Friday, February 7, 2014

Night's Promise by Amanda Ashley

The Basics:
Night's Promise by Amanda Ashley
Book Six of Children of the Night
Paranormal Romance
Published February 4, 2014
Source: Received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Why I picked up this book:

Honestly, I recognized the author's name, and combined with the cover image, thought she was one of those collection of authors who write really good historical romances. At some point, the fact this was a paranormal romance did register, but since I'm a fan of those too, I figured this would be a great fit.


For beautiful heiress Sheree West, vampires are more than a fantasy. They are an obsession. Night after night, she dresses in black and immerses herself in L.A.'s goth club scene. Searching for a lover who is more than a man. A creature of the dark who lusts for her blood. A legend who lives in the shadows and not just her dreams. Then, one fateful night, she meets him. . .

Derek Blackwood is no ordinary vampire. Descended from a bloodline as old as Cleopatra, and blessed with unearthly powers of seduction, he is everything Sheree wished for--and more. When he takes her in his arms, she is powerless. When he kisses her neck, she is his. But when the full moon rises--and passions flare--something is unleashed in Derek that he's never felt before. Something wild. Something dangerous. Something no vampire can control or stop. . .even for the woman he loves.

My thoughts:

Night's Promise is a light, fluffy paranormal romance. It was the first book I've read in the series, though not my first book by this author (a fact I didn't realize until I was about half-way through the novel.)

Sadly, this book drove me crazy. 

The story itself was so meandering - because the heroine already semi-believed in vampires and there was insta-chemistry between her and the vampire-hero, there wasn't room for a lot of obvious conflict between the two of them (though she did show some intelligence by feeling a little nervous about the vampirism thing once she learned it was real). Everything that happened was over too quickly - for example, Derek began to worry about seeing Sheree as prey, when he had numerous examples of male vampires who had gotten involved with mortal women. 

We also get a collection of vampire hunters who, I think, have made appearances in previous books in the series, as well as two elderly vampire-women who were sidekicks to a villain who kidnapped the hero when he was a baby.

And, oh yeah, the latent gene that Derek's inherited from his father seems to be kicking in, which is a *big* deal.

I'm sure a fan of the series will be thrilled to get a big dose of Mara and Logan, but it was frustrating for me because I wanted to read about Derek and Sheree.  I also thought that though Mara was very protective of Derek, their conversations together didn't feel very mother-son-like. A product of being a vampire? Other things about this character bugged me - for the first half of the book, a good 75% of scenes she was in ended with her and Logan distracting each other with sex. Also, I found her Queen of the Vampires thing a little annoying in that having no weaknesses (other than love of children/husband) is a little... boring?

Also, Sheree struck me as pretty useless - she comes from money, acknowledges she has no skills, and goes out to California trying to find a vampire. She spends her days shopping and...?  I don't know. She seems like a good person, just one who doesn' contribute much to the world around her.

Ultimately, the story felt very thin and a lot of it didn't seem quite logical to me. I just couldn't get into it, though I did stick it out to the very last page.

Bottom line:

I could not get into this book. I found the story repetitive and weak - decisions were made and then unmade or immediately rendered unnecessary. The convening of various villains or sidekicks from previous stories was  too convenient and cluttered the story with material that detracted from the central romance. I found the main characters too superficial to engage with, much to my disappointment as that might have saved the book for me. 

In my opinion, you should avoid this one unless you're already an Ashley fan. That said, your reading experience can and will vary. If you're looking for light and fluffy, this might be perfect for you!

1.5 stars
For fans of Amanda Ashley.

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