Thursday, August 16, 2012

DB Reynolds - Raphael

Malibu, California-home to rock-and-roll gods and movie stars, the beautiful, the rich . . . and vampires. Powerful and charismatic, Raphael is a Vampire Lord, one of the few who hold the power of life and death over every vampire in existence. Thousands call him Master and have pledged absolute loyalty on their very lives. But when, in a brazen and deadly daylight attack, a gang of human killers kidnaps the one female vampire he'd give his life for, Raphael turns to a human investigator to find his enemies before it's too late. Cynthia Leighton is smart, tough and sexy, a private investigator and former cop who's tired of spying on cheating spouses and digging out old bank accounts. When Raphael asks for her help in tracking down the kidnappers, Cyn's happy to accept. But she soon realizes her greatest danger comes not from the humans, but from Raphael himself. Battling Russian mobsters and treacherous vampires, and betrayed by those they trusted, Cyn and Raphael find themselves fighting for their lives while caught up in a passion of blood and violence that is destined to destroy them both.

Comment: In one of my book clubs we got this one to read. I was rather expectant because some people have said good things about it and I got curious.

The story is about Cynthia, a private investigator whose family has possessions and a position in society but she's never cared about that and pursued a job in law enforcement.
Then there's Raphael, he's a vampire master, an old one like usual, and one of his family has been kidnapped. He knows the ones who did it are human although it surely happened by the orders of vampires. So, he decides to pursue this as humans do and looks for a PI to discover the humans and therefore, leads to the vampires involved.
When Raphael and Cynthia meet, there's an obvious attraction between them. Raphael wants Cynthia for his own right away, although vampires live too long to form attachments to humans and Cynthia is a free spirit, too addicted to her independence to stick with him. But deep feelings start to develop and their actions show they're not as indifferent to feelings and cynical about the whole thing as it looks.

The good thing about this book is the type of hierarchy on which vampires live on. Not that it is very different from the usual, but it's interesting to see how a family is formed, how they deal with each other, how the more powerful ones see the weaker ones and vice-versa.
Unfortunately, to be quite honest - and after some time after having read the book - that was the only good thing about the book. Some of the secondary characters look promising but I'm not sure their stories would be that special and I'm seriously doubting I'll buy more books in this series.
The two main characters have some dept, which is good, but their attitude in his case to show everyone how powerful he is and how cold he is to others except lovers, and for Cynthia how she's so independent and she doesn't need anyone and only has sex because she can and how she does what she wants because she has money..well, they didn't appeal to me. Their characterization was so evidenced that when thy showed a bit of vulnerability it sounded ridiculous and a cliché. I accept hard core characters pretty well, but if they're to connect with me, I need them to be vulnerable from the start, I need them to feel emotions all the time, somehow, not just because it's convenient to the plot as it felt like in this book.
The story didn't end with an HEA. I know there's a continuation but I don't feel the will to read it, you know? I can understand the appeal of the story, the magical idea of a vampire and a human, and usually I like this paranormal stories...but in this case, I think it lacked something, to me at least. All things considered, it was a great effort from the author and being her first novel it had indeed many elements to make the story good, but I think she kind of lost herself in trying to make her heroine something too untouchable, I don't know how to explain it well.
Perhaps one day I might try more books, but for now, this was enough.

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