Review: Acquainted with the Night by Piper Maitland

December 10, 2011 Review 6


Acquainted with the Night Title: Acquainted with the Night
Author: Piper Maitland
Series: N/A
Cover Art: N/A
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Excerpt: Yes
Source: Publisher
Reviewed by: Julia

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; November 29, 2011
  • ISBN-10: 042524363X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425243633

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Sexual Content:

References to rape, several sex scenes.


Good – A fun read with minor flaws. Maybe read an excerpt before buying.


The pages of history are written in the blood of the undead…
A woman’s quest for the truth…
A medieval icon that holds the clues…
An ancient book with the power to shake Christianity—and humanity itself…

Caroline Clifford’s bland life as a London tour guide flips upside down when her beloved uncle is brutally murdered at a Bulgarian archeological site. While traveling to recover his remains, she meets a man who corresponded with her uncle. Jude Barrett is a biochemist on a mission—to eradicate the world of vampires…

At first, Caro is dismissive of Jude’s beliefs, but she can’t ignore the signs around her—the human bites on her uncle, the strange men following her, the anguished cries after sundown. Strange anagrams on her uncle’s passport lead her and Jude to a cliff-top monastery in Greece, where a shattering revelation connects a relic Caro inherited from her parents to an age-old text on immortality—and an enigmatic prophecy that pits the forces of darkness and light in a showdown that could destroy them all…

Acquainted with evil…


Fans of both THE HISTORIAN and the Jason Bourne series will love ACQUAINTED WITH THE NIGHT, which brings murder, intrigue, and a biological twist to vampirism. I’m a sucker for authors who meld supernatural creatures with the science of our own world, and Piper Maitland did a great job bringing a medical sensibility to this classic myth.

For the first few chapters, Maitland’s mythology carried my interest above all else, as the heroine flounders from sheltered ignorance into the violence of her hidden past. Caro’s development owes more to old school romance than urban fantasy, as she’s more focused on being accepted by the hero than on embracing her birthright.  In a typical, heroine-focused urban fantasy this would be a fatal flaw for me, but ACQUAINTED BY THE NIGHT has more of a thriller feel, driven by an engine of suspense and plot.  Maitland’s world building made the characters’ human weaknesses one more flawed, realistic detail.  While I would have enjoyed this book more with a different type of heroine, readers who focus more on plot can probably tack another bat onto this review (and though satisfying as a standalone, there’s plenty more plot to pick up where this book leaves off).

Of all the details Maitland wove into her mythology, I particularly loved how she included the hyper-sexuality so common in Paranormal Romance as part of the physiology of vampirism. While I’m normally all about characters, those little details stole the spotlight in ACQUAINTED WITH THE NIGHT. Though Caro and Jude aren’t so memorable for me, I’ll enjoy mulling over the plausible biology behind Maitland’s vampires for quite some time.

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Also Reviewed By:
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6 Responses to “Review: Acquainted with the Night by Piper Maitland”

  1. Carmel @ Rabid Reads

    Interesting review. I liked the Thriller/Suspense spin Piper put on the UF genre but you're right, Jude and Caro weren't particularly memorable as characters. The biology aspect definitely makes you think though!

  2. Denise Z

    I love the trailer. I was in my local Fred Meyer today and saw this on an end cap and said hey there it is 🙂 I have not read Acquainted with the Night and would like to.

  3. Julia

    @Lisa – Thanks for linking, great review and guest post with the author.

    @Carmel – I'm a sucker for the kick butt UF heroine. It's unfair to expect Caro to be tougher (I'd be in the fetal position if I went through half of what she did), but in this case the mythology totally overshadowed the characters for me.

    @Denise Z – I get so excited to see UF pop up in unexpected places. I hope you get to read a copy soon!

  4. Anonymous

    I have just finished this book. I have never written to anyone before, (aren't you tired of hearing that). But this made an impression on me. I am sorry to say, but this is the worst "work of literature" I have ever
    encountered. It is now residing in my trash bin. I know you will probably never see this, you probably have people to screen negative comments from you.

  5. Julia

    No screening, you did reach a person! Not sure if I'm the person you were looking for however (I wrote the review). Sorry you hated it, I enjoyed the biology/vampire angle enough to get me past the characters or the plot. *Definitely* shades of thrillers and old-school-romance on those angles. Over the top action and a heroine that doesn't make good decisions.