Title: Crying for the Moon
Author: Sarah Madison
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: July 22nd, 2011
Genre(s): Contemporary Paranormal, Vampires, Werewolves, and Shifters
Page Count: 210
Reviewed by: Lily G Blunt
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Vampire Alexei Novik may have the teeth and the coffin, but he’s given up the lifestyle for an old fixer-upper in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Weary of his past, Alex plans to keep to himself, but it seems his sexy, new neighbor, Tate, can’t take the hint—a good thing, since it turns out he’s handy for all kinds of things around the house. Tate even gets along with Alex’s werewolf friends, though one of them pointedly reminds Alex that their friendship is a bad idea.
If a platonic relationship is a bad idea, the growing attraction between Tate and Alex is a disaster waiting to happen. Loving Tate will draw him into Alex’s dangerous world, and Alex is torn between having the relationship he’s always craved and keeping Tate safe. Tate won’t take no for an answer, however, and seems to handle everything Alex can throw at him without blinking. Just when he thinks things might turn out all right after all, Alex’s past catches up with him—forcing him to make a terrible choice.
I liked this different take on the vampire/shifter genre and how Sarah wove her own world for her paranormal characters. Alex was a ‘good’ vampire rather than the traditional idea of a wicked bloodsucker. He wasn’t scary at any time during the story. Yes, he was a little moody at first because he wanted some alone time in his new house. He was born a vampire but had wanted to disconnect from others in the Life—including his controlling ex-lover, Viktor—and live almost as if he were human. And in Sarah’s reality, both he and his werewolf friends manage to just about do that. He didn’t even have to suck blood from a victim to survive as he could drink from his store of cold blood in the fridge. I liked how Alex came across as more human than vampire because it made his character seem believable somehow. It worked for this story.
Much of the plot involves the character dynamics between Alex and the small pack of werewolf friends who help him move in, and then (annoyingly) take up residence during the three days around the full moon. However, the banter between them is friendly and amusing, and it is obvious that Alex cares for these guys as he would a family. And again the werefolk in this story are not your traditional shifters. I would have liked more background to their friendship and way of life as I felt something was missing here. They surprisingly didn’t seem to know much about each other.
What I did like in particular was the connection between Nick and Peter and how they showed their affection for each other after Peter was injured.
The local sexy vet and general good guy, Tate, is rather special. He readily accepts Alex and his friends’ supernatural status. He’s handy to have around; he cooks, fixes things, and knows how everything works in the house. The growing friendship and sizzling attraction between Alex and Tate develops steadily, giving Alex time to think about his future. Their kissing and the couple of lengthy sex scenes are hot and I liked how drinking blood and sexual feelings are linked in his vampire world.
Viktor’s appearance provides some danger and angst for Alex, Tate, and the werefolk, but it’s relatively short-lived and dealt with in two surprising ways.
From early on in the story I’d guessed the mystery, and was waiting for it to unfold, although part of it was still unexpected. (Sorry that’s vague, but I don’t want to give away a key spoiler).
I was confused by the purpose or need for Alex’s coffin. It could regenerate him and keep him young, yet at the same time it made him more of a ‘vampire’ and that’s why he was reluctant to use it—because he wanted to appear human.
This was an entertaining and well-written story with likeable characters. I would have appreciated more information on Tate’s background and Alex’s past, as well as additional scenes with Alex and Tate alone.
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