Sweet Oblivion 4: Swarm

swarmTitle: Sweet Oblivion 4: Swarm
Author: Jordan Castilllo Price
Publisher: JCP Books
Buy link: Amazon.com (Second Edition)
Genre: Paranormal M/M
Length: Novella
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

THE BLURB

For some time, Michael has suspected that Wild Bill’s done more than just dabble in art. As with every other piece of his personal history, Bill plays his cards close to his chest. But when he lets on that a mural he painted before his change might still exist, Michael’s dying to see it — and Bill’s never been good at saying no.
 
Only fragments of the building remain, but it’s possible Wild Bill’s painting is still there. Unfortunately, there’s a lot more in the ruins than Bill and Michael bargained for.

THE REVIEW

When Michael is having a new tat done he realizes (as Melba the  old vamp crone/tattoo artist is shaving the area with a straight razor, with Bill looking on,) that his hottest kink is a combination of blood, pain and vamp and he’s getting it in spades. He has a temporary job at the local veterinary clinic and it would have been a good gig to make a few extra dollars  except for one thing. Lance, a bully who works there, gets his kicks from grossing out Michael with blood and gore. At times Swarm is like a horror movie, with blood everywhere, as Lance uses his best tricks on his prey, some of which could be entertaining if you’re into blood.  After their last encounter Michael leaves the job, and he and Bill hit the road looking for new pastures.

 This book is quite different in a number of ways from the others. First, it’s told from Michael’s POV. Second, it’s also more revealing in terms of Wild Bill’s past. Bill doesn’t talk much about his life but Michael discovers that he used to be something of an artist before he was turned, and they decide to go in search of a mural that Bill had painted all those years ago, which is when they ran into a whole lot of trouble from an unexpected source. It looks like this time their luck has run out and they won’t escape injury, or worse.

There’s a lot of action in Swarm but in some ways the book didn’t achieve the high intensity of the previous stories in the series and the plot was not as complex, but it made up for this in the relationship between the vamp and his human lover.  What we don’t know is: How human is Michael? The action between the vamps and humans in the book is scary and some incidents require a strong stomach. One of the toughest characters in Swarm was Silk, a female vamp, a genius with tattoos who could scare anyone with just a look; Melba, another vamp tattoo artist, was almost as scary. What is it about these female tattoo artists?

This book seems to have redefined certain aspects of Michael’s and Bill’s bond. The sex, as usual, was incredibly passionate, wild and mindblowing hot, but  in some ways perhaps the intensity was different – softer. These two characters are so well drawn that I felt as if I knew them, but I was never going to invite them into my living room! I love the way the author builds the scenes, increases the tension, then lets the readers see the vulnerabilities of the characters as they struggle with their emotions and different needs. The humour is off the scale and the dialogue between Michael and Bill is very funny and sometimes sweet, especially during sex. I love JCP’s other series but Sweet Oblivion doesn’t take second place to anything that she has written to date. What makes this series so memorable is the love between Michael and Wild Bill, although Bill would probably call it something else.

Swarm chilled my blood a few times and in the end Michael recognized what his place was in the world of vamps, and it was not pretty. Definitely recommended.

Author

I live in Canada and I love big dogs, music, movies, reading and sports – especially baseball

16 comments

  • Hey guys, I’ve been offline all day. What a treat to come home to this juicy review and awesome discussion.
    *
    Book 5 was a bitch to write. It’s hard to let these boys go; I’m really attached to them. I’ll be biting my nails waiting to see what everyone thinks of the big ta-da in a couple of weeks.
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    They don’t die. I don’t think that’s too big of a spoiler. 😉
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    I thought the grossest part of Swarm was after the dog surgery when Michael was trying not to faint in the receptionist’s bathroom. And I wasn’t sure if I’d get to leave in that thing a male and two female vampires were doing (I won’t be more specific than that, since I don’t want to spoil it for anyone.) Good thing my editor is stout of heart and difficult to shock.
    *
    I have an idea for a Wild Bill/Michael third story-arc novel but I’m not sure when I’d have the time to pen it.

