This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Genres: Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Released on April 7, 2015
I saw this one that blended vampires and historical romance so I thought I’d give it a go since I love that. I discovered this was the third book in a series with a groan, but then cheered up when I realized that I had the first book, hoping that the first book would help me get into this one easier. My plan worked like a charm although I probably would have been alright for the most part if I went without it. New couple and new circumstances helped with that. Still, things made much better sense along with the knowledge of who some of the players were and how things got sorted the way they did. The premise grabbed my attention and from there I had a good time with this vampire romance ala Beauty and the Beast style of story between a lady doctor and a scarred, bitter vampire.
Like the other heroines in the series, Lady Cassandra Burton’s fire and ambition for her forbidden vocation lands her into danger when her need for a cadaver leads to a misunderstanding. The interim Lord Vampire of London, Rafe Villar, snatches a woman who is disturbing graves at night. He has caught a vampire hunter. Only when things get sorted, he realizes that he has caught a mere human and the human can’t have her memories wiped so he must kill her or change her according to vampire law. His troubles are more complicated than that because first this is no stranger, but the friend of Ian’s wife and he already changed a human so isn’t powerful enough to change Cassandra. He is drawn to her and doesn’t want her to die so he searches for other solutions not knowing that Ian’s former second in command is resentful that the scarred, disabled Rafe was given charge of the city’s vampires over him. Plotting in the shadows to stage a coups, the vampire can use the human woman that Rafe has in custody to further his plans.
Cassandra is irked to be a prisoner, but agrees to be reasonable if Rafael allows her to continue with her medical work and let her study him. She is afraid that he will decide to end her life so seeks to make herself indispensable by restoring function to his injured arm that has been useless to him for years. Rafe grudgingly cooperates, but what touches her is that he respects her skills and supports her dreams to be a doctor and physician. Cassandra is a scientist and doesn’t believe in love or so she tries to convince herself as she feels something strong for the scarred vampire who doubts his ability to rule and worries over the trouble in his territory. She thinks he cares for her, but is it enough or will he follow the law and kill her.
This third book was not nearly as light and humorous as that first book I read. Oh, there is still humor to it as Cassandra and Rafe work out their differences and it did meander a tad in the early stages, but the stakes (forgive the pun) are higher and the plot gets darker. In the end, there are tragic losses and tension-filled climax. Though I was looking for it to be much like the first book, in truth, I was glad that it wasn’t. I enjoyed this one much more as a result of the danger and darker feel with the betrayals and rebellion.
It runs hotter with the passionate romance too. Rafael and Cassandra offered backgrounds and personalities that had great chemistry. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about Rafe as a hero since in previous books, he has a smoldering broody nature that crossed into the cranky a lot, but that wasn’t the case in his own book. Cassandra really did a number on him so that he was all twisted up inside. It took a while for Rafe and Cassandra’s relationship to develop mostly because she had that cold, analytical scientist switch, but once they got going exciting sexy times commenced with a vengeance.
Lots of potential for further stories continuing off this one after meeting a few new intriguing characters. I am pleased to continue along with this series that appears to just get better and better. Those who enjoy blending the historical with the paranormal in a spicy romance should give these a go.
My thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca and Net Galley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #137 HR
Historical Romance #35
Cliché Klatch #63 ‘It’s a long story’