Tag: vampire books

Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost Review

Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress, #1)

Title: Halfway to the Grave

Series: Night Huntress #1

Author: Jeaniene Frost

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Synopsis:  

Flirting with the Grave…

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father – the one responsible for ruining her mother’s life. Then she’s captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She’s amazed she doesn’t end up as his dinner – are there actually good vampires? Pretty soon Bones will have her convinced that being half-dead doesn’t have to be all bad. But before she can enjoy her newfound status as kick-ass demon hunter, Cat and Bones are pursued by a group of killers. Now Cat will have to choose a side . . . and Bones is turning out to be as tempting as any man with a heartbeat.

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Format: Audiobook

Pages/Hours: 358 pages / 10.5 hours

Ownership: Own

My Rating: ★★★★☆

Tags: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Ghouls

Themes: Buffy & Spike, Enemies to Lovers

Halyway to the Grave Night Huntress 1 by Jeaniene Frost Elaine Howlin Book Blog

Review: I have now read this book three times. First time I hated it. Second time I enjoyed it. Third time I loved it! I have no idea what’s going on with me and this book but I’m really happy I gave it another try.

During my first reading I couldn’t get past the fact that Bones was basically a copy of Spike but on my reread I could see him as his own character. It probably helped that I rewatched Buffy between my rereads which highlighted how different the characters actually are. Bones just dresses like Spike and has a similar accent and bone structure.

Overall this is a great book. It’s urban fantasy with a heavy romance plot but never suffers from lack of action and suspense.

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository

Synopsis and book cover from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

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Deeper Than Midnight by Lara Adrian Review

Deeper Than Midnight (Midnight Breed, #9)

Title: Deeper Than Midnight

Series: Midnight Breed #9

Author: Lara Adrian

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis: Delivered from the darkness, a woman finds herself plunged into a passion that is Deeper Than Midnight.

At eighteen, Corinne Bishop was a beautiful, spirited young woman living a life of privilege as the adopted daughter of a wealthy family. Her world changed in an instant when she was stolen away and held prisoner by the malevolent vampire Dragos. After many years of captivity and torment, Corinne is rescued by the Order, a cadre of vampire warriors embroiled in a war against Dragos and his followers. Her innocence taken, Corinne has lost a piece of her heart as well – the one thing that gave her hope during her imprisonment, and the only thing that matters to her now that she is free.

Assigned to safeguard Corinne on her trip home is a formidable golden-eyed Breed male called Hunter. Once Dragos’s most deadly assassin, Hunter now works for the Order, and he’s hell-bent on making Dragos pay for his manifold sins. Bonded to Corinne by their mutual desire, Hunter will have to decide how far he’ll go to end Drago’s reign of evil – even if carrying out his mission means shattering Corinne’s tender heart.

Deeper Than Midnight by Lara Adrian Elaine Howlin Book Blog
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Format: ebook

Pages/Hours: 387 pages

Ownership: own

My Rating: ★★★★☆

Tags: Vampires, Brotherhood

Themes: Tortured Hero, Tortured Heroine, Virgin Hero

Review: I read the previous book (Taken By Midnight) in 2013 so I was kind of playing catch up while reading this. Adrian recapped all the important stuff throughout the story though so that was handy.

Since starting this series I read J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood which is pretty similar to Midnight Breed. I kept getting the storylines and characters mixed up….

I’m not sure I’ll continue with Midnight Breed but I did enjoy this instalment. There seems to be more focus on the main story line of the series instead of the romances which made it a more interesting read. And that ending!!! I may pick up the next one just to see what happens next.

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Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository

Synopsis and book cover from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

5 Books of the Dead for Dia De Los Muertos

Dia De Los Muertos or the Day of the Dead is a Mexican holiday that is actually two days honouring the dead. The first day celebrates infants and children and the second celebrates adults who have passed away.

In honour of the Day of the Dead here are some of my favourite books where the dead are not quite so inanimate.

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A Hidden Fire (Elemental Mysteries, #1)A Hidden Fire – Elizabeth Hunter

A phone call from an old friend sets Dr. Giovanni Vecchio back on the path of a mysterious manuscript he’s hunted for over five hundred years. He never expected a young student librarian could be the key to unlock its secrets, nor could he have predicted the danger she would attract. 

Now he and Beatrice De Novo follow a twisted maze that leads from the archives of a university library, though the fires of Renaissance Florence, and toward a confrontation hundreds of years in the making.

