THE SHADOW LORD by Tony-Paul de Vissage In de Vissage's universe, vampires (he calls them aventurieri) eat food and drink wine, they marry, have children, the children grow up, and they squabble. He makes it clear they're mortal humans who've evolved wings. Blood's nice but not that important in this book. And they're living in 1806 and utterly ignorant of the existence of firearms. Personally, I think the great attraction of vampires in fiction is showing how different th
"THE BEAST" The Decker/Lazarus Series by Faye Kellerman, 2013 I almost didn't finish this book. About a fifth of the way in, I was utterly convinced I knew who the killer was and the motive. But I was a little vague on the exact means so I decided to finish reading the book. I almost wish I hadn't read the rest of the book, though. Despite being well-written, with an engaging plot, and appealing characters, the book is just a single chapter of an on-going series. Kellerma
“THE BIG RED DEVIL” by John Huber, 2015 This story follows two men. John Harker is a psychopath, tortured by demons all his life. When he falls into a coma, he's tortured by them for five long years. They change him, making them the instrument of their desires. But Harker plans to turn the tables on his tormentors. The other man is Clint Bandosky, the most sympathetic of the doctors assigned to Harker's case. But he's also driven to study unique cases like that of Harker
"THE RED BRIDE" by Jeremy D. Hill , 2014 What horror story would be complete without the heroes doing something stupid? In Jeremy Hill's long short story, "The Red Bride", when the heroes realize something fishy is going on at the vampire's mansion, they wait until nightfall to investigate! The teenaged girl, told to stay safe at home, waits ten minutes and then follows them to the lair. But there's a reason for this, albeit a definitely non-European and non-historical reason
“THE LAST VAMPIRE STANDING” by Tony-Paul de Vissage, 2012 De Vissage and I employ a similar theme in our books, that of vampires warring against one another in hopes of achieving supremacy. So yeah, I'm down with the plot. But instead of following the victor, de Vissage's story is about the loser of the fight, one Vladislaus Chemere. Early in the Fifteenth Century, Chemere attacks the vampire lord Rigla and is buried alive for his troubles. But the heart of the tale comes
by Steven A. Roman, 2011 I've read several things by Steve Roman in the past, both novels and comics. His "Blood Feud" is practically a novelization of a comic book, so here the reader can get the best of both worlds. In the past, I've chided Roman—a little—about slow beginnings in some of his stories. There's a few slow parts in "Blood Feud", but they're necessary to get a feel for the characters and their relationships. But there's nothing slow at the beginnin
"ICE COLD" (Rizzoli & Isles #8) by Tess Gerritsen, 2010 Before reading this book, my only familiarity with the Rizzoli & Isles series was seeing commercials for the TV show, set in Boston. So I wasn't expecting a story set in a ghost town in a frozen wilderness.
I really liked the opening chapter, which was not only dramatic but horrifying. The meat of the story is more an adventure than a mystery--for a long time we're not aware of what happened, let alone who did it.
"THE HISTORIAN" by Elizabeth Kostova, 2005 This is more like it... "The Historian" is the tale of a father and daughter drawn together, not so much by love but by fear. It's the tale of a hidden secret, not one but two secret societies, and the danger that comes from learning about them. And the book is about Dracula, so the heroes of this book had better learn about that hidden secret before it's too late. The Dracula of this book is the Wallachian despot, Vlad III, known as
"DRACULA THE UNDEAD" by Dacre Stoker and Ian Holt, 2009 First, how dare Dacre Stoker imply that he is the descendant of Bram Stoker? He isn't, either biologically or literally. Screenwriter Ian Holt wrote virtually the entire thing, then hit up Dacre to put his name on the book as a publicity stunt. And I wouldn't care if it was a faithful sequel. Instead, this book consists of 450 pages of pissing on the original. Every chance he can, Holt takes the events of the origina
"THE NIGHT MAN COMETH” by Tony-Paul de Vissage, 2011 The first half of “Night-Man” is a vampire novel spanning the centuries. Beginning during the Plague the book then jumps to the reign of Vlad the Impaler, then the French Revolution, and Charleston in the days before the Civil War. Then comes a bit set in the present day. But it doesn’t stop there. Overall this is a very enjoyable and innovative book, chronicling the “life” of the vampire Damian La Croix. It does have a