Taste of Night – Second Sign of the Zodiac (Review)

Taste of Night – The Second Sign of the Zodiac by Vicki Pettersson

  • Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books; Reissue edition (March 27, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060898925
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060898922

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Equal parts Light and Shadow, Joanna Archer must fulfill a destiny she never wanted. Once a photographer and heiress to a casino fortune, she is now dedicated to the cause of good . . . but susceptible to the seductions of evil.

A deadly virus is descending on Las Vegas—a terrifying plague unleashed by the powerful overlord of Zodiac’s dark side: Joanna’s father. Chaos and panic grip Sin City as agents of Light fall prey to the terrifying epidemic. Death reigns supreme—and Joanna stands at dead center of an epic and terrible war long foretold, the last hope of a damned world.

But first she must somehow conquer the malevolence that grows all around her . . . and within.


After reading the first book in the series, I went and downloaded the second to my Nook in and effort to read a series through to the end before starting a new one. I was not disappointed with this plan in the least. It was almost as if it was an extension of the first book, flowing right into it.

As I expected, there was none of the slow intro that there is many times in the first book in a series. If you read the first book, you would already know about the paranormal world Jo lives in. This allows us as the reader to dive right into the story – and dive right in we do. The action picks up in the beginning giving us a depth in the Shadow Agents. In this book the action is there, the overhanging doom of the plague is there but it is flavored with an almost humanizing of the Shadow Agents.

Don’t get me wrong, they are still as nasty as Taco Bell at two in the morning, but you get an idea of why they are that nasty. You almost feel sorry for them. That is until one of them opens up their mouth and says something. Which is the feeling I get that the author is trying to show us – a bit of how Jo is seeing things.

She is part Shadow and part Light. Her mother, the previous Archer for the Light had her while infiltrating the Shadow side with the Tulpa, Leader of the Shadows and a being created fully from thought and will. An evil agent on the Shadow side created him out of his imagination. And now this creature with near limitless power knows that Joanna Archer is his daughter.

The idea of the “cursed battlefield” that is the Second Sign that the Zodiac troops are looking for is presented in a couple of different ways. The reason this appealed to me is that it left it up to me to interpret which one was really happening – if there was indeed only a single cursed battlefield.

The one thing that I wanted to see more of in the first book I felt like I was given. More of a style of Krav Maga from Jo. Without spoiling too much, there is at least one major fight scene where I feel she was displaying more of the brutality of the fighting style working in conjunction with her superhuman powers. More inline with the initial fight she had with Ajax and the Shadow that killed her sister.

With more of a depth of feeling and caring for the characters, more of a Krav Maga feel to her fighting and everything from the first book that I loved, I am moving this one up a bit higher in the grading system. At least an A- and well worth the money and definitely worth the time to read. Book 3 is already sitting in my Nook waiting for me to open it.


One thought on “Taste of Night – Second Sign of the Zodiac (Review)

  1. I’ve read the entire series including the new one. Even though I think you and I would have a different view of the world etc. I know you will like the other books just as much. At the end of the latest one especially the author ties together so many things that made me go “Geesh, of course.” This is one of those series that I’ll need to go back and read them all the way through again back to back.

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