Kiss Me Deadly [NOOK Book]

Overview

Death cocktail is what the vampires call a witch's blood. It's poisonous--a drop will destroy a vampire within minutes. Nikolaus Drake is the rare vampire who has survived his first taste. Now he's on the hunt for the witch who almost brought him to his demise--Ravin Crosse.

A witch who spends her nights hunting vampire tribes, Ravin has three obligations to fulfill to set her soul free. One of those obligations--crafting a love spell--twists her world upside down when Nikolaus ...

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Kiss Me Deadly

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Overview

Death cocktail is what the vampires call a witch's blood. It's poisonous--a drop will destroy a vampire within minutes. Nikolaus Drake is the rare vampire who has survived his first taste. Now he's on the hunt for the witch who almost brought him to his demise--Ravin Crosse.

A witch who spends her nights hunting vampire tribes, Ravin has three obligations to fulfill to set her soul free. One of those obligations--crafting a love spell--twists her world upside down when Nikolaus draws the spell from her veins. Natural enemies rarely make the best bedfellows--but is it possible their intentions are really, truly the same? Can Nikolaus's tribal loyalty survive if he surrenders to desires far darker than his own?

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426805752
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 9/1/2007
  • Series: Bewitching the Dark , #24
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 211,631
  • File size: 614 KB

Meet the Author

A Minnesota native, Michele Hauf lives in a Minneapolis suburb with her family. She enjoys being a stay-at-home mom with a son and a daughter. Michele writes the kind of stories she loves to read, filled with romance, fantasy, adventure and always set in France. Though she has yet to leave the U.S., since her family knows that, once gone, she might set up house in a little French village and never return! Always a storyteller, she began to write in the early 90s and hasn't stopped since. Playing guitar, hunting backyard butterflies and coloring (yes, coloring) keep her creativity honed. Research for her Silhouette Bombshell novels has yet to see her stealing jewels or racing cars on a high-speed chase, but…she can pick a lock or bake a mean chocolate cheesecake (with a file inside) if duty calls.

