Audie Award Nominee, Paranormal, 2013
1870. A time known as The Great Killing. The vampire clans arose and slaughtered humanity with unprecedented carnage in the northern parts of the world. Millions perished; millions were turned into herd animals. The great industrialized civilizations of the world were left in ruin. A remnant fled south to the safety of the ever present heat which was intolerable to vampires. There, blending with the local peoples, they rebuilt their societies founded on human ingenuity, steam and iron. The year now is 2020. The Equatorian Empire, descendant of the British Empire, stretches from Alexandria to Cape Town. Princess Adele, quick witted, combat trained and heir to throne is set to wed the scion of the American Republic, a man she has never met. Their marriage will cement an alliance between the nations and set the stage for war against the vampires in an attempt to retake the north. Prepared to do her duty she finds herself caught in a web of political intrigue and physical danger.
The Greyfriar, a legendary vampire hunter from the north, appears ready to rescue the Princess and return her home—but he harbors secrets of his own. As the power struggle between the vampires and humans increase Adele and The Greyfriar are caught in the middle, on the run, being hunted, and fighting for not just their own lives, but for future of humanity.
Audie Award Nominee, Paranormal, 2013
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The Greyfriar Rocks!
Yes, although I enjoyed the print version the added dimension of James Marsters narrating was impressive. I always love him in the Dresden Files but oh my what he does with this makes me impatient for the next book in the series (I've read the Riftwalker and am waiting for the 3rd book to come out) They even have a little bit of Ney music leading in and ending the book which makes me think of of Princess Adele as a child and her Persian mother.
My boyfriend's favorite was Flay and I guess it is because she is so sexy while being so deadly. For myself it has to be the Greyfriar himself. He is obviously on the classic hero's journey and sometimes it is painful to watch. He is by no means perfect except in the struggle.
James Marsters puts in a performance, not just some sort of mellifluous voice. He handles womens voices so well that I forget it is a man who is doing the reading. He nails the ethnic voices making the Japanese tutor/mystic Marmaru sound more like Lord Toranaga than Mr. Miyagi, his Colonel Anhault, a Gurkha officer who heads the Royal Guard sounds as if he sprang right from the sub-continent and he even does convincing voices for the Persian female mystic and an African sorceress who are members of the cabal. He draws the smallest of characters so vividly that you can feel the warmth folksy appeal of the elderly couple that open their poor home to the Greyfriar and Princess Adele even at great risk to themselves. Guess you know that I've been following James Marsters since he played Spike on Buffy and Angel and he has done nothing other than improve. He never dissapoints.
The first paranormal Steampunk Adventure
The balance of action adventure, mystery and romance makes this audio worthy of your Audible credits.
I took a chance on this one and...wow!
Action. Adventure. Romance.
For me the sign of a good book is when I'm compelled to READ the sequel if it's not available on audible. Wanting to find out what happens next to the characters was what mainly had me dying to read more. The character building is superb which sometimes gets neglected in sci-fi/fantasy books. Princess Adele is a strong, independent and quite deadly heroine as opposed to some of the frail little waifs that have appeared in other vampire fiction. The Greyfriar was a superb hero, definitely far from perfect, but striving to make a difference in a war torn world.
The world building was good as well though I still have lots of questions that will hopefully be answered in future installments in this series. I felt totally immersed in the world and could picture the places and the events as they took place.
There was a twist, which I won't mention here, that I absolutely loved. The aftermath was handled perfectly. Each of the affected characters dealt with the repercussions of this revelation in a realistic way. Loved, loved, loved it.
I also loved the vampires. They definitely do not sparkle. The mythology of their race was fascinating and seemed almost believable, at least more believable than that in recent vampire books I've read. These vampires were downright scary, ruthless, but at the same time fighting to survive, much like the humans in the book.
This brings me to the next thing I liked about the book. Seeing the perspectives of both the humans and the vampires and the driving force behind each of their actions really helped the world and the novel to be more believable.
He is amazing. I'm a fan of Buffy and have always loved Mr. Marsters but I have to say I was shockingly impressed with how well he handled the various voices, both male and female, and those from various parts of the world. I actually found myself forgetting that a man was narrating for Princess Adele. He gave her such a unique voice. He was never overly dramatic, but always pitch perfect in his inflection and portrayal of emotions.
Please get the sequel on Audible as fast as possible. Though I'm tearing through the print version, it's not nearly as satisfying as listening to James Marsters portray these characters.
Give this book a chance. It's a welcome new twist on vampire lore with characters that will stick with you long after you're done listening.