Length: 109 pages
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Date Released: September 28, 2012
Purchasing Info: Author’s Website, Publisher’s Website, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble
After the fall of the Mayan civilization, Kane, an immortal Night Walker, has taken refuge in France for over 800 years. The modern world holds little interest for him until the night he meets the Golden Thief and is robbed of much more than his pocket watch.
Marguerite Rousseau is living a double life. By day she is the assistant to an eccentric French artist, Antoine Berjon, and by night she dons elegant evening gowns to woo French dignitaries before lifting their wallets.
Sparks ignite when Kane captures the thief, but Marguerite harbors a dark secret that could ruin them both.
Night Thief is both a prequel and a sequel to Lisa Kessler’s Night Walker, the first published book in her Night series. I’ll say up front that I loved Night Walker (review here), and I read Night Thief because I was eager to learn more of her mysterious creatures who are, but are not quite, vampires.
Night Thief takes place earlier in history, Paris in the 1840s instead of San Diego California in the present, but we read it after Night Walker, so we know the Night Walkers. Also, the hero of Night Walker was made, while the hero of Night Thief was born. Kane has a much longer history.
But the love story doesn’t.
The greatest enemy of the immortal isn’t a weapon, it seems to be boredom. Or ennui. Kane is getting bored. In Paris!
Napoleon has just died and Kane is watching the funeral procession when he spots Marguerite. Not for the first time. They’ve been stalking each other. She wants to rob him, and he wants to catch her. Not because he cares about her thefts, but because the thief known as the Le Voleur D’or shakes him out of his doldrums.
Marguerite is more than just a pretty face. She’s even more than just a pretty thief. She already knows that the world holds more terrors than even the recent Revolution could have imagined. And that not all those terrors are human. Or at least, not human any longer.
Kane sees a spirited woman who has been harmed, and wants to protect her. Needs to protect her. His spirit cries out that he must.
Marguerite knows that any man who does not appear between the hours of sunrise and sunset is something otherworldly. Her experience of such is that he must be a monster, just like her master. She has no experience of the otherworld that is not monstrous.
It is only when Kane trusts her enough to let her see what he really is, that she discovers that not all who hunt the night are evil. Some protect. This one wants to protect her. At all costs.
Even against the vampire who once saved her.
Escape Rating B+: Marguerite’s dilemma is what catches the reader. She knows that there are things out there, she lives with one. He abuses her every night. Her master is a vampire. She steals in order to get enough money to escape him. Not just for herself, but also for her cousin. The ocean might be enough distance. She doesn’t know the bastard is toying with her.
Kane is her rescue, but only if she can believe in him. The worst part, for Marguerite, is that Antoine, the vampire, used to be her rescuer. Her father beat her, and Antoine got her out. But that was before he went vampire, of course. Now he’s the bad guy, and she needs another white knight. Maybe that should be a red knight. She’s aware that being rescued isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, that rescuers can become victimizers in their turn. Rescuing herself was a better idea, if she could have pulled it off.
In some ways, Night Thief doesn’t have the depth that Night Walker did. Calisto loved his love for two centuries, he just had to wait for her to be reincarnated. Kane has been around for much, much longer, but his history, stretching back to the Mayan Empire is only hinted at. I’d like to know more about how the Night Walkers came to be, and came to be scattered to the four winds. There’s a tragic story in their background, and I want to read it.
Guess I’ll have to wait for Night Demon to learn more. Darn.