In "Vampire Ascending," author Lorelei Bell has blended Gothic romance and fantasy with a modern setting to create a compelling new chapter in vampire lore. Drawing on literary vampire traditions and giving her own paranormal and clairvoyant twists to old stories, Bell has penned an intriguing page turner that delves into the passions and hopes, lusts and longings of the vampire heart. The main character, Sabrina, rather than being a vampire or a stereotypical female vampire ass-kicker, is a human unsure of herself, searching to make sense of who she is, a very human quest that will make Sabrina’s journey resonate with readers.
Copperhill Media Corporation (2010)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (2/11)
In “Vampire Ascending,” the main character Sabrina Strong has a gift of clairvoyance. Because she has visions when she touches items, she usually prefers to wear gloves. Except for this gift, and her mother disappearing on her after being turned by a vampire when Sabrina was ten, she has led a pretty mundane life. She seems to have the same financial worries and self doubts that most females have. I found myself being able to really relate to her character. Her adventure begins when she takes a job as a clairvoyant with a master vampire’s organization. She really, really needs the money if she wants to hang on to the house that she inherited after her father’s death.
In addition to the job paying well, Sabrina also discovers that she has something very special about her that tends to attract the attention of vampires and shape shifters. While this can be somewhat startling at times, it is also very exciting for her. As she gets drawn into using her gifts to help discover who is murdering vampires, she suddenly realizes that she is a very hot item. She also finds a link between the mystery of what happened to her mother, and a vampire mark that she received as a child. Having become involved with the mystery has caused her life to become endangered. Fortunately, she has some newly found, attractive friends to help protect her.
I am a huge fan of vampire stories. It all started with “Interview with a Vampire,” by Anne Rice. In college, I was thrilled to discover that “Dracula” was on my reading list for a course. Lately, the market has been deluged with vampire tales. While many are very good, some are beginning to give me that “run of the mill” kind of feeling. When I began reading “Vampire Ascending,” I was ecstatic to discover that I had gotten my hands on a truly extraordinary vampire tale.
The author, Lorelei Bell, incorporates other worldly creatures into her story. These include: shape shifters, werewolves, demons, and elves. Because they are all a part of mainstream society, with their abilities hidden, this gives the novel a touch of credence that these characters could really be out there in our own reality. Now I know that this isn’t really true ; to me it helps add to the fantasy. I can still hope that just maybe that gorgeous Native American male, with the long flowing hair, walking down the street is actually a shape shifter. Thoughts like that help me make my mundane world more interesting, but, mind you, not interesting enough to require psychotropic meds.
I think that Lorelei Bell has made a mark in the world of vampire novels with “Vampire Ascending.” Fans of this genre will be pleased to discover her work. I cannot wait to see what she has in store for her characters in her next novel.