Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Pretty When She Dies by Rhiannon Frater

Pretty When She Dies by Rhiannon Frater is the first part of a trilogy of vampire novels. I have always been a sucker for vampire novels and I'll state right now that this is one of the best series of novels I have ever read. Until I read this trilogy my favourite vampires were Vampirella (obviously), Durham Red (from the 2000AD Strontium Dogs series), Selene (from the Underworld series of films) and Sonja Blue (from the Nancy A. Collins series of novels). Now I have another vampire heroine to add to my list - Amaliya (pronounced ah mal lee ya) Vezorak. Note that my top five favourite vampires are female although Angel and Spike from Angel and  Buffy the Vampire Slayer are just bubbling under in the next two slots.
Amaliya was a college student who was sired by one of her tutors. He was actually an ancient and powerful vampire necromancer known as The Summoner. He has the power to force the dead to do his bidding. Amaliya soon realises she is but a pawn in his twisted game, and her only hope for survival is to seek out one of her own kind. Born and raised in Texas, she heads for Austin, the state capital. Here she meets Cian (pronounced key inn). He rules Austin and unlike many other vampire lords, he does not have a coterie of vampires at his disposal. Fortunately for Amaliya, he proves to be a very reliable ally and he teaches his young protégé how to survive as a vampire. Not only does Amaliya survive, but she grows even more powerful under Cian's tutelage and she learns that she, too, can control the dead. Together with a small group of human allies, including Amaliya's grandmother (a wonderful character) and Cian's fiancé, Samantha (annoying and lovable in equal measures), they take on the Summoner in a climatic fight.
This was absolutely riveting from start to finish. It is very erotic, very violent, very gory and at times, laugh out loud funny. Amaliya and Cian are nothing like Bella and Edward from the Twilight series. They are proper hardcore vampires. Amaliya has her faults, (she is just a teenager after all) which made her more endearing to me. She is headstrong and swears a lot and she certainly needs Cian's caring and more cautious approach. Mind you, Cian is no wimp or pushover. He kicks ass when necessary. As soon as I read it I wanted to read the second novel in the series, Pretty When She Kills. I have been a huge fan of Rhiannon Frater for some time now and I had high hopes for this vampire series. My expectations were more than matched by Rhiannon's writing.
Please note that this novel also includes a small collection of Rhiannon's erotic short stories. I found them very enjoyable and an unexpected treat. Pretty When She Kills costs $10.99 or £6.88. I bought my copy from Amazon.UK for £5.93 and it was worth every penny. I loved this novel so much I will give it a perfect 10 out of 10 rating. It had everything that I wanted in a vampire novel.

16 comments:

  1. Soumds like you're saying it was "dead good".

    Not one for me though.

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    1. Ha, ha, dead good! Yes, it certainly was, Joe.

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  2. It's a good series, although it goes a `bit Buffy' in the later novels

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    1. I agree, but you say that like it's a bad thing, Phil. It only made me like the series even more.

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    2. Bryan it wasn't meant as a bad thing at all, I've had a weakness for the Buffy franchise for years.It wasn't quite the direction that I thought it would go.
      I'm also hoping that she writes a follow up to `The Last Bastion of the Living'.

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    3. You're a good man, Phil. Anyone who likes Buffy the Vampire Slayer is okay with me.
      I'd like to see a follow up to "Last Bastion of the Living" as well. It was a cracking good story.

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  3. I tend to steer clear of vampire novels as they of late have tended towards teenage girls with the Twilight and Buffy demographics. Bram Stoker is still good though.

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    1. Believe me, Clint, this series is definitely not aimed at teenage girls.

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  4. Sounds good. I'm definitely keen to check out some of her Zombie books, such as Last Bastion of the Living. My other half would probably love this.

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    1. Last Bastion of the Living was a superb book, Adam. Tell your missus she has good taste in books.

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  5. Interesting review Bryan. I enjoyed her zombie novels I shall see if I can pick this up at the library. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

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    1. I'm glad to have been of help,, Simon.

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  6. I always liked Bill Paxton in neardark,the cow boy vampire lol

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  7. I read this one a long time ago, before Rhiannon got a real contract. It was a great book, sort of more in the True Blood vein and definitely not Twilight material. I'm sure Rhiannon would appreciate seeing your review, you should sent her a link.

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    1. Thanks, Roger. I'll do just that. I'm sure she'll appreciate my review(s).

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