Have you ever wondered what would happen if Dracula and Frankenstein were to meet? Apparently, Jeaniene Frost did. As such, she created a love story with Dracula and a young woman with powers similar to Frankenstein and threw them together to see what would happen.
Vlad Tepesh is Dracula. The very same one who is in all the books and movies. He is still living in Romania and owns whole towns over there. But given his past, it is no surprise that he has quite a few enemies stored up. When one of his enemies captures Leila “Frankie” Dalton, he doesn’t realize what he really has, but he knows that Leila’s powers can be the key to destroying Vlad. If only she would side with him.
But Leila isn’t about to let someone else decide what is best for her, especially when she knows he plans to kill her. She was injured in an accident as a teenager and now, in addition to having a big scar from her chin to her wrist, she can conduct electricity and is able to see the past, present, and future of a person just through contact with them or something they touched. Though she could corner Vlad for his enemies, Leila uses her power to contact Vlad himself and get his assistance. When the two pair up to go after Vlad’s mortal enemy, they are a hard combination to defeat.
There were two things that brought this book down for me. For one thing, there is an unwritten rule in paranormal romances. Either the events take place in a world where the mortals all know about the immortals/vamps/shifter, etc. or the mortals are oblivious to what is happening around them. Rarely is it a mix of both. This book is an example of why that is. Here, while the heroine was well aware that there were vampires out there and that some were good and bad, her family wasn’t. This, to me, was a cop out for the writer. The heroine was able to roll with the punches and that made it easy to advance plot points quickly, but she still could capitalize on the drama of the family finding out. To me that was playing both sides of the fence and I didn’t like it.
The second problem was Leila. Now, I am all for a spunky heroine. When they are sarcastic and don’t let the alpha hero walk all over them? Even better. But because this book is written in the first person POV, Leila’s spunkiness and sarcasm got old real fast. Her snide comments and quips, even when just in her own head, were constant. And here was the kicker. With Vlad being a mind reader, he too was forced to listen to them all. I don’t know how he didn’t just tell her to be quiet after a while. I know I sure wanted to. Sarcasm is fine, but when the whole book is in any characters head the whole time, the sarcasm needs to be cut back so that the reader has something other than sarcasm to focus on. This book really had very little else.
I really wanted to like this book. The story is good, the world creative and unique, and Vlad was a compelling character. Unfortunately, as much as I wanted to, I still didn’t. Had this same story been written without me being forced into Leila’s head, I probably would have loved it. But since it wasn’t, I am afraid that any recommendation would be with definite reservations.