Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Drop Of Red - Chris Marie Green

A Drop Of Red
Vampire Babylon – Book 4
Chris Marie Green

Urban Fantasy/Vampire

Note: Background for this book will necessarily spoil some of the outcome of the previous book (BREAK OF DAWN) that ended the author’s first trilogy. Proceed at your own risk.

This is the first book in a new trilogy. For readers who are new to the series, this is an excellent place to start. Most of the characters carry over from the first trilogy, set in Hollywood. Now the team has moved to London, and learning a new place, searching for a new Underground (vampire nest) is a great way to acclimate new readers. There’s enough background given to understand the characters and their situations, without rehashing the first three books.

Dawn Madison, stuntwoman-turned-vampire hunter-turned-vampire-turned human, and her team moved to England after the battle that ended the last book (BREAK OF DAWN.) They’re looking for a new vampire Underground to destroy. When they meet Natalia Petri, a Romani who can sometimes hear the dead speak, it’s both a blessing and a curse. With Natalia’s help, they’re able to locate some recently buried human remains. But Dawn, not the trusting sort, isn’t sure of Natalia’s motives. The group’s resident psychic, Kiko, takes Natalia’s presence as something of a threat, and works to improve his game.

Meanwhile, at an exclusive boarding school, the Queen Bees have quite a big secret. Although they can walk in daylight, they’ve been turned. Their mentor, nicknamed Wolfie, seems like an aging rock star to them. To the hunters, he may be something much more important.

This novel starts out with a scene involving the new vampires, and the pace continues to be fairly steady after that. Dawn is still learning to control/use her newfound abilities. Costin is still fighting the good fight, even with his new disadvantages. The rest of the team is still feeling their way after their exit from the US. For my money, the relationship between Dawn and Costin/Jonah is far less inherently interesting than the search for the local vampires. That may be because I didn’t follow them through the first trilogy. The mythos presented here is quite interesting, and the book is left open-ended. This is clearly intentional, since the next book is due this summer. I’ll be waiting.

Rating: 7 ½
March 2009
ISBN# 978-0-441-01681-5 (trade paperback)


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