From Goodreads: "But they are not the only ones searching for the legendary sword. The Blacktide Coven wants it, too, and they are close on Caitlin and Caleb's trail. Worse, Caitlin's little brother, Sam, remains obsessed with finding his Dad. But Sam soon finds himself in way over his head, smack in the middle of a vampire war. Will he jeopardize their search? In LOVED (Book #2 in the Vampire Journals), Caitlin and Caleb embark together on their quest to find the one object that can stop the imminent vampire and human war: the lost sword. An object of vampire lore, there is grave doubt over whether it even exists. If there is any hope of finding it, they must first trace Caitlin's ancestry. Is she really the One? Their search begins with finding Caitlin's father. Who was he? Why did he abandon her? As the search broadens, they are shocked by what they discover about who she really is.
Caitlin and Caleb's journey takes them on a whirlwind of historic locations-from the Hudson Valley, to Salem, to the heart of historic Boston-the very spot where witches were once hung on the hill of Boston Common. Why are these locations so important to the vampire race? And what do they have to do with Caitlin's ancestry, and with who she's becoming?
But they may not even make it. Caitlin and Caleb's love for each other is blossoming. And their forbidden romance may just destroy everything they've set out to achieve....
LOVED is the sequel to TURNED, yet it also stands alone as a self-contained novel. LOVED is 51,000 words."
I must admit that I am quite conflicted about this book. On the one hand the 'insta-love' bothered me quite a bit more in this book than it did in the last (mainly because there was 2 cases of it going on in it, again with Caitlin and Caleb, but also with Caitlin's younger brother, Sam, and Samantha) but I felt that the plot of this book was much better developed (and more interesting) than the first.
Plot-wise I loved learning more about Caitlin and Sam's background and I found the idea of the Rose and the Thorn to be entirely intriguing and something that I hope plays a large role in the other books of the series. Furthermore, I think that Morgan did an amazing job meshing together the Salem Witch Trials with modern-day vampires, it is a unique idea that I have not come across in any other YA paranormal before.
However, I had quite a few difficulties trying to connect to Sam's part of the story. In "Turned" Caitlin made him seem a really sweet kid, though somewhat lost, but in this I felt that he was anything but. Furthermore, I also had somewhat of a difficult time connecting to him because I felt that he would say or think things that real people wouldn't (typically because they are overly cliched), for instance: "Here she was, this totally cool and hot, awesome chick, who he loved hanging out with- and yet she had also been that crazy, psycho girl that totally killed the creep without even blinking an eye" (pg. 165).
All in all, I do think that this book is marginally better than the first book in the series and I am quite excited to see what Morgan has in store for us in the next book of the series, "Betrayed".
I received this book from the author to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.