Sunday, February 1, 2015

'Crouching Tiger, Forbidden Vampire' by Kerrelyn Sparks

Crouching Tiger, Forbidden Vampire is the 16th book in the Love at Stake series by Kerrelyn Sparks. I'm not a regular reader of the series. In fact, I've read only one other Love at Stake novel: #5, All I Want for Christmas Is a Vampire:

All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire (Love at Stake, #5)All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Good story, though it's part of a series and evidently I've skipped a few. Said vampire is a good-hearted, kilt-wearing, 600-year-old Scot who only drinks synthetic bottled blood (well, with one exception near the end). Santa, I will gladly take a vampire for Christmas, especially if he looks like James McAvoy.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

So then I skipped ahead eleven volumes when I got the opportunity to order this free of charge through the Amazon Vine program, in exchange for a review. I liked the cute title, and I'm almost always willing to give a paranormal romance a chance, even though I couldn't remember all the specifics of the background characters.

As one might conclude from the title, this one is about a weretiger. She also happens to be a member of royal weretiger society. A Chinese native, she's about to become engaged to the weretiger prince of South Korea. But first, Jia is determined to exact revenge on the vampire who killed her parents and brother. He goes by the name of Master Han.

Jia isn't Han's only would-be assassin, though. He's also hunted by Russell, a secretive vampire who lives alone in a bat cave. Russell has to rescue Jia - an inexperienced assassin - and take her back to his cave. Slowly they begin to find themselves attracted to one another, although relationships between weretigers and vampires have never been heard of before. Chafed by her constrained life in weretiger society, Jia finds freedom with Russell.

Master Han is a dangerous enemy, but making him even more dangerous is his association with the demon Darafer. Darafer drags Jia off to hell, and then Russell needs the help of the angels to get her back.

In short, it's everything I want in a paranormal romance. The protagonists are likable people, they're both a little wounded by their tragic histories, and they fall in love in a natural, gradual way, not a love-at-first-sight fantasy way.

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The First Bite Is the Deepest by Elisa Catrina. $2.99 from
“Funny and clever and emotionally hard-hitting” "A perfectly creepy read." Elisa Catrina's debut novel begins as a quirky send-up of vampire romance, but quickly turns sinister. High schooler Stella Ortiz starts dating the mysterious new guy, but her friends are convinced he's bad news: Sebastian misses tons of school, he day-drinks something that smells like pennies, and oh yeah, he's a vampire.

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