"...the blood is the life..." - Deuteronomy 12:23
thirst. it was the craving for water to quench his thirst that made Devon Furst's life drastically turn one fateful night on his way to the gym. stopping at a bar, he encounters the beautiful Mathilde de Roche and goes with her to a hotel for more than a nightcap. Mathilde reveals her true nature. Devon ends up bitten, undergoes a transformation and wakes up as a fledgling vampire thirsting for blood.
David Gittlin's novel about an accountant turned vampire was an interesting piece of fiction for me. it had the elements of a bildungsroman with a darker and fanged twist to it. Devon, the main protagonist, is both awed and horrified by his new life. he welcomes and delights in the mental and physical changes wrought by vampirism but his heart is conflicted when his thoughts frequently turn to his parents, business partner, friends and life in general. falling in love with Madeline adds to the complication. "thanks" to Madeline's vicious sire Egon Schiller whose greed and bloodlust knows no bounds, Devon is confronted to take action if he is to ensure the safety of his loved ones and his survival as well. what follows next is a series of events that plunges Devon deeper into a world far removed from debits, credits and the pressures of tax season.
after having read so many books, i am no longer a purist when it comes to vampire lore. i take my vampires as they come and Gittlin's take on them is a mix of the traditional and then some. he has some fresh ideas to offer while debunking others. he drops hints along the way, leaving the reader eager and curious to know then suddenly provides the answers a few pages or so later catching the reader unaware.
as the story progresses, the reader gets to know Devon fully but Mathilde remains an enigma all throughout. despite her guidance as a sire and the information she doles out to Devon in bits and pieces, i still find her too mysterious and dangerous - a fanged femme fatale if you will.
one of the things i liked about Devon was his apparent love for his family, his friends and his job. his flaws both as a human and a vampire make him an endearing character. i felt sorry though, for his business partner Nadine Van Morrison who stood by him and helped him all the way even if she knew the risks involved.
there were a few typos especially towards the end but too minimal to be distracting. there was one detail, however, that niggled at me when Madeline and Devon met again at the bar where they were first ran into each other. something transpired during that rendez-vous which i know was impossible for Devon to accomplish but it still happened and it made me shake my head for a moment.
as i mentioned earlier and regardless of the aforementioned niggle, this was still an interesting read for me. the book was not just about vampires but an oddysey of sorts filled with blood, drugs, some minimal sex and a bit of humor thrown in.
i cannot be sure if there is a sequel planned as the novel's conclusion leaves one to wonder of its possibility. whether there is or not does not really matter. Devon went through so much. what is important for me is that he finally found what he wanted in the end.
*received a copy for review for Bewitching Book Tours