A little over a year ago, I wrote a review for Cass McMain's first book, Sunflower. Her second book, Watch, seems like a departure, plot-wise. It certainly is a bit darker. But, readers will be treated to the relatable characters and amazing dialogue that are McMain's specialty. She is even able to write interesting conversations between children, without ever making it feel like you're reading YA.
Watch opens on a realistic family drama: Corky visits her dying uncle who is sharing family secrets before he goes. It's hard for her to make sense of his ramblings, which she first dismisses as a product of dementia. After his death, she reads his journal and is forced to confront what seems impossible: he believed her father was a vampire. Was he simply mentally ill or could there be some shred of truth there?
As Corky delves deeper into this mystery, she encounters an underground society of "Sanguinarians" who appear to be normal human beings whose fascination with vampires leads them to act out a sort of vampire culture. In an attempt to make sense of her family history, Corky is exposed to a part of the world she never knew existed and she learns that it's impossible to know a person's secrets by looking at them from the outside.
The ending felt a bit abrupt to me, but as the writer says: "it's all going in circles, so there is no end really."