Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff

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Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff

Empire of the Vampire #1

US Publication Date: September 14th 2021 by St. Martin’s Press

752 Pages, Hardcover

Goodreads Summary: From holy cup comes holy light;
The faithful hand sets world aright.
And in the Seven Martyrs’ sight,
Mere man shall end this endless night.


It has been twenty-seven long years since the last sunrise. For nearly three decades, vampires have waged war against humanity; building their eternal empire even as they tear down our own. Now, only a few tiny sparks of light endure in a sea of darkness.

Gabriel de León is a silversaint: a member of a holy brotherhood dedicated to defending realm and church from the creatures of the night. But even the Silver Order could not stem the tide once daylight failed us, and now, only Gabriel remains.

Imprisoned by the very monsters he vowed to destroy, the last silversaint is forced to tell his story. A story of legendary battles and forbidden love, of faith lost and friendships won, of the Wars of the Blood and the Forever King and the quest for humanity’s last remaining hope:

The Holy Grail.

From New York Times bestselling author Jay Kristoff comes Empire of the Vampire, the first illustrated volume of an astonishing new dark fantasy saga.

Review: *Note: I received an exclusive 400 page sampler from the publisher so this review is based solely on those 400 pages.*

It comes as no surprise to anyone that has been following me for awhile that Jay Kristoff is one of my favorite authors. I am also a huge fan of vampires so when I found out that he was writing a book trilogy about vampires…. I almost lost my mind in excitement. And when St. Martin’s Press sent me the exclusive sampler, whoa boy! I was torn between wanting to devour it and savoring it because I knew that the sampler was going to leave off on a massive cliffhanger so if I finished it too quickly I would be left dying inside waiting for my finished copies to arrive. (And yes, I did say copies plural… but more on that later.)

From the moment I cracked open the sampler, I knew I was going to be in for the ride of my life. There was a huge sense of forboding but in the way that you know you’re reading a vampire novel if that makes any sense. The story starts out in Gabriel De Leon’s present and then proceeds to backtrack to how he came to be in his present circumstances as Jean-Francois of the Blood Chastain records Gabriel’s oral history via the written word and sketches. In that sense it had a similar setup to Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice. And yet, Gabriel is a captive which is likely the only reason he is being so forthcoming in telling the details of his life and how he became to be the Last Silversaint. The banter between Gabriel and Jean-Francois is absolutely hilarious which provides a nice bit of levity amongst the heaviness of Gabriel’s tales. Gabriel has lived a rather hard life which is evident from his stories so those brief moments of humor really help to break things up. There is even more humor added once Gabriel arrives at San Michon and the other silversaints are introduced… be prepared to write down some really fantastic insults!

Jay Kristoff’s writing really has a way of immersing the reader into the worlds he creates and it is no different with Empire of the Vampire. It was incredible to visualize certain scenes in my mind and have them match up very similarly with the illustrations. And let’s talk about the illustrations…. wow!!! Bon Orthwick (aka @monolimeart on Instagram) did a phenomenal job on the illustrations for this novel. Bon’s attention to detail in transforming Jay’s words into these stunning illustrations… just amazing.

Everything about this book so far has completely drawn me in! I love all of the different editions that are out there and had actually preordered 6 different editions for my collection! The book published in the UK last Tuesday so I actually received one of my UK editions yesterday and my first US edition is currently out for delivery! The Waterstones special edition is the one that arrived yesterday and it is bloody gorgeous! I can’t wait for my other editions to arrive and add them to my shelf. I have continued reading the rest of the book with the Waterstones edition.

*Please note: These are not glamorous vampires. This book is graphic in terms of violence and sexual content so proceed at your own risk.*

I received an exclusive sampler of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

5 bloody fangs!

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UK Edition

Available to purchase:

TRUEL1F3 by Jay Kristoff

49081735TRUEL1F3 by Jay Kristoff

Lifelike #3

Published June 30th 2020 by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers

480 Pages

Goodreads Summary: From the bestselling co-author of the Illuminae Files comes the thrilling finale in the LIFEL1K3 trilogy–hailed by Marie Lu as “a breathless, action-packed exploration of what humanity really means.”

Best friends have become enemies. Lovers have become strangers. And deciding whose side you’re on could be the difference between life and death. For Eve and Lemon, discovering the truth about themselves–and each other–was too much for their friendship to take. But with the country on the brink of a new world war–this time between the BioMaas swarm at CityHive and Daedalus’s army at Megopolis, loyalties will be pushed to the brink, unlikely alliances will form and with them, betrayals. But the threat doesn’t stop there, because the lifelikes are determined to access the program that will set every robot free, a task requiring both Eve and Ana, the girl she was created to replace. In the end, violent clashes and heartbreaking choices reveal the true heroes . . . and they may not be who you think they are.

Review: Please note that this is the third book in a trilogy so there will be spoilers for the first two books. If you have not started this trilogy I highly recommend you skip this review and just start reading LIFEL1K3 immediately 🙂

Immediately after I finished DEV1AT3 I knew I needed to start TRUEL1F3 because DEV1AT3 ended on such a crazy cliffhanger. And right from the start the action gets going in TRUEL1F3 picking up right where DEV1AT3 left off. I absolutely adored Lemon Fresh in this book especially. I feel like her character was developed so well over the course of this series. My heart broke for her so many times… she did not deserve the terrible things that happened to her. But I LOVED how close she got to Grimm and Diesel. Their friendship and banter was so fantastic. I also really felt for Zeke… he was being torn in so many directions but I loved that he was able to stay true to his beliefs. One character that I was really surprised to feel a kinship with was Abraham. At first I didn’t think he would have a very big role to play in this story but was I ever wrong.

