Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5
Vampire hedonist Teak has finally gone too far with that last drunken orgy and seduction of that priest. Now the council has given him two options. Be entombed in a coffin for over a 100 years or be vanished to the wildnerness of Canada, forbidden to feed on the locals and ordered blend in by resuming his mortal profession, a physician, something he hasn’t done since 1923.
Teak has no intention of following orders in Canada until he meets pharmacist Marcus Kent who confounds him totally. Attracted to Marcus, Teak tries his tricks but nothing works! Marcus seems immune. Can a potential seducee become the seducer? Teak is about to find out.
I loved this story. In Teak, Manly has created the total unrepentant vampire who also happens to be the local vampire bad boy. Teak loves to party, love to drink blood and have sex and if he can do all three together, than he will do it to the extremes. Manly’s Teak is over the top outrageous and absolutely charming, even when hanging from silver chains about to the sentenced by the Vampire Council. Teak is the shameless bad boy of rock, without the band of course and the reader will fall for him immediately.
Banished to Canadian wilderness, Teak is a vampire out of water. It’s city boy vampire meets Northern Exposure and it works as Teak encounters one unknown after another, from curling to an attractive mortal immune to vampire lures. The other main character, Marcus Kent, is not as fully fleshed out a character as Teak but still he works as the tasty human morsel who turns into the first real love Teak has ever known. Their romance was charming and a tad old fashioned, just a lovely change of pace for Teak and the reader.
If I had a quibble about the story, it would be that it (and the character of Teak) turned a little overly gushy towards the end. With his love for Marcus hanging, Teak turns almost weepy, definitely not in keeping with the characterization Manly has established. I would also have loved to have seen more of Teak in his doctor’s office interacting with his patients because other important part of the changeover for Teak is the reigniting of his love for his profession. He loves being a doctor again. It’s a wonderful element of the story and I would have enjoyed seeing Teak’s reaction to medical advancements.
Succulent Dark is a succulent little piece of supernatural fiction, highly enjoyable and leaving the reader wanting more of this couple and this universe. I definitely recommend this story, it’s the best of the Frostbite collection.
Collection cover art by Posh Gosh, great cover.
The Frostbite Collection includes:
Gravedigger (Frostbite #1) by Aurelia T. Evans m/f
Night Fall (Frostbite #2) by Jenna Byrnes m/m
Succulent Dark (Frostbite #3) by D.J. Manly m/m
The Study of Blood in Winter (Frostbite #4) by Catalina Dudka m/f