Monday, August 01, 2011

ETERNAL KISS by Laura Wright

ETERNAL KISS - Laura Wright
Mark of the Vampire, Book 2
Signet Eclipse
ISBN: 978-0-451-23384-4
April 2011
Paranormal Romance

Vermont, New York, and Massachusetts - Present Day

When Nicholas Roman and his brothers fail to end the existence of Ethan Dare, an Impure (mixed blood vampire) with a growing list of followers and a grudge against the purebloods, the Order (rulers of the vampire communities) puts Nicholas through morpho (vampire maturity when they lose the ability to withstand sunlight and gain other powers in compensation) early just as they did his elder brother Alexander. If they don’t destroy Dare, Lucian, their remaining brother, is next. As if that’s not enough pressure, a mysterious female vampire named Kate has just shown up with a balas (vampire child) she insists belongs to him.

Kate Everborne doesn’t want the responsibility of taking Ladd (the balas) to his father. However, since his mother was attacked and died in front of them both and it was her dying request, she feels obligated. It’s unfortunate that the Order, the people responsible for her spending the last ten years in Mondrar (the vampire prison) and who currently have her on work release, won’t understand. In fact, she might as well be signing her own arrest warrant. If only Nicholas, the stubborn, devastatingly attractive and super annoying male responsible for Ladd’s existence didn’t have to be such a pain-in-the-butt. He’s as determined to use her in his quest to capture Dare as she is to get away from him and the Order both. Freedom is all she wants. At least that’s what she believes at first…

Two people more determined, damaged, and secretive than Nicholas and Kate couldn’t be found and if they can’t learn to work together, it’s a certainty that the hunt for Dare will fail this time as well. And that might be putting a positive spin on what could happen. Can they overcome their prejudices and embrace the connection that seems undeniable?

Nicholas seems destined to never receive the ETERNAL KISS of his true mate. Forced by his mother to become a whore when he was just a small child, he’s lost the ability to enjoy pleasure for its own sake. How could he expect someone as pure and good as Kate to love someone like him? Even his own brothers don’t know how badly damaged his soul is or what he has to do just to survive each day. Despite his belief, Nicholas is worth loving, and Kate just may be able to prove that to him. If she can overcome her own doubts. Raised under the thumb of an abusive male, she has yearned for nothing but freedom for decades, and even Nicholas’s appeal may not be enough to make her accept having a mate. You can’t help but be invested in both of these characters, and you’ll be rooting for them to find a happily-ever-after (or at least a happily-for-now) from the beginning right up until the end.

Integral to the story are, of course, the other Romans who were first introduced to readers in ETERNAL HUNGER (October 2010): Alexander and his true mate Sara (an Impure who quickly tries to befriend Kate) and Lucian (the brother who loves a fight and is sure females will be the downfall of them all). Sara’s brother, Gray, is also around and has plenty of his own troubles to worry about (stubborn creature that he is, he’s not going to share them either). Readers are sure to recognize Dillon, the female vampire bodyguard and friend of Sara’s who has become like family to the Romans (though sometimes she’s really annoyed about letting that happen). Also back from the first book is Bronwyn Kettler, the genealogist veana (female vampire) who once believed herself Alexander’s true mate and still finds herself attracted to the dangerous and supremely annoying Lucian. Yes, the feelings are mutual and seem destined to be revealed in ETERNAL CAPTIVE (coming in February 2012). I suppose I must mention Ethan Dare, the one causing all this trouble, although really, the Order’s hands certainly aren’t lily white either. Dare is ruthless in pursuit of his goals, as is the man giving him the power boosts that are keeping him one step ahead of the Romans, the Supreme One as he prefers to be called. There’s a mystery there, and readers are sure to be surprised as more comes to light about him. Each of these characters adds immeasurably to the story, and most of them I hope to read more about in the future.

Danger, action, plenty of scorch-your-fingers passion and a storyline that’s well thought out and riveting make the second installment of the Mark of the Vampire as captivating as the first. Get your copy of ETERNAL KISS today!

Lori Ann

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