Tuesday, September 05, 2006

A Bite to Remember by Lynsay Sands

Vincent Argeneau has a serious problem. Someone has been sabotaging his stage productions. When his entire cast comes down with anemia, he knows another vampire is involved -- but who? Enter Jackie Morrisey, a private investigator and attractive mortal woman. Jackie knows about vampires, more than she'd like to know, and is determined to stop the saboteur before more innocent people are hurt. If only Vincent would stop distracting her with his manly chest . . .

The sexual tension between Jackie and Vincent is believable and their relationship is satisfying. Fans will appreciate appearances from characters in Sands' other vampire novels. However, the ending seems a bit forced. The culprit's motive is weak and Vincent seems stupid for never suspecting this person was invovled.

Three and a half out of five stars.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Undead and Unpopular by MaryJanice Davidson

Betsy, the Vampire Queen, has a lot on her plate with her upcoming wedding, her 31st birthday (the 1 year anniversary of her rebirth as a vampire), and a diplomatic visit from a group of powerful European vampires. To make things worse, her best friend Jessica has been really grouchy lately and Betsy herself hasn't exactly been a ray of sunshine since she decided to go cold turkey and stop drinking blood. What else could go wrong? Oh yeah, her life story is being published as a work of fiction and there's a zombie in the attic.

Davidson has jammed a lot of happenings into a short book. The pace moves quickly, but many things aren't resolved (or are resolved too easily). It's better than the last book in the series which was little more than filler, but again it seems like it's just setting up for the next in the series. How many more books will there be before the wedding? It's worth reading (Betsy's lisp returns!) but the next book better have more substance or I'm going to lose my patience with the series.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Dead and Loving It by MaryJanice Davidson

OK -- I admit, it's not really a vampire novel, but 2 of the four novellas are about vampires so I'm including it. I also must say that I don't like short stories or romance novellas. They just seem too rushed. It's always "love at first sight," hot steamy sex, and a suggestion of happily ever after. I mean, it's hard enough to believe the romance novels when the characters actually develop a relationship, but when a one night stand leads to happily ever after -- come on! (So says the chick who reads about vampires -- like THAT'S believable).

Monster Love is about an opinionated, foul-mouthed she-werewolf who finds happiness with a lonely male vampire who rapes her. Basically the attraction is that they can have sex without crippling each other. They do make a good couple, but Davidson should have found another way of bringing them together instead of rape. Again, easier to believe in vampires and werewolves than to believe that a victim would fall in love with her rapist.

The reason I read this book at all was for A Fiend in Need. It reveals the origins of George the Fiend from the Undead series. A psychic she-werewolf has a vision that leads her to Betsy the Vampire Queen. When she meets George, she feels an immediate connection and reveals that his real name is Garrett Shea. Sparks fly and they have great sex even though he's a man of few words. --- It just didn't work for me. I mean, I understand that fiends have needs too, but eeewwwww! It's not like she somehow heals him psychically and he's a whole man again. This whole relationship was just too much too soon.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Dansce Macabre by Laurell K. Hamilton

Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, has seen some pretty scary things in her time, but she's never faced anything as frightening as this -- an unplanned pregnancy. She doesn't know who, or what, the father is - werewolf, wereleopard, or vampire. Now is not the best time for Anita to be facing this crisis. A vampire dance troupe is coming to town and Jean-Claude has invited several Masters of the City to the final performance. Anita needs to pull herself together because showing any signs of weakness in front of their "guests" would be a costly mistake.

Another satisfying installment in the series. The possibility of a baby forces Anita to reexamine her relationships with the various men in her life. Mystery fans may be disappointed that there's no case to be solved, but readers who enjoy the characters, the romance, and the sex will be pleased.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Tall, Dark & Dead by Tate Hallaway

Garnet Lacey, the manager of a New Age bookstore in Wisconsin, has been refraining from practicing magic in order to escape the notice of the Vatican assassins who destroyed her coven. When a gorgeous man comes into the shop seeking mandrake, she has no idea her world is about to be turned upside down. She can tell he has no aura, which means he's dead, but he's like no other zombie or vampire she's ever known. She suspects he may be a powerful warlock because the mutual attraction between the two of them sure feels like magic!

This book was good. Not bad, not great, just good. It was different enough to hold my attention, which is always a good thing. But it wasn't funny enough, scary enough, or sexy enough to be great. The secondary characters were well developed, but the main characters weren't as deep as they could have/should have been. The relationship between Garnet and Sebastian was unsatisfying. When I read a fantasy romance, I want a fantasy relationship, not a one-night stand that lasts 3 days because some psychotic killers are after them both.