Arc Review: Gothic Vampires

Silver Under Nightfall by Rin Chupeco

Publication Date: September 13, 2022

Summary from Netgalley:

Remy Pendergast is many things: the only son of the Duke of Valenbonne (though his father might wish otherwise), an elite bounty hunter of rogue vampires, and an outcast among his fellow Reapers. His mother was the subject of gossip even before she eloped with a vampire, giving rise to the rumors that Remy is half-vampire himself. Though the kingdom of Aluria barely tolerates him, Remy’s father has been shaping him into a weapon to fight for the kingdom at any cost.

When a terrifying new breed of vampire is sighted outside of the city, Remy prepares to investigate alone. But then he encounters the shockingly warmhearted vampire heiress Xiaodan Song and her infuriatingly arrogant fiancé, vampire lord Zidan Malekh, who may hold the key to defeating the creatures—though he knows associating with them won’t do his reputation any favors. When he’s offered a spot alongside them to find the truth about the mutating virus Rot that’s plaguing the kingdom, Remy faces a choice.

It’s one he’s certain he’ll regret.

But as the three face dangerous hardships during their journey, Remy develops fond and complicated feelings for the couple. He begins to question what he holds true about vampires, as well as the story behind his own family legacy. As the Rot continues to spread across the kingdom, Remy must decide where his loyalties lie: with his father and the kingdom he’s been trained all his life to defend or the vampires who might just be the death of him.

ARC provided by Gallery Books via NetGalley for an honest review.

Confession:

While I did enjoy this for the most part, especially the characters and the plot, I did have some issues with the world building. But if you are looking for a new and different kind of love story with lots of vampires and some swoony, and a little bit graphic sex, then this is a book you should consider.

The main character Remy is such a sweet and kind soul, except for when he is out killing vampires. He had an emotionally abusive childhood and has a hard time finding himself and how he fits in with the life his father has chosen for him. But he shows such tremendous growth in this book and that was lovely to see, especially with how naive and even how simple his personality was to start with. He even admits he is not the smartest sword in the kingdom, yet he tries very hard to understand. He is easily manipulated by his father and even society and some of the people who interact with him.

Xiaodan and Zidan are the two vampries that Remy falls in love with. Yes, folks we have a thruple here, and it is quite the steamy and romantic time between the three of them. Xiaodan an Zidan are wonderul to Remy and see him for who he really is, brave, strong and emotionally starved. They do a wonderful job of helping him to grow. They are also a very interesting couple of vampires, smart and willing to work and live alongside humans. They have been trying to create a treaty with Remy’s kingdom but there are of course many factions working against them. Zidan is also a scientist and has been working on how to save the humans who have been infected by the Rot that is running through the kingdom.

The plot was really interesting and I don’t want to get to much into it, because I don’t want to give anything away. There are some slow spots and the action scenes can be a bit gory and also hard to follow at times. But overall I really enjoyed the story. My biggest issue though was with the world building. It seemed kind of wishy washy, drawing on many different influences that never really meshed well together. For instance, Zidan has all of this medical equipment which allows him to detect DNA in blood samples and trace them to a specific person, yet this world doesn’t seem to have electricity or anything else technologically advanced. Everyone still uses horses to get around, and there doesn’t even seem to be indoor plumbing! It just all didn’t quite work for me. But if you can ignore all of that and just go with it, then I think you will find a story that you can sink your teeth into (pun intended).

If you are looking for a vampire story with lots of great characters and both good and evil vampires this is a story you might want to consider. Just know that there is a lot of steamy sex between the three main characters, but it’s not to graphic, as well as a lot of swearing. But I still really enjoyed this and look forward to seeing how it all works out in the second book.

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