First Drop of Crimson By Jeaniene Frost

From  From the New York Times bestselling author of the Night Huntress series comes a breathtaking new journey to the dark side of desire.  The night is not safe for mortals. Denise MacGregor knows all too well what lurks in the shadows—her best friend is half-vampire Cat Crawfield—and she has already lost more than the average human could bear. But her family’s past is wrapped in secrets and shrouded in darkness—and a demon shapeshifter has marked Denise as prey. Now her survival depends on an immortal who lusts for a taste of her.  He is Spade, a powerful, mysterious vampire who has walked the earth for centuries and is now duty-bound to protect this endangered, alluring human—even if it means destroying his own kind. Denise may arouse his deepest hungers, but Spade knows he must fight his urge to have her as they face the nightmare together . . .

Because once the first crimson drop falls, they will both be lost.

My Spoiler-Laden Thoughts on First Drop of Crimson:

The Recap:  This is the first entry in Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress World series, which is a spin-off from the Night Huntress Series featuring the always entertaining Cat and Bones.  When we last saw Denise, our heroine, her husband had just been brutally murdered by zombie-like creatures and she had sworn off the supernatural world as a result.  Now Denise is in a whole different kind of trouble when a vengeful demon, Raum, starts picking off her family members in an attempt to find a distant relative who escaped him once upon a time.  Raum allows Denise to live on the condition that she can locate said relative, Nathanial.  Unable to reach her bestie Cat, she settles for asking Spade, Bones’ friend and human hater for help before the demonic essence Raum left behind consumes her.  It looks like this series is going to adopt the PNR formula of boys sees girl, girl sees boy, something gets all tingly, and they are ‘I Would Die 4 U’ in love 3 days later while battling some sort of big beastie.  Not that I am complaining, this formula works, but the rest is pretty predictable so I will skip ahead.

The Drama:  While I liked the plot, the action just really didn’t do it for me.  Once Denise and Spade figure out her blood is like vamp crack because of the demon juice, they travel to Vegas to find a dealer in hopes of getting closer to Nathanial.  The Vegas trip for me was just alright, except for that shower scene…more on that later.   I did enjoy getting to see Spade’s home while the duo fled Raum, and I got really excited when Monaco was the next locale.  I have always wondered why Monaco doesn’t pop up more in PNR, it just seems like such a romantic place.  The climactic battle scenes towards the end were great, but I wouldn’t expect less from Ms. Frost.  I especially enjoyed the form Denise chose to battle Raum with, though I was shocked the big bad demon went down so quickly. 

The Smut:  My absolute fav scene of the book was the Spade shower scene.  HOTNESS.  And when he later admitted that the shower was cold to avoid the steam, I thought that was too cute.  On the other hand, Denise’s demon-y hands were a huge turnoff and I hated how they kept popping up at the worst times.  And all the eating! Its like “we get it, you’re becoming a demon and you’re hungry…get to the banging!!”  The sex scenes were good, and there was a fair amount of sexual tension built up throughout.  The issue I have is that Spade and Denise’s personalities just didn’t shine they way they did in the Night Huntress series.  I understand that Denise has had a really tough time lately, but I felt like all the angst took away from the romance.

The Rant:  I have mixed feelings about spin-offs that rely heavily on knowledge of the original series.  I think the series is a great idea, and a great way to showcase all the supporting characters that Cat and Bones overshadowed.  But at the same time, I could barely remember details like what Menecheres’ powers were and how Cat acquired Fabian.  That being said, I am so excited for Ian to get his own book!  I always loved Ian and all of his Prince Albert-assholey glory.  Yummmm…

Should I buy-with-1-click?  If you were a fan of the Night Huntress series, you will enjoy this book.  If I had to choose, I would go with Cat and Bones any day, but this is a nice filler until we see them again in July ’10.  Rating: 8


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