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*This novel was provided by the author via Book Lovin’ Bitches eBook Tours
For more information please visit Tina Folsom’s website.
Early 1800s - Venice Italy -
Isabella Tenderini, a wealthy merchant's widow rescues a stranger from drowning in one of Venice's canals. And how does the man repay her selfless act? By kissing her - her, a respectable woman.
Not only is Raphael di Santori grateful for his life being saved, he would also like to thank his rescuer very intimately - more intimately than decorum allows. But then, Raphael has never been one to play by the rules - as a vampire he doesn't have to.
Warning: This vampire novella is sexually more explicit than my other books. So, if you're a little squeamish about things like voyeurism and other sexual taboos, it's safe to assume you won't like this one.
Venice Vampyr, the first in a new series by Tina Folsom, is a marvelously steamy Paranormal Erotic Romance, heavy on the erotic! Love vampires? Love some hot sex? Well, then this book is definitely for you!
I must admit, I was a little shocked when I first started reading this novella by how well written it was. I don’t know why I expected it to be a little lacking, but that misconception was quickly dispatched from my thoughts, all worries laid to rest. I suppose it has something to do with the ‘historical romance’ stereotype I still have firmly lodged in my head despite reading some truly amazing stories. At any rate, this novel was wonderfully developed with a cursory glance at Venice that managed to capture the atmosphere of the 1800’s quite well. I would have liked to see a bit more development within this aspect of the novel, but that’s just me. I love for the worlds to come to life as somehow this helps to make the story somehow more vibrant.
The characters were definitely endearing. I loved Isabella’s fearlessness when it came to saving Raphael from drowning. This initial look at her really set a positive spin on all of my thoughts regarding her. Yet, when she comes to find the more passionate side of herself buried under the façade of propriety I could literally have done the happy dance. There’s just something about characters discovering themselves in this way that truly appeals. And Raphael! What a rake. I simply loved him. He’s wicked and oh so much fun. The chemistry between the two is excellent seeming to go way beyond the mere word ‘hot’. The trust that Isabella places within Raphael, seemingly without merit, was incredible and the very evident protective and tender feelings Raphael harbored towards her was compelling. Together, these two were beyond arousing as he pushed Isabella out of her comfort zones.
I also really enjoyed the original approach to vampires drowning. Something about that was pretty interesting going towards the evil can’t pass over running water myth. However, the vampire’s in Folsom’s world couldn’t be farther from evil if they tried. I’m willing to go as far as wicked, but who doesn’t enjoy a little wickedness in their men? I also really enjoyed the Guardians of the Running Water, or rather a group of people who hunt vampires and kill them by drowning. This was unique and I really would have liked to see this aspect explored a bit more.
That, however, can’t be said about the sex. Wow! Now that was wonderfully explored. Fair warning, there are some light D/s themes, one extremely hot bondage scene, one blazing hot voyeurism scene, and some anal play for both parties. And those of you who don’t like any M/M in your smut, rest easy because there’s none of that.
What I would have liked to see more of in this novel, would have been more exploration of the plot, or rather sub-plot of the vampires being hunted by the Guardians. I think this could have set a wonderfully mysterious tone adding some danger to the plot. While there is a bit with the nice climax of the novella, I just think this could have been built up a bit more. I also would have enjoyed seeing Raphael around his kind a bit more. We only briefly get a couple brief glimpses of his brother Dante, and I just really would have liked to see more interaction, especially regarding Dante’s suspicions about Isabella. I think that could have added some nice tension. However, that’s just my opinion and I have this bad habit of constantly wanting more, especially from good books! And this certainly falls into that category as I would have loved to spend more time getting inside the heads of these two wonderful characters.
Overall, this was a titillating read that was wonderfully written. The characters were endearing, the romance sizzling, and all in all this was just fun read. I will definitely be checking out more of Tina Folsom’s work and I can’t wait to read the next installment in the Venice Vampyr series, Final Affair!
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Scars