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raphaelThe Blurb: Malibu, California-home to rock-and-roll gods and movie stars, the beautiful, the rich . . . and vampires. Powerful and charismatic, Raphael is a Vampire Lord, one of the few who hold the power of life and death over every vampire in existence. Thousands call him Master and have pledged absolute loyalty on their very lives. But when, in a brazen and deadly daylight attack, a gang of human killers kidnaps the one female vampire he’d give his life for, Raphael turns to a human investigator to find his enemies before it’s too late. Cynthia Leighton is smart, tough, and sexy-a private investigator and former cop who’s tired of spying on cheating spouses and digging out old bank accounts. When Raphael asks for her help in tracking down the kidnappers, Cyn’s happy to accept. But she soon realizes her greatest danger comes not from the humans, but from Raphael himself. Battling Russian mobsters and treacherous vampires and betrayed by those they trusted, Cyn and Raphael find themselves fighting for their lives while caught up in a passion of blood and violence that is destined to destroy them both.

I’ve heard good things about this series, and it’s been a long time since I read anything vampire-related so I thought I would give the first book in the series a try. I knew ahead of time that this book ends on a cliffhanger as far as the relationship between the two main characters goes. The mystery/crime is solved by book’s end, but there is no happily ever after. She wants a relationship with him, but he doesn’t appear to be ready for that.

She’s a tall, tough ex-cop. She’s tough-talking and bold. I had a hard time liking her character at times because she does a lot of stupid things. She’s specifically told for safety reasons not to do things on her own, but she does them anyway. I didn’t find that character trait admirable. I just thought she was stupid, needlessly putting her life at risk. He has to save her life at one point when she’s near death after an attack by one of the bad guy vampires. He’s a vampire lord, ancient and immensely powerful. He rules over many other vampires in a large territory. I liked him. He doesn’t pull any punches, and he doesn’t hesitate to punish those who are disloyal or guilty of a crime. The romance between the two of them is steamy. I think he’s surprised at the depth of feelings he has for a human female. She’s never been in love before, and she can’t figure out why it had to be him that stirred that level of feelings in her.

I enjoyed this book. I especially enjoyed the vampires in the story. I will continue on with the next book in the series.