Christine Feehan, queen of paranormal fiction, marks her first Carpathian novel in hardcover with a first for the bestselling Dark series -- a Christmas celebration that brings all the major characters together. This makes Dark Celebration a great introduction for new readers and a treat for those who have followed the series intently. Just don't expect a holiday event full of merriment: Christine Feehan always does dark.
(For those just tuning in, Carpathians are an ancient, shapeshifting nonhuman species who read minds and hunt vampires. The males -- alpha to the core -- are intense and passionate, committing to one lifemate; without that mate, they lose their ability to see color and feel emotion, then finally become vampire.) As the story opens, the Carpathians are in grave danger of extinction, not only from their enemies but also from the propensity of Carpathian women to have miscarriages. At Raven's suggestion, the Carpathians are gathering for their first community holiday event; but to her lifemate, Prince Mikhail, it presents an excellent opportunity for their enemies to strike. Feehan brings us up to date with familiar couples, Raven and Mikhail, Desari and Julian, Shea and Jacques. She introduces the early stages of a possible new love story between Skyler and Dimitri. Feehan adeptly shifts between danger and humor, cooking disasters and passionate sex, as the group fights vampires and a dark mage, their oldest enemy. The book concludes with a special section of Dark Desserts (chocolate, chocolate) sent in by Feehan fans across the country. A holiday treat indeed! Ginger Curwen