Title: Seeing Red: Scorched
Author: T.C. Orton
Release Date: May 6, 2016
Page Count: 337
Reviewed by: Vallie
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Down the twists and turns of the London alleyways, where Chinatown meets the highstreets, lies a small venue where unknown rock bands often play to crowds of less than one-hundred.
Isaac is nineteen, living on the sofa of his best friend’s brother – Eric – after his bible-loving parents tossed him aside because of his sexuality. After two years of struggling to make sense of his life, Eric and Charlotte convince Isaac to attend Red’s gig; an up and coming rock band with a small cult following.
All hell breaks loose and Isaac is left injured, with the whereabouts of his friends unknown and his body crippled on the ground. It’s then that the four members – Troy, Nicolai, Kyle and Moss – aid Isaac by infecting him with a ‘magical’ virus that grants immortality in exchange for consuming blood.
The ‘Paranorm’ world is exposed to Isaac. Vampires, werewolves and warlocks lurk in the depths of the city he has lived in his entire life, but he won’t become one with the night until he completes his nine-month transition, leaving him in the hands of the band and at the mercy of vampire politics.
This story is part of the Omega Moon universe, but is a standalone tale.
This story is a gay vampire romance featuring intimate scenes.
(360 pages based on 250 words per page.)
I enjoy vampire stories, even if I don’t read them often nowdays, and this one started off very promising. However, the book was too long and the plot went places that had me shaking my head in bafflement.
So. Vampires. Werewolves. And…more. This story focus on the vampires of the band Red and Isaac, the human they saved after a fire broke out at one of their gigs that left Isaac half dead. I liked the twist in the vampire tale offered by the author. Turned humans become ghouls for nine months, while they complete their transition. It’s a weird stage where vampiric abilities start to develop but if the ghoul eats or drinks anything other than blood, it’s all reversed and the ghoul returns to the state they were in when they were turned. In Isaac’s case, that wasn’t an option because he would die immediately.
So the book takes place in the 9 months it takes Isaac to transition. The other members of the nest, Moss, Troy, Kyle, and Nicolai, all have distinct voices, with Kyle being a particular favourite of mine. They went for a Christmas trip, they hung out, they went to a club full of other Paranorms, met Troy’s brother, the King, and life went on. Details of vampire history and the political goings on of the paranormal world were revealed slowly so it didn’t feel like info dumping.
I enjoyed the action scenes and seeing Isaac Vamp out as well as the drinking from the neck while humping sessions! Hot! But I wasn’t sure where it was all going. The story was laid out in a way that Nicolai was the love interest, taking things slowly and forging a bond with Isaac. Nicolai was the voice of reason, always trying to protect him and calm him down. They wouldn’t have full on sex because Nicolai said “It would be better” after Isaac’s transition. This was a bit weird and felt unsubstantiated from the plot, what with the “we shouldn’t have sex until you’re turned.” Sure, they made out but everything was just so slow, and pretty boring, frankly.
And then at 70%, I was smacked upside the head with a complete change in direction. I had not seen it coming but I have to say, there were aspects of the story that felt like plot holes, which I guess, were not. But please, don’t change the love interest at 70%. FFS. I was so thrown by that and although it made more sense in the end, there was no freaking time to fully explore the actual relationship that happened. I wanted a whole other book on that new relationship alone. I kept thinking, “This is what I should be reading about from the get go! It’s not safe, it’s not boring, and it’s hot!” For this reason, combined with the super slow pace, my rating was lower than I hoped it would be when I started the book.
Fans of paranormal stories might be interested in this because it does offer a different take on a trope that is very overdone. But, mind the gap. The sudden shift at 70% will come out of nowhere and will leave you hanging. On another note, I saw the author’s bio and was super impressed at his ability to write so well and create such a complicated world at such a young age. Kudos author!