Demon in My View
is a vampire novel by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes
, and the second book in the Den of Shadows
series. It chronicles the life of perpetual outcast and secret-author Jessica as she deals with two new and odd students, Alex and Caryn, with the odd feeling that Alex looks and acts very similarly to Aubrey, the vampire in her most recently published book... But vampires, witches, and such aren't real...are they?Despite being a sequel to her other book, in The Forests of the Night
it is perfectly easy to read as a stand-alone and received critical praise.
This novel provides examples of:
- Action Girl: Fala, Fala's sister, Jessica, and possibly Caryn, depending on the reader's generosity.
- The Witch-vampire-hunter Caryn's mother calls in from another clan, though she doesn't get a chance to really show it.
- Adults Are Useless: Jessica thinks this about her adoptive mother, but the woman does try to help her when she's stressed or upset and is sorry she can't connect better with Jessica. Caryn's mother fits better, other than calling a hunter-witch and housing Jessica briefly after her mother is killed she does a whole lot of nothing. The hunter-witch is more of an obstacle than anything else, and really doesn't get to do much.
- Always Chaotic Evil: How witches view vampires.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: An interesting variation. How hard a person fights as a human before being turned equals how powerful they become as a vampire. This is why Aubrey can't just turn Jessica to protect her, as she would be willing and therefore weak. At least, not until after her fight with Fala.
- Bad Ass: Aubrey. Frequently acknowledged.
- Jessica and Fala both get moments [[spoiler during the fight in the climax.]]
- Badass Pacifist: The Smoke witches, at least Caryn and Monica. Other witches can be much more militant.
- Category Traitor: Jessica really sympathizes with the vampires more than witches or humans, leading the witches to declare her one to humanity. Caryn is less-so about it, and is still willing to help her.
- More important to the backstory is Monica Smoke, who found out how to turn a vampire back to a human, and helped Jessica's biological mother do just that. The Smoke Witches, including Caryn's mother, her own sister, never speak of her because of it.
- Deadpan Snarker: It's a teen novel, so almost everyone. Jessica stands out once in awhile.
- Dreaming of Things to Come: Inverted. Jessica's subconscious is linked to the old vampire Siete so she know the history of almost all vampires and many witches. She notes that if she tries to revise a story before it's over, she cannot finish it, and she writes in a subconscious state.
- Enfante Terrible: While not what Jessica's mother thought, going unborn for two decades in a vamparic womb made Jessica more Siete's child than the child of either of her parents. Her mother gave her up because she couldn't take the reminder of that portion of her life.
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Jessica, most brunette vampires.
- It's noted that while dark-skinned vampires lose a little color, you can still tell their race pretty well since it's only a shade or so lighter.
- Falling For The Mark: Aubrey, especially when he realizes she's writing the truth unintentionally.
- Fight for Your Life: Required for a human-to-be-turned to become a strong vampire. Jessica is also trying to not get killed by vampires for most of the book for accidentally writing their lives and secrets. She gets a more literal version against Fala.
- Fight Scene: A few minor skirmishes happen before Jessica's epic fight with Fala which takes a whole chapter, more of the after math, and is awesome to read.
- Flower Motifs: Jessica notes that vampires use the black rose as their symbol. When she finds such a rosebush near where a vampire hideout was in her books, she realizes things are getting real.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Averted. The vampires really don't care much for humans, though "nicer" ones try to feed off criminals. They really wouldn't even care about Jessica if she wasn't writing their secrets.
- Played pretty straight with Siete, though he's only referred to or thought of.
- The Ghost: Siete. He never shows up and is only mentioned in Jessica's thoughts, but ends up having a pretty big impact on the plot anyway.
- Good Parents: Jessica's adoptive mother tries very hard, but Jessica doesn't want to let anyone in.
- The Good Witch: It's implied all of them are, but the Smoke family stands out as they are pacifists. And one of their ancestors managed to turn Jessica's mother back from being a vampire. Caryn even goes against witch-code to help Aubrey and Jessica once it's clear Jessica is on the vampires' side to protect her.
- Green Eyes: Jessica. Siete.
- Hero Antagonist: One could argue this about the hunter-witch and Caryn's mother, as they just want to protect humanity from vampires, however the hunter is especially unsympathetic about it.
- Idiot Ball: Carefully avoided. Aubrey and Caryn both tell Jessica what actions will most likely get her killed, and she is quite careful. Fala has to pull a good trick to get her alone—pretending to be Aubrey in a very convincing way.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: A friendship version, where Caryn is willing to go against witch-code to save Jessica if necessary, even though Jessica clearly sides with Aubrey over her.
- Very powerfully done with Siete towards Jessica's mother. He'd offered to turn her for years, and it's clear he was in love with her, but he backed off when she married. However, when an accident left her widowed, pregnant, and desperate, he agreed to turn her when she asked. He also didn't seek revenge on her or Jessica after she found a way to turn back.
- Ineffectual Loner: Jessica. She likes it that way, but isn't sure why almost everyone, evne her adoptive mother, seem put off by her. It's Siete's unconscious influence on her.
- Knife Nut: Fala's sister.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: A weird version: Jessica's mother was pregnant when turned by Siete, and Jessica spent two decades in the womb before her mother was turned back and gave birth. Because of this, Jessica is more Siete's child than anyone else's.
- The Masquerade: The vampires want to kill Jessica before her books break it. The witches are trying to warn her about this, but needed to be more direct.
- Miss Exposition: Caryn for Jessica about a few things, though cryptically. Jessica ends up being this for herself later on, in a very interesting manner.
- Poor Communication Kills: Caryn being so cryptic and evasive with Jessica at the start soured Jessica towards her, making it harder for Jessica to work with the witches later on even though her life may depend on it.
- Our Vampires Are Different: They can shapeshift, are all-but impossible to kill (except by witches), super-strong, and can drink anything that isn't blood for kicks (such as poison or antifreeze). There's also rules for who is stronger as a vampire—see Asskicking Equals Authority.
- Playing with Fire: Jessica and Aubrey note that Fala likes to use fire as a weapon, though we never see her do it.
- Power Levels: Vampires instinctively know when another is stronger or weaker than them. Fala is careful about Jessica since Aubrey is stronger than her, and they both know Jessica will likely be stronger than either of them after she's turned.
- Sacrificial Lamb: Jessica's adoptive mother, presumably by Fala. This starts the events that lead directly to the climax.
- Stop Helping Me!: Jessica spends most of the book seeing Caryn as little more than an annoyance, until she realizes how much danger she's really in and that Caryn can help. She also treats the hunter-witch like this.
- Vampires Are Rich: Possibly—many have been around a long time, Jessica notes that Aubrey's apartment is nice, and Siete is hinted to be some kind of lord.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Aubrey says he can turn into a few shapes, but he only uses as a large black wolf in-story. This may be a common thing among vampires.
- Why Don't You Just Turn Her?: Discussed. Aubrey can't just turn Jessica because she is willing and wouldn't fight back, which would make her weak and therefore an easy target for vampires that still dislike her.