Reviewed by Jackie, 4 out of 5 tombstones (that would be a GOOD thing, in case you're wondering)
The vampire nation, strong and sure, will reach an age of destruction. Food will be scarce and changelings will not survive. The vampire numbers will dwindle. With great magic a savior will take the good from the weres and give it to the vampires to stay their fall. It will make them strong and raise them from the dust. They will be called by a new name. As a phoenix rises from its own ashes, so shall the vampire (Ah, yes, this would be the prophecy part. Every book will have a new piece of the prophecy. Bound by Darkness is already written and will be released next August).
The moment Damien met Wolfrik Usher, he knew he was the Keeper, the prophesied savior of the vampire nation. How do you tell someone they are meant to be bitten by a werewolf so they can develop a way to help vampirekind? ("No, hold out your arm. Trust me on this. You're going to let this huge, hairy, snarling beast rip into your arm. The trick is getting you away before you are devoured. Ready? Go!")Ten years later, and Damien’s still trying to figure out the best way to do just that. In his defense, Damien has been a bit distracted. The mere sight, smell, or thought of Rik makes him harder than a brick wall(ouch. Try carrying that around in your pants. Poor sod). Again, Damien is met with a difficult question: how do you tell your completely heterosexual best friend that he just plain does it for you? And do you tell him that before or after the proclamation that he’s meant to be a savior to Damien’s people? Does Hallmark make a card for such occasions? (Roses are Red, Violets are blue, I'm just a dude, in love with you... hmm, good point. Such a card may not exist. Maybe Roses are sneeze-y, Violets would be better, If you don't mind a bloodsucker, check yes on this letter. No. Still nothing. Sigh.)
The romance between Rik and Damien was both sweet and poignant, even though their banter occasionally reminded me of a ‘70s porn—(OMG, I cannot express how much I LOVE that line. It has left me with strip music playing in my head since I read it. You must love a reviewer who is not only intelligent but has a fantastic sense of humor. I love, love, love this line, Jackie.)specifically the initial scene in the lab with Petra. Their single-sex relationship and the effects it had on both the werewolves and vampires was handled with much more grace than expected, refusing to go completely After School Special (*snort* "Gee Bobby, you didn't tell me you had two dads...")and instead tackling the importance of love, in whatever form it may take.
By far, my favorite aspect of this story was the voice. (La la la laaaaaaaa)The characters were multi-layered(rather like a good bean dip), the plot was well thought out, but it was the voice that lulled me in and captured my attention. The best example is found on the first page: “And the cycle would repeat. Throbbing music, soul-binding songs, swaying in a primal dance of barely concealed sexuality as one flitted from moment to moment, struggling to make his importance stick before that generation too was forgotten like mist under the blaze of morning sunlight.” (Did I write that? Huh. Actually, I feared to have over-dramatized. I'm glad I was wrong)The words flow like the music they describe, creating an emotion from touch and sound instead of relying on images, showing the author’s talent in just a few sentences (show don't tell. show don't tell. 'Tis a writer's mantra).
Overall Claimed by Darkness by Mia Watts was a hilarious (excellent), sexually charged novella that deserves 4 tombstones (Overall this review of Claimed by Darkness by Jackie at Bitten by Books is charming, fun, and a proud piece of art all on its own which deserves 5 tombstones. Seriously, it is that fantastic).
e-book, digital format
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Book Length: Short
To purchase an electronic copy of Claimed by Darkness click here.
I posted my thanks at the end of this review and found this comment after mine, this morning. I had to add it as I'm completely humbled yet pleased beyond measure to have such accolades.
Comment by Tessie Bradford — September 3, 2009 @ 6:40 pm
Claimed by Darkness absolutely rocked my world as both a reader and an author. Mia’s ability to create an intense, believable relationship between alpha males of different species immediately swept me into their story. I, too, was captured from the first page. I have re-read this book multiple times in an effort to learn from a master of the craft (No one tell her otherwise, please. She'll find out soon enough).