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Saturday, August 29, 2009

'Texas Vampires: TRILOGY' by Diane Whiteside




‘Bond of Blood’ - From the BLURB:

Former Spanish knight Don Raphael Perez has been a vampire for seven centuries, and is now the leader of the largest vampire territory in North America, spanning Texas and Oklahoma. But a rival is challenging his rule. Then he meets veterinarian Grania O'Malley, who's never felt the touch of a man. Raphael has sworn never to initiate a woman into the eternal pleasures of the flesh, but now it may be the only way to save her from his bloodthirsty adversary...

This is the first book in a trilogy called ‘Texas Vampires’. Each of the three books centres around the same event, told from a different perspective in each book. The event is a take-over being orchestrated by she-bitch Vampire Queen, Madame Celeste, who rules New Orleans but is trying to encroach on the Texas territory owned by Don Rafael Perez.

‘Bond of Blood’ (2006) is the first book and is told from Don Rafael Perez’s perspective. Don Rafael is an Alpha male to the nth degree – he was once a noble knight before being forced to become a vampire. Over seven centuries he has managed to build himself up and create a prosperous territory out of Texas, making him one of the most fearsome Vampire Kings.

‘Bond of Fire’ (2007) is the story of Don Rafael’s right-hand-man, Jean-Marie St. Just. Jean-Marie’s story centres on the one that got away – Helene D’agelet was a widower when she met Jean-Marie for the first time, and there was instant attraction. When the French Revolution put her in danger, Jean-Marie went searching for her to ensure her safety. Now, as the war between Don Rafael and Madame Celeste breaks out, Jean-Marie learns that his beloved was turned into a vampiress and he is determined to find and keep her once and for all.

‘Bond of Darkness’ (2008) tells Ethan Templeton’s story. Stephanie Darling, aka ‘Steve’, was Ethan’s lover for many years – she was aware of his vampiric nature, but wanted children, so ended the relationship to pursue her dreams of family with another (human) man. A couple of years later and Steve has left her cheating-ex and her Texas Ranger job has her inadvertently working with Don Rafael’s guard, Ethan, as a vampire invasion wreaks havoc on Steve’s town.

The story actually originates form a collection of Diane’s short stories released in 2001 called ‘The Hunter’s Prey’. The short stories are a collection of flashbacks from different time periods and the lives of Don Rafael, Jean-Marie and Ethan. It’s not imperative that you read ‘Hunter’s Prey’ to understand the trilogy, but if after reading the three books you still want more, I would highly recommend giving the short stories a go.

The Texas trilogy is described as being ‘paranormal romance’, but it is a hairs-breath away from erotica. The detailed plot probably saves it from being straight-up erotica, because this series is H-O-T! It is similar to JR Ward’s ‘Blackdagger Brotherhood’ with a dash of Gena Showalter’s ‘Lords of the Underworld’ thrown in. Diane Whiteside has a very distinct voice, and even the steamiest scenes are written absolutely beautifully with a real eye for detail.

It is a little bit frustrating that the three books are centred on one plot – even though the resolution doesn’t come until ‘Bond of Darkness’. The characters are so vivid and wonderful; it would have been great to read about them in new situations or even how their lives changed in the future. Regardless, the plot is entertaining and suspenseful, and Madame Celeste is one of the best bad-guys. And within each book there are flashbacks and recounts of the main male protagonists life before the events leading up to the Texas coup, which keeps things fresh.

I highly recommend this series. I completely stumbled across it by reading Amazon’s recommendations and it has become one of those series that I automatically urge other paranormal romance/urban fantasy fans to read.

It is very steamy and packed full of yummy Alpha male vampires – what more could you ask for?

5/5





1 comment:

  1. I have the first 2 books in this series on my tbr shelf. :)

    Great review. I'm glad to know you enjoyed this series.

    M

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