A MelanieM Release Day Review: Blood and Eternity (Blood #3) by Shira Anthony

Standard

Rating: 5 stars out of 5

 

 

Sequel to Blood and Ghosts and the final installment in the Blood Trilogy

Vampire hunter Adrien Gilbert never dreamed he’d fall for his prey or that his love, Nicolas Lambert, would give him the gift of immortality. But when a hunter bent on destroying the truce between vampires and hunters throws the gauntlet at Adrien’s feet, Adrien must travel through time to save Nicolas, and with him, the entire vampire race.

The time has come to make a choice—one they will live with for eternity.

In this final installment in the Blood Trilogy, Adrien and Nicolas must face their greatest enemy in a deadly last confrontation. But to prevail, they’ll need to master the enemies within.

When Adrien awakens to a future he doesn’t recognize, he faces an impossible decision: live a perfect life with Nicolas in a shattered world, or risk everything to repair a broken past. But before he can challenge vampire hunter Verel Pelletier, he must master the demon who lives in his own mind—and learn to control his ability to travel through time. With Nicolas by his side, he prepares for a final battle against a powerful adversary who likes to play games with the past and future.

But the price of ensuring a future for their loved ones may be an eternity spent alone.

I always find it so hard to return to a series when it’s been a while since the last story.  In this  case, Blood and Ghosts, was released in 2015, and I’ve read a ton of books since then, including many by this author.  Another factor here?  Shira Anthony’s overall arc for her characters and plot for the trilogy.  Labyrinthine barely covers it.  It involves multiple time times, different eras, alternate universes even for these characters lives, yes time travel that continually changes both the people, the relationships, warping both past, future and present around all involved.  It ended on a cliffhanger of sorts.

Yes, the mind boggled even as the author kept us heavily invested in the outcome for not only the main characters but many of those also in close support.

Now three years later, the last novel is released and I need to remember everything?  Yikes!

Luckily for all, Shira Anthony has us covered.  She included a cast of characters, their relationships to each other as well as a series recap at the beginning of the story.  Neither of which weighs down the story  but acts more like a springboard, providing the narrative energy for us to jump into the action once more.  It’s a quick refresher course that brought everything immediately back to mind.  These are marvelous characters and I didn’t need much to bring them and their situations vividly back to memory.

Having left Adrien waking to Nico/Nicholas in a future that came with a warning from their despicable enemy and a dire choice to be made, I couldn’t wait to see how Anthony now resolved all the time lines and this amazing complicated romance.  I can now say I have never been happier with the finale novel of a trilogy.

Without giving away any spoilers, and they are so many ways to do that here, Anthony managed to tie all up the couples, all the convoluted timelines, bring them all full circle, and yet still, logically, bring her trilogy to an outstanding, heartwarming, sniffle- inducing conclusion.

Yes, the villains get theirs too!  That’s a must with me.

But what’s more, Anthony does it by keeping the integrity of her characters, their timelines she has created for them, their various histories and relationships intact.  That’s no small feat considering the various Councils and politics also involved.  Did I say complicated?

I don’t know how the author manages to keep all these threads organized and flowing as she does but the story remains compelling at all times,  The various Nicholas, no matter where they are in history or time, pull at your heart.  The consequences of time and their actions heartbreaking.  I think that’s another reason why that ending resonated with me so greatly.  Because I connected so deeply with these characters through all three stories.  The villains had to have their comeuppance and the heroes (all of them) had to have their forever loves.

The author gave me that.  How I love this story and this trilogy.

Shira Anthony’s writing is fluid and so well done it keeps you glued to the text! Her story and series complicated, compelling and exciting and her characters memorable and ones to keep close to your heart.  If you haven’t found this series yet, now is the time to start.  Begin with book one, Blood and Rain, and read through until you get here.  I highly recommend them all.

