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I am new to romance novels and for some reason reading about vampires doesn't appeal to me in the least. I'm not sure why. So, I have to ask. What is the appeal in a vampire novel? What do you like about them that causes you to read them?
Forget your billionaire tycoons and studly athletes. Vampires have immortality, superhuman strength and speed, centuries of experience and knowledge of all kinds. They have generally amassed huge fortunes. They are very controlling and dominant and possessive and have that dangerous edge. But their long life is a burden unless they find "the one". It's just fun to vicariously be "the one" for such a bad boy and to see him tamed (somewhat) by love.
Is that your own little dog in the picture? He's/she's adorable.
Last Edited on: 12/6/09 6:42 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Kate - Since you are new to the genre, you might read what appeals to you for a while, then find that you want more...
The neck biter character is one who has supernatural powers and abilities, yet meets one woman (sometimes human, sometimes not) who makes him want to be more human. Unlike movies, vamps in books have varied abilities, dependent upon the author, but usually do not hypnotize and 3 bites doesn't usually mean she'll become a vamp herself.
The vamp doesn't just desire her blood, he is devoted to her, wanting to please her (and pleasure her), make her happy, and protect her from danger. Perhaps it's the idea that love can cause the tiger to change his stripes that makes vamps appealing. Conflict in the story almost always include the inner-conflict with a vamp who finds himself wanting to do something so contrary to his nature and past behavior.
Vampires, shapeshifters (including werewolves, jaguars, etc.), wizards, demons, and other supernatural heroes are usually categorized as paranormal. Most paranormals are romantic suspense with extraordinary main characters. There are lots of good romance stories without ever delving into this sub-genre. I didn't get into them at all until romantic suspense, historical, and contemporary plots and characters all started to look alike to me.
Now, I mix it up. I'll read a few contemporary stories, then want to read an historical (regency or western), then an erotic romance, then a romantic suspense (I love mercenaries and paramilitary stories), then a paranormal.
Some readers prefer stories that focus on emotional conflict with sex occurring behind closed doors. Others want every detail of the couple's physical relationship. The paranormals usually include graphic descriptions of sex.
Some authors who do paranormals:
Kresley Cole - Her stories include all kinds of mythical beings (werewolves, valkyries, demons, witches, vampires and more) but are set in contemporary times with familiar locations (New Orleans, London, Scotland, Rome).
Diane Whiteside - Her Texas Vampires series is both historical and contemporary (hey, these neck biters live for centuries before they find their true love).
Sara Reinke - A fairly new author whose Hungry series includes some vamps whose characteristics and abilities aren't like other authors' vamps.
Lora Leigh - She doesn't do vamps, but her Breeds series includes heroes and some heroines with paranormal abilities and characteristics. This series would have to be categorized as "erotic paranormal romantic suspense."
Cherry Adair - She pretty much limits her paranormal heroes to wizards and has received mixed reviews in this forum.
Shiloh Walker - Her Hunters series includes vampires and vampire hunters, with stories that span centuries. Erotic romantic suspense.
Shayla Black - Her Doomsday Brethren series is about wizards and immortal warriors. Erotic romantic suspense.
Sorry. I've been known to ramble a bit...
I'm not a vampire lover but I have read a few vampire romances. To me, they're great for a change of pace from what I normally read so I read them occasionally.
Just like I'm not a fan of Historicals but I read one on occasion as well.
Not all Lora Leigh books are pricey and rare. The one that tops all others in that regard is "Ties That Bind." This 2-story duet with one story by Jaid Black and the other by LL, recently sold on eBay for $33.00 but has historically brought much more. The LL story is the first in her "Bound Hearts" series (all feature a M/F/M menage a trois theme). Ties That Bind will undoubtedly fall in value when this story is re-issued next year.
Her earlier Breeds books are harder to find and therefore, more expensive. Those published by Ellora's Cave fall into that category because they are a small publishing house and print far fewer copies than would be done by Harlequin, Avon, Warner, Berkley, etc. They're also far less likely to be re-issued in print format, though e-books are often available on the Ellora's Cave website.
Easier to find are some of the later Breeds books that have been published by Berkley. These are in MMPB format and copies are either available now or with very short WL queues.
Megan's Mark (Breeds 7) - 0 copies, 0 wishers
Harmony's Way (Breeds 8) - copies available
Tanner's Scheme (Breeds 9) - 1 wisher
Dawn's Awakening (Breeds 14) - 0 copies, 0 wishers
Mercury's War (Breeds 16) - 26 wishers
Coyote's Mate (Breeds 18) - copies available
Bengal's Heart (Breeds 19) - 111 wishers (but with MMPBs, the line moves pretty quickly so get in line!)
Lion's Heat (Breeds 20) - 357 wishers (due for April 2010 release - Add to your WL now. You can always delete later)
Lion's Heat is actually story #21 (there is a story in the Hot for the Holidays anthology that would be #20). LL is very good at providing back story so you don't need to read every story and you don't need to read them in sequence to enjoy them. I'd suggest snagging one of the titles available to see if you like the theme and LL's writing style.
I like the light/funny vampire/shapeshifter books - kerrelyn sparks, kathy love, lynsay sands for vamps and shelly laurenston, christine warren for shapeshifters
I like the immortality, super-powers..and a change of pace.
my 1st romance book was a vampire romance and it really wasnt all that great but i had a good time reading it. there is a real sexy aura about vampires. the older they are they sexier they get. but thats just my opinion lol but i wouldnt read the twilight series if u like some REAL action..no offense
Hey we can't leave off a mention of Sookie Stackhouse! She's the reason I started reading about vamps!
The first book in the series is "Dead Until Dark:" and the author is Charlaine Harris. This is the series they based "True Blood" on- though the HBO series is much darker in my opinion and more sensationalized sex.
The Sookie books are funny- as are Lyndsay Sands. That's what got me hooked. But, I find I don't like all vamp books. Some are definately better than others. And you can suffer that same "on book/series starts to look like another" thing with them too.
i read a bunch of romance as a teenage (along with a lot of horror), mostly Harlequins. since they were cheap and readily available (free from the library honor stack, $.25 at Goodwill or lots of garage sales, or borrow them from Grandma - as long as i only took the ones both she & her sis-in-law had read.). when i went to college i had no leisure reading time for four years, and then when i started reading again i read almost entirely sf&f.
jump a few years and some of the authors i was reading started writing romance, and some of the things that sounded fun were paranormal romance, and so on and so forth until i'm now reading close to half & half sf&f and romance - and it's still mostly paranormal romance. (though for erotica, lately i like cowboys. go fig.) i don't particularly want reality when i'm reading - i get plenty of that around here. ;)
I'll make a juvenile admission that the first vampire books I ever read were the Twilight series. Not long after I finished them, I discovered PBS, and since then, my vampire tastes have matured (though I still love my Twilight, lol). I adored Katie MacAlister's Aisling Grey, Guardian series, and Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series (though that falls a little more under urban fantasy than romance).
I honestly can't put my finger on my love for neck-biters. The fact that most are uber-alphas may have something to do with it, but there's also the fact that most vampires see love as something that is unattainable to them, because of their, um, tendencies. So when they do fall, they fall hard and fast and unexpectedly. Plus, there's just something super sexy and sensual about neck biting..... ;-)
Last Edited on: 12/7/09 12:53 PM ET - Total times edited: 1