Hot Blood is an anthology by for of the hottest paranormal writers around today - Christine Feehan, Maggie Shayne, Emma Holly and Angela Knight. This book rocks, no two ways about it! If you love Vamps and Lycans, love cutting edge, shock-your-socks-off, sizzling writers with original tales, then this book is for you. Don't pass it off to Gran or Auntie Mae unless you know this is their cup of tea. It can, in places, make little old ladies swoon and reach for the smelling salts. However, if you are tired of tame anthologies and looking for a walk on the wild side, don't hesitate. It's rare to find so much talent under one anthology banner.
The first tale is Christine Feehan's Dark Hunger, a continuation of her very successful "DARK" Carpathian series. I noted one mainstream critic said she struggled with the short story form. Baloney! Christine's style is sharp, fluid and beautifully written - and I might compliment her on her multiple-POV (Point of View) style I so enjoy. The lyrical writing was so refreshing compared to the single POV rabidness going around of late that is making books stale. It's quality writing at it's best. The tale is about a Carpathian who has been captured, and left to die, in a remote jungle lab. He cannot warn his kindred without being "bait" in the trap. However, he is saved by Juliette. Unable to control his need, he must take Juliette's blood to survive. All the DARK fans will not want to miss this one. And again, big round of applause for Feehan's multi POV style!
Awaiting Moonlight is Maggie Shayne's tale. I have been a fan of her work since the old Silhouette Shadow's heyday, and her talent just grows. This is a wonderful tale about a science professor who enters the steamy bayou to find a new species of animal, convinced it is responsible for the wild tales of Lycanthropes running about the town. Only, she runs smack into the real thing, fangs and all, and find he is quite tempting. He is not her worst nightmare, but her darkest fantasy come to life. Shayne's writing is strong, the tale magic.
The Night Owl is the entry from Emma Holly. It's a very charming tale of Marriann O'Faolian who lives in a small Vermont town, and just loves to bake her grandfather's recipes. The sexy Bastien, who is her landlord, has a lot of secrets to hide, but the townsfolk little care since he and his rich companion are tossing around a lot of money. Bastien has fallen in love with the homey Marriann, but is nearly tongue-tied when he tries to court her. When she is nearly killed in a deliberate hit and run accident, she is saved by Bastien, but at what cost?
Angela Knight is the "new kid" on the block, and yet she comes in with the most original and engaging tale. She says to the other three pros, move over, and they had better listen! She takes vamps and mixes in Camelot lore, and conjures a, winning, imaginative tale "Seduction's Gift". John Lance aka Lancelot is one sexy modernize hero. He has come back to claim Grace, a Southern policeman. Only one problem Grace does not want to be claimed. I will not say more, because Master of the Night (October 1, 2004, Berkley) comes out next month, so this is a kick off for what promises to be one great series. Proving once again, Knight is a writer to watch. (2004 Reviews International Organization Award of Excellence Finalist for best short story catagory)
Four tales from four very strong writers. If you want sizzle and pop...then don't settle for a cup of tea, but reach for a wee dram of Stop-Breath!