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Stake Sauce, Arc 1: The Secret Ingredient Is Love. No, Really

(Stake Sauce #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  128 ratings  ·  50 reviews
ARC 1, IN WHICH: A cute punk-rock vampire and a disabled firefighter-turned-mall-cop with a dark past join forces to battle the forces of evil.

Jude used to leap out of helicopters to rescue/protect people from terrifying infernos. Now, by day, he protects the local mall from rowdy teenagers who ride their skateboards inside. By night, he protects the the parking lot, and t
Kindle Edition, 193 pages
Published October 31st 2017 by The Kraken Collective
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  128 ratings  ·  50 reviews

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Start your review of Stake Sauce, Arc 1: The Secret Ingredient Is Love. No, Really (Stake Sauce, #1)
Tyler J Gray
I love how the writing is accessible and flows easily, yet manages to deal sensitively with hard topics. I was in a house fire years ago. And while I was saved by my neighbor and physically made it out ok (barely) I have PTSD from it. This book deals a lot with fire, and ptsd. And I loved every bit of it. It's not something that's easy for me to get through. But I absolutely love RoAnna's stories! Well this is the third book of theirs i've read so far (i've also read Chameleon Moon and Moon-Brig ...more
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An amazing story about love, friendship, consent, one’s own need for revenge, and never giving up. In its heart, Stake Sauce has such an amazing set of characters. I will definitely be looking forward to more of this universe.

Full review on my blog.
Nicole Field
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
OMGOMGOMG I just love RoAnna's beautiful and insightful work. And what an original and completely captivating take on vampires! An absolute breath of fresh air.

In August last year, I read and reviewed the first act of Stake Sauce, Going Through The Motions, and knew I couldn't wait until it was all packaged together, all six acts.

(As it turned out, I could wait on reading it as I'm a little late to the table in getting this review out...)

Jude is the main character, as briefly discussed in the
I didn't know vampires could be this soft™ ...more
This was so cute! The only thing I've read by Sylver before was a short F/F mermaid/witch story so it was nice to read something a bit longer and really get a better feel for her style. I think her stories are really great because they have both funny and serious parts and also her characters are very unique and memorable. Also I think this is the first time I've ever even seen 'aro-ace' mentioned in a book so congrats for throwing that out there [even though the character is actually grey but I ...more
'Nathan Burgoine
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: glbt
This title is part of the awesome Kraken Friends 2018 deal, January 26th to February 1st, 2018!

Hello! A couple of days ago, I did an interview with RoAnna Sylver, and we talked characters, rep, and inspiration. Today I want to focus a bit more on Stake Sauce (Arc 1: The Secret Ingredient is Love. No, Really).

I read this over the last week leading up to the Kraken Collective anniversary celebration (which includes nineteen fabulous queer spec-fic titles on sale, and you should check it out), and
Sinead Anja (Huntress of Diverse Books)
Check out my book blog for more book reviews and other bookish posts!

I received an ARC of Stake Sauce from the author. I enjoyed RoAnna Sylver’s previous writing, and was intrigued to read a story that had a very different premise (i.e. vampires) than her other work.

This book is #ownvoices for asexual, transgender and poly relationship representation.


The worldbuilding isn’t very detailed, which fits to the narrative style of the text. The story is told in first-person by a character who is not
Jul 04, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: scribd, trans's only been three days, and I kinda forgot I read this already!! Yikes. I did like a lot about it, but I wouldn't recommend it for anyone who gets frustrated with incomplete story arcs. There are a lot of plot threads introduced here, and only one has reached any kind of satisfying climax by the end.
That's the one described in the blurb, but it's such a small part of the book it feels like a very misleading description. I might have felt satisfied with it at that point if this was a sh
Jun 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
CW/TW: fire, gore, PTSD, crucifixion

“Hey, Jude.”

You know that feeling when you finally finish a book and you just let our a breath and it's one of just poor joy? Yeah. That's me with this book. I absolutely adore it, okay.

I already knew from the get go that I was going to love this. I've only read two other RoAnna Sylver books but they brought me such happiness that I knew this one wouldn't disappoint me either. And I was, of course, correct.

