Darklands: A Vampire’s Tale by Donna Burgess

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Darklands by Donna BurgessDarklands: A Vampire’s Tale by Donna Burgess

Series: Darklands Vampires #1

My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

Halloween night, twenty years ago, college student Susan Archer watched as her beloved twin brother was brutally murdered at the hands of a stranger she invited into their home. Still haunted by the guilt of that night, Susan is now a tough but bitter cop in a nowhere town, trying as best she can to lead a normal life. When she is nearly killed during a wild shoot-out, she realizes she is not as strong as she first thought. Fearing a breakdown, she flees the confines of her safe boyfriend and familiar surroundings to find salvation in the arms of “Deathwalker” Devin McCree—the very man who killed her brother.

But things aren’t always what they seem and she quickly realizes Devin was not the monster she originally thought, but a kind of guardian angel instead.

On the run from a crazed Nazi vampire-hunter named Kasper, she and Devin must find a way to endure the dreary urban landscape of a dying metropolis and escape Kasper’s wrath.

So 2-ish stars has this weird look about it that makes others think, “It must’ve sucked,” but that’s not the case with this one. It was interesting; compelling, even.

Susan Archer suffers some pretty terrible tragedies as a teenager by having her small family ripped from her and then again 20 years later. The first time, it was at the hands of Devin McCree. The second time, it was the hands of Devin McCree that saved both her life and Michael’s, her boyfriend.

Devin McCree fancies himself a Deathwalker. That’s right, he’s a vampire. No secret there. (It’s in the title.) But they’re not like normal vampires. Actually, they’re barely vampires at all. The only thing that separates these vampires from humans was a ridiculous impossibility to kill (unless the head was removed) and a hunger for blood. They were warm, their hearts beat and at one point a Deathwalker who gets their chest sliced open (just a scratch) actually requires stitches. Not a merit in my book.

Aside from insanely humane vampirism, the dark and dank atmosphere of the novel kept me enthralled from the get-go. Burgess’ prose is straightforward and twice as bleak as the scenes it depicts, so palpable that the darkness is choking half the time. I have a feeling this book will stay with me for some time to come.

Reading the sequel? Prolly. So 2.5 stars. It was good.

“You have become what everyone wants to be. You are eternal. Together, we will watch the end of the world.”

Fun note: This one is actually posted at permashift, at least in part, right here.

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