Disclaimer: A review copy was provided by Netgalley and the publisher for an honest review. No other remuneration was received.
Book Title: HAVE A BITE
Series: The Vampires of Brooklyn Chronicles
Publisher: Ylva Publishing
Category: Romance, LGBTQIA
Author’s Website: https://rgemanuelle.com/
Find It: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | KoboKobo | Indie Bound
Source: Review copy provided by NetGalley, ebook format
4 Batty Moons!
The world of vampires is, by nature, one of darkness, secrecy, and covertness. Vampires are invincible. No one can hurt them. Except vampire hunters.
Delphine Bouchard is a celebrity chef and owner of a world-renowned restaurant in Brooklyn, NY, where the chic and elite crowd mingle with neighborhood denizens. She enjoys fame, money, and women, and lives life by her own rules. She also happens to be a vampire.
Del’s life and the local vampire community are rocked when a vampire hunter begins picking them off, and Del has reason to believe that she might be next. Del is also being watched and criticized by the vampire hive council and persecuted by a coven of witches, who are the enforcers of behavior for the supernatural set. In the midst of all this turmoil, Del meets and unexpectedly falls hard for Jocelyn, who she soon discovers is holding back a disturbing secret. Del must decide whether or not to put aside her feelings of betrayal and pursue the relationship.
Meanwhile, when a food critic with a grudge sets out to ruin her business and reputation, Del has to protect her staff and restaurant. But the situation spirals out of control when a human shows up dead, her restaurant is sabotaged, and Jocelyn is threatened. Del must save her business, protect her loved ones, and find out who the vampire killer is before she is the next victim.
Set against a backdrop of elaborate meals and passionate cooking, Have a Bite is book one in the novella series The Vampires of Brooklyn Chronicles. The world of vampires and hunters meets the world of restaurants, foodies, and celebrity chefs—a recipe for paranormal mystery seasoned with suspense, peppered with romance, and flavored with a dash of humor.
READ ON FOR MY REVIEW!
I’m not one of those people who complains that vampires are played out, obviously. I loved bloodsuckers long before they were hot (many, MANY moons ago, around the time we Americans were celebrating our country’s bicentennial… you do the math), and I can’t imagine the love ever going away.
That’s not to say there isn’t a whole lot of vampire fiction out there that reads like it came off the same printer, like the authors just grab the handy “Vampire Mad Libs*” book and fill in their “unique” ideas. It’s an issue. As is quality. Luckily, now that the Twitlight mania is wearing off, the avalanche of vampire crap is definitely starting to slow (at least in adult fiction, I don’t read YA, so I couldn’t speak about that).
STILL, there aren’t a lot of truly fresh vampire stories coming out these days. HAVE A BITE definitely does not suffer from that affliction.
To begin with, this has to be the most unique backdrop for a vampire story I can remember reading in… well, I can’t remember anything quite this unique since the days when you walked into a book store and only find about 10 vampire stories, most of which were either horror or Anne Rice. Our heroine, Delphine, is a world-famous chef with an uber-popular French fusion, goth-modern themed restaurant in Brooklyn, NY. Her history is slowly revealed through the book, mostly through her experiences with cooking and food. For someone who survives through a freezer, a microwave, and a pile of take-out menus, it’s actually sort of fascinating. Reading about Delphine’s love of food is like being a dog and watching a cat’s love of crunching itself into bitty boxes. Or something like that, anyway. It’s utterly foreign to me. I resent the time it takes for water to boil or the oven to preheat when I want to make french fries.
Delphine’s restaurant, Vie Sang (see what she did there?), is the place to be for the swanky and famous in Brooklyn, and Delphine has built a staff that she truly considers family to help with her spectacular creations. She loves her un-life, the artistry of cooking, the beautiful women she meets and feeds from (who volunteer. And it is HOT. I’ve got a serious fictional vampire bit fetish, and these were some great ones!), and her motley group of friends. It’s so well drawn that it feels real–an unusual circumstance in paranormal fiction. You half expect that if I walked down the streets of Brooklyn, I’d run into Delphine’s restaurant.
Not that I’d be able to get a table…
I couldn’t sit down and read this straight through the way I would have liked to: trapped between a massive freelance project and a short story for a charity anthology to raise money for Pulse victims & families, I was forced to “take breaks” to read HAVE A BITE. Some of them lasted much longer than the 5 or 10 minutes I “allowed” myself. Heh. That’s a good sign, and does indeed indicate what I felt about this story.
It’s full of some of my favorite things: vampires & witches, intrigue, mystery, steamy romance, and best of all, paranormal politics! My only complaint (as so often happens with short books that grab and hold my attention) was that there wasn’t enough of it!
If you’d like a taste (see what I did there?) of something a little different from paranormal fiction, I have to recommend HAVE A BITE. I can’t wait for the next story in the series!
I’m giving it 4 happy happy batty moons!
For what I’m sure is an entire generation–maybe two–that has no clue what Mad Libs are, you don’t know what you’re missing. You NEED to check them out! They’re entertaining for every age group… it all depends how you play.