School Library Journal (USA) | 27 April 2010 | Heather Ver Voort
Darren Shan, a 21st-century vampire prince, and his friends, Mr. Crepsley and Harkat, are on a quest to stop the Lord of the Vampaneze. When a series of murders takes place in Mr. Crepsley's hometown, they stop the search for the evil lord to look for the murderer, whom they suspect is also vampaneze. School officials become aware that Darren, who looks like a 15-year-old despite actually being 20+, is in town, and he is forced to attend school. His English teacher, Debbie Hemlock, is his ex-girlfriend, all grown-up. Darren is attacked by a hooked-hand creature and is saved by his childhood friend, Steve. Soon, acquaintances and classmates are being slain, and Darren, Mr. Crepsley, and Harkat, as well as Debbie and Steve, begin tracking the killer through underground tunnels. This horror/mystery tale takes a strange twist when Steve's motives to aid the friends are exposed and Debbie is taken hostage. The plot moves slowly until the killings begin, but then the story takes off. Darren is a likable hero, but other characters are not well developed. Gory fight and murder scenes and some profanity are included, but are in keeping with the story line. Fans of the series will enjoy this cliff-hanger and look forward to the next installment.
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