The synopsis: Fortitude Scott’s life is a mess. A degree in film theory has left him with zero marketable skills, his job revolves around pouring coffee, his roommate hasn’t paid rent in four months, and he’s also a vampire. Well, sort of. He’s still mostly human.
But when a new vampire comes into his family’s territory and young girls start going missing, Fort can’t ignore his heritage anymore. His mother and his older, stronger siblings think he’s crazy for wanting to get involved. So it’s up to Fort to take action, with the assistance of Suzume Hollis, a dangerous and sexy shape-shifter. Fort is determined to find a way to outsmart the deadly vamp, even if he isn’t quite sure how
ML Brennan concocts some weird as living vampire rules: vampires are born after powerful vampires make host parents to create the child. It’s very complicated and most of the hosts go bonkers. Which explains why vampires don’t run the show. And also, these vampires are BAD, really bad, since vampires are born (not turned) they are RAISED in a way that makes them separate from humans, not “humans are food and we’re better than them” or even worse “we have to blend in with the humans… for some reason.” THAT MAKES NO SENSE. Fort was raised by humans, and lives and works with humans and he sees the evil, destructive, violent, psychotic nature of vampires. It makes sense.
Fortitude, Chivalry and Prudence are all vampire siblings with really dumb names. Prudence is batshit crazy. Chivalry is a dashing alpha male type vampire, and Fortitude. Fortitude is a mess. He has a bad job, worse roommates, bad clothes and worse luck. His kitsune bodyguard lets him get mugged. He’s actually really pathetic, but you still kinda want to give him a hug.
Random things I liked about it: It takes place in the Providence/Newport/Cranston area, it’s New England-y, he’s a vegetarian (his sort of ex-girlfriend is vegan).
The kitsune, I applaud thinking out side of the folklore box. Suzume is a fox that turns into a woman, she is also a trickster. I thought it was a good switch up. Werewolves are my favorite, but really, there are an awful lot of vampire/werewolf team ups, so new is good. And instead of just being a spunky sidekick/love-interest, Suzume is the more bad ass, more capable and more well-connected of the two, she was a fully developed character worthy of her own book who somehow managed not to steal the story away from Fort. And she spends more time antagonizing him than making kissy faces at him.
Things I didn’t like. I didn’t like Beth. Beth, possibly, considered that she was having an open relationship, Fort did not want that. But instead of you know, not being with her; it was agonized over that she was cheating on him blah blah slut blah blah. “Two days later she’d sent me a sixteen page email that outlined her view of what a modern an liberated relationship was supposed to look like, which boiled down to her being able to have sex with as many people as she liked. ….I’d been trying to come up with a better response to her email than ‘You shouldn’t because it makes me unhappy (plus I really don’t want to catch venereal diseases).'” All fine and valid, open relationships, like monogamy are not for everyone. But there’s just a ton of bitching about what a hobag Beth is. Suzume nails it in the ONE COMMENT HERE “No, I’m really sure that if you are going to have an open relationship, it has to be preagreed upon by both parties before hand, otherwise it’s just post-sanctioned cheating, which is still cheating.”
Anyway, I like that Fort’s broke and has to worry about going to work even when he’s beat up and depressed. AT&T does not care if you got beat up by a vampire lacky. You cannot tell your landlord that you were secretly investigating the abduction of a young girl by an Italian vampire. Busy Beans (your employer), does not have time for these shenanigans they will not understand why your female (fox) bodyguard is hanging out with you at work all day, You have no doctor’s note because you went to an elf instead of a hospital.
Most importantly. He didn’t just gain a kooky set of friends, become all powerful and save everyone. Shit went wrong. He met kitsune, an elf and a witch and mostly, they were not thrilled. People died. Things got wrapped up, but it wasn’t all neat and tidy.
Also, this one line, “the Boston Area looked at Rhode Island as it’s mentally slow country cousin.” Yes, that’s true.
5 Stars- Totally Killer… it’s brain candy, but it’s good. No smut, lots of plot, great world building.