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Nancy Baker
book cover

Book 1

Who recommends: Preeti, Laurie, Julie, Linda, Shelley, Barbara, Danielle, Tanya
Who discommends: JW, Robin, Isabel

Speaking of vampires -- I've finished KISS OF THE VAMPIRE by Nancy Baker. I liked it; didn't love it. Very good horror/vampire story but only okay romance for me (at best). Too violent for my taste; or rather, the intermingling of violence and sex in a way that turned me off.--JW

Canadian author Nancy Baker's THE VAMPIRE'S KISS is a nicely done vampire romance. Ardeth, a low-key graduate student, goes looking in the club scene of (Toronto?) for her missing sister. In the process she ends up kidnapped and thrown into a cell adjoining that of a truly starved vampire hanging onto his humanity by a thread. She's the bait meant to break him to the demands of the villains. The hardcover, if you want to look in the library, was titled THE NIGHT INSIDE (a title I love).--Preeti

Wow what a wonderful vampire story. Yes, there's some obligatory blood gushing but just enough for the story, I guess. So now I'm going to have to get some of her other stuff - which is going to be hard. The story takes place in roughly two segments - the first being the start of a mystery/kidnapping where the heroine is used as "feed" for a newly resurrected vampire. And you realize that the horror that really exists is what people do to other people and the vampire is the least of the worries.

Then we escape the kidnappers and the two separate, to start on their own personal quests - and how events can change people from the people they thought they were - or how values change when you face death. Again, you get a sense of the beasts in the story are not the vampires at all - the people are drawn with realistic stories you might read in the newspaper every day. And of course the denoument (did I spell that right?) when the source of the mystery is revealed and the book finished - you start thinking about how you would react given the same choices and how much of your moral fiber is a true value or just because people are watching.--Barbara

If you can't tolerate your HEA being messed up, skip the sequel to KISS OF THE VAMPIRE (that would be BLOOD AND CHRYSANTHEMUMS.) I thought it was a fascinating book myself, but it left stuff between h&h; of KISS OF THE VAMPIRE up in the air. Plus much of the book concentrated on an ancient Japanese vampire (this was the fascinating part). As an aside, I loved the Canadian title of KISS, called THE NIGHT INSIDE. It's so evocative and it truly fits the mood of the story.--Preeti

I read this in the middle of another binge, that time on vampire novels, and this one stood out for having two believable and fairly likeable protagonists, and for not playing the usual theme of emotional and physical sadism: Ardeth and Have-Forgotten-His-Name actually respected each other and were different but equal.--Tanya (30 Jul 99)

I have to admit that I didn't care for KISS OF THE VAMPIRE very much - I'm squeamish, I admit it! The only other vampire stories I've read are Maggie Shayne's series which I did enjoy but those stories are much less graphic. Apart from the gore, the romance didn't really work for me. I have this niggling feeling that Ardeth and Dimitri wouldn't have had very much to do with each other if they had not been in adjoining cells.--Isabel (09 Sep 99)

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