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Read an Excerpt

Two months ago, a slayer killed Nikolaus Drake.
Not any slayer, but a vigilante witch with death in her eyes. As if acid, her blood ate into his flesh. Felled in an instant, Nikolaus had gasped for breath, and could not find it. His heart had stopped beating.
A vampire isn't supposed to survive the death cocktail—that's what vampires call witch's blood—but, after being hit, drunk from his friend, racing to take the blood before death's release of the mortal soul made it useless.
The blood had served to restart Nikolaus's heart. He wasn't sure how he'd made it home, or how he'd been able to stop the caustic effects of the death cocktail.
And it didn't matter anymore. Nikolaus had survived. He was now a vampire phoenix, risen from ash and blood. But his injuries had forced him into seclusion, for a witch wound proved a stubborn heal. He still bore scars and could yet feel his left lung wheeze when he exerted himself.
Before being transformed into a vampire, Nikolaus had been a surgeon, a man who had witnessed many people survive incredible odds to recuperate and heal. But yes, sometimes they also died.
Experiencing recovery for himself had changed him. It had fixed a lust for vengeance into the scarred sinews of Nikolaus Drake's soul. He, a man who had always strived for peace, now desired a bloody revenge.
Foremost, Nikolaus could not stand back and do nothing when he knew the witch yet stalked the shadows in search of one more vampire to make ash.
Summer solstice arrived in two weeks. That night, Nikolaus planned to return to tribe Kila.
Yet he could not do that until the anger that had brewed within him for two months was settled.Before the attack, Nikolaus had led tribe Kila and served them well for twenty years. The tribe was wary, but none were safe from the death cocktail—save Nikolaus. He possessed immunity now—the witch could not again harm him—so he would fight for his tribe and destroy the enemy.
One thing could tip the scales and return his mind to the peaceful resolve needed to lead properly.
Tonight, he would kill the witch.
The witch's name was Ravin Crosse, and she rode a big black street chopper with the word venom curved across the gas tank, and wore more black leather than Nikolaus did. Small, but imposing in her costume, which also included visible weaponry that could annihilate a vampire in less than a minute, the witch walked as if she owned the earth.
She was the only slayer in the Twin Cities area that Nikolaus was aware of.
Not for long.
Nikolaus had located the witch's hideout. She lived at the edge of Minneapolis, but three miles west of him, at the top of a warehouse recently rehabbed for luxury flats. Nice, but not half so spendy as his digs in the Mill district.
He did not give a fig for a witch, her life, or her nasty soul. Let her burn.And he would proudly present her ashes to his men.
He had been observing, at a distance, her comings and goings for the past ten days, the first days since his pseudodeath that he'd felt able to leave his home.
The vampire killer went out three nights a week on the hunt—Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Nikolaus had not witnessed her execute a kill.
His own tribe numbered eleven, and had claimed Minneapolis's inner city as territory against two rival tribes.
There were a few independent vampires, not aligned to any tribe, but they were stealthy and kept to the shadows, and very often, the suburbs and smaller towns in the state.
Minnesota was not a vampire hot spot. This surprised Nikolaus. The state offered a healthy six months of winter, which meant little sunlight and plenty of dark basements in temperature so the below-freezing weather affected him little. A bloodsucker's haven, if you asked him.
Tribe Kila was small, but not stupid. Nikolaus had purposefully kept their location away from New York, Miami or New Orleans, major vampire breeding grounds. The average metropolitan area hosted perhaps a hundred vampires, or less. By no means were they in the majority, let alone a countable minority.
He had prided himself on leading the most civilized tribe in the States. While others, such as Nava, Zmaj and Veles stalked the night, wreaking havoc and creating blood children indiscriminately, Kila strove to keep their bloodlines pure and peaceful. No accidental transformations, no witnesses, no mistakes. That had become Nikolaus's personal mantra.
There were a few incidents to be overlooked, though. Hell, they were vampires, not tamed lions. The blood hunger was a powerful thing, and not to be ignored or put aside as if it were a habit one could easily break.
They, all vampires, were called the dark. But none in Kila murdered for the sake of taking blood to sustain life.
Over the weeks since the witch's attack, Nikolaus had slowly healed. Initially, Gabriel Rossum, his closest ally, had brought him donors daily. The infusion of warm, mortal blood to his system had been supplemented with a weekly draw from Gabriel.
Vampire blood proved more powerful in the healing process as opposed to mere mortal blood. Flesh had grown over Nikolaus's exposed ribs within three weeks, and slowly the charred skin on his arms and torso began to heal.
Now only the skin on his left arm, up along his neck and down his left side to his hip was puckered with pink scarred flesh. It looked abysmal, but Nikolaus wasn't concerned with appearance. He'd once wandered the streets bald, exposing a scalp full of tattoos, and a defiant growl to anyone who would cringe.
That was when he'd thought his life was over. It had been over. Dr. Nikolaus Drake no longer existed. Hell, to imagine performing brain surgery around all that blood now?
At the sound of the front door sealing shut, Nikolaus set down the fifty-pound hand weight and strode out to the living room where subdued evening light snuck through the one window Gabriel had commandeered for an assortment of huge, leafy plants.
After the witch's attack, Gabriel had returned to the tribe with word their leader was still alive—a phoenix—and that he required time to heal.
A month ago, Gabriel had moved in with Nikolaus after losing his apartment to a pissed-off girlfriend. It had been easier for the non-confrontational vampire to walk away than to divide up belongings and listen to her angry wails. He was on the lookout for new digs. Though now Nikolaus didn't require twenty-four care, he appreciated the company and was in no hurry to rush Gabriel out the door.
"Tonight the night?" Gabriel asked as he tossed the day's paper onto the coffee table and flicked the sunshades open. The electrochromic blackout glass seamlessly changed to clear, providing an evening view of the Mississippi River and the industrial barges moored on the opposite bank. "It's still too soon for you to be going out on the hunt.You sure about this?"
"Never been more sure of a thing in my life," Nikolaus growled. He punched a fist into his opposite palm.
Maintaining the anger was part of the plan. Not that it was difficult. But fair-haired and dimple-faced Gabriel always played angel-on-the-shoulder to Nikolaus's feral need to get things done, be it by force and fury or by talking through a vexing issue.
A man learned patience in the medical profession, and Nikolaus had spent a good number of years doing so. But along with his mortality, his patience and empathy had been sluiced away with the blood that fateful night of his transformation.
"It'll close a chapter in your life."
"It'll feel damn good." Rubbing a palm up his torso, Nikolaus strode across the room. The scar tissue on his side always drew his attention. It sent out the message "not whole, incapable" to any who might see it.
As he strolled into the kitchen, he punctuated his mood with a slam of his fist to the gray marble counter.

