Devon Ruthin: A Vampire in Love by Tessa Stokes
Reviewed by C. Whetzel
2 out of 5 stars
Bliss, a young and restless teacher, decides to spend her holiday driving through the country to visit castles, abbeys and ruins. She has been lured in by the romance of a fiction book she couldn’t put down. Upon arriving in a charming town, she meets a stranger that takes her breath away. Devon is a centuries old vampire, or at least he used to be. He has aligned himself with a community of ancient beings who have created an antidote for his vampirism, as long as he continues his treatments. Having never been in love, Devon is thrown for a loop when he spots Bliss. It’s love at first sight, for him. He lets the moment slip by, and is desperate to find her again. He follows her trail, and brings her back to a perfect life.
Meanwhile, Drew, Devon’s twin brother and also a vampire, is bent on revenge towards his brother. By some twist of fate, Bliss meets Drew before Devon is able to find her again. Once Drew recognizes the connection his brother has with Bliss, he sets his sights on tracking her down. As Drew is on the verge of kidnapping Bliss, he is thrown off by an old flame that he will stop at nothing to reclaim. The plot weaves in and around Drew’s desire for Elise, one of the ancient beings, and his desire to take her as his own. We are left with Devon and the ancient community believing that Drew is dead. However, Drew was saved at the last moment by one of his followers. He has no memory of who he is. This is the first in a trilogy.
What I liked about this book: Ms. Stokes creates an interesting world, where the possibility exists to be “cured” from vampirism. I found it easy to recognize some of the fictional longing regarding a romantic life that plagues Bliss.
My constructive critque: Though the world Ms. Stokes creates has a lot of potential, I felt very turned off by the writing style. It’s not the fact that it is written in 3rd person omniscient, it’s the fact there is a lot of ‘heading hopping’ with no distinguished point of view changes.
I’m just about to get into the scene with Bliss and Devon, and SMACK, I’m thrown into a scene with Drew and Elise. This gave me a whiplash effect. I encourage the author to hire an editor to fix the grammatical errors and find a writing group or beta readers to help with her writing style. Some examples are rehashing previous conversations, consistency, and showing vs telling.
It took me three tries to get through this book. I honestly didn’t think I’d make it. I don’t want to end on such a sour note. I appreciated the story line and enjoyed the characters. Like I said, this story has a lot of potential; it just needs to be tightened up a bit. With a thorough edit and writing style change, this would be an enjoyable read.
Author's Note: Please be aware that the book, set in England, uses many English spellings and does use the punctuation outside of speech marks method.
About Tessa Stokes
I write urban fantasy romance/ paranormal romance because I like to blend real life and the fantastic in my stories. Presently I live in the United Kingdom but I have lived in many places in the world including the Australian outback and North Africa. I do love the English countryside and the availability of historical and ancient places to visit and this is where I sometimes get my inspiration for stories.