Queen of Tarts Review of
Dark Dates by Tracey Sinclair
I love to read paranormal romance and urban fantasy. I pick up a book from the different genres with certain expectations. The main one is that the story will have an element of the fantastical in it. Magic, supernatural beings, and/or psychic powers etc. The 2nd thing I expect is that in the PNR genre novel the romantic relationship will play a large roll in the story arc. And that the UF genre will be about the main protagonists journey and doesn’t promise you happy ever after. I like both types of stories.
Dark Dates is urban fantasy. I got a huge kick out of the heroine, Cassandra. She is a Sensitive and knows things about people… This story is written in first person, so you’re right there with Cass. I loved her humor and snark. I felt like we could be friends. She liked so many of the things I do, like cake and pretty, uncomfortable shoes and she must watch as much tv as I do with all her pop culture references to Buffy, Angel’s Wolfram & Hart and Supernatural’s Winchester boys. <g>
Cassandra owns a dating agency and uses her gift to help supernaturals find partners. I liked how she saw the underworld as not too separate from the overworld (us). “I realized they weren’t that different from anyone else. Some are bastards, some are sweeties – set aside by their nature they may be, but for the most part they are just like us… they were also a great business opportunity.” lol So Cass interviews vampires and finds out what they are hoping for then she and her assistant Medea (whom I adored!) throw mixer events for the paranormals and humans to connect. Now some of the powerful beings in town don’t like what she’s doing and start threatening her.
An old flame of Cassendra’s come back into her life. From some reviews I had read, I really thought I wouldn’t like Cain. But I did. He has an attitude of anything necessary to get the job done. He reminded me a tiny bit of Edward from the Anita Blake series. Casandra’s relationship with him is hard to describe. There’s passion and emotion but he only visits her occasionally before he’s off to fight other battles. There is a lot of chemistry between them and she enjoys his visits. <g> (The erotic content is hot but a lot more implied than spelled out.) He is mysterious and some of his secrets made me want to shake him. Would it hurt to communicate? :p He’s come back to town because something bad is about to go down and she seems to be in the middle of it.
Vampires in London are being murdered and the threats against Cass and her business start to escalate. I loved watching her find strength and courage to stand up against the powers that are trying to take her out. She even uses her purse and for another attack she uses an item from her kitchen! She’s resourceful and doesn’t give up and keeps her snarky sense of humor.
Here are a few of my fav lines…
♥”I pay my direct debit to Amnesty Inernational. I’m aware there are mean people in the world.”
His mouch twitched into a smile.
“Mean people?” I love how you can mix with monsters on a daily basis yet the worst you can say about the evil the walks the earth is that there are ‘mean people’?”
The evil that walks the earth? You see what I have to put up with?
“Well, that’s the whole thing with you, isn’t it?” I retorted, taking his bait, the same way I always did. “You don’t hunt the bad guys. You hunt a very specific set of bad guys, because you’ve decided their very nature makes them ‘evil’ , so you’re going all Winchester on their arses.”
He looks at me blankly. “I don’t carry a Winchester. I carry a Glock.”
♥”Ah. my apologies, I am Laclos.”
“Of course you are. Louis and Lestat being taken.”
♥”I think I may have issues.” I said into the phone. I swear, I could hear Medea roll her eyes in response.
“I think you may have to narrow that down a little.”
Dark Dates has vampires, witches, shapeshifters, daemons and angels oh my! I love Cassandra and I enjoyed the secondary characters too, especially Medea and her partner. Laclos, the sexy, powerful, vampire with rock star like charisma, intigued me and I want to know more of his story and of course, there’s Cain. He is not a comfortable man, but he’s very compelling and there are hints at more emotion then he shows on the surface…. This story made me giggle and gasp in a few places. I recommend you give Dark Dates a try if you enjoy first person urban fantasy with a fiesty, sarcastic, not perfect, heroine, who doesn’t give up or back down. I can’t wait to see what she does next!
The Queen of Tarts
♦eARC provided for review
Click HERE to see my interview with Tracey
Tracey is giving one lucky commentor from The Book Tart a digital copy of Dark Dates. Contest open 10/11-10/21. Click on the interview for the Rafflecopter
All Cassandra Bick wants is to be left to get on with doing her job. But when you’re a Sensitive whose business is running a dating agency for vampires, life is never going to be straightforward – especially when there’s a supernatural war brewing in London, a sexy new bloodsucker in town and your mysterious, homicidal and vampire hating ex-lover chooses this moment to reappear in your life…
Witty, sharp and entertaining, Dark Dates is a heady mix of vampires, witches and werewolves – with the occasional angel thrown in – and introduces Cassandra Bick, a likeable heroine destined to join the ranks of fantasy’s feistiest females.