The day itself makes an appearance in this urban fantasy book.

Get the book: Amazon

““Do you know much about Dia de los Muertos?” Beatrice asked as they walked.
He shook his head. “Not much. I haven’t spent a great deal of time in Latin America.” He knew plenty, of course, but he preferred to hear her explanation.
“It’s not usually celebrated until November second, but the art center hosts a family fair on Halloween so parents have an option other than trick-or-treating for the kids.” Beatrice smiled at a pair of small children in skeleton costumes with flowers in their hair as they rushed past on the way to the carnival games.”


My Life as a White Trash Zombie (White Trash Zombie, #1)My Life as a White Trash Zombie – Diana Rowland

Angel Crawford is a loser.

Living with her alcoholic deadbeat dad in the swamps of southern Louisiana, she’s a high school dropout with a pill habit and a criminal record who’s been fired from more crap jobs than she can count. Now on probation for a felony, it seems that Angel will never pull herself out of the downward spiral her life has taken.

That is, until the day she wakes up in the ER after overdosing on painkillers. Angel remembers being in an horrible car crash, but she doesn’t have a mark on her. To add to the weirdness, she receives an anonymous letter telling her there’s a job waiting for her at the parish morgue—and that it’s an offer she doesn’t dare refuse.

Before she knows it she’s dealing with a huge crush on a certain hunky deputy and a brand new addiction: an overpowering craving for brains. Plus, her morgue is filling up with the victims of a serial killer who decapitates his prey—just when she’s hungriest!

Angel’s going to have to grow up fast if she wants to keep this job and stay in one piece. Because if she doesn’t, she’s dead meat.

Literally. 

Highly entertaining zombie series.

Get the book: Amazon / Book Depository


Pet SemataryPet Sematary – Stephen King

Sometimes dead is better….

When the Creeds move into a beautiful old house in rural Maine, it all seems too good to be true: physician father, beautiful wife, charming little daughter, adorable infant son — and now an idyllic home. As a family, they’ve got it all…right down to the friendly cat.

But the nearby woods hide a blood-chilling truth — more terrifying than death itself…and hideously more powerful.

King at his finest.

Get the book: Amazon / Book Depository


Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress, #1)Halfway to the Grave – Jeaniene Frost

Flirting with the Grave…

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father – the one responsible for ruining her mother’s life. Then she’s captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She’s amazed she doesn’t end up as his dinner – are there actually good vampires? Pretty soon Bones will have her convinced that being half-dead doesn’t have to be all bad. But before she can enjoy her newfound status as kick-ass demon hunter, Cat and Bones are pursued by a group of killers. Now Cat will have to choose a side . . . and Bones is turning out to be as tempting as any man with a heartbeat.

Very raunchy but still fits the urban fantasy bill.

Get the book: Amazon / Book Depository


The Lesser DeadThe Lesser Dead – Christopher Buehlman

The secret is, vampires are real and I am one.

The secret is, I’m stealing from you what is most truly yours and I’m not sorry—

New York City in 1978 is a dirty, dangerous place to live. And die. Joey Peacock knows this as well as anybody—he has spent the last forty years as an adolescent vampire, perfecting the routine he now enjoys: womanizing in punk clubs and discotheques, feeding by night, and sleeping by day with others of his kind in the macabre labyrinth under the city’s sidewalks.

The subways are his playground and his highway, shuttling him throughout Manhattan to bleed the unsuspecting in the Sheep Meadow of Central Park or in the backseats of Checker cabs, or even those in their own apartments who are too hypnotized by sitcoms to notice him opening their windows. It’s almost too easy.

Until one night he sees them hunting on his beloved subway. The children with the merry eyes. Vampires, like him…or not like him. Whatever they are, whatever their appearance means, the undead in the tunnels of Manhattan are not as safe as they once were.

And neither are the rest of us.

One of the best vampire books I’ve read.

Get the book: Amazon / Book Depository

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Synopsis from Goodreads.

Shadow’s Bane by Karen Chance

Shadow's Bane (Dorina Basarab, #4)

 

Title: Shadow’s Bane

Author: Karen Chance

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Series: Dorina Basarab #4

Goodreads Rating: 4.37/5

Goodreads Link

          Midnight's DaughterDeath's Mistress

Synopsis: Half-human, half-vampire Dorina Basarab is back–and facing her biggest challenge yet in the next urban fantasy in the New York Times bestselling series.

