolerable, even interesting, here, and I found his dynamic with 'the family' to be curious -- indeed, I thought he worked as a character here far more than in the other books. At any rate there was breadth and scope added to the dynamics.

I wondered what had happened to Lois-Cesare (an undead uptight Frenchman) so his appearance in this novel put to rest that little query. I never found him terribly interesting so I was glad to see him fleshed out a little. He's probably one of the few vampires I actually don't mind. It made me laugh that in Dory's inner monologue she refers to him as 'Frenchie', not terribly politically correct which is why it was funny. Radu also warmed my heart as did Drac. As usual Chance's secondary characters were colourful and quite often, hilarious. I did actually laugh out loud quite a few times throughout the book -- which is no mean feat!

The Fey character was a little blah to me. So Louis-Cesare was a welcome presence with his sweet but slightly 'uptight-at arms length' approach to dealing with Dory. They took no bull from one another and that was way more interesting to read about than how beautiful X character is. Indeed, Dory was good at not falling over herself too much over the males.

Looking forward to the next book, the ending was promising! Highly recommended!
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on 4 October 2008
Oh I've been looking forward to this new novel by Karen Chance and I'm glad to say I wasn't disappointed, it's a fabulous read, exhibiting what I've come to expect from Chance, fast pacing, a strong and interesting lead and good development plus complete and utter I'm going to put in anything slightly paranormal, mythical and magical then just throw it all in the air and see what happens mayhem. Brilliant.

Dory was conceived 500 years ago, a Dhampir and daughter to the first level master vampire Mircea, who we have already been introduced to through Chance's three previous books in the Cassie Palmer series. As with all Dhampir's our heroine is an undesirable so to speak, vampire's fear and distrust her because of her tendency to take her ya ya's out on them and anything else monstrous that gets in the way and humans are equally disgusted once she goes into one of her blacks outs. See Dory like all Dhampir's has trouble copping with the strain of having super human powers in a human body...in other words she has periods when she goes stark raving, kill anything in site mad.

Dory carries a lot of anger around with her and her mental state has only deteriorated recently with the disappearance of her room mate Claire, a null who has a calming effect on her. Determined to find her but having no luck does Dory have a choice when her hated father offers his very capable help? But "Daddy dearest" help comes with a price, he'll get Claire back but only if Dory helps track down and stop her deranged and single-minded "uncle Drac". Oh but she'll have help, a certain French swords man, Louis-Cesare, like all master vamps he's arrogant and has a server superiority complex, but could our heroine find something more in her reluctant partner than the usual mistrust and hate that is her lot?

I didn't like Mircea in the Cassie books and was initially annoyed that he would be a major player in this as well, but he didn't bother me at all when not manipulating and cajoling Cassie, although he does try similar tacks with Dory, she doesn't take any of his crap, which was refreshing. All in all the vampires are more fleshed out in this, I always found Louis-Cesare interesting, considering his back story, which was heavily explored in 'Touch the Dark'. The consequences to Cassie and Micea's actions are shown and I thought he's character was developed very well. We're also introduced properly to Radu, Mircea's less stable but much more exciting brother, his flamboyance and eccentricities were delightful.

And as for Dory, I really enjoyed her voice, yes she's strong, powerful and with other attributes that could seem old but she is given so much back story and deals with enough prejudice, pain and loneliness to make her if not a complicated character, one with enough depth and intrigue to carry the narrative and create sustaining interest in her first person dialogue.

If you thought there were an over abundance in supernatural entities in Chance's other books well there's more in this, as well as vampires, mages and weres, there's trolls and mutants and an arms dealing gnome. There's also much more on the fey, that I felt needed more fleshing out, the light and dark always seemed a bit boorish to me. Although there is a touch of mayhem to the plot, it is a lot more focused than her Cassie books, there is a set goal and it's achieved, which was also refreshing.

I would say that you will get more out of this book if you've read not only 'Touch the Dark', 'Claimed by Shadow' and 'Embrace the Night' which are the first three books in Chance's Cassie books but also the short story 'Buying Trouble' in the anthology 'On the Prowl', which is from Claire's POV and details what happened to her. I say this because you will understand more of the war that is mentioned, the characters back stories and be able to appreciate the fact that this is a decent spin off that develops and concludes a plot thread that was started in 'Claimed by Shadow'. I'd also check out 'Day of the Dead' a free short story on Chance's website that stars Thomas (also from the Cassie books) which I suspect is building things up for 'Death's Mistress' the next Dory Book (out Autumn 2009). But this is not necessary; Dory is such a solid and entertaining lead that this can be read as a stand alone.