Cover art: Reese Dante.  That’s Adrien, a perfect portrait of the man in my brain.  I love it.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 214 pages
Expected publication: July 31st 2018 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640807426
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series Blood :

Blood and Rain

Blood and Ghosts

Blood and Eternity

Author Highlight! Shira Anthony on Blood and Ghosts & Writing Time Travel! (contest and guest blog)

Standard

 BloodandGhostsFS

“Blood and Ghosts (Blood #2) by Shira Anthony”

Special Guest Blog

We are so happy to have Shira Anthony here today to talk about her sequel to Blood and Rain (Blood 1), Blood and Ghosts! In her latest series, Shira Anthony has vampire characters, time travel and many other elements that we haven’t seen from this author before.  So today we are offered a little insight into her characters and how it is to write time travel into her stories. For more details about the book and its author, continue on after the guest post.  Happy Reading.

 Shira Anthony on  Writing Time Travel

Thanks, Melanie, for hosting the Blood and Ghosts blog tour today! I’m so excited to share the second book in the Blood Series from Dreamspinner Press with everyone. Be sure to read down about how to enter the blog tour giveaway for a cool Dr. Who “Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey” pendant.

Have you ever dreamed you could go back in time and do things differently? There are many different concepts of time and how the choices we make affect our future. Speculative fiction is hot right now, and there are some great books out there that delve into what might have happened if, for example, Germany had won World War II, or the South had won the United States Civil War and slavery had never been abolish. These sorts of stories utilize a view of time as linear, but with many twists andTime travel turns based on events and choices. This diagram demonstrates that concept. Each green dot is a choice that leads to a different outcome. Decide you’re going to have dinner with Jim, and maybe you don’t meet John. Each choice becomes a fork in the road.

The Blood Series was inspired by a Japanese anime, Noein, which utilizes precisely this concept of time (and yes, I’m a total anime geek, for those who may not already know!). The Blood Series features three M/M pairings, but the main focus is on immortal vampire hunter Adrien Gilbert and the ancient vampire (born a vampire, not created from a human) he loves, Nicolas Lambert. Through Nicolas’s powerful blood, Adrien not only becomes immortal, but he gains powers beyond those of vampires or hunters. In book 2 in the series, Blood and Ghosts, Adrien discovers he has the ability to travel through time. Unfortunately for Adrien, controlling that power is something just beyond his grasp.

Blood and Ghosts features three timelines, or “timestreams”: the original timestream Adrien lives in which is chronicled in Blood and Rain (Blood #1), the timestream Adrien inadvertently changes when he’s sent back to a time before he ever met Nicolas, and finally, a confusing new future I won’t spoil in which he finds himself at the end of the second book (a where he finally gets a happily-for-now with his beloved Nicolas!). Keeping all of these straight, and keeping them understandable for the reader, was a monumental task. How did I do it? With a lot of input from my wonderful beta readers and my Dreamspinner Press editors. Oh, and a crap ton of rewriting!

Adrien meets three versions of Nicolas in the series: the Nicolas he originally fell in love with, the Nicolas whose life he changes when Adrien finds himself in his teenaged past, and a Nicolas of the future who has never met Adrien. Writing each Nicolas was a great deal of fun. At his heart (or soul, as the vampires would say), each Nicolas is the same. But events and choices can change and shape a person, for better or worse.

Adrien wants to spend his immortal life at Nicolas’s side. But which Nicolas he’ll end up with is far from clear. Finding Nicolas isn’t the only challenge Adrien must face—he must also repair the damage created by Verel Pelletier, another immortal hunter bent on reigniting a war between vampires and hunters. And Adrien must fix both past and present before he loses everything he ever cared about.

Blood and Ghosts ends with a happily-for-now for Nicolas and Adrien, and with a question: what would you sacrifice for your own happiness? That question will be answered in the final book in the series, Blood and Eternity, which will be published in early 2016. –Shira

 BloodandGhosts_headerbanner

 

Blood and Ghosts (Blood #2) by Shira Anthony

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Release Date: April 20, 2015

Sales Links:     Dreamspinner Press      All Romance (ARe)       Amazon        Buy It Here

Thank you so much for being part of my blog tour! Below is all the basic information you’ll need to add to the exclusive post. I’ve also attached the artwork for you to use as you wish to dress up the post. If you have any questions, please email me at: shiraanthony@hotmail.com. Thanks again! -Shira

Contest

Blood and Ghosts Blog Tour Giveaway:  Enter to win a Blood Series prize basket including a Dr. Who Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey Pendant, a paperback copy of Blood and Rain, and a Blood Series pen.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Prizes and link provided by Shira Anthony.
Link to Rafflecopter giveaway: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/cf0ba94911/?

