by Bobbie Gott
In this book we follow Celestria Slavic, who is what would be similar to the princess of the vampire covens. Being a purebred vampire, she’s the next in line to take over after her father. Until then, she works with the newly turned vampires called Mix Bloods. At the beginning of the book, Celestria is forced to marry one of her students, Killian. This starts a spiral of events that leads to Celestria realizing that the coven keeps many secrets. Now, she must find a way to survive.
So, I think this book is very interesting with a good premise. It has vampires and blood and a good plot with interesting characters. I can see how those who love vampire stories will enjoy this. It’s a rather traditional style of vampire that we’re introduced to here, which for me is a good thing. They are not good, but at the same time they are not all evil either. It makes them very real and interesting.
This is a fast read and I appreciate that it’s not bogged down with exposition and unnecessary descriptions. It moves fast and things happen all the time and we move from one thing to another, which suits me well.
It’s written in a bit of a different style than the traditional fiction novels I usually read. It’s almost exclusively told rather than shown to the reader. So, one could say that this goes against every writing advice that says you should “show vs tell”, but it’s not a bad thing, just a different thing. Initially, it made it a bit hard fo me to get into the book, but after a couple of chapters, I got used to it and it was fine. The very “telly” writing style has the benefit of making the story feel like a letter from a friend. So, as I read it, I think of Celestria writing this to me specifically, and that makes it personal and it makes me invested in her journey even if I’m not “pulled into the story” as I would a traditional novel. And I appreciate that the author did her thing here and followed what she wanted for the story.
I do, however, feel like the book would have benefited from being looked at by a professional editor. There are quite a lot of grammatical mistakes and we’re swapping between past and present all the time, even within individual sentences, this ends up being a little jarring, and I feel like this is something that a professional editor should have caught and corrected.
The cover is perhaps a little too real for me to enjoy it, though. I appreciate the idea of it, and it suiting for the book, but it’s a photo of two bloody hands holding a real heart, which at the wrong time of day actually turns my stomach, and that’s coming from someone who’s not squeamish. I would have suggested it being turned into an illustration instead of a too real photo. But that’s just a personal opinion and really doesn’t affect what’s inside the cover (other than the fact that I would never have picked up the book had I found it on a shelf in a bookstore). For the sake of this review, I used an alternate cover from the hardcover edition.
But overall, this is a good read if you like vampire stories.