That was the only ointment that would completely heal his wounds, both physical and emotional.
In the fridge, he eyed the bottles of wine Gabriel kept for his evening sacrament. He sniffed. The corks gave up the rich aroma of eighteenth-century soil steeped with raspberries and limestone and the poignant cry of tiny black grapes plumped to bursting from the sun. "You pick up the fish oil?"
"In the bag on the counter."
Much as blood served his only means for regeneration, Nikolaus believed some natural remedies certainly couldn't hurt. Wouldn't theAMA get a chuckle over that?A former neurosurgeon using natural remedies. Of course, he'd always held the belief that the brain could not heal itself if a person insisted

Flexing his left arm, he eased his palm over the rippled flesh. "You know," Gabriel commented, "you've got an opportunity to steal some of the witch's magic if you don't do the deed too quickly."
Right. Nikolaus was immune to her poisonous blood now. Or should be. A risk he was straining at the leash to take.
And should a vampire manage to drink witch's blood without harm, the witch's magic would flow into him. "Bewitched" is what they called the ancient vampires who were once able to enslave a witch and consume her blood in order to increase their own strength.
Nikolaus had never met any of the ancients, though tales told of half a dozen that yet lived.
"Any blood magic I gain will be a bonus," he said as he slipped on his dark sunglasses.
He was a phoenix. And though he'd yet to test his strength, he wondered about the legend that a phoenix was indestructible. He didn't feel it, but he was still recovering.
He glanced to Gabriel. "The kill is what I'm after, and nothing but."
"Do you know how odd it is to hear such a declaration from you?"
Nikolaus shrugged. "Yes." For he preached avoidance of the deadliest drink.
"You know this is necessary, Gabriel. I do this for the entire tribe. One less witch in this world is one less nuisance for the vampire nation. I'm out of here."
"Have a nice evening!" Gabriel called.
Nikolaus smirked as he strode for the front door.
Nice? He hadn't known so sublime an emotion since before he was turned. Since before, when he'd been the newest neurosurgeon to grace the Mayo clinic, the smart young resident with dreams of changing the world in hand and a self-righteous God complex to put the most arrogant men to shame.
The world was not nice. The world…demanded presence. And tonight Nikolaus Drake intended to return with a vengeance.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 2411 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(733)

4 Star

(662)

3 Star

(529)

2 Star

(252)

1 Star

(235)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 2426 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 20, 2010

    Great Free Read!

    This was interesting & fun for a free read. It won't win any awards, but was definately worth the time for the read, I would be interested in reading the sequel, but have so many other books in queue. Get it if you want easy, fun reading without having to think much.

    22 out of 23 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 31, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    SO bad I deleted it from my Nook

    Yes I understand that this was a free book that I picked up from the B&N website or as a listed "free Friday book" but it was just super bad. So bad I at first it was in archive because I didn't want it in my Nook library, just seeing the title irritated me. THEN with the software updates it was moved to a shelf called "crappy free books" to finally being deleted. This book is slow, unimaginative, with little character development. Granted we all have our own opinions, but mine is don't waste your time reading this free book.

    17 out of 30 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A different take

    For being a free book, I was pretty okay with it. I like the new take on witches vs vampires. The devil makes me smile throughout the whole book. All in all, I'm going to go ahead and get the sequel cause I'm curious to know what they do next.

    13 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 7, 2010

    fun

    its free and its actually interesting. go for it.

    12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Rated X

    This book is about sex. No plot. I'm glad this book was free I would be would be upset if I had paid for it. Barnes and Noble should put out a warning about these type of downloads.

