I enjoyed reading A Hidden Fire so much that I promptly bought and read the next book in the series. Giovanni and Beatrice's story continues in This Same Earth, book two in the Elemental Mysteries series by Elizabeth Hunter. Beatrice has been abducted by Lorenzo and was held captive for several weeks before being freed by Giovanni, Caspar and Tenzin. Although she wasn't tortured or hurt physically, the emotional torture has left its mark, primarily because she thought that Giovanni had willingly traded her for a book.
It takes awhile for Giovanni to convince Beatrice that this was not the case, but he gradually gets her to see that Lorenzo was going to abduct her no matter what so he simply played along with him. To give Beatrice time to heal from the emotional trauma of her abduction, not to mention witnessing the horrific fight between the two different vampire factions, Giovanni takes to the mountains of Chile. Beatrice and Giovanni are given the opportunity to show their feelings for one another and their relationship becomes much closer, or so Beatrice thinks. Regrettably their lives cannot be put on hold forever and Beatrice must return to the States to attend graduate school. So off they go, Beatrice to LA for school and Giovanni to try and track down her father, his errant son and to amass allies in the ongoing battle with his son.
Beatrice spends an enjoyable few years in graduate school and makes friends. She returns to Chile each summer but her time there is spent without benefit of Giovanni's company. She knows that she loves him and tells him so in a series of journals. Each year she says she's not going to return to Chile but her ticket is mysteriously left at her home and she returns. Fortunately she is afforded the opportunity to read through some of Giovanni's journals and learns a bit more of his past lives.
Fast forward a few more years and Beatrice is twenty-eight years old. She is an accomplished young woman, fluent in several languages, a homeowner, an employee at the Huntington Library in California, and in a relationship with a loving man, Mano. It has been six years since she saw Giovanni and she's trying to move on with her life, or so she thought until Giovanni mysteriously reappears. Giovanni is now the legal guardian and "uncle" to a precocious, street-smart twelve-year-old named Ben.
Beatrice must deal with renewing her relationship with Giovanni and building a relationship with Ben, her eventual breakup with Mano, and an introduction to her great-great-great-grandfather (I think I left out a few more greats but you get the idea), who just happens to be a water vampire that oversees LA. What follows is a series of fast-paced incidents including the abduction of one of Carwyn's sons. Beatrice and Giovanni wind up going to Ireland, England and France trying to track down leads on the whereabouts of Lorenzo and Beatrice's father, Stephen. Through it all Beatrice must confront her feelings for Giovanni and ultimately decide if she wants to have a relationship with him as a human or be turned.
This Same Earth is another fast-paced paranormal, romantic suspense read by Ms. Hunter. There's slightly more action and intrigue in this story, and more background information is given providing insight into Giovanni, Carwyn, Tenzin and even Lorenzo. The story ends leaving the reader hanging, wanting and waiting for more. Regrettably the third book in this series, The Force of Wind isn't due out until February/March 2012, and I'll definitely be putting it on my TBR list.