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House of Shadows (The Breed Wars, #1)
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House of Shadows (The Breed Wars #1)

4.39  ·  Rating Details  ·  76 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Befriended as a young teenager by a beautiful and mysterious benefactress, Eugene Evans believes the downward trajectory of his white trash existence has finally been arrested and his life turned around. Then, after he becomes a man, he is confronted by a horrifying and unavoidable choice between two unacceptable options.

But it doesn't stop there.

For once his decision has
Paperback, 210 pages
Published June 14th 2012 by Full Moon Publications
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(showing 1-30 of 1,408)
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4.5 stars, rounded up to 5!

I read this book with my horror group at Shelfari and found it to be an original twist on an old theme.

Young Eugene looks out for his sister Barbie, because his mom is often otherwise engaged. Sometimes they are left alone for days at a time without anything in the house to eat other than bread and ketchup.
Then, a mysterious woman catches sight of him and Barbie and their lives are changed forever. In a good way? You will have to read this book to find out.

I was pleas
Sep 19, 2013 Ctgt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This may go up to 5 stars after I mull this over some more, I enjoyed it that much. I must confess I'm not a huge vampire fan, I don't avoid the character type but I don't actively seek them out either. While this is a vamp story there were enough small twists and tweaks to the standard vamp style that I never found myself thinking I had read this before. So while I found the changes around the vampire mythos interesting, what really intrigued me was the background and history of said vamps. The ...more
May 27, 2015 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There is someone hunting the members of House Ember. Newbie Mordant may be the last. He has a lot to learn in a short time frame if he and the rest of the Breed have a chance at survival. Who can he trust?

Well done and intelligently written, Walter Spence’s House of Shadows is a very good debut. The characters were fleshed out very well and Mr. Spence was able to create an entire mythos surrounding the Breed in a short framework. Just enough closure to be thoroughly satisfying and enough cliffha
May 03, 2013 Kimberly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Walter Spence has woven a tale of unique vampire creatures, and given the vampire sub-genre a fresh new look. The Breed are set apart from others in most aspects of their existence and are truly a species unlike any others.

Let me start out by praising the language and smooth narrative style of this novel. This area alone sets House of Shadows leagues ahead of other similarly themed books. The pacing was perfect throughout--I never once found myself feeling that it was either lagging, nor being r
Thomas Strömquist
Sep 20, 2015 Thomas Strömquist rated it it was amazing
Shelves: book-collection
Not a single word of praise from my fellow group members (and others) is not well earned and I'll just join the chorus. First off, Walter Spence writes really well, beautiful prose with a very nice flow. Secondly, the story is fantastic; enough due is paid to the vampire myths and sagas so that we feel quite at home, and what is different with theses vampires and their communities and traditions is different enough to makes one feel that we are reading a new story. Finally (yes, there's more), t ...more
Cindy Lyle
Feb 11, 2013 Cindy Lyle rated it really liked it
I purchased a copy of House of shadows as part of a group read through Goodreads and I’m glad I did.

Being a vampire fan, I was happy to read a new and believable take on the species. In this story his vampires are called the Breed, and they make it quite clear that they don’t even consider themselves in the same league as traditional vampires. There are some similarities, but I think Walter was successful in trying something new.

The main plot follows the story of a young man named Eugene who i
Feb 18, 2013 Abinanaaa rated it it was amazing
I am totally in love with this book. I have only a few pages left, and I am going to savor them- as hard as that is, literally I did not want to put it down. I am glad that I chose to read it on the train commute to work everyday so I was forced to make it last.
Why should you like this too? Vampires are terribly interesting creatures, especially when they don't sparkle and there is no "love triangle" nonsense. The author here has used some of the very well known lore and has introduced some new
Aug 31, 2012 mountainmama rated it it was amazing
Pygmalion with a twist

A young boy is befriended by a mysterious wealthy woman who saves him and his sister from abject poverty. Although her support is practically anonymous throughout his childhood, eventually he is required to repay the kindness. He finds himself in a world of non-humans where he must learn to protect and preserve a culture he never knew existed.

The first part of the book documented Eugene’s (known as Ace) journey from the dregs of society to an educated worldly young man with
C.J. Pinard
Jan 12, 2013 C.J. Pinard rated it it was amazing
I picked up this book by Walter Spence because it looked like a great read - something right up my alley....and it definitely was!

