Review originally posted on Bitten Books
and given 5 stars.
This book was an absolutely brilliant blend of the best aspects of historical romance and paranormal romance. I love the masquerades and other parties, gentlemen's clubs, forgotten propriety and general atmosphere of historicals. Gleason fit those all in seamlessly with my favorite paranormal aspects; a dark, cocky vampire hero, heart racing plot, seduction and especially the heroine's discovery of another world. This is the first historical paranormal romance I've read. I was expecting the different halves of the book to clash and stand out from one another. Instead, everything flowed wonderfully and I was left completely immersed in a supernatural regency England. I would definitely recommend this to any readers familiar with one genre and looking to try out the other, you won't be disappointed.
Not only was this new England as pleasure to read about, but I also fell completely in love with Angelica and Voss. Often times when the hero starts out as a rake, he doesn't remain in character after meeting the heroine which many readers find frustrating including myself. Gleason did an amazing job keeping Voss true to himself, allowing him to grow and not torment the reader too much while doing so. Angelica was a dream come true to read about. I adored her. She was funny and unbelievably caring. She wasn't weak but at the same time I felt she was very true to the time period.
I have very few complaints about this book. First off, I hated Chas and Maia and I think we were supposed to like them, especially since the sequel features Maia. I found her annoying and obnoxious. I liked Chas until he actually appeared in the story, then he became an inconsiderate, self righteous jerk. Maybe the reader is meant to feel this way, because I certainly don't see anything redeemable about him. Several pages from his 'POV' lead me to believe otherwise though. I really trudged through those pages though, definitely didn't need a love scene for a character I hated. My last, very minor issue, was with the prologue. I actually enjoyed it after I got a few chapters in, but I was very confused at first and that through me off. I'm not sure a reader who picked up the book in a store who reads the first few pages is going to get a feel for how the book really is.
Anyway, the negative aspects of this book were easy for me to ignore since the rest of the book was absolutely amazing. The masquerade was perfect. I haven't read anything so heart pumping and delicious in ages. The entire book could have been confusing and poorly done, and I still would have loved it just for this single scene.
To end this review, I want to briefly touch on the conclusion of the book, without spoiling anything of course. The last few chapters literally made me squeal. I loved it. The ending was deeply romantic and I've never encountered that type of solution to the blood lust issue before.