A twist on vampiric tales of Eastern Europe, Silver in the Blood follows two American girls who get a little more than they bargained for when they agree to travel back to Romania to meet their eastern relatives. The two main characters, Dacia and Lou, are foils to a certain extend: Dacia, a bold and precocious young lady, differs from her quieter and reserved cousin quite a bit, although surprising twists and ancient family secrets bring out new characteristics in each of the sister-like cousins. Throughout the story, character development is integral; while Lou learns to stand up to her scheming relations, Dacia’s pride suffers a blow that she never quite recovers from (although she does realize that her source of pride may have been a little misplaced). The plot is consistently driven forward, first by the girls’ inquiry into their supernatural family inheritance, and then by their struggle against their family’s treacherous plot against the Romanian royalty. While the Florescu family powers incorporate legends of vampires and werewolves, this book definitely distances itself from tropes more common to Victorian-set supernatural tales and reads far more like classic fantasy than paranormal. The lush setting of 19th century Romania adds a richness to the book that, when compounded with the fantastical nature of the story, makes for an enthralling and captivating read. Jessica Day George’s writing is engaging, vivid, and, as always, thoroughly enjoyable.
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