Series: Cassandra Palmer #1
Published by Ace/Roc
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Source: Purchased myself
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Cassandra Palmer can see the future and communicate with spirits;talents that make her attractive to the dead and the undead. The ghosts of the dead aren't usually dangerous; they just like to talk; a lot. The undead are another matter.
Like any sensible girl, Cassie tries to avoid vampires. But when the bloodsucking Mafioso she escaped three years ago finds Cassie again with vengeance on his mind, she's forced to turn to the vampire Senate for protection. The undead senators won't help her for nothing, and Cassie finds herself working with one of their most powerful members, a dangerously seductive master vampire—and the price he demands may be more than Cassie is willing to pay.
Rec for people who love: old-school sexy vampires, and heroines you would actually enjoy spending time with.
First Line: I knew I was in trouble as soon as I saw the obituary.
Thoughts: Once I got into Touch the Dark, I really enjoyed it. It has plenty of action, hot vampires and a solid plot. But it did take me a while. After an impressive showdown to start the book, we go through a lot of character introductions that, er, drag. It might not have been quite as noticeable if it hadn’t been for the fact that Chance is introducing us to people I felt I already knew. Being introduced to Cleopatra and Jack the Ripper would likely be a bit more interesting if they weren’t, you know, Cleopatra and Jack the Ripper.
Of course, Chance did make them into more than just caricatures. In fact, making Dracula’s brother one of the main characters actually ended up setting the book apart from the vamp lit that we are currently being inundated with. Unlike some authors who seem determined to turn vampires into aliens/demi-gods/sparkley dildos, Chance is not afraid to incorporate the vamp stereotype.
Moreover, Chance has a really identifiable heroine in Cassie Palmer. I honestly haven’t a single thing to complain about with her – and seeing how hard it is to write a leading-lady that reviewers don’t want to shoot, it’s a rather impressive feat. Cassie has had some seriously horrible stuff happen to her in her short life, but she is not so fixated on getting revenge/answers that she throws away all her sense of self-preservation. In fact, she is probably the least “too stupid to live” heroine I have read in a long time.
Overall, I really did enjoy Touch the Dark. It was another keep-you-up novel with lots of action and a well-crafted plot. The slight romantic element actually got rather explicit without turning Cassie into a slut, or even dominating the plot – keeping the book very firmly out of the Paranormal Romance Genre. I am definitely getting the next three books in the series.
- LoveVampires gave it five stars.
- Jo at Ink and Paper had trouble getting into the book, but liked it when she did.
- Literary Escapism recommends it for Anita Blake fans.
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Great review! Cassie sounds like a great heroine and, all-in-all, this sounds like my kind of book. Now I have to hunt it down. 🙂
@Jess – You really should – a great heroine is hard to find!
Ah, I had that same problem when I fist found this book awhile back. It started slow but then really got moving. I enjoyed the books that follow it, but somehow they weren’t as thrilling as the first.
LMAO! Vamps = Sparkly dildos! That just cracked me up. A lot of authors do seem to use them in such a manner though. Hamilton is especially bad about that. Which is really disappointing because initially that series kicked butt. Then there are the series where the vampires might as well be humans wearing plastic fangs for all the effort that is put into making them believable.
@Joana – lol The Sparkle!Vamp is having a pretty good run at things at the moment! Personally, I don’t mind it if you sleep with a vampire – so long as you acknowledge the fact that vamps are terrifying.
Everyone tells me that Hamilton really drags down her Anita books – but I remain optimistic that the “Dead End” signs are only there for… decoration. < / denial >