Blurb: Sequel to Blood and Rain/Blood: Book Two

BloodandGhostsFSWith vampire Nicolas Lambert’s marriage to a rival clanswoman only weeks away, Adrien Gilbert struggles to come to terms with his defeat at the hands of Verel Pelletier, a vampire hunter and an immortal like himself. Adrien and his former teacher, Roland Günter, begin to explore his newly acquired abilities. But without his soul’s sword, Adrien flounders.

On Nicolas’s wedding day, a two-hundred-year old secret is revealed, sending the wedding party into a blazing battle between hunters and vampires. Once again Adrien finds himself facing Pelletier’s superior strength. Just as Adrien believes all hope of a future with Nicolas is lost, he finally learns his true gift—he can turn back time. But time travel comes with a high cost. To save Nicolas, Adrien must become strong enough to use his power without descending into madness.

Blood and Rain (Blood #1):

Blood and Rain 400x600Adrien Gilbert has spent several lifetimes searching for the love he lost. Born in the 1800s into a clan of fabled vampire hunters, Adrien once wanted nothing more than to tend his family’s vineyard in southern France or read a good book. But Adrien’s peaceful existence ends abruptly when his older brother, François, is murdered. Bound by his hunter’s oath, Adrien sets out on a path that will forever change his life when he agrees to execute his brother’s killer, the vampire Charles Duvalier.

After months chasing the elusive Charles, Adrien reluctantly makes a bargain with Nicolas Lambert, an ancient vampire. Adrien will escort Nicolas to Paris for his marriage to a rival clanswoman, and Nicolas will help Adrien find Charles. Nicolas’s quiet strength and gentle heart soon convince Adrien that Nicolas is nothing like the vampires he has sworn to destroy. As the wedding date draws nearer, a force intent on destroying the fragile peace between the vampire clans threatens to tear apart both the vampire realm and the world of the hunters. To secure both past and future for those he loves, Adrien must find a way to stop the looming war between hunters and vampires. But first he’ll have to let Nicolas go.

About Author Shira Anthony….

Shira Anthony is a complete sucker for a happily-ever-after, and rarely reads or writes a story without one. Never a fan of instalove, Shira likes to write stories about real men with real issues making real relationships work. 

In her last incarnation, Shira was a professional opera singer, performing roles in such operas as “Tosca,” “Pagliacci,” and “La Traviata,” among others. Her Blue Notes Series is loosely based upon her own experiences as a professional musician.

Shira is married with two children and two insane dogs and when she’s not writing, she is usually in a courtroom trying to make the world safer for children. When she’s not working, she can be found aboard a 36’ catamaran at the Carolina coast with her favorite sexy captain at the wheel. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle.

Interested in hearing Shira sing? Here’s a link to a live performance of Shira singing an aria from Puccini’s “Tosca”: http://www.shiraanthony.com/wp-conten

You can subscribe to Shira’s monthly newsletter for updates, free fiction, and subscriber-only contests here: http://www.shiraanthony.com/newsletter/

Blood and Ghosts Blog Tour Participants:
April 20th – Prism Book Alliance
April 21st – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
April 22nd – My Fiction Nook
April 23rd – Love Bytes
April 24th – MM Good Book Reviews
April 25th – Andrew Q. Gordon (The Land of Make Believe)
April 26th – Aisling Mancy
April 27th – Bike Book Reviews
April 28th – Charlie Cochet
April 29th – Hearts on Fire Book Reviews
April 30th – Kim Fielding

A MelanieM Review: Blood and Rain (Blood #1) by Shira Anthony

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Blood and Rain 400x600Born in the 1800s into a clan of fabled vampire hunters, Adrien Gilbert wanted nothing more than to tend his family’s vineyard in southern France. Adrien loved his family and their life but all that changed when his older brother, François, is murdered, or so he thinks.  Bound by his hunter’s oath and lost in grief, Adrien sets out to find and destroy his brother’s killer, the vampire Charles Duvalier.  But nothing is as it seems and the course of Adrien’s life is forever changed by his hunt for the killer and truth.

