Ever since an accident turned her into a knockout vamp, Elvi Black’s been catching her z’s in a coffin, staying out of the sun, and giving up garlic. She knows there’s more to being undead than what she saw in Dracula, but she can’t very well ask her mortal friends about proper biting etiquette. But when her neighbors placed a personal ad for her in the local paper, she never imagined she’d meet Victor Argeneau, a vampire who could have his pick of any woman, dead or alive.
Rich, powerful, and drop—dead gorgeous, Victor’s the perfect man for a novice neck—biter like Elvi. He’s willing to teach her everything he knows, but he’ll have to do it fast. Someone’s out to put a stake through her new vamp life, and only Victor can keep her safe and satisfied for all eternity.
This book is seventh in the Argeneau series, but Ms. Sands has been kind enough to write each book as a stand alone. There are reoccurring characters but you do not need to read entire series, or even in order, to get what’s going on. Of all of the books I read in this series, this one stood out for me. Find out why, after the jump.
To begin, I’ll fill you in on Lynsay Sand’s version of a vampire since they are not at all traditional. (No, they don’t sparkle. *grins*) These are not so much vampires as immortals. Okay, this may sound a little cheesy but bear with me. These “immortals” are actually descendents of the people of Atlantis. Apparently, their technology exceeded ours and they had created these ‘nanos’ that were injected into the body. They keep the hosts body at a peak age (mid-twenties) and keep it in top shape. However, to do this the nanos require more blood than the hosts body can supply so they need to drink blood to survive…hence the development of fangs, and the downward spiral into vampire mythology. They can still go out in sunlight, though the suns damaging rays makes the nano’s work harder, therefore requiring more blood, so they tend to avoid it. They can also eat and drink as usual and bear children. They do keep their existence a secret and have set up a council with enforcers who ensure that all Immortals play by the rules. So, kinda cool but kinda cheesy. That’s okay though, it’s fiction. Right?
Once upon a time, Elvi Black was a 60-ish year old widow who went to Mexico on vacation. A bus accident later, she wakes up looking over 40 years younger and a thirst for blood. Somehow, she became a vampire. After living in Port Henry her whole life, she couldn’t hide her new condition and astonishingly, the community accepts what she has become and stands by her. So for five years, she sleeps in a coffin, doesn’t eat any food and takes down all of the mirrors in her house. After all, that’s how Dracula lived, right?
Mabel, Elvi’s 62 year old best friend, as well as others, are concerned about Elvi. They are continuing to age and one day they won’t be around to keep her company and protect her. They decide she needs a companion and place a personal ad in the paper on her behalf seeking single male vampires. Wouldn’t you know it…six men actually respond to the add and show up in Port Henry. Four of them happen to be Immortals.
One of whom is Victor Argeneau. A 2000 year old immortal who works for the council as an enforcer. He is sent to the small town of Port Henry in Ontario to investigate rumors of a female living openly as a vampire, and who is also drawing attention by placing ads for a vampire mate. So Victor answers the ad, discovering that he is one of six males who are all staying at Elvi’s Bed & Breakfast, vying for her hand.
Against his better judgement, Victor is drawn to this quirky female. He quickly finds out that she has no clue what she actually is, and is living her immortal life through vampire folklore. She is not breaking any laws if she is not aware of what they are…she has never met another vampire to teach her. Victor finds out just how clueless she is…
“We can eat?” Elvi echoed faintly. It was really the only thing he’d said that stuck in her head. “I can eat?”
“You didn’t know?” DJ asked, his teeth now back in place.
“Dracula never ate,” Mabel pointed out, confusion and concern on her face as she peered at Elvi.
“Dracula is a fictional character,” Victor said dryly.
Don’t let the funny fool you though. There are some seriously steamy moments in this book. One thing Sands is good at are the schmexy times. If you read the rest of the Argeneau series, you will find much of the same in each book. I found this particular pairing very sweet. Here you have a serious, 2000 year old plus Immortal who kills rogue Immortals for a living. Who does he end up mating? A female who has been living like Dracula the past five years. He can teach her all she needs to know about her new life, and she can teach him to lighten up a little. Perfect fit if you ask me.
There were so many humourous and endearing moments in this book. You have to wonder at times, how dense poor Elvi is…but really. She was over 60 when she became a ‘vampire’ and has lived in a small Canadian town all of her life. It’s no wonder she didn’t look further than her back yard for answers. I just took this book in the spirit in which it was written. The rest of the series is much more stoic, and this book was a break from that. I thought it was very clever of Sands to take the subject of vampires and poke fun at it. Who doesn’t enjoy a campy spoof once in awhile? Try it, and I dare you not to laugh.