I love everything about this book. I
OMG, this book!!!

For about the first half of the book it was a little slow paced for me, but then all of a sudden, everything changed and I was absolutely hooked. These characters are all so wonderfully nuanced and the FRIENDSHIP is so beautiful and important. I especially love some of the later scenes between Jude and Jasper where they’re talking about how their recovery isn’t at the same point and has to take different paths.

This is such a unique take on vampires and I want more. This is a bri
I really enjoyed this one!

The first half has a slower pace and was heavy on backstory (Jude's grief, his deteriorating friendships with Eva and Jasper, obsession with vampires and revenge) andleading up the second half which was quite action packed and pretty gruesome - which I could handle but might be tough for the faint of heart (view spoiler). The change might be a little jarring or too slow at first for some but I liked it. It's an odd, dark yet optimistic little sto
Natalie Cannon
May 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Stake Sauce has a lot of things I like: a cast of queer (aka not straight) characters of color, a punk fashion sense, friends-as-family/found families, and urban magical creature shenanigans. As soon as I read the blurb, I wanted to dive in and love this. After reading though, I think Stake Sauce is a few drafts away from a full five stars.

After the brutal death of their coworker Felix, friends Jude, Eva, and Jasper quit being firefighters and work at a shopping mall in Portland. Their coping me
Mar 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It took me a little while to warm up into this book - after finishing I realized that was because it took me a little while to warm up to the characters - not surprising as they've all experienced recent trauma and their struggles with it form the backbone of this book. But I was racing along by the end, desperate to know how things were going to turn out, how they were going to turn out.

I think one of the things I liked best about this book came at the very end when two women are talking. Most
Can Richards
Feb 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Very difficult to put words to how much JOY and DELIGHT i got from this book!!

Sometimes it’s hard finding stories that have the exact kind of vampires I want, and even harder to find ones that have so much compassion for queer folk and disabled folk. But as the title suggests, Stake Sauce is a story written with so much love.

One of the core strengths of the book is the way it writes friendships - the strength of having a found family through adversity (even if that adversity has fangs) while a
Amber (bookstacksamber)
This was a perfect, quick read for Halloween season.
Lori S.
Took longer than I expected to get to the heart of this story, but I do like the characters.
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
I was provided a copy of this book by the author in exchange for a book review.
Stake Sauce, Arc 1 is the first book in a mystery series featuring vampires, the arcane and found family.

Content warnings include: (view spoiler)

For some reason this took me a lot longer to read than length of the book warrants.
The writing was good (though there were quite a few editing errors), the story engaging, I really adored the cast of diverse characters, and yet...

One thing that I can
Briony Appleton
Rating: 5/5 Stars
 I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review. 
 I was super excited to get the chance to read Stake Sauce Arc One. Before this I hadn't, to my shame read any of RoAnna Sylver's books. Although Chameleon Moon and it's ilk have been sitting cosily in my Kindle library for a couple months now. I went in expecting to like what I read, since I trust the reviews of the people I follow on Goodreads. I was not expecting to fall in love with it like
Kimberly (kimberly_reads)
I absolutely loved this story. The characters were so well developed and complex, there’s no way I am able to pick a particular character as a favorite. With that said, I believe Jude is the one who hold a special place in my heart because I felt the most understood while taking in his perspective. I can’t wait to delve into more of RoAnna’s work and can’t recommend reading this for yourself enough!
Mar 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“How do you know, though?” Pixie pressed, with the slightest edge of desperation. “Five years ago you didn’t believe in vampires. A couple days ago, you didn’t think you’d ever have a conversation with one. What are you gonna believe in tomorrow?”

I... <3

I had no idea what this release was about going into it; it was a Christmas gift from Karla. I read the synopsis and thought it was adorable though.

Then I got into it and it was so... pure and beautiful.

