Tag Archives: vampires

Book Tour Book Review: The Gilded King by Josie Jaffrey

Self Published
Published June 25, 2018
303 Pages

In the Blue, the world’s last city, all is not well.

Julia is stuck within its walls. She serves the nobility from a distance until she meets Lucas, a boy who believes in fairytales that Julia’s world can’t accommodate. The Blue is her prison, not her castle, and she’d escape into the trees if she didn’t know that contamination and death awaited humanity outside.

But not everyone in the Blue is human, and not everyone can be contained.

Beyond the city’s boundaries, in the wild forests of the Red, Cameron has precious little humanity left to lose. As he searches for a lost queen, he finds an enemy rising that he thought long dead. An enemy that the humans have forgotten how to fight.

One way or another, the walls of the Blue are coming down. The only question is what side you’ll be on when they do. – Goodreads

This is not your typical vampire story and I am here for it. I am just going to jump in and say it that although Julia’s and Cameron’s story are connected (they told separately but trust me its completely fine and works fantastically), I found myself more engaged with Julia’s side than Cameron’s. Normally, I would figure it was due to me be able to empathize with her because she is a human that was dealt with a trash card but I actually liked her beyond that. She had a grit to herself that didn’t completely define her. She was able to still open herself to experiences outside of what she has always known or thought of and it made her an easier and enjoyable character to read.

Cameron was a bit. . . not annoying but a “alright, I get it. You have a chip on your shoulder, you’re trying to find the girl and life sucks.” His emotions became a bit redundant because it was constantly being repeated “I won’t come back until I find her.”

However despite this, I fully enjoyed reading both point of views because they provided, very clearly, details about what was going on each side. Although one side was human and the other vampire, as a reader you are able to sympathize with both of them and understand why things are happening in the way that they are.

The pace of the novel was really good. It was easy to get sucked into the world because you know it is full blown mess with hope of redemption once you meet Julia. The setting was clear and detailed without dragging on. Although I wish more for some more history and intensity, a reader couldn’t go wrong picking up this book.


3 Pickles

Book Review: Beauty and the Vampire by Zoey Hunter

Published Jan. 19, 2018
207 Pages

Honor student and cheerleader, Bel Winter, works hard to be a normal teenager. But deep down, she knows she is far from normal. The glowing rose-shaped mark on her shoulder is her first clue. 

As her 17th birthday draws close, Bel’s friends fear she is losing her grip on reality. Yet, Bel believes. The visions she sees are real. The men in black capes who come out of the shadows are real. 

And they are coming for her… 

On the night of Bel’s birthday, at the stroke of midnight, her world goes black. When she wakes, she is thrust into a new and frightening world—the underground Onyx City. 

It is a place rife with magic and creatures of the night. 

It is a place of dark beauty, dangerous intrigue and ruled by a beast—the ruthless vampire prince, Ezra Blade. 

When Bel makes a desperate attempt to escape her captors, she trespasses through the royal gardens, and is caught by the prince himself. Now, her fate is in his hands. Though she fears the mercurial Ezra, Bel knows he alone has the power to release her from the Onyx City. 

Can Bel tame the beast? And convince him to set her free? – Goodreads

What can I say about this book? A lot actually. Firstly let me begin by saying I liked it. Something about this book just sucked me and I liked it. But there were a lot of holes in this read.

Firstly the book promises a heart stopping romance. That isn’t exactly the case. The romance is there and its cute but heart stopping? It doesn’t even come close. What is missing in the romance is the actual courting, the stories they build together when no one is looking. In other words, the build up is missing. The attraction is there. Bel and Ezra are attracted to each other but author adds things to make it seem as if they are destined for each other.

For instance, Bel is special and she sort of knew Ezra before meeting him and I am cool with that but the author didn’t go deeper into that. There are no dreaming of a mystery man, there is no flashes of them being together. Bel sees a man she is attracted to, sees his goons and that is it.

Another thing that bother me, is Ezra isn’t a beast. He is mourning and he is angry about it. The author could have did so much with Ezra and not even on a physical level but his internal torment could have been more detailed and provided a bigger struggle in his relationship with Bel. He gave in too easy and I have an issue with that.

