Laura Summers's Reviews > Carnal Lust

Carnal Lust by Ashley Ladd
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** spoiler alert ** *** Warning: This Review Contains Spoilers***

At 47 pages this is more a novella than a book. Kes is a vampire from the future where planet Earth has been destroyed by an evil vampire called Nikolai. Escaping to the past with her family, they are intent on preventing this horrific disaster.

Kes believes the only way to do so would be to kill Nikolai and cannot understand why her parents are reluctant to. But the more she begins to watch Nikolai in the past she realises the while he may be a cruel man in the future, in the past he is actually the opposite. Is it fair to kill a man for crimes he is yet to commit?

Nikolai is a sixteenth century Lord intent on doing the best for his people. But, he finds himself becoming enchanted by a beautiful woman who seems to be following him and haunting his dreams. Unable to get her out of his mind, he knows he must learn more about her.

The timeline on this story is a bit mind boggling and to be honest even after reading it I'm not sure I could fully explain it to you. Simply because I'm not quite sure what happened where and when. It jumps around so much and refers to so many different events, as well as at some points there are two of the same people existing in the same time and place. I struggled to get my head around it all. It may be that this novella is part of a larger series which may clarify a lot of this confusion, but this is the first book I have read by this author.

I also felt that the relationship between Kes and Nikolai lacked integrity. Firstly there are the times that Kes visits Nikolai. There are times she sees him in her dreams, times she accidentally astral projects to him and times she unwittingly visits him in the flesh. All of these visits became a bit of a jumble and slightly bizarre. I actually had to reread a section a couple of times as I was not sure if they had truly consummated their relationship or if it was 'just a dream'.

However, one of the biggest problems I had with this story were the decisions the characters seem to make. Let's take the point when Kes's opinion of Nikolai turns from that of evil villain, to lover and then to love of her life. This all seemed to happen in the space of about three days with no real explanation behind this change of mind. In addition, Nikolai is portrayed as a caring and noble overlord. Feeding the poor from his personal stores, taking sick children into his castle to nurse them to health. Then he falls in love with Kes, a vampire and runs off leaving his land and people into the care of his elderly groom. This didn't seem to me to be the decision of a caring Lord?

On a personal note, the story was very much on the erotic side of romance which is not really to my taste. The language was very evocative which I did not enjoy. But besides this it got immensely repetitive. The same phrases seemed to be used every time which unfortunately got tiresome.

It seems as though the author tried to achieve too much in such a short space of pages. I actually don't mind reading novellas and often enjoy them. I just didn't get on with this one.


I found this book very confusing and struggled to engage with the main characters. Interesting concept of time travelling vampires, but it just did not make it for me. I'm afraid I would not recommend it.

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Laura Summers Thanks Stephanie. I didn't mind the Vampire destroys the world and even time travels thing - that could have been fun. It was just the way the story was told. Not for me, but other people may love it, so I try to be fair when I write a review :-)

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