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Friday, December 10, 2010


Plot Type: SMR
Ratings: V5, S4, H1
Publisher and Titles: Signet
      Nightkeepers (2008)
      Dawnkeepers (2009)
      Skykeepers (2009)
      Demonkeepers (2010)
      Blood Spells (2010)
      Storm Kissed (6-2011)

     This series focuses on the Mayan end-times apocalypse prophecy of December 21, 2012. The heroes and heroines are the Nightkeepers, sworn to protect humanity by defeating the demonic forces that will unleash themselves on the earth on that critical date. Each Nightkeeper is a trained warrior with a magical talent that is connected with an animal (e.g., the eagle and hawk bloodlines are connected with air and flight, the serpent blookline is connected with trickery).

     The first book, Nightkeepers, provides detailed background information about the Nightkeepers, so it includes a great deal of Mayan “history.” The series focuses on a series of violent battles with various dark forces as the countdown to global cataclysm draws nearer. Each book tells the SMR story of one Nightkeeper couple as they try to save the world while traveling down love’s rough road. As each couple mates, a magical mark appears on their right arms to mark them as jun tan (beloved).

     The high rating for violence is based on both the brutal battles and the ritualistic bloodletting that the Nightkeepers engage in when they cast spells: slashing their palms with knives and stabbing their tongues with stingray spines—ouch!

     Each story includes so many mythological and cultural terms that plots can be difficult to untangle. Andersen includes a glossary in each book, divided into sections: entities; places; things (e.g., spells, glyphs, prophecies);earthly enemies; and Nightkeepers and their winikin (i.e., their protector-advisers). All of these terms are absolutely necessary to the understanding of the stories, so it might be best to read the series all at once, so that you don't forget the terminology while awaiting the next book (which is, unfortunately, how I have read the series).

      On her web site, Andersen includes a time line for the Nightkeepers and a short story prequel to the series. According to Andersen's web site, the series will end with three books that are scheduled for publication in 2012: Sven's book, Anna's book, and Rabbit's book.

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