This novel is told in the present tense, something I usually dislike, but somehow it worked for me in Tegan’s Blood. When we first meet her, Tegan is an emotional mess. Her boyfriend’s suicide a couple of months ago has rendered her a prisoner in her own apartment. She is afraid to go outside, drinks too much, and is generally not looking after her physical or emotional wellbeing. Her good friend Nicky determines that enough is enough, and forces her out on a girls’ night to the club Crimson, a Goth-type vampire bar. The vampire persona is not just a theme; the place is run by Ethan Cristescu “a beautiful bastard” in Tegan’s words, and a powerful vamp of Romanian heritage, naturally. He quickly sets his sights on her, and not unlike Sookie Stackhouse from the Charlaine Harris books, Tegan suddenly finds herself immersed in the deadly world of vampire politics.
The setting is Tribane, a city divided by the Hawthorne River; I’m guessing this is a fictional place located in England given the references to Tesco and pounds. I loved Tegan’s dark sense of humour and the major flirting and innuendos going on between her and Ethan. Tegan’s down-to-earth nature and normality reeled me in straight away, and I sped through the novel. She’s quite self-deprecating and unaware of what a cool woman she is. She’s also brazen in her own way, like how she slyly nabs the job at the occult shop, Indigo. I could easily relate to Tegan and laughed at how similar our Saturday nights are: queuing to get into a club, having the girls behind her bitch when her friends skip the queue, fumbling in her bag to find her passport for the bouncers, ordering an unclassy alcopop like Bacardi Breezer at the bar… That’s my basic Saturday night! If all that wasn’t enough to make me love this book, Buffy gets an entire chapter named after her. What Would Buffy do?
And of course, no paranormal romance read would be worth much without a hot male lead. Ethan is strong and commanding, patient but authoritative, and he meets his match in Tegan. There’s also wicked imagery running through this novel. The images of the house rising out of the ground on Ridley Island, and the carnival lit up at night with all the rides going but no one on them, were both vivid and disturbing. I did notice a few slight errors in the text, but they didn’t take away from the beauty of this book which I cannot recommend enough. Tegan’s Blood is the first novel of 2012 that I have absolutely loved. Bring on part two: Tegan’s Return. *****
Check it out on Amazon HERE