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Nightlife (Cal Leandros Series #1)

Nightlife (Cal Leandros Series #1)

4.3 140
by Rob Thurman

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“There are monsters among us. There always have been and there always will be. I’ve known that ever since I can remember, just like I’ve always known I was one…

…Well, half of one, anyway.”

Welcome to the Big Apple. There’s a troll under the Brooklyn Bridge, a boggle in Central Park, and a beautiful vampire in a


“There are monsters among us. There always have been and there always will be. I’ve known that ever since I can remember, just like I’ve always known I was one…

…Well, half of one, anyway.”

Welcome to the Big Apple. There’s a troll under the Brooklyn Bridge, a boggle in Central Park, and a beautiful vampire in a penthouse on the Upper East Side—and that’s only the beginning. Of course, most humans are oblivious to the preternatural nightlife around them, but Cal Leandros is only half-human.

His father’s dark lineage is the stuff of nightmares—and he and his entire otherworldly race are after Cal. Why? Cal hasn’t exactly wanted to stick around long enough to find out.

He and his half-brother Niko have managed to stay a step ahead for three years, but now Cal’s dad has found them again. And Cal is about to learn why they want him, why they’ve always wanted him…for he is the key to unleashing their hell on earth. The fate of the human world will be decided in the fight of Cal’s life…

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
With the dark humor and violent intensity of Anthony Burgess's 1962 dystopian masterwork, A Clockwork Orange, and the supernatural ambiance of Simon R. Green's masterfully macabre Nightside novels (Something from the Nightside, Agents of Light and Darkness, et al.), Rob Thurman's debut novel, Nightlife, could be the love child of Lenny Bruce and H. P. Lovecraft.

Caliban "Cal" Leandros has got serious issues. His mother is a down-and-out con artist whose fortune-telling scam has long ago lost its shine. Living in a run-down trailer, she cares more about where she's going to get her next bottle of rotgut and pack of smokes than she does about the well-being of her two sons. Cal's deadbeat dad is, well, a monster. With only his butt-kicking big brother, Niko -- a "blond Bruce Lee" -- to watch over him, Cal has been on the run from the nightmarish Grendels for four years. But what would bloodthirsty monstrosities -- whose primal passions are violence, destruction, and mayhem -- want with a half-breed human? When Cal eventually finds out the reason for the Grendels' interest in him, he is forced to make some very difficult decisions -- decisions that could forever alter humankind…

While some readers may find Cal's incessant outbursts of sullen, preadolescent behavior and bitingly sarcastic humor trying, dark fantasy fans who enjoy their novels with plenty of smart-ass attitude will find this chaotic and raging debut refreshingly unreserved and impenitent in its over-the-top narrative style. Paul Goat Allen
Caliban Leandros has spent most of his life knowing he is a monster. Then he met his father, an "Auph," and spent two years in another dimension, a time he has blessedly suppressed. Now he and his older brother Niko are on the run, one step ahead of the Auph, who want Cal for unknown reasons. With danger pressing in on all sides, you'd think that a humming ghost in the mirror would be the least of Cal's problems. Unfortunately, you would be dead wrong. This charming and fast-paced urban fantasy has it all: male banshees, beautiful vampires, mugger-eating boggles, a teenage seer and a super-hero-class protector in brother Niko. The book comes to a satisfying end, but with enough loose ends that readers can eagerly anticipate a sequel. For all fantasy collections, especially where urban fantasy is popular. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2006, Penguin, Roc, 339p., Ages 15 to adult.
—Deirdre Root

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Cal Leandros Series , #1
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.94(d)
750L (what's this?)
Age Range:
18 Years

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Rob, short for Robyn (yes, he is really a she) Thurman lives in Indiana, land of rolling hills and cows, deer, and wild turkeys. Many, many turkeys. She is also the author of the Cal Leandros Series: Nightlife, Moonshine, Madhouse, and Deathwish; has a story in the anthology Wolfsbane and Mistletoe; and is the author of Trick of the Light, the first book in the Trickster series.

