I am so excited to receive so many great review requests since I have come back from my hiatus. I received a review request from Bella Forrest for her new book A Shade of Vampire. After reading the sample on amazon I decided to go ahead and review the book for her as I found it intriguing. Here’s the description:
On the evening of Sofia Claremont's seventeenth birthday, she is sucked into a nightmare from which she cannot wake.
A quiet evening walk along a beach brings her face to face with a dangerous pale creature that craves much more than her blood.
She is kidnapped to an island where the sun is eternally forbidden to shine.
An island uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet. She wakes here as a slave, a captive in chains.
Sofia's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn when she is the one selected out of hundreds of girls to join the harem of Derek Novak, the dark royal Prince.
Despite his addiction to power and obsessive thirst for her blood, Sofia soon realizes that the safest place on the island is within his quarters, and she must do all within her power to win him over if she is to survive even one more night.
Will she succeed? ...or is she destined to the same fate that all other girls have met at the hands of the Novaks?
I know most of us are quite over vampires in the paranormal genre but what drew me into this story was that it is different. The concept that the vampires live separately on an island was intriguing. Also the mystery that surrounds Derek and his entrance to the story got me further interested in the story. The world that Bella has built isn’t like any other world I have read.
I enjoyed Sofia’s strength in the story and her lack of whiny qualities. She has a quiet strength that really draws you to her character. She isn’t overly headstrong and independent but I imagine her with a lot of dignity and poise. Derek keeps you guessing about what he is truly like. He acts very affectionate with Sofia and yet is still a hard ruler to the other characters. To me this endeared him even more. I would have liked to see more depth in the characters. It seemed as though there was more to them but the story didn't take time to focus on them.
The conflict arises between Derek and his brother as there is a lot of jealousy there and they both want Sofia. There is not a love triangle here though as one wants to posses her and break her will and the other seems to love her. I also liked that there wasn’t a love triangle as I am quite over those.
My main issue with the book was that it was really short. I really wanted to see more description of the island and see more of the interaction between Derek and Sofia. We are told that they grow into a routine and become affectionate but we don’t get to see all of that. We don’t see them sharing their pasts, etc. The characters behave in a way that implies they have depth and multiple facets to their personality but we don't get a lot of insight into that. I would also like to know more about this issue that Sofia suffers from and has to see the witch about. I'm hoping some of this is revealed in the next installment.
Overall, I give the book a 3.5. It was shorter than I would like and it just seemed to be missing something for me to give it that 4 or 5 review. However, this is the author's first book and there is so much potential in this story. Despite my rating of 3.5 I really recommend it as a read and a potentially great series to follow.
Bella will be with us on Jan 18th to do an interview and she has generously agreed to giveaway a copy of her book! Check back next Friday for the interview and contest information.