I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
A Hunger Like No Other
This paranormal romance is a paperback edition that was published by Pocket Star on April 1, 2006 and has 356 pages.
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Other books by this author which I have reviewed include If You Dare, The Captain of All Pleasures, No Rest for the Wicked, Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night, Dark Needs at Night's Edge, The Professional
First in the Immortals After Dark paranormal romance series (if you count short stories as xx.5; if you don’t this is second).
In 2007, A Hunger Like No Other won the RITA Award by Romance Writers of America for Best Paranormal Romance, the HOLT Medallion by Virginia Romance Writers for Paranormal/Time Travel/Futuristic/Fantasy, and was nominated for the Maggie Award for Excellence (Georgia Romance Writers) for Contemporary Single Title Romance.
I didn’t enjoy this as much although the storyline was very interesting. I mostly worked my way through just to get it over with as the writing was juvenile without any finesse. Although, it was interesting to observe when Lachlain finally realizes the truth about Emma and then he goes overboard in the other direction trying to suck up.
Instead Cole writes rough encounters…and, no, I don’t mean the rough interaction there is between Lachlain and Emma or with her aunts. It’s the choppy progression from hating Emma and hauling her to Kinevane and then the uneven segues from scene to scene.
The taking of Emma from Scotland by a vampire doesn’t inspire much concern from the aunts even though they’ve invaded and destroyed aspects of Lachlain’s castle. Then there’s the encounter in New Orleans where the aunts are ready to start a major war. Hypocritical much?? It’s more of a bullet outline that didn’t get past first draft stage.
I enjoy the idea that Cole combines groups that don’t usually encounter each other as well as the change-ups she designs into each. She has a start on creating a unique world if she would just stop riding roughshod over it all. Cole does create a nice bit of backstory for this initial full-length novel in this series.
The major issue is for the series as a whole is Accession when the supernaturals fight to reduce the population allowing the group with the greatest numbers to rule over the others until the next Accession. In between, alliances seem to shift depending on payment or need although the Vampire Horde seems to be on its own side most of the time with occasional alliances with the demons. I get the impression that there is something special about Emmeline’s blend but Cole doesn’t provide much detail.
I’ll try the next in the series, No Rest for the Wicked if only to try for fairness…
Emmaline Troy has finally gathered up the courage to travel alone to Paris and research her mother’s activities. Her mother died after her birth and Emma wants to discover her father’s identity and since Paris was her last known residence, it only makes sense to try here first. Only, Emma has never had to feed straight from another. She has never had to protect herself and when the beast runs her down and drags her back to her hotel room…well, there isn’t much Emma can do to stop him.
On the beast’s part, Lachlain, he’s appalled that his mate could possibly be this weak, fragile vampire. Even as he hopes that he’s wrong, he lies and provokes Emma into coming home with him to his castle, Kinevane, in Scotland. Every step of the way learning what he has missed in technological advancements and crudely seducing Emma yet never managing that last step with this virginal vampire.
Part of Lachlain’s problem is that vampires are the enemy and how he will coerce his subjects into accepting Emma when he has such issues with it. Then there’s Emma and her reluctance. She cannot lie and does expect him to be honest in return.
The story has strong female and male characters.
The primary female lead is Emmeline Troy, the result of a Valkyrie mother, Helen of Troy, and a vampire father. Left on her aunts’ doorstep, the Valkyries do their best to raise and train young Emma but she’s weak. She’d rather curl up in a ball than fight and she cries when a moth dies—she can’t even bite a human for the necessary sustenance of their blood.
Lachlain is the primary male lead and is king of the Lykae and has been chained underground in the catacombs of Paris and tortured by fire for the past 150 years. Only the scent of his mate gave him the strength to finally break the chains holding him prisoner.
The aunts and other Valkyries in their group live at Val Hall Manor outside New Orleans and include Regin, Lucia, Annika, and Nix as Emma’s aunts while Myst and Daniela are amongst the others.
Demestriu is the king of the Vampire Horde with some interesting revelations on the quality of blood one might drink from different beings. He’s also the vampire who captured Lachlain. Ivor the Cruel is one of his, let’s say, more reluctant subjects while Lothaire is another enemy of the Valkyries.
The Lore is a collective of the supernaturals divided into the Vampire Horde, the Valkyrie, the Lykae, the Forebearers, the Furiae, wraiths, demonarchie, witches, and ghouls.
The Cover and Title
The cover certainly reflects Lachlain and Emma with his dark form and clawy-looking hands entrapping a pale barely-clad woman—with painted nails—up against him as he attempts a kiss. The title is accurate as well as Lachlain and Emma each experiences A Hunger Like No Other.