Dorina Basarab is a dhampir–half-human, half-vampire. As one of the Vampire Senate’s newest members, Dory already has a lot on her plate. But then a relative of one of Dory’s fey friends goes missing. They fear he’s been sold to a slaver who arranges fights–sometimes to the death–between different types of fey.

As Dory investigates, she and her friends learn the slavers are into something much bigger than a fight club. With the Vampire Senate gearing up for war with Faerie, it’ll take everything she has to defeat the slavers–and deal with the entirely too attractive master vampire Louis-Cesare….

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What I thought about the book: Loved every minute of this rip-roaring ride of a book!

With typical audacious Dory style and humour, we’re back in Chance’s world of vampires and fae. In this instalment, we follow Dory on her first job with the Senate searching for smugglers looking to benefit from the upcoming war.

As with all of Chance’s books, this is full of action and so fast paced you will be on the edge of your seat!… if it’s possible to be on the edge of your seat reading a book… The book is quite a bit longer than previous instalments but with such a long gap between publications, the extra bit of recapping at the beginning was greatly appreciated but does slow progression of the plot for the first 100 or so pages.

Once that’s out of the way we’re treated to the most entertaining book in the series that also does a lot to expand the universe of both the Dorina series and the Cassandra Palmer series. I absolutely loved the glimpses into Mircea’s past as a young vampire and the growing dynamic between Dory and her alter ego vampire self Dorina. There’s a lot going on there I never suspected and I can’t wait to see where it goes. We get a lot of growth in relationships and in who the characters are in this one as well especially with Dorina, Mircea and Caedmon.

Loved every minute of this one and can’t wait for the next. Dragon’s Claw, a Dorina/Pritkin crossover novella is due out the end of this month.

Favourite Quote: “There are a thousand ways to die,” he told me quietly. “There are so few really to live. I would gladly risk the former for the latter, and it is my choice, is it not? To risk whatever I must, my heart, my body, my soul, in order to be with you. Is that not what love is? – Louis-Cesare

My Rating: 5 star review

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository | Google | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Sunglasses After Dark Review

Sunglasses After DarkTitle: Sunglasses After Dark
 
Author: Nancy A Collins
 
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Horror
 
Series: Sonja Blue #1
 
Goodreads Rating: 3.9/5
 
 
Synopsis: One spring night in London, heiress Denise Thorne disappears while partying at a nightclub, never to be seen again. That very same night, Sonja Blue, a tough-as-nails punk vampire/vampire-slayer, conceived in terror and blood, is borne from the city’s gutters. Saved by modern medicine before she could die, she is a living vampire who still possesses a soul and is determined to fight for what remains of her humanity. In the years since her bizarre resurrection, Sonja Blue travels the globe, hunting down and disposing of those creatures that prey on the innocent while searching for the vampire Noble who created her. But when she investigates a sleazy televangelist named Catherine Wheele, who is exploiting Denise Thorne’s parents, Sonja finds herself up against a powerful inhuman adversary. But as dangerous as Catherine Wheele proves to be, Sonja’s greatest foe remains the Other, the demonic personality with whom she is locked in a constant battle for control of their shared body. Can Sonja Blue overcome her inner demon in time to rescue an innocent man from Catherine Wheele’s unholy clutches?
 
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What I thought about the book: It was ok.
I wasn’t aware before reading that the author had edited newer versions of the book. It kind of ruined the flow of the story for me. I knew the book was published in the late eighties and then came across mention of a DVD player which confused me. So I looked up some reviews on Goodreads to find out what was going on. There was also a lot of typos as well. Sometimes whole sentences were repeated with minor changes in the second sentence.
***SPOILERS BELOW***
The beginning was very strong but it teetered out in the middle during the flashbacks. Although Sonja’s were very interesting the editing to bring the novel into modern day created a decades-long gap in time. It would make the mortals mentioned older than I think they were intended to be as well.
Catherine’s flashback sequence was frustrating to read after the childhood scene when she discoveries her abilities. I found it slowed the novel’s momentum quite a bit especially since it came so soon after Sonja’s flashback. At that point, we’re retracted from the main plot for a large portion of the book.
I liked the ending, though, it was suitably dark and dramatic.
 
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My Rating: 3 paws

Get the book on Book Depository. 

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