For those readers not familiar with Katie MacAlister's works, let me summarize. She does zany contemporaries, kooky historicals, sexy dragon shifters and, my favorites, the Dark Ones (her vampy line). She successfully write both YA and Adult paranormal genres. Her stories are fast paced, witty and thoroughly enjoyable. Things don't ever seem to go quite right in Katie's realms, but that's okay because things have a way of working themselves out and the ride is worth the trip!
In the Company of Vampires is actually the adult continuation of her YA Dark Ones stories, Got Fangs? and Circus of the Darned, featuring Benedikt and his Beloved, Francesca. Fran meets vampire Ben at a roving GothFaire in Germany when she is 17 . He realizes that she is his Beloved (ah, the eternal soulmate saga prevalent in paranormals) and proclaims they are to be together. Fran, a smart and modern girl, reminds Ben that she is a teenager, has free will and is fully capable of making her own romantic decisions thank-you-very-much. The YA series ends with her request for space and time to go to school, grow up a bit and experience life some (and also because Dorchester Publishing closed it's doors and has given up it's print side of publishing).
Fast forward five years, Fran has graduated from college and resides in Oregon. Fran appears content to continue her life and work until a series of mishaps, failed kidnapping attempts of her roommate and her mother's disappearance at the hands of Norse god, Loki, leads her to return to the GothFaire in Germany. Fran arrives with the hopes of resolving her emotional issues with Ben possibly once the mystery of her mother's whereabouts is solved but all does not go according to plan. Ben has taken up with the Faire's new resident tattoo artist, the evil Naomi. Ben does agree to assist her with her search and they are both pleased to note their connection is stronger than ever. Now if only they could get around the impediments of the past, 3 viking ghosts with a penchant for improper dress and pillaging, a pissed off Norse god, an even more pissed off witchy tattoo artist, Ben and Fran might actually stand a chance of working things out.
The madcap qualities of Katie MacAlister's books are what make it for me. She creates worlds that are at once both ridiculous and romantic. Secondary characters again steal the show and the one liners will have you giggling and snorting your way to romance! Where else can you find lusty Viking ghosts who no longer have to steal because Odin and Freya provided them with "weasel gold" which can be used anywhere you see the logo? Or the idea that Valhalla got moved to the Carribean because the gods wanted to work on their tans? Romantic heroines shouldn't have to decide if the hero needs a smack or a kiss . Sassy retorts should always be standards, not optional. Oddly enough, once you dig through all the goofiness and sass, her story lines are classic, simple romances. For this reviewer, you have me at romance, but you'll keep me forever if you make me laugh too!
So, go out and snag your own copy which releases today! I give this fab new release, In the Company of Vampires, 5 chocolate covered strawberries - delish! Enjoy! Yummmmmm.