This story begins about a teen brother and sister who meet a mysterious woman who begins to provide them with necessities and luxuries but never tells them why. She is rarely seen by them, remaining a mystery, mostly to the boy Eugene, who longs to see her.

The book takes a very dark turn in which we fast forward thirty years and watch Eugene go through some serious ch
Fangs for the Fantasy
Dec 07, 2012 Fangs for the Fantasy rated it really liked it
Eugene has a difficult life with his sister, impoverished and with a mother who is, at best, neglectful and at worst outright abusive it is not a life with many opportunities. So when Penelope, a wealthy, generous benefactor appears to give them every advantage it seems like a wonderful gift and that they’re finally given a chance at life.

That is, until the price arises and one of them has to die. Faced with an impossible choice, Eugene elects to be Penelope’s prey – but death is hardly the end
Nov 23, 2012 M.T. rated it really liked it
This is an interesting and unusual vampire story. The approach is very different from the traditional gothic horror but at the same time also far removed from the misunderstood and loveable creatures that we have grown used to in the past few years. 'The Breed' that Walter Spence introduces us to is something akin to a mysterious race. As the story unfolds and we learn about their traditions and history, we may not grow to like them but we do grow to understand them.

The story is written in the f
Missy Lamarre
Jan 19, 2013 Missy Lamarre rated it it was amazing
As much as I love horror and all the fantastic characters it produces, I have never sank my teeth (haha) into a vampire book before this one. I was tired of the vampire clichés, modernized vampires and the young adult interpretations, so there was definitely nothing out there to convince me to change my mind. I was hesitant to even read this one, but after much procrastination (it stayed in my shopping cart for months), I finally decided to take the plunge. I had received a tablet for Christmas ...more
Melissa Bryan
Feb 16, 2013 Melissa Bryan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Melissa by: Walter Spence
I loved this book…what a plot. Mr. Spence has written an impressive book with such a fresh storyline. When I first started the book I had no idea what type of adventure I was going to be taken on and man what an adventure. Once I started this book I couldn't put it down. You would think that every story had been written about this subject matter…that it has been beaten to death…but Mr. Spence has created a world of its own in this narrative. I would tell you what the story is about but I don’t w ...more
Sep 29, 2012 Staci rated it it was amazing
House of Shadows was a wonderful surprise! I enjoyed this book so much I read it in one day! Walter Spence plays with the vampire genre in an interesting and new manner. There was a bit of confusion as the vocabulary of the characters are a bit more advanced then the storyline can support and due to that makes this book geared towards adults as I do not think the average YA reader would be able to follow. There are some minor editing/proofing errors as well. All that being said, I am anxiously a ...more
Oct 02, 2012 Penny rated it it was amazing
I got this book in a goodreads giveaway and was excited to dig into it! This book was amazing and i imediately got sucked into it. The author Walter Spence wasted no time getting to the good stuff in this book and constantly left me wanting more and more. All of the characters are so exciting but i have to say I fell in love with Ace and want to see more from him in the next books. There was so much left open for the next book that I know they can only get better and I cant wait to see what happ ...more
Sep 25, 2012 Tiffany rated it it was amazing
Walter Spence's "House of Shadows" spins a unique tale in a Modern World were Vampires are not the romanticized vegetarians of late. No, this Breed is cunning, quite deadly, and in the middle of a war they weren't even aware of. This book offers a refreshingly unique story of Vampires and the young man who risked death to save those he loves. I hated for this novel to end and I can't wait for book #2 to see how the (young life he saved) plays into the grand scheme of the story.
Alaina Barham
Dec 24, 2012 Alaina Barham rated it it was amazing
I can not wait for the next book in this series! This book starts slow, but when it begins to move, there is no stopping it.

A poor boy 'happens' into a bright future with a lovely yet distant benefactor, but once this poor boy turns into a well groomed and intelligent man, his world is ripped away from him, and he awakens in a world he doesn't know. Does he have the worst luck ever or a fate he is yet to understand?
Angie Lisle
Nov 12, 2012 Angie Lisle rated it it was amazing
I won a free copy of this book for review from Library Thing and was pleasantly surprised.

The shadowy prose of Gothic Lit is blended with the glamour of old Hollywood to conceal what the well-crafted blurb of this book doesn’t tell you. And I’m not giving away the spoiler but I will tell you that I loved the surprise.

