Book Summary: Explore the emotional upheaval that is the transformation from human to vampire.
Bleeding to death after brutal mugging on the campus of UNLV, Twenty-five year old Alyssa, is rescued by the cold and aloof, vampire, Lysander. Taking pity on her, he shares the gift-and curse-of immortality. She awakens as a vampire and is soon devastated by harsh realities of her new way of life: An unyielding thirst for blood as well as the loss of her friends, her independence, and her humanity.
As if having her humanity stripped away was not enough to make life interesting, Alyssa finds out her “turning”, did not go unnoticed by the rest of undead society. Old enemies; an ancient sect of vampire hunters, known as the Acta Sanctorum, as well as a powerful Vampire mistress, each set plans in motion to destroy both Alyssa and Lysander.
Only by accepting her new-found immortality, seizing the night, will Alyssa hope to survive. She and Lysander must fight together against two sets of enemies bent on destroying them both.
This was very original in the sense that Katies Salidas explored the life changing effects of vampirism instead of the usual beauty, age and perception ‘makeover’ most writers go with. I am used to reading about how, once turned, the heroine’s beauty is enhanced. She is overwhelmingly strong to the point of impervious, (barring wood and decapitation), she will never age, get sick, be turned down by the hot guy or be the last one picked for the team.
Although Alyssa will eventually enjoy most of these benefits, she is at first horrified at the supposed implications of her new life. Does she have a soul? Is she damned, dead? Can she ever re-connect with her old life? How will she survive…and so on? I found this approach by Katie Salidas to be a perfect fit in the Urban Fantasy genre. The characterization of Lysander was done well too. He only decides to turn her at the last minute to save her life. He actually hadn’t plan to save her, just wait until the men assaulting her were done then he could feast. If you’ve lived centuries, seeing the evil in humanity, eventually you would probably realize you can’t save ’em all. He did, however, and was faced with his own doubts about turning her.
I’ve said this before, Fantasy, horror, romance, whatever…. I love and need a dash of realism. Kaite gives us that and more. Impressive.
The only reason I gave this book a 3.5 star rating versus 4.0 was because for most of the book Alyssa acts like a brat. She didn’t choose to become vampire, didn’t realize they even existed, but complains about everything. She takes risks despite Lysanders warnings and eventually I just wanted her to get the ever-loving shit kicked out of her but she eventually gets past this.
This series is definately worth a second look. I will be reading number two as soon as I can because this book was great, Salidas’s writing was very good and the theme hits the Urban Vamp Fantasy genre’s nail on the head!