Desperate to find Charles after months of fruitless searching, Adrien reluctantly makes a bargain with Nicolas Lambert, an ancient vampire.  In exchange for Adrien escorting Nicolas to Paris for his arranged marriage to a rival clanswoman, Nicolas will help Adrien find Charles. A simple agreement that would have profound effects on them all.  Because despite the fact that Nicholas is a vampire and Charles a vampire hunter, they are drawn together by a bond neither understands.

In searching for Charles, Adrien’s established view of the world is fundamentally shaken, first by what he finds out about the history between hunters and vampires and secondly by his feelings and actions towards Nicholas.  As his world falls apart around him, Adrien must still deliver Nicholas to the wedding ceremony that is to make peace between the two warring families.  This peace is necessary for the safety of all Adrien loves but will he be able to let the one man he loves above all else go to make that happen?

In Blood and Rain, first installment in the 3-book “Blood” series from author Shira Anthony, Anthony must lay down a complicated foundation for the three couples and stories involved.  The author starts in Europe, France specifically, with a history of the hunter and vampire dynasties that exist, the troubled and convoluted political jockeying for power, and a mythology so strange that some of the hunters and vampires have buried it under layers of disbelief and legend, until most of those involved arent’ sure what is fact or fiction.   Added over top of that like an intricately patterned lace cloth lies the Gilbert, Lambert and Rousseaus families, (hunters and powerful vampire clans) as well as the Council of Hunters, a governing body in deadly disarray.  Anthony has so much basic series universe building to do that it can feel a little heavy and complicated trying to remember it all.

And woven into the middle of this 18th century political drama is several love stories, the first two are as intwined as the brothers involved.  Two human brothers, Adrien and Francois, and the vampires they love or loved.  The destinies of this quartet are tied together by love, blood, and power.  Adrien and Nicholas, the vampire scion whose helps Adrien enlists to find ancient vampire Charles Duvalier, are the primary couple here, but only just.  Adrien is something of a naif at the beginning, full of absolutes and a certain provincial lack of sophistication.   That you believe in him as a character while not exactly liking him is to the credit and talent of Anthony’s ability to build realistic characters who act, think, and feel as humanly possible.

Nicholas, and the other vampires closely associated with Adrien, Francois, Nicholas, and others are constructed along the same believable lines, although I found these characters to be far more appealing and affable than Adrien at first.  Luckily for all, the reader included, Adrien runs headlong into some life altering events, ones that will change his perception of everything he knows, family, history, even the laws of nature.  But until he does, don’t be surprised if you want to smack him up head the head a time or two.

This story is full of mythical elements, from hunts for  revenge, secret passages and hair raising escapes from malignant villains and vile dangers. That means over the top fights with magical swords, life altering wounds, and bloods, tons and tons of blood.  I loved the action sequences and the mystical elements that Anthony has created are marvels themselves.  Plus there is angst, almost as much angst as there is blood that flows.  The suspense will keep you riveted as the narrative speeds along.

And yes, there is a cliff hanger too.

All of this adds up to a supremely entertaining and engrossing read.  It’s a vampire swashbuckler, full of romance and evil deeds, that includes thwarted, star crossed lovers and the stuff heroes are made of.  Errol Flynn (a swashbuckler above all swashbuckers…google him) would have felt right at home. I kept flipping the pages until it was over and then was ready for the next story to see what happens next.

The only thing that kept this from being perfect was that it got a bit dense in trying to establish all the histories, mythologies, political intrigues and alignments, (and yes, genealogies too) for all the character involved.  At times that tended to weigh down the action and derail the romance, but once established, the story swung perilously along to our horror and delight.

A new series from Shira Anthony is always cause to celebrate.  By adding vampires to her mermen and musicians, she has given us a triumph of genres and couples to root for and love.   Add this to your Holiday wish list or just go ahead and get it right now, you know you deserve it!

Happy Reading.

 

Cover art by Reese Dante.  Great cover, very brooding.

Sales Links:    Dreamspinner eBook & Paperback         All Romance (ARe)       amazon                 buy it here

Book Details:  

ebook, 268 pages
Published December 15th 2014 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781632166074
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5805