Friday, March 8, 2013

Blood Rush (Book Two of the Demimonde) by Ash Krafton

Blood Rush (Demimonde #2)

Back of the Book Blurb:
Sophie doesn't believe in happily ever after. These days, she'd settle for alive after sunrise.
Advice columnist and newly-appointed oracle to the demivampire, Sophie Galen has more issues than a Cosmo collection: a new mentor with a mean streak, a werewolf stalker she can't shake, and a relationship with her ex's family that redefines the term complicated. And then there's her ex himself, who is more interested in playing leader of the vampire pack than in his own salvation.
Becoming a better oracle is tough enough, but when Sophie encounters a deadly enemy - one she never dreamed of facing - it will take everything she's ever learned in order to survive.

Review:  Wow!  This book sucked me in right from the beginning.  This is a confident writer with a clear vision of the world created in Bleeding Hearts, the first book in the Demimonde series.  Blood Rush picks up right where the first book ended, with Sophie recovering from her near-death after her lover is driven mad with blood-lust.  As she slowly recovers, she realizes that Marek has no intention of coming near her again, and that he is no longer the man she knew and loved.  But picking up the pieces of her life is harder than it should be, because she is still the Sophia, an empathic Oracle of wisdom and emotional comfort to the DemiVampires.  Grieving, physically recovering, and trying to pay the rent, Sophie is also being stalked by a Were and spends her afternoons running out of her office building to evade her hunters.  She moves constantly and is nearing her limit when Marek's brother Rodrian suddenly pops back into her life with a too-good-to-be-true offer:  Marek's country mansion is now Sophie's.  The catch?  Rodrian's daughter Shiloh will live there too, and Sophie will help keep an eye on the bubbly teenager.  Sophie is suspicious, but also desperate for some stability and contact.
Pretty soon she and Rodrian are acknowledging their attraction to each other and flirting while pretending nothing is happening.  After all, Sophie still loves Marek and Rodrian worships his older brother.  The progression of their relationship is awkward, sexy, and uncomfortable - in other words very believable given the circumstances.
During Sophie's recovery she has become best friends with Dahlia, one of the DV and soon she adopts another stray named Toby.  Little by little Sophie is making a family for herself even as she mourns the loss of Jared, Marek and her dreams for the future.  Things look even brighter when Sophie is contacted by an experienced European Sophia who offers to train Sophie as an Oracle.  Sophie jumps at the chance, and even though Eirene and her sidekick Dorcas are arrogant, condescending and rude, Sophie's power grows quickly under the tutelage.  She is soon able to protect herself against the DV's compulsions - and about time, too!  I mean she's their Oracle, but they yank her around like a puppet.  Sophie's not an ass-kicking heroine but at least now she can defend herself.
One of the frustrating parts for me is that Sophie is still willfully ignorant about much of the DV world she now lives in.  When Pontian or Rodrian hints at their age or history, she immediately changes the subject, claiming she is too freaked out. Wouldn't you want to know as much as possible, being the weak, helpless food source surrounded by predators?  Sophie has the survival instincts of a sofa for the most part, but she survives anyway due to her stubborness, her tenacity, and her faith - and lots of luck.  But that is also part of her charm as the heroine - in many ways she is a very traditional old-school, romance heroine.  She is gentle and kind, her empathic and compassionate skills slowly soothing the savage alpha-male beasts surrounding her while she befriends and charms the other women - classic!
Blood Rush also gives us some intriguing little windows into the DV world Krafton has created.  There is a brief mention of the DV Special Ops at a rock concert attended by DV and Weres, which I think could be a whole new book right there.  We learn a bit more about the prejudices and bitter hatred of the two races, and we have some great new characters.  
 Fast paced, well-written, with a very satisfying blend of realistic romantic entanglements, intrigue, betrayals and some great surprises, I loved this book.

 Blood Rush will be released on May 14, 2013 by Pink Narcissus Press.

Wolf's Bane (Book Three of the Demimonde) will be released 2014.

Disclaimer - The author sent me this book in exchange for my honest review.

For more information check out the author's website at:

Blind Alleys: A Collection of Dead Ends  Doorways: Three Tales of No Going Back  Bleeding Hearts: Book One of the Demimonde

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