The Calling - #2 in the Darkness Rising series by Kelley Armstrong.
Click here: The Gathering for my review of the first book in the series.
Maya, and her friend Rafe, Daniel, Corey, Nicole, Haley and Sam, were all rescued from the forest fire that ended the first novel. All 7 of them are in a helicopter, heading for the mainland to reach their families and safety.
Only Maya, with her keen sense of direction, realized that they were going in the wrong direction. When she confronted the pilot about it, he made some excuses, but Maya wasn't buying it.
After figuring out that the pilot was part of the St. Cloud corporation, all 7 of them find out a way away from the helicopter - sure, it was by crashing the aircraft into the ocean, but they weren't going to get caught by the St. Cloud corporation again.
Following that, the teenagers were on the run away from two different groups: St. Cloud and another group where the leader claims to be Maya's biological father.
Because Maya is a shape-shifter, who changes into a cougar, she is very familiar and comfortable in the forest. She leads the group to their hometown, hoping that their families will be there and that things will get resolved once they arrive.
Along their trip, they lose one person after another. First Rafe falls from the helicopter before it crashes, obviously pronounced dead as no one could survive from that horrible fall.
Then, Nicole gets captured right after the helicopter crashes on the beach. After 3 days in the woods, Haley was captured.
Only none of them were killed... They were shot with tranquilizer darts, so obviously St. Cloud wants them alive...
In the end, it's Maya, Daniel and Corey. Their plans changed throughout their adventure, but they find some interesting news of other "supernatural" people from a different project. Now their mission is to find these 6 teenagers to stay away from St. Cloud.
Kelley Armstrong did it again! I didn't think this story could get much better than the first novel. True, the first one was a little more romantic with Maya and Rafe, but since Rafe was missing throughout this novel, it was a little bland in that category.
However, the reader learned more about each character and their abilities. And some even used their abilities. Maya got to shape-shift!
Also, while this novel was a lot of them on the run, it was a very fast paced novel and you wanted to run right along with them to stay away from St. Cloud.
I love Maya's character. She was very mature in the first novel and she just grew even more mature in this second one. She also became even more of a leader when she had to take them into the forest. It's her domain, her primary place to be, so she was a natural born leader to stay away from the people chasing them.
Since I've also read the Darkest Powers series by Kelley Armstrong (reviews are here for #1, #2, and #3) I was able to see the connection between these two books. It wasn't a connection that is very dominate, so if you haven't read her first YA series, it won't be a big deal.
I'm hoping that they will be connected in the last, and final, book in this series, though, because I loved the Darkest Powers series and I absolutely adore this series.
For anyone who's interested in supernatural, shape-shifting, running from the government, survival... This novel is definitely something you should look into. Make sure, though, that you read the first novel in the series before picking this up so you understand all of the events fully!