Voice of the Blood by Jemiah Jefferson


The ordinary life of a grad student was so boring for Adriane. She was desperate for some change, some excitement to shake things up. She had no idea she was only one step away from a whole new world - a world of darkness and decay, of eternal life and eternal death. But once she fell prey to Ricari she would learn more about this world than she ever dreamed possible. More than anyone should dare to know...if they value their soul. For Ricari's is the world of the undead, the vampire, a world far beyond the myths and legends that the living think they know. A world even more horrifying than the living could suspect. From the clubs of San Francisco to a deserted Hollywood hotel known as Rotting Hall, the denizens of this land of darkness hold sway over the night. But as seductive and erotic as these predators may be, Ariane will soon discover that a little knowledge can be a very dangerous thing indeed.

The plot of this one may seem like an everyday vampire novel from first glance but thankfully it's a lot different once you bite in. Ariane, a grad student with a promising future and a semi-messy relationship with her fiancé, meets a vampire by fate. From then on she's caught in the uproar of being mesmerized by the forbidden, and spends the novel searching for a way to get into this "exciting" world. But as life usually goes, she learns all that glitters is not gold, and that she may have gotten in too far over her head.

There is one thing about this book that is slightly out of the norm: it definitely focuses on the sexual side of both humanity and vampires. While this isn't really different from any other vampire tale, what makes it stand out is that it's loaded with it. There are explicit details, naughty dialogue, and a high number of sexual encounters, from the first chapter to basically the last one. Not to mention not all of the sex is even straight; I wouldn't call this one PG-13. But it is erotic.

Don't go into this one expecting a peaceful, happily after ending. I was a little surprised when my eyes devoured the last sentence - from the way this novel had been going I was excepting a little bit of a different turnaround. But hey, surprises keep the blood flowing don't they? The atmosphere is mainly light with some dry humor and sarcasm, but also with cruel characters. Sex plays a large amount in the atmosphere.

Ariane is one of those characters it's hard not to emphasize with. She's realistic, but also cute without trying to be. Her intelligence is definitely higher (she's a scientist), and she has this internal sense of humor that kept me chuckling throughout. Seeing things in first person through the eyes of a character like this always make a story flow smoother; from page one we're smacked right in the middle of the action. With this novel, I feel like I'm reading about a creature with dimension, with substance, not just a cardboard monster.

Thankfully Jefferson's vampires were anything but typical; new vampire rules are invented here, no day-old formula was followed. One is a saddened, disheartened creature who is always down, similar to Louis in Interview with the Vampire. The other is well, not like Lestat but very interesting and unpredictable.

I won't give away too much on the other characters involved, for to do so would be giving away a lot of the spoiler. Basically the major characters are vampires, and they all work together to unravel the present Jemiah Jefferson made up for us.

The author also did an admirable job having us feel confused WITH Ariane. When things were dreamy for her, my mind got a little foggy. When she didn't know what was going on, I definitely didn't have a clue. It's hard for auth! ors to get that type of feeling across sheets of paper, but this one does.

The pace is fast. You definitely didn't have to wait long from opening the book to get right to the point. Your brain is sucked in and it stays there. There was a point in the middle where I started getting slightly bored being in the same situation and became a little impatient for things to get rolling again. But when all was said it done I could easily overlook that small fault and be content.

The style of the writing was fast-paced and to the point. The transition between chapters was done well, and the overlying mood was dark but also fun and light. It's no easy feat to blend all those in one novel, but Jefferson manages to make it his craft.

Overall a satisfying and somewhat surprising novel, Voice of the blood reads very quickly, has enough varying emotions to keep you interested.