    Reply
    • Jordan
      What kind of hint is that???? You call those hints?????
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      I was really surprised and grossed out by the scene you mentioned – that’s one of the reasons it was tougher to read. And the bad blood – the least said about that the better. I don’t ever want to spend a moment in your imagination.:)

      *
      We need more hints about Book 5.

      Reply
  • Okay, I finally bought it and finished it this evening. Enjoyed it as much as all the others. I just see it moving one step closer to ….. what I’m not sure but little things revealed each book.
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    Maybe I’ve got a twisted sense of humour but I laughed out loud at these two parts:
    *
    “…I’d been two seconds away from upending that dog and chugging it like a beer bong.”
    *
    and
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    “…as I’m happy to mainline your abject misery….”
    *
    I didn’t find it too bloody or scary although I was concerned at the end, what would happen to them, but I knew there was one more book so they’d be okay. LOL It was like Harry Potter, you knew he couldn’t die in book 6. 🙂

    Reply
    • Tam
      *
      Boy that was quick.

      *
      There were terrific lines in the book. So you didn’t find it too bloody? What about the dog you know what? And what about the bad blood (gah – gag me) 🙁 OK I don’t want to remember so don’t make me. ) Can’t wait to see if they shack up in Book 5 or if they continue on the road forever! Let’s see if Jordan gives us any hints if she checks out the review.

      Reply
      • Well yah, it was gross but it didn’t really bother me. And I choose to believe that the blood I donate tastes deliciously delightful for many many weeks in its little plastic bag. 🙂 They were just too fussy. (I try not to think about them drinking blood period. LOL)

        Reply
  • I am really sad to see these characters come to an end too. Since the series alternates between Michael’s and Wild Bill’s POV and the next book is the last, I guess the series will end from Bill’s perspective.

    What makes this series so fascinating is that it does not follow a traditional story arc, so it is impossible to predictable the outcome. I thought the titles of the series might be a clue – morpheus being the god of dreams and oblivion implying forgetfulness or a void.. but I can’t imagine JCP ending the series with one of the characters waking up and it all being a dream! 🙂

    Reply
  • I love these guys too. It doesn’t hurt that the cover models are incredibly hot. Someone had recommended JCP at Nalini Singh’s blog and after reading just 1 book, I bought her entire backlist and read in one sitting.

    Although I’m looking forward to the next book, I’m a little sad it’ll be the last in the series.

    Reply
    • Mariana
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      You’re right – it sure doesn’t hurt that the cover models are so hot!

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      Book No. 5 will be a rocker I’m sure.

      *

      I just bought the Channeling Morpheus series in print and I’m looking forward to getting Sweet Oblivion in print as soon as the series ends so that I can enjoy the guys all over again.

      Reply
  • Great review Wave!
    Micheal and Wild Bill story is one that I will read again and again. Sad to hear that only one more book will come out. I don’t want it to end. It was nice to see the “softer” or should I say “Sweeter” side of Wild Bill. And like you said Wave “The humour is off the scale “.

    Reply
    • Elyane
      JCP writes great characters and I love her plots as well. She has a terrific imagination and I’m sure we all hope that she’ll come up with another series that will make us laugh, cry and cringe in horror when this one ends. I hope Wild Bill and Michael go out with a bang!

      Reply
  • Tam
    It’s a real pain, isn’t it, when we don’t shop at a publisher and miss their new releases? *g* This one is different – let me know your reaction after you read it!

    Reply
  • Arrggh. Why haven’t I read this yet? Probably because its from Changeling and I never go shopping there. Must make a point. Moving to the top of my to-do list. I think Jordan said next book is the end and she’ll wrap it up. Sadness. But then she can work on Psycop 🙂
    *
    Oh yay, I’m Canadian again.

    Reply
  • Jen
    Like you, I can’t get enough of Michael and Bill. I’ll be so sorry when this series comes to an end. I think book 5 may be the last, going by the publisher’s guidelines. However, we have to wait and see. When you read this one don’t eat anything beforehand – there are a couple of really chilling scenes.:)

    Reply
  • Is this out already? I’m getting really behind – I’ve still got fluid in my tbr pile.

    Sounds good though Wave. Thanks for the review. I’ll be buying it whatever you had written as I’m hooked on this pair.

    Reply

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