Much Ado About Vampires / Dark Ones / Katie MacAlister

Synopsis (Goodreads)

Bitter at first bite…

Corazon Ferreira is one heck of a jaded woman. Not only did her husband dump her for a pretty, vivacious blonde, but her sister has lost her mind and married a vampire. Worse, it turns out that Cora herself was a vampire’s mate in a past life…the very same vampire she witnessed killing someone.

If only Cora hadn’t inadvertently been caught up in the ill-laid plans of a reanimated corpse and its master, she could deal with the distractingly gorgeous vampire. But it’s only Alec who stands between her and those who threaten her existence, and there’s only so much temptation a woman can bear before she starts taking her heart as seriously as her head…


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My Take
4 Stars



I was first introduced to Katie MacAlister and her Dark Ones series through a short story from the book My Zombie Valentine. I was impressed with her writing then, and after getting Much Ado About Vampires through first-reads, I am hooked on the Dark Ones series!

Much Ado About Vampires is the ninth book in the Dark Ones series. The story is centered around Alec and Cora (Corazon). Alec is a “Dark One” (vampire) who has been banished to the Akasha for killing the woman that accidentally killed his Beloved (mate). Cora finds herself and her friend Diamond in a very strange situation (a matter of wrong place at the wrong time) and gets banished to the Akasha, where she meets Alec. Once Cora gets a good look at Alec, she realizes she's seen him before, and she is definitely not happy about it...at first.

There is a lot of light humor in this book, and funny circumstances. I found myself chuckling many times throughout the book (sometimes aloud).

If there is anything about the book that I found a bit annoying, it would be Cora's over-use of the phrase “Jesus wept”. If it had only been used a couple of times, I probably wouldn't have even thought twice about it. However, I would say that would be my only complaint because I really enjoyed the book. The story wasn't hindered by reading the ninth book first, and I will be purchasing the rest of the series.
 
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Looking for Co-Reviewers!

Book Hollow is looking for a couple of co-reviewers to contribute their book reviews. I am only able to post a new review once every one-two weeks because of my busy schedule. If you would like to help out, please e-mail me with a sample of one of your reviews and I will get back to you as soon as possible (usually within a day or two).  Please use "Book Hollow" as the subject of your e-mail to keep it from getting tossed.
 
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The Radleys / Matt Haig

Synopsis (Goodreads)

Meet the Radleys

Peter, Helen and their teenage children, Clara and Rowan, live in an English town. They are an everyday family, averagely dysfunctional, averagely content. But as their children have yet to find out, the Radleys have a devastating secret

From one of Britain’s finest young novelists comes a razor-sharp unpicking of adulthood and family life. In this moving, thrilling and extraordinary portrait of one unusual family, The Radleys asks what we grow into when we grow up, and explores what we gain – and lose – when we deny our appetites.


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My Take
4 Stars


This book actually surprised me. It's a very easy read, broken down into small chapters. At first I didn't think this book was going to interest me much, but little by little I found myself getting sucked into the world of The Radleys.

At first glance, the Radley family seems like many other families; the father, Peter, finds himself day dreaming about his neighbor, Lorna; the mother, Helen, is withdrawn and has her own secrets; the son, Rowan, has a skin condition and is bullied by kids at school; the daughter, Clara, has decided to become a vegan and finds herself sick all the time without knowing why.

Peter and Helen are also hiding a big secret from their children. They are forced to expose their secret to the children when Clara does the unthinkable...they are vampires.

In a moment of panic and against Helen's wishes, Peter phones his blood-driven brother, Will, whom he wrote-out of his life 17 years ago. This starts a chain of events that seem to be destroying the already-dysfunctional Radley family.

All-in-all, I really liked this book. I would definitely recommend it!
 
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Book Give-A-Way! Kissing Coffins: Vampire Kisses bk 2

Book Hollow is pleased to announce we will be giving away one copy of Kissing Coffins. Please visit the Contest Information page to read the rules and restrictions, and find out how to enter!

Contest date: Sept. 20 - Nov. 20
 
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The Turning / Blood Ties bk 1 / Jennifer Armintrout

Synopsis (Goodreads)

I'm no coward. I want to make that perfectly clear. But after my life turned into a horror movie, I take fear a lot more seriously now. I finally became Dr. Carrie Ames just eight months ago. Then I was attacked in the hospital morgue by a vampire. Just my luck.
So now I'm a vampire, and it turns out I have a blood tie to the monster who sired me. The tie works like an invisible leash and I'm bound to him no matter what I do. And of course he's one of the most evil vampires on earth. With my sire hell-bent on turning me into a soulless killer and his sworn enemy set to exterminate me, things couldn't get much worse -- except I'm attracted to them both.
Drinking blood, living as an immortal demon and being a pawn between two warring vampire factions isn't exactly how I'd imagined my future. But as my father used to say, the only way to conquer fear is to face it. So that's what I'll do. Fangs bared.
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My Take
5 Stars

The Turning is the first book in the Blood Ties series. I just finished re-reading this book and realized I didn't write a review for it.

This is not your typical vampire romance read. Lately, most of the vampire romance out there are light, and very romantic. This book is nothing like those. It is intense, dark, and gory. I guess that why I like it so much, because it's a change from what I've been reading. More bad things happen than good in this book, and for some people it just may be a bit too dark. I thoroughly enjoyed it because it's different.

Dr. Carrie Ames is attacked in the morgue by what she thought was nothing more than a corpse. After nearly a month in the hospital, she is released only to realize that she has some really weird symptoms and it becomes clear that she is changing and not in a good way. She decides to seek help via the internet. She contacts a person claiming he/she can help her.

I don't want to say anymore about what happens in the book. I hate to do spoilers. If you are tired of the same old vampire romance, then come on over to the dark side and read The Turning.
 
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Dracula In Love / Karen Essex

Synopsis (Goodreads)

From the shadowy banks of the river Thames to the wild and windswept Yorkshire coast, Dracula’s eternal muse, Mina Murray, vividly recounts the intimate details of what really transpired between her and the Count—the joys and terrors of a passionate affair that has linked them through the centuries, and her rebellion against her own frightening preternatural powers.

Mina’s version of this gothic vampire tale is a visceral journey into Victorian England’s dimly lit bedrooms, mist-filled cemeteries, and asylum chambers, revealing the dark secrets and mysteries locked within. Time falls away as she is swept into a mythical journey far beyond mortal comprehension, where she must finally make the decision she has been avoiding for almost a millennium. 

Bram Stoker’s classic novel offered one side of the story, in which Mina had no past and bore no responsibility for the unfolding events. Now, for the first time, the truth of Mina’s personal voyage, and of vampirism itself, is revealed. What this flesh and blood woman has to say is more sensual, more devious, and more enthralling than the Victorians could have expressed or perhaps even have imagined.


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My Take


Karen Essex had a brilliant idea and turned it into a great book. I loved the idea of Mina getting to 'set the record straight' and tell the story of (Bram Stoker's) Dracula from her point-of-view.

Mina claims that many facts were fabricated and wants to tell the real story of her love triangle with Johnathan Harker and the Count.

In this book, Mina shows herself to be strong, and also taking control of her destiny. I loved getting to know Mina's back story from her childhood. Through this retelling from Mina, we learn of the cruelty she experienced at the hands of her parents because they did not understand her and were afraid that she harbored evil inside of her.

Instead of giving spoilers, I will say that I enjoyed this book very much and found it to be a great read. There were times when I found myself fighting sleep because I wanted to keep reading!
 
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