Synopses & Reviews
As obsession and loss become dark partners, how far must the people of Abbey Hills go to survive?
Six months ago, brutal murders shook the small Ozark town—murders that stopped after a house fire reportedly claimed the killer’s life. Lauryn McBride's family auction house has taken responsibility for the estate sale of one of the victims—the enigmatic Markus Chisom. Submerging herself in Chisom’s beautiful but strange world, Lauryn welcomes the reprieve from watching Alzheimer’s steal her father from her, piece by piece. She soon realizes that centuries-old secrets tie Abbey Hills to the Chisom estate and a mysterious evil will do anything to make sure those secrets stay hidden. Even the man who grew up loving her may not be able to protect Lauryn from the danger.
When Amede Dastillon receives an unexpected package from Abbey Hills, she hopes it might be the key in tracking down her beloved sister, long estranged from her family. Visiting Abbey Hills seems the logical next step in her search, but Amede is unusually affected by the town, and when mutilated carcasses begin turning up again in the small community, the local law enforcement isn’t sure if they are confronting a familiar evil or a new terror.
Two women brought together by questions that seem to have no answers. Can they overcome the loss and darkness threatening to devour them—or will their own demons condemn them to an emotional wasteland?
"Bateman (Thirsty) revisits her vampire venue of Abbey Hills, Mo. Months after vampire-related killings, the estate of one of the victims, Markus Chisom, is being settled by an auction house owned by the family of Lauryn McBride. Lauryn is doing the work; her father, her only close relation, is declining from Alzheimer's. Chisom is tied to a really old New Orleans family, and a letter from Lauryn brings Amede Dastillion to town, ostensibly for family heirlooms but really in search of a family member. Both women confront pain in their histories even as ritual killings resume in the town. This sequel is less successful than its imaginative predecessor. The villains are less well drawn; Lauryn's former love, Billy, a preacher's kid become missionary, is a bit of a holy roller in an evangelical Christian novel that deals logically with the theme of redemption without getting preachy about it. Still, this is a well-plotted novel that offers a plausible Christian take on the ubiquitous vampire theme. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
Lauryn McBride's family's auction house has taken responsibility for the estate sale of murder victim Markus Chisom. She soon realizes that centuries-old secrets tie the town of Abbey Hills to the Chisom estate, and a mysterious evil will do anything to make sure those secrets stay hidden.
About the Author
TRACEY BATEMAN is an award-winning author of more than thirty books including Thirsty
. Tracey has been a member of American Christian Fiction Writers since it began and served as its president for nearly two years. She lives in Missouri with her husband and four children.
Reading Group Guide
From the very start of Tandem, we feel Lauryn’s burden of caring for her ailing father, while watching his mind slip away. Have you ever been torn by the need to care for someone you love and the desire to escape the burden?
Amede has to leave her sanctuary home and venture out to “a place of torture, loneliness in the midst of a crowd.” What circumstances are the cause of this in her life? Have you ever personally experienced this type of loneliness?
How has all the loss in Lauryn’s past caused barriers in her life towards relationships? How has this affected her relationship with God?
What parallels do we find in Lauryn & Amede’s lives?
Trapped, Eden’s memories and thoughts consume her. She carries a huge sense of guilt and shame over hurting and disappointing others. How can she free herself…physically? Mentally? Is it possible for her to find that absolution of sin she thinks about? Did her father?
Amede resents the curse of not growing old. Stuck in a perpetual fountain of youth, so to speak, she could only imagine what she was missing. Change is difficult in most people’s lives, would you want to stay 30 forever…while the rest of the world passed you by? What would be some benefits of this? What would you miss the most?
After the night of their highschool graduation and that first kiss, Billy left home to pursue his calling into missions. In what ways, do Lauryn and Billy misunderstand each other? How much of Lauryn’s heartache and anger is warranted?
Relationships and co-dependancy play a key role in Tandem. Amede and Eden. Lauryn and her father. Are there others? What did these relationships have to endure to get to a point of healing?
Throughout the book, Charley is an odd character, subtly manipulating others. How does he complicate the lives of Lauryn and Jill? What is his stake in the story?
Do you have any sympathy for Charley’s character and the choices he made? Why or why not?
We see a wide range of personalities and characteristics among the vampires. How does Amede differ from her half-sister? What parallels can we draw between them all?
The emotional and psychological connection between Amede and Eden had a deep impact on Amede’s behavior. What changed?
When the killings started again in Abbey Hills, did you begin to suspect Amede’s appetite could be changing?
Lauryn has never needed anyone besides her Dad. The realization that he would not be around forever left her empty and shaken. She needed something more. More than contentment. More than herself. How did she “know” when she had found it?
How would you describe Lauryn’s spiritual journey? What role does her father play in it? Can you relate to her hesitance in the pursuit of spirituality?