Thanks to the author for the eARC! All opinions are my own.
Wesley needs a captured vampire to trade for proof of his mom’s death, and the one biting him in his sleep should do nicely.
But his plans are fuddled when this vampire turns out to be Vincent, Wes’s shy childhood neighbor. To stop him from fleeing into the night, Wes has to offer his own neck on a silver platter.
Vincent is more than Wes bargained for though: sweet, funny, and devastatingly handsome, with intoxicating fangs that awaken new desires in Wes. As he realizes just how little Vincent has—and how much they’re both coming to rely on their not-so-fabricated friendship—he fears neither of them will survive the betrayal he has planned.
CW as provided by author: violence (including murder/manslaughter), medical experimentation (not conducted on or by the POV characters), non-consensual blood sucking, non-consensual drug induced sleep, implied and contemplated semi-explicit sexual acts
In the interest of ending on a high note, I’m going to start with the reason it took me two weeks to read this paranormal romance book and then finish with the parts I really enjoyed.
Wes’ secret of needing a vampire to investigate the shady dealings of the shady corporation was really the nail in the proverbial coffin for me. In my opinion, it was a lot to hide for the majority of the book and then to make it the reason for the 3rd act break up. No spoilers, but while the author did put in a decent amount of work in the aftermath, I would’ve rather the secret come out earlier so there would’ve been more time for them to parse it out.
That being said, I didn’t hate this book by any means. The conflict might not have been for me, but I really loved both Wes and Vincent. Wes is reacting badly to his mother’s disappearance even if he hides it with a carefree attitude that didn’t come off as annoying to read. If anything, even as I felt uncomfortable with his secret, I still felt bad for him that he felt this was his only option. I really just wanted to wrap Vincent up in a blanket and warm hug. He truly deserves the world!
I also loved seeing both POVs because the author did a great job in showing how Wes and Vincent look at each other and don’t see the truth. Vincent sees Wes as carefree and loving while Wes hides that he’s grieving. Wes looks at Vincent’s thrift-store clothes, greasy hair, and taped up shoes and assumes it’s a fashion statement instead of the result of there not being a lot of support for vampires.
I also loved that this is a romance book with no explicit sexual acts, but still has a decent amount of heat. As Vincent feeds off of Wes, they explore Wes’s biting kink in a non-sexual way (even if he also imagines sexual acts) involving both biting itself and a little predator/prey action. It’s not something I see much of in romance books and it was really nice to read!
I rated this book 3.5 stars. The secret/betrayal really brought the book down for me, but there were a lot of moments between the characters I liked and would read more from this author in the future.