The Night World As a Whole
The Night World series by L.J. Smith is a series designed around the idea that within our world there is another world, a world full of vampires, and witches, and shapeshifters, all of the legendary creatures. The Night World's laws are simple. No one can fall in love with a human or tell a human about the night world. In each installment of the series both of these rules are broken as members of the Night World and humans are brought together by the soulmate principal.
Although Strange Fate has yet to be released and (hopefully) complete the Night World series, I still felt a certain need to explain my view of the Night World series as a whole. Actually, other than Dark Visions, I have found the Night World to include some of L.J. Smithís best work. Hereís why.
First of all, the idea of the Night World is intriguing. A secret world within our own world. Who wouldnít find that interesting? Iíve personally never been a big fan of what I consider full on fantasy, meaning books that not only take place in other worlds but where the other world is so different from our own that itís extremely difficult to relate to. The Night World is just the right balance of fantasy and reality.
The Night World is complete. L.J. Smith paints the picture so well that the Night World and our own world blend together without a hitch. The background is interesting and explanations are given for anything that canít be readily understood.
The soulmate idea is something that I find intensely interesting. Although some say they find it redundant I donít understand this at all since to me each couple is different, each with their own specific circumstances whether itís Ash and Mary-Lynnette meeting for the first time and being forced to work together, or James and Poppy who have known each other since childhood. I love seeing how each new couple is going to work off each other and figuring out why each one of them belongs together.
Finally, the sheer variety of characters makes me love this series. Unlike some authors L.J. Smith does not stick to a specific character type. Instead her characters run the gamut, from shy and somewhat naive (Gillian) to strong and independent (such as Jez.) Each character is different and each has their own experiences that determine their reactions to things, whether it be to finding their soulmate or to dealing in a crisis.
I found each installment in this series refreshingly original and yet comfortingly familiar because of the consistent Night World setting. Although I might wish for the books to be longer, all in all I believe that L.J. Smith has done a wonderful job.