I ended up enjoying this book even more than the first!
For one thing, it was funny. Possibly funnier than the first, but I admittedly don’t remember exactly how funny the first one was. It also got pretty intense and dark right near the end. Then it wrapped up with mostly good feelings again. So I wouldn’t say it was too dark overall, and I like when books can balance both humor and intensity.
For another thing, the story was more focused, interesting, and entertaining, and I’m not just saying that because it involved vampires. However, I do like vampires, so that was a plus. And it was fun seeing this author’s version of Dracula and the Dracula story.
The characters were more likeable too. Dale was significantly less of a misanthrope, James seemed less unnecessarily mysterious, and Coyote was less of a troll (not literally, I mean the kind of person who likes to screw with other people) and more lovably playful. All the main characters in this series are imperfect but mostly lovable (well, if you ignore some of the things they’ve done in the past, especially James). Seeing the dynamic between Dale and Coyote as friends was nice too. And I gotta say, I think Coyote and Daphne may be an even cuter couple than Dale and James, haha. Poor Coyote doesn’t understand the nuances of modern human dating, but he tries.
There were a couple things I didn’t like though, the main one being the head hopping, again. It’s something that’s especially frustrating to me in these books because, aside from that, the writing is really good and does draw me in. I guess I’ve decided that it’s worth it to just deal with the head hopping since it doesn’t happen too often, and I like the characters too much to stop reading now.
I also didn’t care much for any of the POVs other than Dale’s, but other people might enjoy them. I did at least understand why the author gave us Abraham’s POV.
The other thing I didn’t like was that they cured James’s mental illness with magic, at least temporarily. In real life though, there is no insta-cure, so I don’t like seeing this in books because it can lead to harmful misunderstandings. I don’t actually know what illness it is that he had, but before they fixed it, it had seemed realistic in the sense that, even though he knew he was being irrational and that he was going to face serious consequences if he didn’t get back to his job, he just couldn’t get past it, he couldn’t will it away and force himself to get over it no matter how much he wanted to.
So overall, I had a problem with the head hopping and the mental illness cure, but I really liked the characters and the story.
Anyone who likes M/M urban fantasy, humor, a bit of mystery, and imperfect but mostly likeable characters.
More Books in the Series:
Book Review: The Man in the Long Black Coat (Dale Bruyer Book 1) by J.L. Aarne
Book Review: Love Song for a Vampire (Dale Bruyer Book 2) by J.L. Aarne
Book Review: The Watcher’s Son (Dale Bruyer Book 3) by J.L. Aarne
Dale Bruyer kills bad things that go bump in the night, or at least he used to. Now he owns a bar in small town Louisiana and granted, it has become a hang-out for the same creatures he used to track down, but they tip in gold and diamonds, so he can’t really complain. He’s retired (sort of) and out of the game until a friend starts him a blog without his permission and brings him a new case: vampires in New Orleans.
He’s skeptical at first, but he discovers vampire blood making the rounds on the street as the newest cheap thrill and comes face to face with a monster from legend and it’s not so unbelievable anymore. Except things aren’t always what they seem, especially in Dale’s world, and it’s up to him to figure out what’s actually happening and ultimately decide which side he’s really on.
Book Author: J.L. Aarne
Publisher: Self Published
Series: Dale Bruyer
Genre: Fantasy, LGBTQIA, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
My Book Rating: 3.5
Series/Standalone: Part of a Series
Setting Location: Louisiana, New Orleans, USA
Sexual Orientation: Gay (Love Interest), Gay For You (Main Character)
Disability: Mental Illness, Other Mental Illness
Non-Human Type: Reapers, Vampires, Witches
Romance Type: M-M
Extra Love: Cover Love, Funny