Blood Life
Gianna Perada

Bright Eyes Press
Paperback, Digital Editions
Review by Darkeva

Gianna Perada brings us into the imagined world of Spectrum in 1774, in which King Morgan is a tyrannical ruler with no regard for the fact that his daughter, Alexandria, loves a peasant, Roman. He marries Alexandria off to a strange suitor, Lokee, who gives her the creeps from the start, and she has good instincts, as he turns out to be quite the cad and brute, a rogue vampire who opposes the Combined, half witches and half vampires, although he himself is the child of such an interbreeding. The angel of death, Azrael, also shows up from time to time, and quite precariously at what is to be the scene of Roman’s execution, but the angel doesn’t claim anyone at the last minute, the King decides Roman will live as long as Alexandria marries Lokee and agrees never to see Roman again. Lokee marries Alexandria with nefarious intentions and sets in motion a reincarnation plot that takes two hundred more years to get to. Devendra, Roman’s faithful horse, reveals herself to be a powerful witch who turns Roman into a vampire with the aid of the Goddess, Lillith, to help her in her battle with her son, Lokee.

As a vampire, Roman changes drastically over time and under Devendra’s tutelage, learns to shed the naivete of his peasant frame of mind. When we flash forward to 1982, he’s a club owner and has had many lovers, but he is awaiting the return of his love, Alexandria, who Devendra predicted would be reborn in a different form, and she is. Roman meets Alethea when she happens upon his house after her car breaks down outside. Although she doesn’t remember anything about her past life at first, Roman eventually succeeds at jolting her memory, and the conflict with Lokee comes back stronger than ever.

While the product description is true to a certain extent in that Blood Life does deviate from Twilight, the mark of many other popular vampire fiction series can be felt in the novel, which lends a welcome sense of familiarity for paranormal romance fans, who will enjoy the love story between the doomed lovers, Roman and Alexandria, and finding out what becomes of them after all the hardships they face. Although the novel has some issues, including pacing, plot holes, inconsistent dialogue that alternates from modern to antiquated speech patterns, and some info-dumping, it has all the elements of a page turner, and a compelling story that will keep you reading to the end to find out what happens, and when all the loose ends are tied up, everything clicks into place and leaves the reader with a satisfying resolution. If you enjoy vampire fiction with romance and epic fantasy thrown in, you’ll enjoy Blood Life.

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