Published by Avon on June 26th 2012
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Source: Personal Copy
Also by this author: Twice Tempted (Night Prince, #2)
She's a mortal with dark powers...
After a tragic accident scarred her body and destroyed her dreams, Leila never imagined that the worst was still to come: terrifying powers that let her channel electricity and learn a person's darkest secrets through a single touch. Leila is doomed to a life of solitude...until creatures of the night kidnap her, forcing her to reach out with a telepathic distress call to the world's most infamous vampire...
He's the Prince of Night...
Vlad Tepesh inspired the greatest vampire legend of all—but whatever you do, don't call him Dracula. Vlad's ability to control fire makes him one of the most feared vampires in existence, but his enemies have found a new weapon against him—a beautiful mortal with powers to match his own. When Vlad and Leila meet, however, passion ignites between them, threatening to consume them both. It will take everything that they are to stop an enemy intent on bringing them down in flames.
An Honest Moment on Why It’s Taken Me So Long to Read This Series: Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series is one of my go-to rereads (maybe six times for some of the Cat and Bones novels?). I shied away from the spin-off series, Night Prince, for five years because I typecast Vlad as the eccentric, best-friend type who could also turn you into crispy fried chicken faster than you could say “Dracula Who?” No matter how hard I tried, I wasn’t ready to picture Vlad as leading man material.
This first book is a solid four-star read, but I’ve had to reluctantly retire my previous images of Vlad. Jeaniene Frost is slowly building him into a more complex, emotional character than what we saw in the Night Huntress novels. Yes, he still comes off as unpredictable and frighteningly powerful but we’re slowly learning about the motivations for his actions.
Leila was also a character who felt risky to me. I was afraid she was going to be a ‘woe is me – nobody loves me because I’m different’ woman who bends over backward for the first man to give her attention. That did happen – there’s an instant lust between Vlad and Leila that’s acted upon because… well, this is the first time Leila’s can act on her attraction for someone without accidentally killing them. I couldn’t blame her but appreciated that she recognized her worth and stood her ground when Vlad became over protective or unreasonable. I can’t say I’m 100% convinced I’ll love this series but want to give it a fair and full chance.
Why you might like this book:
- Potentially Deep Characters with Room for Growth: This is the first book in a four-part series. Once Bitten introduces Vlad and Leila as well as the flaws and the challenges they will face as a couple. Jeaniene Frost doesn’t provide a quick resolution to these issues, implying continued growth over the next three novels.
- Strong World Building: The Night Huntress World is carefully crafted and well thought out. There is a strong hierarchical relationship amongst the Vampires that makes sense in the context of their power and immortality.
- Continuing Story Arc: There is a ‘did he/didn’t he’ cliffhanger at the end that suggests a complex story arc that could play out over the next few novels. Personally, it’s a nice change from series that string together unrelated stories with a common cast of characters.