George, Jessica Day. Silver in the Blood.
July 7th 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Dacia and Louisa are being sent to Romania to connect with their mother's family. Louisa is sailing with her aunt Kate, but the girls have both run into problems with young men, and are not allowed to meet up. Both are preoccupied with typical concerns of 1890s, well-to-do girls-- Paris fashions, romance, coming out parties, and the like. When creepy men start following them and making odd comments, and their cousin Radu is actually frightened when they ask him to explain all of the bizarre occurrences, the girls realize that there is more to their family history than they have been told. Their grandmother, Lady Ioanna, is intensely frightening and refuses the girls' wishes to go back to the US. After being frightened and kept in the dark for most of the book, the girls find out the dark secret about their family's past, but also find out that they have more power within the family than they would have imagined.
Strengths: I appreciated that Louisa and Dacia didn't have modern sensibilities. The tall, thin Dacia bemoans her figure, wishing she were more like the comfortably upholstered LouLou, although Lou does wish to be more like her cousin. They are realistically under the guidance and watchful eye of the men in their family, and don't complain about this too much. They see getting married as an acceptable life plan. All too often, historical books put modern day sensibilities on their characters, and it doesn't always work. This also has some good paranormal facets, but I don't want to ruin the plot-- these don't come into play for a good half of the book, although they are hinted at strongly.
Weaknesses: Werewolves and vampires are pretty much over, although I do have a few readers who still crave new stories. This has a classic feel to it, with the historical setting, so while it won't circulate all that frequently, it will be good to have on hand.
What I really think: Not my cup of tea. The cover is very nice. I'll have to buy the rest of the series when it comes out.