There is a lot of holes in this story. Mythology, traditions all of that could have added to the story making it richer and more entertaining. Also there was predictability in one situation but it is huge.

But the worst offense of this book was the ending. IT FREAKING STOPS MID THOUGHT. It is the most crap ending that pissed me off. It was there. What you have been waiting for was there and then the author stopped. Dude, I was pissed.

Despite all of this, I really liked this book and I think it is a good foundation for at least a book two. Anything more than that, I’m not sure. Would I consider this a retelling of Beauty and the Beast? Nope, but the author does add some cute references in the book.

Overall, I liked the book. I guess I’m a sucker for vampire romances *Kayne Shrug*.

3 Pickles. 

Manga Review: Devil’s Line by Ryo Hanada

Vertical Comics Published May 24, 2016 224 Pages
Vertical Comics
Published May 24, 2016
224 Pages

Tsukasa is rescued from a vampire attack, by an unknown vampire blending with the human population. Anzai, her hero is a half-breed that uses his powers to help a shadowy police task force, fight against vampire- related crime in Tokyo. 

As Anzai and Tsukasa become closer, Anzai has to fight harder to keep from breaking his no human blood rule.

Based off the summary, this sounds like a typical vampire human romance. But trust me . . . it is not. I am only two volumes into this (because the other’s have not been posted online) and it is on my top ten for vampire mangas.

Tsukasa is a awkward college student. Although social-able when it comes around men, she doesn’t know what to do or for that matter say no. When she meets Anzai, she finds him fascinating as opposed to a freak (cliche I know). But there is something about Tsukasa that Anzai decides he has to protect her. The romance is there but it isn’t acted upon as easily as one would think. I loved how both didn’t completely understand their feelings but they weren’t avoiding each other either. It was a mature move; instead of running away they just went with it. I enjoyed that.

Beyond the romance, the story is amazing. So many characters are intertwined and complicates everything in the most artistic way. Is there some predictability? Yes. Is there a love triangle? No. (Thank God) But the cliche not everything is what it seems is the case with this one.

I loved the pace of the manga and how detailed it was without dragging. It was intense, dramatic and had some funny points. The art work was far from cliche; everyone looked different and had different personalities. The cliche of beautiful vampires doesn’t exist in this manga. It is mentioned but from my point of view, that vampire wasn’t all that cute.

If you want a vampire romance that doesn’t have the high school drama and is pure action and intensity, this is for you. I am in love with this therefore to the point, I may buy the series, I am impatient for the next volume to be released.

5 Pickles

Book Review: The Vampires’ Last Lover (Dying of the Dark Vampires #1) by Aiden James and Patrick Burdine

Curiosity Quills Press Published Jan. 1, 2010
Curiosity Quills Press
Published Jan. 1, 2010

Txema Ybarra is 19 and a freshman at college, enjoying freedom and a sexy boyfriend that she cannot get enough of. But Txema is more special than she ever thought of. The tear drop birthmark on her neck is a symbol that only a handful of women in the world have.  It tells those that her blood is the key to eternal youth and beauty.

Because of this the women with this mark have been killed off, leaving Txema at the mercy of five vampires who promise to protect her from a rouge undead nation. Leaving everything she knows behind, Txema goes to France to save her life and her precious blood. 

*Short Review*

Two things happened when I started this book. I rolled my eyes and then I rolled my eyes again. How is it that a strange man appears in your room and you decide not to scream for help? Or how do you decide not to run to the door for your boyfriend, who is waiting for you? In what world, is any of those options okay to do?

I tried guys. I really did try to make it through this book but when two guys appeared in her dorm room and all she cared about was waking her roommate, I was done.

The story moves fairly quick. Normally I wouldn’t have an issue with this but nothing really sticks and nothing is really believable. Yes, I am aware this is a fantasy book but when you read something you should feel as if it has or is happening and you’re just taking a peak through the window. I felt so detached from the story. I felt that Txema and all of the characters were as uninteresting as a stack of leaves. I couldn’t picture her being this great human that saves the dangerously sexy vampires even as she being a hero.

I really couldn’t do it with this book but other people gave it amazing stars so for once . . . maybe it is just me.  But I cannot stress enough how much I rolled my eyes while reading this book.