I don't know when the second book will be released, but I'm eager to read it.
Brooke Anne
Jul 23, 2014 Brooke Anne rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! Walter Spence is a very kind man, so I was so glad when his book was published! I'm glad people like his book as much as I did!!
Colleen Bratley
May 01, 2013 Colleen Bratley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A creative, detailed, and surprising story. I haven't read vampire stories since I read a few by Anne Rice, but this one was really very interesting, and I'm glad I took a chance.
Vampires are a bloody sort, literally. I don't like to read about the blood, the killing for it or any of that vampire stuff, at all. I always feel sorry for the one who is changed, or killed, and never understood why anyone would want to be a vampire. Silly, I'm sure, but just one of my aversions. So when a book comes
Thaddeus White
Feb 10, 2013 Thaddeus White rated it really liked it
The story follows Eugene, a teenager in 1980s America abandoned by his father and with a less than model mother. His reasonably normal little sister is the only real plus in his life until Penelope Ember, a rather tasty and well-heeled woman, takes an interest in Eugene. Desperate to earn Penelope's approval, Ace (as she calls him) works hard to improve himself only to discover… that the next few lines would give the plot away.

The author does a good job of capturing that certain period of a youn
I received this book via Library Thing's Member Giveaways. My rating is actually 3.5 stars.

This was a very different take on vampire lore, with regard to the classic assumptions such as garlic, immortality, becoming a vampire, people who are in service to vampires, etc.

The story overall was good with great world building. Spence made the characters interesting (if not very sympathetic, including our protagonist). Spence's vampires are dark, violent, untrusting, and old fashioned.

There were times
Jan 29, 2015 Tokies rated it really liked it
sword and laser brought me here
enjoyed it. seriously . kinda wish there was a next book
Apr 10, 2015 Nicholas rated it liked it
Shelves: goodreads-win
This was a pretty good read. It was quick and was paced nicely. This was a great horror type of book. The characters were interesting and the story was pretty interesting. I would definitely recommend this book to just about anyone. A good read.
Mar 24, 2015 Jean rated it it was amazing
It isn't often that I sit down to read a few pages of a book and look up hours later as I finish the book. This is one such book. Oh my goodness! And it is the first in a series, so now my fingers are scrabbling to turn the page and find volume two somehow hidden on my Kindle.

This is a vampire book for adults -- no sparkly vampires here or ones who steal from blood banks. And yet, it isn't focused on horror, so there's really no gore, except as necessary. The book includes a vampire culture, mor
Feb 07, 2013 Gavin rated it it was amazing
Very cool vampire novel unlike any I've ever read or seen on screen. I can't wait for the next one in this series!
Jessie Rember
Apr 26, 2014 Jessie Rember rated it liked it
I gave this book a 3 star rating because it is reasonably well written and the story is interesting. I don't really like modern day vampire stories. This one had a good enough story to keep me interested. I actually bought this book by mistake. I was intending to buy House of Dark Shadows for Kindle. Since it was into the first chapter before I realized my mistake, I decided to keep reading. I wouldn't put it on my "must read" list, but it's not a bad read, either.
S. Wideman
Dec 12, 2013 S. Wideman rated it liked it
It was okay. Frankly, it would have been better if not for two things, and those brought the rating down majorly.

1. About half the book was explanation. We not only have the long letters from Penelope to Eugene explaining what happened to him, but we have various characters telling, for chapters, the history of the Breed and everything Eugene needs to know! I'm not kidding! It was at least 50% of the book spent in explanation. Over and over and over again.

2. The parentheses. In the narrative, f
Aug 25, 2014 Heidi rated it really liked it
Not your typical Vampire tale. These creatures are unique and unlike any others that I have read before. The pacing of this book keeps you reading without dragging. it has the perfect amount of adventure and mystery to grab even non vampire lovers! I wish this book was a little longer, that way Eugenes character could have been stronger.
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I'm a writer of fantasy, particularly fantasy with an edge. My urban fantasy/paranormal series, The Breed Wars, are independent novels which take place against the backdrop of a much larger story which continues to unfold with each successive book. For more info, please visit my website at And if you'd like to be kept informed about upcoming releases, future giveaways and ...more
More about Walter Spence...

Other Books in the Series

The Breed Wars (2 books)
  • The Secret Room

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