Title: Code Name Jack Rabbit (Vampire Guard #1)
Author: Elizabeth Noble
Publisher: DSP Publications
Release Date: July 12, 2016
Page Count: 200
Reviewed by: Kristin
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
Meet the newest members of the Vampire Guard, where legend and myth meet science and technology.
Jonas Forge, vampire. Once a spy and soldier, now a cop, Forge enjoys the life he’s built with his friends in Flint, Ohio.
Blair Turner, PhD. Blair, a vampire and computer hacker with exceptional skills, shares a powerful empathic bond with Forge, his soulmate.
Declan, vampire, ex-pirate, ex-fur trapper, thief, and con man. Declan is Forge’s former lover and soulmate to Lucas Coate.
Lucas Coate, MD, Flint’s medical examiner. A werewolf living amongst vampires, Lucas is also one of Forge’s best friends.
Their lives become complicated when an impending Presidential visit throws them headlong into a world of high tech vampire spies and espionage. Recruited into the Vampire Guard by the secret society of the Akhkharu Nasaru, they uncover a werewolf terrorist organization known as the Qiguan.
Together they must thwart a murder attempt on the open waters of Lake Superior while tracking a previously unknown biological weapon controlled by the Qiquan—a weapon which may very well mean death for one of them.
I liked the premise of this book: a secret agency recruits three vampires and one werewolf into their fold and they go forth to fight evil. In what I thought was a unique twist, it’s in vampire’s and werewolves best interest to protect humans, because without humans, there would be no vampires. Vampires are the guardians of humanity working in secret and undercover to achieve that goal, not the harbinger of evil.
I also liked how the author bucked a couple of vampire tropes, which contributed to a refreshing read. Not telling you what, that would ruin the fun.
The setting around the Great Lakes was also delightful – I’m a bit partial to these inland bodies of water and love it when an author uses them as a backdrop.
But I also struggled with this book right from Chapter One:
• Introducing six main characters at once was a bit like trying to figure out who the twelve dwarves are. A side list was necessary, which irritates me to no end.
• This read like book number two or three in a series, and I even did a search to see if this group of characters was part of another series (not that I found?). The tidbits of back story were inserted in strange places and were more jarring than informative – thus, leading me to think there were perhaps previous books.
• The premise for the uber secret society ‘kidnapping’ our merry band of vampires was rather unrealistic. If you want someone to join your group, invite them to tea or out for a beer, or a mocha latte or whatever. The kidnapping came across as kinda weird.
• I double checked this too, this read like a YA book…but it’s not. With a few tweaks, this could be a very solid YA.
• The cover, despite it’s simplicity, gives quite a bit of the plot away.
Ultimately, an interesting premise but, unfortunately, the nuts and bolts of the story didn’t work for me.