Vampires in Vegas! Why hasn’t anyone thought of this yet and if they did, why haven’t I heard anything? The premise had almost everything I love in a book: vamps, humor and hot lovin’. I hoped and prayed this would be a winner but it wasn’t. Erin McCarthy just didn’t pull through this time around, but not without a good try.
I’ll premise this by saying I love Erin McCarthy. She’s not just an auto-by with me. She’s a check-website-daily-for-new-books-and-pub-dates kind of author. I’ve read her entire backlist minus the anthologies and loved them all. She has an ability to combine humor, sex, and sentiment that are above the norm. When I heard she was delving into vamps I grew very excited. I hoped. I prayed…
The first scene had potential. Ethan Carrick, Master Vampire and President of the Vampire Nation, is contemplating the importance of good dental hygiene when he decides to make his cute dentist his First Lady. It’s a reelection year and he needs to knock his bad boy image. I also helps that Brittany, the dentist, is half vamp even if she doesn’t know it. It will look good for voters. After convincing Brittany – in the normal hypnotizing vampire way – to stay at Carrick’s casino in order to do the campaign thing, Brittany’s older sister, Alexis, comes to her rescue thinking she being held hostage.
I liked Alexis for the most part of the book. She’s a tough, albeit small, county prosecutor who doesn’t take any bull from anyone. She meets Ethan while attempting her sister’s rescue and sparks fly. She tries to beat him up with her immense knowledge of martial arts, but Ethan is immortal and can take a beating. The first time this happened I was amused. The frequent punching, kicking and Hi-Ya’ing after that grew a little old.
Ethan, sensing that Alexis isn’t going to back down offers her a compromise: stay in your sister’s place for one week and Brittany can leave. Easy enough to play a hot guy’s girlfriend for a week to save her sister (who didn’t want to be saved. She wanted to save the souls of the vamps of the world). Once the pair is together as a “couple”, it turned a bit boring. The loves scenes were great as they always are with Erin McCarthy, but I was missing the sentiment, the emotion of the story.
What worked: The humor and dialogue is great. The author, even when talking about a Vampire version of The West Wing, has the ability to incorporate realistic conversations.
What didn’t work: This list is a bit longer. The secondary romance (if that’s what you would call it) between Brittany and a banished French vamp is rather dumb. I think the author was setting up another book with this couple. I didn’t like either character so I’m not sure if I’d be interested in reading that.
Ethan has a few good internal thoughts, quite witty at times, but came off rather shallow and flat. He has a strong foundation for a strong character, but that never came to fruition.
My biggest quibble is with the setting. This story could have easily been told from Washington, D.C. and it wouldn’t have changed much except Ethan’s source of income. The great Vegas setting is hardly touched upon besides a few mentions of card tables, slots, and a Tom Jones concert. It was a great setting that was wasted on too much vampire politics.
Okay, maybe that wasn’t my biggest quibble. The ending was atrocious. I know the author is doing a whole series about these Vegas vamps, but I don’t see why she would leave so many loose ends. I thought my copy of the book was missing a chapter.
The humor, dialogue, and loves scenes made this an average read considering the flaws. Unfortunately it wasn’t up to Erin McCarthy standards and I would gladly re-read anything from her backlist before this one.