by Brenda Sparks
GENRE: paranormal romance
Starved for blood, vampire, Nicholai Peterhof is greatly relieved when two tourists decide to grace his restaurant, but one sip from the pretty brunette and his world is forever turned upside down. Juliette Staint-John is everything he could have asked for in a heartmate; pretty, smart, built with curves in all the right places…and totally unavailable.
Juliette doesn’t want anything to do with the handsome, young-looking Nicholai. As if their differences aren’t enough, the acute grief over the loss of loved ones keeps her heart guarded. He may be her fantasy, but that’s all he can ever be.
To get past Juliette’s defenses and in order to keep her safe, Nicholai must prove himself worthy of her love and trust. Unbeknownst to the couple, her personal demons are not the only ones threatening their relationship. Hiding virtually unseen by the vampires, Demon Royalty plots to destroy not only the couple but the entire vampire breed. Luckily, Nicholai will do anything for Juliette—even if it means sacrificing himself.
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Nicholai took Julie’s hand in his, leading her through the velvet ropes to the Grand Staircase. The fine, white marble stairs rose on either side of the room toward a large landing at the top. Golden, life-size statues stood as sentinels along the gilded iron railing. Penny’s eyes widened as they tracked along the walls, looking at the painted cherubs and golden moldings.
“Let’s take a picture.” Penny shoved the camera into Julie’s hand.
“Come on, Nicholai.” Penny linked her arm around Nicholai’s and pulled him toward the bottom of the immense set of steps.
The two of them situated themselves at the base of the stairs while Julie crossed to the opposite side of the rounded staircase.
“All right, you two.” Julie backed up as far as possible and adjusted the camera. “I think I can get you and those golden statues in the frame. Say cheese. I mean syr.”
“Syr,” Nicholai and Penny sang in tandem with big grins on their faces.
Every nerve ending in the warrior’s body suddenly lit up like the Vegas strip. Fear crept along his spine, circling it before it wrapped around his heart and squeezed until he could not breathe. His senses searched the palace.
A blank spot registered the exact moment Nicholai’s keen eyes noticed movement above Julie’s head. Horror gripped him with its icy tentacles when the statue of the golden woman holding a sickle leaned toward his heartmate. Time slowed his vision as it can only do during a time of danger. The heavy sculpture leaned further and further until it hung upside down, its head directly over Juliette’s. Suspended ominously in midair, it dangled for a second then fell, making a bee line for Julie.
Man, a hot Russian and he’s a vampire. I know, I don’t typically read PNR but this one got my attention. Plus, I liked the fact that his mate is human. I love when the “mates” aren’t the same species. *giggle* I know, I said species but it’s the truth. I also liked that Nicholai had to romance Julie, too. He had to this while keeping her safe from the demons that wanted to destroy the vampires.
Okay, backing up. I loved the world building in the story and no, I didn’t read the first two books. Sure, did I think that I was missing some things but I felt that Ms. Sparks gave me enough information to be able to follow the subplot in the book? There are vampire councils, royalty, demons (*swoon*) and the fact that this is a series and with the ending of the book, there are still unanswered questions from the overall arc of the book. There is enough intrigue to keep me engage in the story. The pacing is slow in the beginning but it picks up quickly and never let’s go.
Julie is breath of fresh air. I liked the fact that she was a normal looking woman. The connection that I felt for her was instant and even though she was dealing with her own demons, her connection to Nicholai is quick. I know, sounds like instant love but for me, it’s not. But again, he had to romance her. Sure the smexy times are hot but that’s not the point of their relationship. Julie had a lot of things to work out and Nicholai had to NOT get her killed. They had to grow up apart from each other, to make their relationship work.
Overall, I really liked the story. Did I feel like I was missing something? Not really but I will definitely be on the look out for the next book in series. Yes, I’m hooked.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Born in Virginia, Brenda Sparks now resides in the Sunshine State. Balancing her professional commitment to the local school district with her writing is challenging at times, but writing suspenseful paranormal romances is a passion that won’t be denied. Her idea of a perfect day is one spent in front of a computer with a hot cup of coffee, her fingers flying over the keys to send her characters off on their latest adventure. Brenda loves to connect with readers. Please visit her online or stop by her website to say hi. www.brenda-sparks.com
Author Links: Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/forBrendaSparks
Twitter : @brenda_sparks https://twitter.com/brenda_sparks
Facebook Author Page : http://www.facebook.com/brenda.sparksauthor.1
Website : www.brenda-sparks.com
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
Brenda Sparks will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
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