Jude is a retired firefighter, he used
DB  (DB's Guide to the Galaxy)
Amazon link:
My blog link: https://dbsguidetothegalaxy.wordpress...
RoAnna's blog link:

This book is fantastic. I love it. Buy a thousand copies and hand it out to a thousand people. Buy yourself a personal copy. Buy another one to frame on your wall – it’s that good. It strikes something personal in your heart and just makes you want to adopt all of the characters (which I really want to do) and care for them and give th
K. Lincoln
Nov 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
(provided a copy of this book in return for honest review)

So this is a dear, little oddball of a book. It's about a group of ex-Firemen who have retired after one of their group is killed in a fire. Eva is a mall security head. Jude is one of her security officers, and Jasper runs a magic store.

They are all trying to live with the pain of having lost Felix, who was Jasper's finance, but also had a very close relationship with the other two. This story is mostly told from Jude's perspective. As t
Laina SpareTime
Dec 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle
Cross-posted from my blog where there's more information on where I got my copy and links and everything.

This was really fun! Y’all know I’ve been talking about queer vampire books for A While (since 2017) now and this is exactly that. This is very, very heartfelt but also knows when not to take itself too seriously, and when to enjoy some of the more funny and lighthearted moments. ‘

I also really appreciated how much it valued friendship. There are romantic relationships in the book, but friend
Jan 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Jude is grayro and gray-ace (and trans and disabled), and I love him. I love that he tries to be a vampire hunter, isn't prepared to actually hunt vampires at all, but will still try for the people he cares about. Pixie is punk and a delight (and the cutest guitar-playing bat, y'all) who cares so much about consent. Eva is aroace and protective and healing (view spoiler).

I appreciated that everyon
Kit (Metaphors and Moonlight)
2 Stars

This book was really slow to start, and I struggled to get into it. I felt like Jude had no personality, and his voice felt flat. This also just wasn't what I was expecting because it was very focused on grief, trauma, and healing, and most of the book consisted of Jude thinking about how he and his friends were coping, discussions between him and his friends about how they were coping, etc. I also had some issues with things in the plot and character reactions to things. What I di
M D.
Oct 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you can’t tell by the cover of this book that it’s awesome. Well, it’s awesome!!! I started reading this book before bed which was probably not a good idea because I didn’t get much sleep with my eyes glued to my e-reader. The main character Jude is a ex-firefighter mall cop turned vampire hunter who survived a brutal vampire attack that killed one of his friends and took his leg years back. I’m not going to share much of the story because I want you to read it for yourselves but fate kinda f ...more
Nov 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Somehow I ended up reading back-to-back consent-focused vampire stories? Which is obviously awesome. Plus this book is super queer (view spoiler)!

Stake Sauce does a really fantastic job of being funny without diminishing the darker parts of the story. I thought the handling of trauma and grief was much more nuanced than one often sees in fiction. This arc has a pretty limited cast and settin
Emma Kimble-Maerki
Aug 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you like Vampires, queer romance, and a fast paced read, this is the one for you! I sat down with this book and read it cover to cover in no time! It's easy to read, moves quickly, and had me wanting more with each turn of the page. As a queer woman, seeing queer characters as main characters instead of background characters was refreshing.

This is NOT your typical Twilight romance novel which I think is a great thing. Going into a paranormal romance, you have typical things you expect. But th
I hesitate to give the number of stars I have for this one, but this is based on the fact that I know Stake Sauce is ongoing and I'd prefer to score it once I have a more complete picture.

Anyway. I've been a fan of Roanna's writing ever since someone suggested Chameleon Moon to me a couple years ago. This has most definitely been a welcome addition to CM and it's sequel. Although sad, the characters are sympathetic. The story is heartwarming despite the trauma. "The Secret Ingredient is Love. No
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RoAnna Sylver is passionate about stories that give hope, healing and even fun for LGBT, disabled and other marginalized people, and thinks we need a lot more. Aside from writing oddly optimistic dystopia and vampire books, RoAnna is a blogger, artist, and singer.

RoAnna lives with family near Portland, OR, and probably spends too much time playing videogames. The next adventure RoAnna would like i

Other books in the series

Stake Sauce (2 books)
  • Arc 2: Everybody's Missing (Somebody) (Stake Sauce, #2)

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