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:

Shelf Control – February 1, 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!


12813630Title: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
Author: Holly Black
Published: September 3rd 2013 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Length: 419 Pages

Goodreads Summary: Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave.

One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black.

How I Got It: I bought it.

When I Got It: I don’t even remember exactly but it’s been on my TBR for at least 2 years.

Why I Want To Read It: I originally bought it because vampires… but I recently read my first Holly Black book (The Cruel Prince) and loved it so much that I want to read everything that she has ever written.

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

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

11468955A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

Published December 27th 2011 by Penguin Books (first published January 1st 2011)

579 Pages

Goodreads Summary: Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries-and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

Debut novelist Deborah Harkness has crafted a mesmerizing and addictive read, equal parts history and magic, romance and suspense. Diana is a bold heroine who meets her equal in vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont, and gradually warms up to him as their alliance deepens into an intimacy that violates age-old taboos. This smart, sophisticated story harks back to the novels of Anne Rice, but it is as contemporary and sensual as the Twilight series-with an extra serving of historical realism.

Review: I am so glad that I finally got around to reading this book.  I have always had a big interest in witches and witchcraft.  And to combine that all with vampires and other supernatural creatures just made it that much better.  If you read the summary I included in this review and you’re not a fan of Twilight… don’t let that little mention scare you away because this is really nothing like Twilight.  The book was a little slow moving at first but it was still enough to keep me interested.  I’m so glad I kept on reading because I really did enjoy this book.  I loved all of the characters, especially Matthew.  I loved his and Diana’s relationship.  This story could have been your typical witch coming into her power type but it was so much more than that.  I really love how history was incorporated into the story and can’t wait to get even more history in the second book.

4/5 Stars

Halloweeny TBR & TBW

Halloween Wallpaper 02 - www.HopIMG.com

It’s October!  You know what that means!  It’s almost time for Halloween.  To get in the mood, I have prepared my entire month of reading and watching movies around Halloweeny type things.  I’ve tried to include a little bit of everything: witches, paranormal, vampires, zombies and slashers.  Although I didn’t include any paranormal in my movie list, I have plenty for backup if I run out of movies to watch.

TBW

My TBW includes:

  • Hocus Pocus (witches)
  • The Craft (witches)
  • I Know What You Did Last Summer (slasher)
  • I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (slasher)
  • The Crazies (zombies)
  • Scream 1-4 (slasher)
  • World War Z (zombies)
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (slasher)

UPDATE: Brandie reminded me that I completely forgot one of my all-time favorite movies!  PRACTICAL MAGIC!  I am officially adding it to my list of movies to watch!

TBR

My TBR includes:

  • The Witching Hour by Anne Rice (witches)
  • I Am Legend by Richard Matheson (zombies)
  • Salem’s Lot by Stephen King (vampires)
  • The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich (paranormal)

The Witching Hour is over 1000 pages so I have only selected 4 books for my set TBR.  And for backup books in case I finish all 4 books, I have selected a few alternates.

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  • Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness (vampires and witches)
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker (vampires)
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (monsters)

And just in time, I got my awesome Halloween bookmark pre-orders from Happy Hello Art!

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I am so excited to start off my October with some creepy reads!  I am going to start with a re-read of The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich so I can finally read it through with the finalized pages.

HAPPY OCTOBER!  Are you reading any creeptastic reads this month?

30 Day Book Challenge – Day 24

Happy Sunday everybody!  Once again, I forgot to post yesterday!  I didn’t exactly forget, I just didn’t have time.  Last night we had some spontaneous plans to go to a friend’s house for a bonfire.  We didn’t get home until late so I didn’t have time to post.

30 Day Book ChallengeDay 24: A book you love but hate at the same time

Hmm… I think for this one I will have to post about a series instead of just a singular book.

The Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris

The Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris

I love this series.  But I also hate it.  I love all of the characters and the different ways that the author portrays vampires, werewolves, fairies, etc.  What I hate is that it doesn’t always go the way that I want it to.  Just when Sookie is finally with the guy that I want her to be with, it soon ends.  And I absolutely hated the way that Harris ended the series!  I knew that Sookie would never ever want to become a vampire, which would make it hard for her to have a long-term relationship with one but who she ended up with just kind of pissed me off.  Some of the story lines were a little bit too far fetched, even for a world filled with mythical creatures.

I have re-read some of the books a few times and will continue to do so in the future but it won’t change the fact that the ending frustrates the hell out of me.

What book or series do you love but hate at the same time?