Max just wanted to have a night out with her cousin and go home. As a plus sized lass she didn’t fit in amongst the tiny blonde gazelles, but protecting her cousin from a perv in the alley changed her fate. In a moment of self preservation when a man started chewing on her neck, she bit the hand over her mouth, setting a paranormal chemical reaction into play. Now that she is infected with his blood, he either needs to turn her or destroy her. The vampire tribunal chips in with an option for Max. She can rescue their kidnapped Guild Master, and he will decide her fate. Sounds like the best deal of the evening
Oh how I wanted to like this novella. The premise sounded perfect for me: a plus sized heroine, accidentally having been infected with vampirism but never actually fully “turned”, is given the chance to save herself by going places where turned vampires can’t go and rescuing their missing Guild Master. Sounds great, right?
Unfortunately, rather than reading like a completely fleshed out story, this reads much more like a quick outline for a novel.
What worked for me:
- The premise.
What didn’t work for me:
- The writing style was very amateur, unfortunately. Everything happened so very quickly, but rather than give this a feel of adrenaline pumping action, it merely felt like the author couldn’t be bothered to actually flesh out any of the ideas. There were several parts that had the potential to be incredibly action-packed and attention-grabbing, but were instead very quickly glossed over to move on to the next point of action.
- Max was way too accepting of not only the existence of vampires, but the fact that she’d been infected by one. A sane person with no background in the paranormal world would not just accept all of this without at least a moment of panic and mental rejection while they tried to make sense of the fact that their reality had just been completely destroyed. Had Ms. Grace given her some sort of history that would’ve made her aware of the existence of paranormal creatures, this would’ve been much more believable.
- The Guild Master had been missing for two months, which is also conveniently the amount of time that he can go without feeding by the way, and yet the vampires wait until this puny little human is brought before them to decide to finally send someone after him. Sure, the argument could be made that due to political reasons, the vampires didn’t actually want him to be rescued and saw this as an opportunity to get rid of Max without getting their hands dirty.
- Max, who throughout the story had been comparing herself to “fashionably thin” women with comments such as feeling like a moose amongst gazelles, is suddenly completely comfortable with being completely naked save for latex body paint and performing in front of a crowd at Burning Man. Right.
There are unfortunately many more points where actions and behaviors felt out of character for Max, and the overwhelming sense that I was reading the outline for a novel rather than a complete novella completely ruined it for me.
Viola Grace has said, both in the author’s notes and elsewhere, that this novella was and is intended to become a full-length novel. I truly wish that she had taken the time to complete the novel before publishing this incomplete work. As harsh as it may sound, I can only be thankful that I bought it on sale.
2/5 Stars, and it’s only that high because I think the premise has potential.