BONDED BY BLOOD
By Laurie London
When Mackenzie Foster-Shaw spots an odd clump of leaves in a country cemetary while out photographing possible film location sites in the Seattle area, she is about to have her life changed in radical ways.
Hiding in those leaves after suffering a gunshot wound is Dominic Serranto. He's not only a powerful vampire, he's also a take-no-prisoners Guardian in an endless battle against those of his kind who prey on humans.
Although Dom doesn't often feed from humans, he's been badly hurt and needs blood. Now. What he doesn't expect is that the only human for miles around is a Sweetblood, whose addictive blood has highly restorative powers for vampires. What he also doesn't expect is that he will be able to pull back, to save her life, and that despite his belief such ties were a myth, he can now share this human's thoughts and feelings. He is bonded to her.
When Dom arranges a way to meet Kenzie in normal life, she doesn't understand this attraction any more than she understands why members of her family have disappeared over the generations. Both this attraction and her family's curse are tied to her sweet blood.
In Laurie London's debut Sweetbloods series novel, the way that Mackenzie's and Dom's destinies intersect is an integral part of the world of vampires and Sweetbloods. The world in which Dom's vampires exist with humans is revealed so well that the reader's disbelief is never in danger of losing its suspension. Instead, it's easy to be swept into the intense romance of Kenzie and Dom. These two perhaps can't help themselves -- after all, her blood is a narcotic to him and he is a charismatic vampire. But their desperate emotions as they struggle to come to terms with their feelings is portrayed vividly. Kenzie doesn't know vampires exist, so she doesn't know there is an extra layer that explains why their hearts seem to beat as one. Dom has family sorrows of his own and has sought to be a loner. So the idea that he is bonded to someone, let alone a human, is, at best, highly irritating and gets in the way of his work.
Dom is not the only vampire who seeks sweetblood, so of course Kenzie is in great danger. This danger ties together not only the new lovers' struggle to be together despite their misgivings, it also brings into the story her family's tragic history, Dom's quest to avenge his family and his organization's most important battle yet.
The hero and heroine in London's first novel are impassioned, engaging and could carry several stories. Secondary characters are brought into the story as potential leads in more Sweetblood novels and, based on their brief appearances, will be more than capable of holding their own in future volumes.
This is solid, exciting and passionate erotic romance with a full-bodied story, compelling characters and the promise of more to come.
©2011 All Rights Reserved CompuServe Books Reviews and reprinted by permission
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