Review: Midnight Caller by Leslie Tentler

21 Jan

Midnight Caller by Leslie Tentler
Mass market: $7.99
Harlequin/MIRA (January 2011)
ISBN: 9780778329343

Favorite Line: “Blood is the elixir of life.” (p. 325)

Late-night radio show psychologist Rain Sommers is used to the crazies who call in to rage from the back alleys of the French Quarter and the shadows of the bayou. But one caller’s chilling obsession with her and her long-ago murdered mother – an iconic singer beloved among the city’s Goth community – has even the jaded Rain running scared as a sadistic serial killer known as the Vampire prowls New Orleans.

FBI agent Trevor Rivette is convinced her midnight caller and the killer are one and the same. As it becomes disturbingly clear that the Vampire has a sick bloodlust only Rain can satisfy, she allows Trevor to get closer and closer. But he soon discovers that his secretive past and troubled present are intertwined – and that he may die trying to keep Rain’s fate out of a madman’s control.

Midnight Caller is part of Leslie Tentler’s Chasing Evil trilogy. According to Tentler’s website, “Each (book) follows a different agent working for the FBI’s Violent Crimes Unit, and each has a different story to tell.” If they are anything like Midnight Caller, you can expect to enjoy well written, suspenseful stories that leave you thoroughly satisfied.

Midnight Caller is a romance that fights to prove love can overcome even the most traumatic of pasts. The main characters were both traumatized as children, and both carry that weight around in different ways. Trevor turned his inability to protect his siblings into a career with the FBI. Now he avoids the past and his family until a case forces him to return to New Orleans. Once there he is confronted with a choice, settle the past and have a future or lose it all to the demons in his past.

Rain decided to look for answers in psychology. Her father murdered her rock star mother when she was two, and today she is still trying to be more than the daughter of a dead star. She sees an opportunity to leave her lonely past with Trevor, but unveiling her emotions is not the easiest thing to do.

Part of what makes Midnight Caller so good, is the secondary characters. We get to meet the people who impacted the hero and heroine in both good and bad ways. These people are fully flushed, imperfect human beings who play integral roles in understanding the emotional place both characters come from and the direction in which they are traveling. Another great thing about the book is the suspense.

One thing I’ve noticed lately about books labeled suspense: they just aren’t that suspenseful. If I guess the villain correctly early in the story, there is no anticipation of what’s to come. That does not happen in Midnight Caller which makes the story that much awesomer. I didn’t know what twists and turns were coming, so I more than got the promising story the blurb promised. Even now, thinking back on the story I’m still not sure if the killer was a vampire or a vampire wanna-be. I guess it will be up to the reader to decide. Come back and let me know what you think.

But is it just me, or are there several books about radio psychologists on the market? Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty series, Stacia Kane’s Megan Chase series, Linda Hilburn’s Vampire Psychologist series…

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One Response to “Review: Midnight Caller by Leslie Tentler”

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