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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Review: Lord of the Vampires

Lord of the Vampires (Harlequin Nocturne)
Title: Lord of the Vampires
Author: Gena Showalter
Page Count: 288 pages
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: paranormal romance, group series
Copy for review obtained via NetGalley in anticipation of an honest review
*Note: This book will be released on August 30, 2011*

Once upon a time…the Blood Sorcerer vanquished the kingdom of Elden. To save their children, the queen scattered them to safety and the king filled them with vengeance. Only a magical timepiece connects the four royal heirs…and time is running out….

Nicolai the Vampire was renowned for his virility, but in a twist of fate "The Dark Seducer" had become a sex slave in the kingdom of Delfina—stripped of his precious timepiece and his memory. All that remained was a primal need for freedom, revenge—and the only woman who could help him.

In her dreams, a wanton vampire called to Jane Parker, drawing her to his dark sexuality and his magical realm. But for a human, all was not a fairy tale in Delfina. Jane was the key to Nicolai's memory…but exploiting her meant dooming the only mortal he craved.

Things I did know about this series prior to reading this, the first installment:
-There are four books, all of which will be released before the end of 2011.
-Each one is written by a different author.
-All four stories feature different characters but will all interconnect with each other.

Things I did not know about this series prior to reading this, the first installment:
-Each book is based on a different fairy tale!  In the case of Lord of the Vampires, elements of Alice in Wonderland are incorporated throughout the story.
-A quartet of royal siblings are at the center of this fictional world, and this story stars Nicolai, the eldest.

For all the PNR I read, I've never delved into the Harlequin Nocturnes arena. I'm not sure why that is, but now that I'm here I'm happy.  With a shorter length that doesn't skimp on the story, this was a great introduction.

Jane has had it rough; after recovering from a devastating car crash and having to figure out what she wants the rest of her life to be about, she gets sucked into a parallel, magical world through a book and finds herself in disguise as Princess Odette, who was presumed dead and has returned from the grave.  Princess Odette is also Nicolai's owner, as he was purchased as a slave and has been fighting to get free ever since.

Nicolai knows who Jane really is since it's his magic that's providing her disguise, but he didn't plan on having any feelings for his rescuer or for having any use for her beyond the rescue and a snack, in that order.  Instead, he falls head over heels for Jane and takes it very personally when horrible things happen to Jane, since she wouldn't have been in his world in the first place if he hadn't called her.  Much in the way that fairy tales aren't the Disneyfied fun fest that they're assumed to be and instead are pretty graphic and not always cheerful, that same tone is in place here.  Ye be warned.

This book added the caveat of Nicolai not being able to remember his life prior to being enslaved, but knowing that he has one.  He has to address some dicey issues when figuring out how to integrate Jane into his obligations as a prince, as well as to figure out how to address the spells cast by his parents that have set him down this road in the first place.

Like I said, this story is short, and it felt like it was over almost as soon as it started.  The next installments in this series are due out quickly, so there will be more fairy tale romance (literally) where this came from.

Overall Grade: B
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