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"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?"
First things first; Sofia makes for a very likable heroine, which is good as the book features her POV in alternating chapters. She isn''t a coward, but she doesn''t wander around putting herself in a endless loop of dangerous situations and she knows when to back the hell away. She isn''t anyone''s doormat, but she realizes that sometimes she''ll be better off keeping silent. In other words she doesn''t irritate me by being a dumb, horror movie-like bimbo, whilst still having vulnerabilities to go with her backbone, so you''ll never be sure that she''ll walk away from the incoming disaster in one piece.
Sofia also manages to squeeze in a bit of romance. So if you like romantic angles in your books, the author has you covered. I don''t mind a bit of romance in my non-romance books - as long as it doesn''t start to distract from the main story and, I always go on about this I know, as long as we can avoid the usual cliques, e.g. love triangles. A SHADE OF VAMPIRE ticks all of those boxes for me, so it''s all good on that score.
The only compliant I can think is that I don''t like Ben, but that is down to my personal preference and has nothing to do with the actual writing. Hmmm; I also wish that that book was longer?
I think that A SHADE OF VAMPIRE successfully straddles the line between a young adult and adult book; the plot mixes drama, horror, action and romance together successfully, and the book is less then 200 pages long, so it makes a fast, engaging read - perfect for a lazy afternoon or a train/plane journey [the sequel is apparently twice the length of this book].
'I'd never felt more vulnerable than I did the moment Derek Novak's electric blue eyes settled on me. His gaze betrayed the thoughts roaming his mind. I was a lamb - a lamb ready for slaughter.'
An evening walk along the beach turns into a nightmare for seventeen year old Sofia Claremont when a strange man takes a liking to her. That's the last thing she remembers before she wakes up in chains; a slave on a island run by Vampires, where the sun never shines.
Although she's one of many human slaves, Sofia is chosen to join the harem of Derek Novak, the prince and ruler of the Vampires. She soon comes to realise that in Derek's presence is the safest place to be, but Derek's brother Lucas is determined that she will be his.
I actually entered a Goodreads giveaway for a copy of this book, and when I didn't win I was generously offered a free ebook copy in exchange for a review. Initially I thought that this book would feel very short and rushed, since it's quite short, but this couldn't be further from the truth. The plot is fast paced, but it's by no means rushed which I always enjoy in a book. I was hooked from the start by the strange world of the Vampires; the concept of Vampires having their own island completely void of sunlight is a new one for me, and it definitely added to my enjoyment of the story.
Sofia is a lovely character; she finds herself in this nightmare world run by creatures she thought were myths, and of course she's terrified. But Sofia is also very strong, she shows warmth and compassion towards the other girls in Derek's harem, giving them comfort when she's terrified for her own life. She tries to make the best of her situation, which is perhaps made a bit easier by the fact that Derek has a soft spot for her, but she is still very much in danger, especially from Lucas.
The story is told from the alternating point of view of Sofia and Derek, which I really enjoyed because I was able to see two sides of the story. By reading both of their thoughts in certain situations, I could see how they would interpret those situations differently, and I could also get a feel for how their relationship was growing from both of their thoughts.
Although this was a fairly short story, I wasn't left disappointed or confused at all. The concept was interesting and imaginative, and one I won't be forgetting about soon. It has a cliffhanger ending, which only makes me want to read the next one even more, and see what's in store for Sofia and Derek.
I'm very grateful to the Author, Bella Forrest, for the free e-copy of her book. There are four other books in this series; the next one is called 'A Shade of Blood' and I'm hoping to buy this one for myself soon.
ISBN 13: 9781481280761
Published: December 2012
Kindle Edition: £0.77 from Amazon
Paperback: From £2.00 from Amazon