Thursday, December 27, 2007

REVIEW: ERedSage: Blood Game by Rae Monet

In a perfect world we could check out presses by buying some of their work, but with sixty or more of them out there that would get expensive fast. So the best I can do is offer my opinion of a book from as many presses as choose to send me a review copy. The invitation remains open, especially to new epresses or electronic imprints. Of course after reading this they may think better of it!

Blood Squad 2: Blood Game
Rae Monet

The core story is that vampire Byron is taken by the enemy (a rebel vampire clan). He hides from the torture in his own dream world until Sara Weston uses a device so she can meet him on the astroplane. After he recovers she goes into hiding, sure that a gorgeous vampire will not be interested in a wheelchair-bound woman. After being an evil vampire’s lab rat Byron has a few problems of his own. 'Blood Game' is a good length at around 40,000 words. The cover is a typical male torso but they digitally added tattoo isn’t even close to the one Byron is described as having. The writing is easy to read, the romance story moves along smoothly with two clearly drawn characters go through the usual throes of mutual misunderstanding before finding true love and multiple orgasms.

It may be because I did not read the first in the series but the setting, one-hundred years in the future seems superficial, sometimes painfully so. Vampires live underground, human up top, but nothing is said about how this is achieved. Technology seems the same as now but unnecessarily renamed (Bluetooth is an autointerface, hypodermics are autoinjectors and traffic tickets are… autotickets—the future, apparently, is automatic). Add to this blasters, turbocycles, vidmovies and helocopters and the future also sounds decidedly retro. This might not have bothered me quite so much without the three page glossary, mainly covering words not used in the book, and in no way necessary unless you are the kind of reader who needs gems like “Organics=Vegetables grown without pesticides” and “Android=Mechanical android programmed in whatever capac¬ity they are needed.” And unfortunately I was equally irritated by the pseudo-science such as “massive irregular heart arrhythmia” and the idea that a vague sort of numb paralysis of the legs, and no other symptoms, could be caused by a virus entering the eye and destroying 60% of a person’s myelin.

But enough of that.

'Blood Game' is a professionally presented and serviceable paranormal romance with sex at the appropriate place in the relationship and two flawed people who truly seem to need each other. It is a competent book but not, for me, a keeper. To be fair I have a preference for science and disability being portrayed accurately and alphas that don’t go as far as stalking and throwing things around the room. Your mileage may vary. I feel this books is let down by plotting and world-building that is sketchy and, in places, implausible. In keeping with my general feeling of benign confusion the first book in this series is going to be available not at eRedSage, but at Cerridwen Press—both are due to be released in January.


Rae Monet said...

Ouch. Well, not ever book is for every person. Thanks for taking the time to review Blood Game. I'm hopeful others will enjoy the book.

veinglory said...

I hope so too. I actaully did enjoy reading the book. And maybe my idea of science and future tech is just not on the same page as yours. Book reviews are subjective things :)

p.s. I shoudl have mentioned that the first sex scene was sizzling and not too early in the relationship like many are in erotic romance these days IMHO.

Rae Monet said...

Well I'm glad there was tiny bit of enjoyment there in it for you--of that--I'm happy:). I'm the first to admit... I'm a character driven writer, which sometimes means, the world building will suffer. And yes, you're correct, reading Sangerian Rose first (the first book in the Blood Squad Series) probably would have given you a way better sense of the world (ALL those glossary terms are used in that book, LOL, not that it would have helped). It's a full length novel, but it's not an erotic, hence the reason why it was placed with another publisher. But thanks again, for carving out time to read Blood Game and sharing your honest opinion of the book. Like you said, it's always subjective, and I certainly understand when one book stands out for one person more than another. Before I started writing, I was (and still am) a reader :) and have had very similar emotions around certain books that others might not have.