1 Pickle

NetGalley Review: Midnight by Eve Eschenbacher

Booktrope Published May 4, 2015 Ebook
Published May 4, 2015

It is Karen’s last year of high school and with her best friend, she just wants to enjoy life and feel alive. When she meets the new boy Gabriel at a party, she can’t keep her eyes off him nor can he.

After he writes his number on her skin in ink that seems to glow, Karen is introduced to a world that she couldn’t have imaged. But with this new exposure comes questionable trust and love that Karen may not be ready for.

Let’s cut to the chase. This book was a bit of a mess. Therefore, this will be a short review.

Karen should not be 17 years old nor should this book have been a high school setting.  Karen nor Gabriel was written for a high school setting; their mentality just wasn’t there and it was hard to take either one of them serious.

The story-line got confusing midway through the book. Confusing because the author was just doing too much with the alternate reality. Because of this the story felt inconsistent and honestly all over the place.

However, I was able to finish the book. The author has talent and was able to keep me interested to see what happen next to Karen and Gabriel. But their relationship was immature and it lacked depth.  To say what they really felt for each other was love is hard.


1 Pickle 

Manga Review: Black Rose Alice Series by Setona Mizushiro

Kazé Editions  Published Nov. 14, 2008 164 Pages
Kazé Editions
Published Nov. 14, 2008
164 Pages

Dimitri escapes death after a accident. When he wakes he finds out that he is a vampire; 100 years later he meets “Alice” and the vampire world is shaken.

The thing about this manga is that it is predictable. The romance is predictable. How it ends is predictable. However, there is something about this series that makes you want to keep reading.

Alice died and came back to life in the body of a woman Dimitri use to love in order to keep the vampire clan alive, Alice must decide which guy (out of five) she can love in order to give up her life to carry their seed. This was an agreement Alice made in order to keep the one she loved alive.

After about a book, this got old. Alice wanted one person but literally led everyone on. She was a brat and they spoiled her rotten. The romance in general was lack luster too. No one really knew anyone. It wasn’t insta love exactly but it might as well be.

Despite all of this Mizushiro can write a really good story. There were twists that I didn’t see coming and they over powered the less than fabulous romance. It showed the importance of the character development and reader engagement.

The art work was alright. Alice herself was a cliche as well as Dimitri. The other vampires seemed more like humans in personality and physical features so yea they were dull.

This wasn’t a bad series. I really enjoyed it because it was different and really thought-out.

4 Pickles.

NetGalley Review: Hunted by Lorenz Font

The Writer's Coffee Shop Publishing  Published Nov. 20, 2014
The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing
Published Nov. 20, 2014

The Vampire Council is hunting down infected vampires and Harrow Gates is their number one target. Suffering from the infection just like his victims, Gates has vowed not to feed unless completely necessary. 

When captured by an unexpected benefactor, Gates has an opportunity to get a fresh start on life and during this fresh start he meets Jordan, a vampire happens to follow Gates in hope of him knowing the killer of her parents.

Not one to steer clear of her mission, Jordan must fight her feelings of friendship and love in order to extract her revenge and Gates must allow himself hope to be cured.

This book started off pretty well. I loved the fact that the action started almost right away and Gates had a drive and a mission even after he was captured he still had this sense of strength and authority that was extremely powerful.

I loved the plot of the story.  The alternative vampire with a heart is always a good idea for me and the author did a really good job developing his character. But here are my issues the story is told in a few different point of views. I really wish the author would have just left it be with Gates and Jordan. I feel that almost 50% of  the story didn’t focus on either of them as whole and there was too many individual stories.

But my biggest issue with this book was the fact that nothing happened for so very long that it completely took away from the book. It was so boring. Nothing happened for so long it stalled the book. This caused a huge disappointment for a book that started so well.

After this point there wasn’t much that got me back into the book. As I said I enjoyed the idea but the constant passing of time with nothing going on just ruined it for me.

2 Pickles

Book Review: The Spiritglass Charade (Stoker & Holmes #2) by Colleen Gleason

Chronicle Books Published Oct. 7, 2014 360 Pages
Chronicle Books
Published Oct. 7, 2014
360 Pages

If you haven’t read the first book *Wags Finger* shame on you!!! But before you go run to the store, check out the review here.

Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes are ready for their new mission. It has been a month since, they became “partners” and help solve the case of the Clockwork Scarab. So when Princess Alix request their help for a special case, they jump to the occasion.

Princess Alix is worried about her friend Willa, who is convinced that her mother is haunting her telling her that her brother is alive and must be saved.

Determined to prove that Willa’s spiritualist is a hoax, Holmes and Stoker go in full force but quickly discover some cases aren’t as cut and dry as they seem and for Stoker this case hits closer to home than she would like. 

Holmes is my spirit animal. . .if I was able to spot amazing details like her.  She is such an amazing character. She is flawed, she’s not a bitch, she’s intelligent, sassy and she has a heart. I love this woman.

But the biggest props goes to the author who was able to write a “love triangle” without it being a horrible piece of work or the focus of the novel. I like how despite Holmes being this super intelligent detective, she is still a young girl learning how to interact with people she cares for.

As for Stoker . . . she is a badass girl that has a lot of growing up to do. But that is okay because there is growth from the first book to the last chapter of the second book. Stoker has communication issues and self-worth issues; some are fixed in this book, others are not. I may not love Stoker as much as I love Holmes, but I cannot see this book working without her.

I can also appreciate the undead details because they were not cheezy, cliche, nor did they bring some new information about vampires that seem to have come out of thin air (-.-).

Overall, I am completely devoted to this series and for once I don’t think anything was remotely wrong with it. There was a lot of details but that is to be expected for a mystery novel and there wasn’t that much down time. I love this series so much it will be added to my collection.

5 Pickles

NetGalley Review: Blood Orange Soda by James Michael Larranaga

JML Published March 15, 2014 350 Pages
Published March 15, 2014
350 Pages

Darius Hunter is a vampire on reds. Reds is a drug that stops vampires from experiencing transformation and being a full fledged vampire. Darius is being bullied at school.

So into to gain strength to defeat his bully, he gets off the reds and beings taking blood orange soda to sped up his transformation (normally takes 9 months).

But things aren’t so simple as that. When a new girl comes to town, showing interest in Darius, he is tempted into a world he may not be ready for. 

This could have been a better book. Darius was a lame character and that is not because he had a bit of an identity crisis. His priorities switch constantly throughout this book. He was a lack-luster teenage boy, who seemed very weak minded.

I didn’t like the idea that he couldn’t stand up for himself without being a vampire. I felt that he was pressured to make the decision by the girl he liked, his uncle and his own lack of identity.

I understand that this book was a coming of age story with a vampire spin but nothing really changed as in the personality of Darius. I didn’t feel his mental strength or confidence.

Overall the story was very slow and the action really didn’t pick up.

1 Pickle

Manga Review: Bloody Cross by Shiwo Komeyama

Yen Press Published May 1, 2012 224 Pages
Yen Press
Published May 1, 2012
224 Pages

Half angel, half demon, Tsukimiya needs to drink the blood of a pure demon in order to break the curse that will kill her on her 18th birthday. In the middle of a battle, she meets Hinata, an angel, claiming to be there to help Tsukimiya.

But when the demon is killed, Hinata is the one who drinks the blood, leaving Tsukimiya to die. But in a turn of events Tsukimiya drinks the blood of Hinata, causing the two to share the curse.

Now Tsukimiya and Hinata must find a way to save themselves before it is too late. 

I didn’t like this manga. That statement is completely weird because its rare for me not to like a manga.

It way to sexual (funny I’m saying that). Almost immediately I know exactly what this girl looks like naked. It took away the integrity of the manga because before you even know she is this bad-ass hybrid, she is just a naked girl.

I also didn’t like how Tsukimiya allowed Hinata to touch her. There was no boundaries which I thought was weird considering that they just met.

The art was dull, sloppy in some areas and very cliche. What I did like about the manga was the story. The idea of a hybrid being sentenced to death by the 18th birthday and how he/she needs to fight and kill in order to save their life sounds really cool. I just think it was poorly executed.

Others may like this manga but I don’t. Oh and I read the second one . .  still didn’t like it.

2 Pickles