Besides wild, ravenous turkeys, she has a dog (if you don’t have a dog, how do you live?)—one hundred pounds of Siberian husky. He looks like a wolf, has paws the size of a person’s hand, ice blue eyes, teeth out of a Godzilla movies, and the ferocious habit of hiding under the kitchen table and peeing on himself when strangers come by. Fortunately, she has another dog that is a little more invested in keeping the food source alive. By the way, the dogs were adopted from shelters. They were fully grown, already housetrained, and grateful as hell. Think about it next time you’re looking for a Rover or Fluffy.

For updates, teasers, deleted scenes, and various other extras, visit Rob Thurman's website and her LiveJournal.

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Nightlife (Cal and Niko Series #1) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 140 reviews.
jaglover More than 1 year ago
Looks like a great book. Too bad that the book you actually download is NOT this book. I've called B&N three times. I did get my money back, but they have yet to actually fix it so that the correct book is on here. It will go to the correct place in your Nook. It will show the correct cover. However, once you open the eBook, you will be reading Night Life by Elizabeth Guest, with a prologue in ancient Egypt, then moving to Vegas. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the Cal and Niko series by Rob Thurman. I even looked the book up on Amazon.com, where they allow you to read the first few chapters for free, to be sure. Anyways, B&N has known about the problem for about two weeks at this point. I just downloaded the free sample and it's still the wrong book. There is no warning on the page yet, and it's not fixed. So here's my warning: Download the free sample first. Don't spend your $6.99 on the wrong book. If you already have spent your money, call B&N. They were very nice about giving me a refund. As far as getting the eBook, though... It looks like we either go paper or go elsewhere at this point in time.
Usagy More than 1 year ago
ROB THURMAN has created her own twist to the mythology we all know and loved. Her version of warewofs and other creatures gives the story a new spin. So if you think you have read all there is about demons, elves, warewolfs, pucks, and vampires, and more....well think again. THat is what makes the book interesting and guaranteed u will not be bored by the same old storylines. The most amazing part of the book is tge family connection the charachters have, you just cant stop rooting for the good guys, while mesmirized by the power of family and friendship ( and not in cliche way) trust me. Its not all hugs and kisses, but two brothers kicking ass (the bad guys and each others, cause thats what brothers do). If you are a fan of the show supernatural, you will love the Leandro brothers. If you are a fan of action, humor, and fantasy, then this is the book for you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I got this book on the recommendation of a friend and I loved it. The characters were rich and had so much depth, the layers just kept coming. The relationship between the brothers was strong and made it even better. Add in the colorful and likable supporting characters and it's just a wonderful read. Plus, I found Cal's smart mouth charming, yet he also possesses a faint vulnerability. It's an intriguing combination.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rob Thurman has breathed new life into what, until recently, had become an almost clichéd storyline. When I initially picked up the book, I did so only because I did not recognize the author and am in constant pursuit of new literary blood. I wasn¿t overly hopeful. And things weren¿t improved by reading the synopsis on the back¿-this had been done before! Then I started skimming a few pages while I was in the bookstore¿-and I was completely hooked. Consumed. I couldn¿t put the thing down, even though I had a dozen other things of considerable importance to which I needed desperately to attend. I ignored them and read the whole thing practically without stopping. Thurman¿s characters have astonishing depth. Their thoughts and emotions and reactions to situations are thoroughly believable, and Thurman¿s descriptive abilities are such that you can easily see a character¿s expression, can hear what he hears and see what he sees. I suppose that this is what sucked me in so thoroughly¿for the first time in a long time, I really felt I was there with a character, experiencing things with him. Nightlife isn¿t going to change your world-view. It doesn¿t offer any insights or solutions into current global crises, and it isn¿t going to spark a world-wide controversy. It¿s pure, delicious fantasy. But it¿s the most thoroughly moving, most thrilling, and the absolute funniest thing I¿ve read in years. And best of all, there¿s a sequel coming out next year . . .
harstan More than 1 year ago
