Author: Adrian Phoenix
Genre: Urban fantasy
Pages: Paperback, 479
Opening Lines: "The sweet, cloying odor of blood and honey-suckle hung in the rain-misted courtyard like rancid smoke."
His name is Dante.
Dark. Talented. Beautiful. Star if the rock band Inferno. Rumored owner of the hot New Orleans nightspot Club Hell. Born of the Blood, then broken by an evil beyond imagination.
"Tracking a sadistic serial murder has led FBI Special Agent Heather Wallace to New Orleans, Club Hell, and the man known as Dante. But the dangerously attractive musician not only resists her investigation, he claims to be 'nightkind'; in other words, a vampire. Digging into his past reveals an extensive juvenile record, but no known birth date or social security number. In and out of foster homes for most of his life, he was eventually take in by an equally mysterious man named Lucien De Noir, who tries to shield his ward from Heather's investigation. Heather is sure; however, that Dante is linked to the murderer -- and could be the next target. Now, she must unravel the truth about this sensual, complicated, vulnerable young man -- who, she begins to believe, truly is a vampire -- in order to bring the killer to justice. but what Heather doesn't know is that Dante's past holds a shocking, dangerous secret and once it is revealed not even she will be able to protect him from his destiny . . ."~ Jacket copy
Thoughts: Reading the first few sentences of the book caught my attention like none other. I really go for the murder-mystery, serial killer type books. Something about them -- and the psychology of a serial killer -- has always caught my attention. So, knowing the vampire element, this book was right up my alley!
The book start up during a three year investigation following the Cross-Country Killer (CCK). Heather Wallace has been tracking his movement since Seattle, and she is bound a determined to end his killing spree. His latest victim has brought her all the way to New Orleans. However, unlike his previous murderers, this time he has left a calling card. It appears as though he is trying to communicate with someone . . . Not her. After researching Club Hell, the neighboring location of the first kill, Heather decides that, somehow, Dante is connected with the CCK. However, once she spends time with the local rock-god, she decides that it is more likely that the CCK is targeting him. As the story develops, the reader is thrown into a secret FBI coup, cover-ups, and murder. Not to mention that the occasional supernatural is thrown in the mix (*cough* vampires and fallen angels!).
This book was really intriguing! To me, Dante was the typical broody, goth musician. In other words, this century's Byronic Hero. It wasn't surprising that our main character was drawn to him, but I felt that Phoenix did a good job starting to flesh him out. However, the abuse her endured in foster care was very, very hard for me to read. Having many friends abused in the foster system drove that whole part story home. But it explains how Dante came to the point he did.
Being the weird, dark person I am, I really liked E. Granted, he was a bit much of a sexual sadist to me, but I felt Phoenix did a lot of thinking to fully get into the mind of a serial killer. Viewing himself as a god, seeing a visible connection between himself and his victims, and liking to read to them was a nice touch! It made him feel unique.
Getting to the fallen angels, I loved how the wings tuck into their back! Aside from the possible glamour, I always wondered how an angel could walk around without getting unwanted attention over their wings! That was a neat solution!
All in all, I really enjoyed the book! However, it took be awhile to get through. It didn't lack on plot, had a great pace, and it was a page turner. For some reason, I think my reading slowed down over this week. Either way, loved it!
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Currently: Ghost Walk by Brian Keene
Current Pages: 17347