The Calling (Darkness Rising #2)
Although the book could have easily fallen into the trap of Middle Book Syndrome, it was just as captivating and enthralling as the first book in the series, possibly even more so. The antics and bars are raised, and suspense is a killer. Small-town kid Maya and her friends are kidnapped and escape, only to find out none of them are what they seem – and by that I mean human. Separated from their families and deserted in the wild of Vancouver’s forest, these kids are on the run from scientists that want more from them than DNAsamples, and it’s scary. In The Calling, friendships are built and destroyed, purposes are undone and discovered, and tendrils of romance blossom between unlikely characters. And if there’s one thing for sure: not everyone is going to get out alive.
I’ve credited Armstrong for her great casts of characters before, but I need to do so again. Maya, the leading lady, could not have been a greater protagonist; quick as a whip, book smart and smart-mouthed, the girl is so much fun to follow. Many times while reading, I stared at the book wondering if I could be as collected as Maya while going through as much as she did. I’m glad we got to see more of Daniel and that Rafe wasn’t so there all the time, too, because the former has certainly earned his role in the series; the boy consistently kept this book together when Maya would go and push it off its hinges. As for the rest of the cast – which I’d call “supporting” if they weren’t just so much more than that – I couldn’t get enough of any character! The group dynamics were clearly thought out well, and every teen had a presence and reason.
Finally I see where Armstrong has joined her earlier trilogy with this one, how they both flow into one. The key plot points that were never quite smoothed over at the end of The Reckoning are starting to click into place, and though they’re never solved and simply added to, a resolution is slowly forming. While sometimes I felt and thought that That Calling was leaving a lot to be solved in the last book, this story was definitely necessary for the characters and plot to get where they need to be for the big finale.
My only disappointment lies in the WHOLE YEAR WAIT I need to endure before I can get my cougar paws on The Rising! Besides that, anything by Kelley Armstrong – but specifically The Calling – is wholeheartedly recommended!