All in all I loved it and would definitely recommend it, though I know Chance isn't for everyone, I find her writing highly entertaining because she doesn't take herself too seriously and her books always turn out quirky, well developed with a mesh of interesting characters.
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on 5 December 2012
Midnight's Daugher would have been the frist book I have read by Karen Chance. A friend told be about her and if you love Fansty books on Vampires etc.
Karen Chance is one of the top writers out there. You will get lost in the world of Dorina Basarab a half breed vampire who can pack a punch, it will have you laughing in someplaces and bite your lip in other parts.
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on 24 October 2008
MIDNIGHT'S DAUGHTER is Karen Chance's fourth novel, her first three being of the Cassandra Palmer series, and it is set in the same world with some of the characters we became familiar with in her previous novels.
If you haven't read the Cassie Palmer series, then I would highly recommend it, but have no fear because MIDNIGHT'S DAUGHTER can easily be read as a stand alone novel, although I do think readers of Chance's other work will get more from this novel.

The main heroine is Dorina Basarab, a 500-year old dhampir (half-human, half-vampire). Seeing as dhampirs tend to live very short, violent lives, hated and feared by vampires and humans alike, Dorina has done very well for herself. She's managed to retain her sanity by making sure she unleashes her anger on those who deserve it the most, demons and rogue vampires. The only reason the Senate (sort of Vampire Government) have allowed her to live this long is because of who her father is - Mircea Basarab, the darkly dangerous and seductive vampire lover of Cassie in TOUCH THE DARK, CLAIMED BY SHADOW and EMBRACE THE NIGHT. Now 'Daddy Dearest', as she calls him (just to get on his nerves), needs her help because her uncle Dracula has escaped from prison, and he is renouned for his cruelty and murderous ways even amongst the vampires...

I prefered Dornia as the main protagonist over Cassie, because she can really take care of herself - there are some delightful scenes where she wrestles for superiority and control with Louis-Cesare, the master vampire Mircea wants her to work with in order to capture 'Uncle Drac'. Previous readers of Chance will recognise him from the Cassie Palmer series, and we really get to know more about him and his past in MIDNIGHT'S DAUGHTER. I have to say I found him rather delectable :)
Dhampirs are certainly a lot tougher than humans, in fact one of the few things that can contest Dory's speed and strength is a master vampire. Despite this, however, there is a battle scene near the end of the book and I wasn't sure how she wasn't a corpse of the floor, let alone jumping back up to kill some more bad guys - she is one tough cookie that is all I can say!

In terms of style of writing, it is very Karen Chance - everything that could happen happens, every mythical creature you can think of is mentioned at some point, each a cliche in it's own right (ogres and trolls and beautiful fairies), but with their own Chance twist...very muddled, and yet it all works and comes together perfectly for an exciting, adventurous, unexpected, gory, sexy, funny novel! I think you can tell this her fourth novel, because it has more purpose and direction in terms of plot than her previous three; there is a clear goal set out from the beginning of the novel, and, with some twists and turns along the way, it is wrapped up nicely at the end, and yet it still has plenty of room for a sequal - personally I can't wait!

I would recommend MIDNIGHT'S DAUGHTER to anyone who loved her Cassandra Palmer series, or to anyone who loves fantasy novels with vampires and mages but with a modern feel, and with a good sprinkling of sexual tension and gorgeous lead men to spice it up :)

1. Midnight's Daughter
2. Death's Mistress - Due Autumn 2009
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on 30 March 2009
I love the Cassie Palmer series so I was a little apprehensive about moving into a parallel story, worried that it wouldn't stand up to the competion or it would start doing retcon on the Cassie Palmer story. Fortunately however it took all the best of Karen Chance and was sufficiently different enough to make it compelling in it's own right. Dory has some of Cassie's traits; humour, sarcasm and strength chiefly, but she has her own problems and ways of dealing with them. It was nice to be re-introduced to Louis-Cesare again, and the sensuality between him and Dory is well-written (and hot!) it was also good to have Mircea as a non-romantic character but find out more about his background and twisted family
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