In romance there seems to be two kinds of writers – the ones who write intense, dark, stories with tormented heroes, and the ones who create funny, playful books with witty characters. I have no idea how she does it, but Teresa Medeiros seems to be able to seamlessly blend both the dark and suspenseful with the light and laugh-out-loud funny. In After Midnight she also does this with a hint of the paranormal.
Caroline Cabot and her two sisters Portia and Vivienne were orphaned at a young age and left in the care of their miserly uncle. For years Caroline has struggled to care for her two younger siblings. When she hears that her sister might have found a wealthy man to marry she must meet him herself to make sure he is worthy of her dearest sister. She doesn't believe in all the Vampire nonsense she hears about him, but she does believe her sister might marry a man she doesn't love just to save the family.
Caroline soon discovers that Adrian Kane and his brother Julian are men with secrets. They never go out during the day, the mirrors in their home are all covered, and they may very well be responsible for the death of Adrian's first fiancÃ©. But what is most troubling, is the sexual attraction that she feels for Adrian and the lack Vivienne seems to feel for him! Determined to make everyone happy Caroline plays a dangerous game of hearts, and discovers there might be some truth to dark things that go bump in the night.
After Midnight is riveting. One moment I would be sitting on the edge of my seat and then the next I would be laughing. Medeiros has an amazing knack for keeping the tension high, but not letting anyone feel worried about how it will all end. As I flipped through the last pages I had a sense of total well-being, and yet the mystery still clung to me, begging me to read the next novel in the series.
Caroline and Adrian are sexy and funny, but both have their hidden dark places. And the sexual tension between hero and heroine left me wanting to know more about those dark places! And all the secondary characters were a joy to read – especially Julian and Portia who will be the center of attention in Ms. Medeiros' next novel coming out in Summer 2006.
Bottom Line: Whether you like or dislike this type of book (vampire/paranormal) doesn't matter. This is just a wonderful read that no one should miss.