A Kiss of Blood by Pamela Palmer
Series: Vamp City #2
Published by Avon
Published on: June 25, 2013
Genres: Urban Fantasy
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Only one woman can save vamp city . . .
One of the few humans who managed to escape the deadly twilight world of Vamp City, Quinn Lennox vows never to return. But the vampires want her back, for only she has the power to renew the magic of their crumbling world and free the vampires trapped within.
When the dangerous and all-too-seductive Arturo Mazza comes for her, Quinn knows she can never trust him after the betrayal she suffered at his hands. But with her beloved brother's fate hanging in the balance, and her own power beginning to emerge, she chooses to risk all on yet another perilous journey back to Vamp City. And though she tries to deny it, her heart begins to hold hope that even a ruthless vampire can learn the meaning of true love . . .
The first installment in this series was a little too dark for my tastes so I was reluctant to continue reading. I’m all for gore but rape and abusive relationships are just not things that I want in my fantasy world. However, upon hearing that the love interest was supposed to grow over the course of five books I rationalized that the 2nd novel couldn’t possibly be any darker than the first. Right? As luck would have it, my theory proved true. Quinn and Arturo actually work together in A Kiss of Blood and, she doesn’t get captured or tortured once! I enjoyed the world-building, Pamela Palmer’s supes are unique and complex; the plot’s life-or-death urgency is gripping and the character development is most definitely impressive. I didn’t like how this series began but I do like where it’s headed.
I was grateful that Palmer revisited many of the key components that make up her Vamp City universe because I needed a refresher on the differences between Emora and Ripper vamps, who’s affected by VC’s magic, and the various feeder types. There are definitely a lot of rules in this world but that’s also part of its appeal. The plot’s fast paced and has a prevalent sense of impending doom which makes the book difficult to put down. Vamp City and Zack’s life are both on the line so everyone has something to lose. Quinn and Arturo’s priorities do clash at times but overall they are a team and I couldn’t be happier. I don’t expect the main couple’s relationship to be obstacle free but I do expect them to not stab each other in the back. I’m just sayin’.
Arturo apologizes countless times to Quinn for his actions in A Blood Seduction which I found appropriate considering the level of douchebag-ness he demonstrated in the first installment. Not only does he have to earn her forgiveness but many readers’ as well I suspect, including mine. He made great strides but there is still more work to be done. I’ve really enjoyed Quinn’s progression as a character so far; I can understand Palmer wanting her to hit rock bottom before her upward climb to heroine status began but the way she actually did it still doesn’t sit right with me. That being said, Quinn’s come a long way in two books and I for one can’t wait to see her kick some vampire ass!
There’s an interesting little side story developing with Lily and her mysterious vamp savior (?) and I look forward to learning more. The ending was a tad rushed in my opinion but as a whole this book satisfied my Urban Fantasy needs. A Kiss of Blood packs a powerful punch of blood, sex and violence that you won’t want to miss.