This book was such a heart pounder with action galore. But what I really loved was that there were also comedic and heart felt moments scattered throughout. I laughed, I cried, I felt anger… so many emotions while reading. These characters are so special that it was hard to say goodbye to them at the end of this book. Overall, I think this was an incredible ending to this series and once again Jay Kristoff proves he is worthy of being one of my favorite authors of all time.

5 Stars

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Shelf Control – January 25, 2018

Shelf Control

Shelf Control is a weekly feature from Bookshelf Fantasies!  The goal is to take a look at the books that are already released that you own but have not read yet.  I have MANY that fall under that category so this feature is perfect for me.  Check out Lisa’s inaugural post for more details!


17261190Title: Stormdancer (The Lotus Wars #1)
Author:
   Jay Kristoff
Published: Published August 21st 2012 by St. Martin’s Griffin
Length: 352 Pages

Goodreads Summary: Stormdancer is the first in the epic new fantasy series The Lotus War, introducing an unforgettable heroine and a stunningly original dystopian steampunk world with a flavor of feudal Japan

The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. When hunters of Shima’s imperial court are charged by their Shōgun to capture a legendary griffin, they fear their lives are over. Any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shōgun is death.  Accompanying her father on the Shōgun’s hunt, the girl Yukiko finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled griffin for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her. But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.

How I Got It: I bought it.

When I Got It: June 2016 but added to TBR April 2016

Why I Want To Read It: I LOVE Jay Kristoff’s writing and all of his other books so I really wanted to read this trilogy but for whatever reason, I’ve set it off to the side.  My goal is to read it either in February or March.

Have any of you read this book?  What did you think of it?

Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff

23264671Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff (Nevernight Chronicles #2)

Expected Publication: September 5, 2017 by Thomas Dunne Books

448 Pages

Goodreads Summary: A ruthless young assassin continues her journey for revenge in this new epic fantasy from New York Times bestselling author Jay Kristoff.

Assassin Mia Corvere has found her place among the Blades of Our Lady of Blessed Murder, but many in the Red Church ministry think she’s far from earned it. Plying her bloody trade in a backwater of the Republic, she’s no closer to ending Consul Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo, or avenging her familia. And after a deadly confrontation with an old enemy, Mia begins to suspect the motives of the Red Church itself.

When it’s announced that Scaeva and Duomo will be making a rare public appearance at the conclusion of the grand games in Godsgrave, Mia defies the Church and sells herself to a gladiatorial collegium for a chance to finally end them. Upon the sands of the arena, Mia finds new allies, bitter rivals, and more questions about her strange affinity for the shadows. But as conspiracies unfold within the collegium walls, and the body count rises, Mia will be forced to choose between loyalty and revenge, and uncover a secret that could change the very face of her world.

Set in the world of Nevernight, which Publishers Weekly called “absorbing in its complexity and bold in its bloodiness,” Godsgrave will continue to thrill and satisfy fantasy fans everywhere.

Review: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  

For those who have not yet read Nevernight, my review for this sequel is simply…. This book was absolutely incredible and completely blew Nevernight out of the water!  You need to pick up Nevernight and start this epic journey now to prepare yourself for the release of this kickass sequel due in September.

For those who have read Nevernight, proceed to my full review below.

Without a doubt, this book was my #1 most anticipated read of 2017 and it did not disappoint at all!  This book took the epicness of Nevernight and multiplied it by a thousand.  There were so many intense moments to the point where I was almost constantly sitting on the literal edge of my chair tapping my feet in nervousness.  The book starts out going back and forth between Mia’s present day and the past few months after saving the Red Church from total destruction.  As a history major, I continue to enjoy the footnotes with little tidbits of background information on certain people, places, or historical events.  The past few months sees Mia continuing her role as a blade for the Red Church and on one of her missions, she runs into a couple old friends.  In the present, Mia is once again working on her quest to avenger her familia by murdering Consul Julius Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo.  All along the way, Mia begins to learn things that will alter her course.  There were so many twists and turns!  A few of them literally had my mouth gaping open because WHOA, MIND BLOWN!  Some new characters were introduced and it didn’t take long for me to feel attached to them.  Kristoff broke my heart a few times and I am still reeling.  Omg and the cliffhanger ending!!! WHAT!  I’m going to need the next book ASAP!  There was laughter, anger, sadness, swoons, etc…. full spectrum of emotions while reading this book.  I haven’t been in the mood to read anything else after finishing Godsgrave because it was so intense and just grabbed me by the feels!

5 Bloody Stars

All US preorders come signed no matter where you buy it from.  Barnes & Noble does have an exclusive edition that includes full color endpapers and an exclusive chapter.  Read more about that edition in Jay Kristoff’s blog post here.

Barnes & Noble Exclusive Edition  |  Amazon

Also… let’s drool together over the UK cover.  (Click on the image below to purchase the UK edition from Book Depository.)32055872