His mother is human trailer-trash and his father is a ¿demonic sperm donor¿. Cal can live with being a half monster though he does not like either of his parents. He has more problems with his ever perfect sibling, Niko, who does everything much better than Cal does. Still the brothers are close --- Their closeness is put to the test when the insane Auphes mutant elves better known amongst the in crowd as Grendels attack the brothers. They fight back when forced, but mostly flee because the odds of winning are nil. The Grendels need the half monster to help them achieve great power. On their quest for safety the brothers run into a supernatural hodgepodge from a canine who once was human to Puck selling used cars to weird humans who should have been paranormal, but then again this is New York --- NIGHTLIFE is a terrific coming of age urban fantasy starring a likable teen Niko and a not so likable sarcastic Cal, whose mockery can become irritating for us older readers even if it seems genuine a little silent Cal would have been less realistic but nice. Together they are a formidable loyal team until women begin to strain their allegiance to one another. Even with this strong cast, the astuteness of the exhilarating story line besides making sure that all the purebred, hybrid, and lesser begat monsters seem real lies in the delightful way Rob Thurman presents clues as to why everyone is after Cal. Fantasy fans will want more treks around New York starring the dynamic siblings. --- Harriet Klausner
hlnkid More than 1 year ago
Yes, this book sets itself firmly in the world of the supernatural and urban fantasy, but it's the intense co-dependent relationship between brothers Cal and Niko Leandros that hooks you to this book...and the the entire series (which keeps getting better). And hey, if you're a fan of the Winchester brothers from the TV show Supernatural, you will NOT be disappointed in the Leandros brothers of Nightlife. Snarky, smart-mouthed little brother Cal and super-ninja big brother Niko are two of the most addictive characters in the genre today. Nightlife is also full of allies and villians and characters that wander that grey area...all of which make this a must read for anyone who enjoys the world of the supernatural - with true humanity mixed in.
Addicted_2_books411 More than 1 year ago
In this first book we learn how the two brothers came to be, their struggles, but the uncondional love and devoted, brotherly relationship between Cal and Nicko is what so wonderful in this book. Excellent plot, characters and writing skills without unnecessary descriptions. Excellent!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have become fascinated lately with the subjects of vampires, warlocks, gremlins, etc in my reading. I have become a great fan of Jim Butcher, PN Elrod and Greg Rucka as examples. Using these authors as a baseline, this book sucks. I found it boring and the characters obnoxious. I read between 3-5 books a week and this is by far the worst book I have ever read except for Fight Club.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Half man. half grendel'Auphe'. All mouth. Picked this book up, cause I thought it interesting about a diffent kind of human/monster hybrid. When I read it, it blew me away. The action, the characters, everything. I loved it. Moonshine was dope like whoa, too! Can't wait to catch Madhouse.
Anonymous 22 days ago
Will read the others
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
3 Stars When a group of friends on Goodreads decided to read this book, I thought it sounded like a great idea and joined in. This book was an okay read for me. It had some really strong moments that I loved. It also had some moments that I thought were more than a little boring. The beginning of the book was absolutely fantastic and I just knew that I was going to love this series. Unfortunately, the book as a whole did not live up to those opening scenes. I have been really torn about how to rate and review this book since the story ended up feeling so hot and cold in the end. I really liked the unique take on the Auphe or demon-like elves. The fact that the main character, Cal, is half human and half Auphe really pulled me into the story. Cal's older brother, Nikko, is fiercely protective of Cal and will do whatever it takes to keep him safe. This interesting world and the strong relationship between the brothers really set the stage for a exciting novel. Throw in a little sarcastic humor, similar to what is found in the Harry Dresden series and it should have been almost perfect. Unfortunately, the book had quite a few problems. The excitement of the opening chapters quickly waned and didn't return until the book was almost over. I thought that much of the book was actually boring at time and tedious at others. This book may have fell victim to the first book syndrome found in many Urban Fiction series where the world building overpowers the story and the book suffers as a whole. I also the humor that started out great at the beginning felt overdone by the conclusion of the novel. I am consider continuing this series but I am not rushing out to buy the second book anytime soon. There were enough good moments and the world is interesting enough that I wouldn't mind seeing where this series could go. I do think that many Urban Fiction fans will enjoy this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy this read. Will read the next book in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series. I highly recommend it . It is a lot of fun, especially if you like urban fantasy
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