Hey guys, here we are for another Pandragon Review! Today is a special one as this book has not one but two authors, a brother and sister team! Today’s novel is book 1 of the Vampire Nightlife series – The Silver Cross.
Now personally, I’m not a huge fan of vampire stories. For one reason, I just don’t feel comfortable for many authors making a romantic figure out of something that is essentially a killer. Another reason – Stephanie Meyer XD. But, it’s unfair to judge a genre based on that, and there are some good vampire stories out there. And this is one of them!
Also, since Halloween is right around the corner, why not have a vampire story to review for it. So, let’s get our teeth into (I really must stop making these bad puns!) The Silver Cross.
About The Authors
Debra L Martin writes fantasy and science fiction with her co-author and brother, David W Small. They have been writing together since 2006 and make their partnership work through the use of email, Instant Messaging and Skype. Their newest release is THE SILVER CROSS, Book 1 in the "Vampire Nightlife" series. They have written three other novels, ASSASSIN'S CURSE, Book 1 in the "Witch Stone Prophecy," QUEST FOR NOBILITY and THE CRYSTAL FACADE in the "Rule of Otharia" series and three novellas in the DARK FUTURE series.
They are currently working on WITCH'S CURSE, Book 2 in the Witch Stone Prophecy for a Winter 2013 release.
Debra lives on the East Coast with her husband and 2 cats. By day she works as a Programs Manager at a major research university. She blogs regularly at Two Ends of the Pen about writing, publishing, ebooks, guest posts, author interviews and book reviews. You can also find a complete list of her published books including her romance titles she writes under pen name, Debra Elizabeth.
David lives on the West Coast with his wife. He retired from the Marines after 21 years and currently works as a Network Lead Specialist.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Debra-L-Martin/e/B003Q1WLXY/
If this book doesn’t make you steamy then nothing will! I’m actually not sure if the woman in the picture is supposed to be the heroine of the book, as this book is set in modern times and her dress is a little bit old fashioned. Nevertheless, this is a raunchy cover that I'm sure will catch a few eyes!
Lacey Gardner works for a special department called the Fringe Department. At first glance, they sound like they hunt down people with bad haircuts, but in actual fact they are vampire hunters. Lacey has a particular issue with them as they killed her sister long ago and has never really been the same since. But not only that, due to an altercation with that same vampire, some vampire blood got into her – meaning that her strength, reflexes and senses are heightened and that she can take on any vampire that crosses her path.
During an investigation into a string of vampire killings, she comes across a guy called Damon Harte, who owns his own bar. Strangely, she finds herself attracted to him and (you guessed it), they soon fall in love. What Lacey DOESN’T realise is that Damon is also a vampire – but one of the good ones. Damon is also a special case as he wears a silver cross around his neck – even though vampires are supposed to be vulnerable to silver in this context. The story of how this happened is actually an interesting one, but I’ll keep the spoilers to a minimum.
Thrown into the mix is a guy called Nic, a rather nasty vampire that has a grudge against Damon and wants his cross. Que tons of bullets firing, blood flowing and fisticuffs, leading up to a really impressive showdown at the end.
The Silver Cross is essentially a cop show, with vampires, so if you enjoy a fast paced story with interesting characters this is the book for you. There are only a few chapters in this book, so you can read through it in a few hours – but the pace is great. At no point does the story feel sluggish, or too much exposition is thrown in. I think it helps that the characters are also likeable and have enough character development for the reader to associate with them. Lacey is a strong heroine and I liked it that, whilst she had a pretty dark and depressing past, that she had some wit and humour to her. Had she just been the usual “stoic protagonist that never laughs” kinda gal I wouldn’t have liked her as much as I did. Damon was also a pretty good character and his past was equally as interesting. He’s a vampire that believes that they can live amongst the humans without causing a war and goes to a lot of lengths to try and keep this up.
He’s a stark contrast to Nic, who is pretty much an evil bastard. He’s one of those “love to hate” kinda villains that manipulates people for his own needs, and he really has a grudge against Damon as well and seems to want to not just defeat him, but discredit him, knowing the love that he has for Lacey.
If there are any problems to this story is that it does fall into some clichés now and then. Most of which you can see coming a mile off. I mentioned something about Lacey’s sister being killed, and if you know fiction then you’ve probably guessed what happens in the book (and if you haven’t, then I’m saying nothing). And the ending is a little bit of a slap in the face for my tastes – but then I am aware that this is part of a series so I’m sure it will work itself out later.
Overall, I did enjoy this book as it had a book pace and some nice character development. And I think others that love vampire stories will to. Another bonus was that the vampires didn’t sparkle – which is always a good thing!
- Exciting pace and plot.
- Good characterisation.
- Interesting story behind the cross.
- The vampires don’t sparkle!
CONS (driving the stake):
- A few minor clichés and predictable plot twists.
- Wasn’t so keen on the ending.
The Silver Cross is a very good vampire story if you want something a little more than a standard romantic vampire story. There is plenty of romance in it of course, but there is plenty to satisfy those who want a little bit more action. I’d recommend this one for all you vampire lovers out there.
FINAL SCORE: 4/5