    11 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 23, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Loved it!!!!

    First let me say i am a huge paranormal romance fan. I love anything to due with magic, or vampires, to have all of it rolled in to one book was great. I love the story line. For me it was a new twist to have the witches and vampires against one another then to add the devil himself to the mix, and with all the other creatures mentioned was enough to leave any paranormal addict totaly thrilled. I loved the story so much i bought the second book in the seris!

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 7, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Surprisingly good read for paranormal

    Even though this book was free, it set on my shelf for quite a while due to the cheesy cover and the mixed reviews. Everyone seamed to "love it" or "hate it". Well I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the rest of the series. This was a fun light read about a witch and a vampire, who are sworn enemies, falling in love due to a crazy mix up with a love potion. There is a lot of internal struggle as the two attempt to fight an unnatural attraction of the heart even when the brain knows their actions are taboo. The character development is decent enough for a fun light read but takes place later in the story as the two lovers begin to open up to each other. There are some funny moments and I especially enjoyed the devil's appearance as "Himself". This is all about a paranormal world that includes witches, vampire power struggles, werewolf territory issues, and the devil as "Himself" wreaking havoc. The ending left me wanting more and I was so glad to see the series continues.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Refreshingly Original

    I loved this fantasy world that Michele Hauf created! I'm not a huge paranormal reader, and the interactions between the witches/vampires/werewolves were all new to me. I loved that each of the paranormal entities had a way to die, and that they weren't "immortal" in the sense that is so commonly written about now. I loved Himself, and I think that this version of the devil is believable and fun. I can't complain about this book. The story was well written and enjoyable. The characters were likable. The romance was lovely. I can't believe that this book was free. Thank you Harlequin! I'm definitely buying the sequel.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 6, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    i liked it!

    it was fun! a new twist on this vampire/werewolf/angel/witch thing thats going on! i admittedly LOVE the vampire/werewolf/angel/withc thing but it can become overwhelming even for myself! i still recomend getting it:) its free! how can you not get a free book if you are a book lover?! lol!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2012

    Kiss me deadly

    Really like it and am going to purchase the next one today!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 25, 2011

    A MOST READ by an AMAZING AUTOR, HIGHLY RECOMMEND to EVERYONE!!!!!!!!!!

    This is the first book by Michele Hauf I read and insantly feel in love with th e characters. I have since read all of her books and loved the whole series and how all the characters tie in to each book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2011

    highly recommended- i loved it!!!!

    The beginning was o.k., but as it went on it dragged me in and I didnt want to put it down. Very Good1

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2010

    1 star is being generous.

    Getting this book for free was paying too much.

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2010

    It was bad

    No story just sex

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    More than What I expected for a free book! Excellent Read

    I downloaded this book to see if I could figure out this ebook stuff - since it was free figured if there was a glitch no big deal.

    I finally got it to work and started to read it. I really loved the plot and the characters. Love the whole, vamps/werewolfs/witchs/angels/devil thing. I love fantasy stories. This has a different spin on how all the supernaturals are and how they come together. There is a follow up to this story to.

    Over all its worth the read for a free ebook.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 14, 2011

    Recommend

    This book is for someone who likes vampires. Not what I expected by the title.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    No should mean no.

    I had a hard time reading this book. I damn near stopped reading it due to the fact that it just reinforces many myths that deal with sexual assault. No means no. The main character continues to say no and then begins to like it... It is not just reluctance but unwanted sexual contact. It was an interesting read but no really should mean no. I am definitely glad I did not pay for this book.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 12, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Are you Kidding me!?!?!

    I couldn't get past the first few pages. I have no idea if the plot was any good, though it sounded boring and redundant like most vampire stories, but the writing style and sentence structure was terrible! Besides the fact that I couldn't latch on to the characters (and I do expect that by the end of page one) the writing was so awful and choppy I wasn't able to get past it. This book wasn't something I could even get through on a slow night.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Not Bad...

    I was expecting so much less than what I got. Especially since I got it for free. I had seen these books in the romance section and passed over them so many times because I had read Harlequin before and they looked to be the same thing... I'm not much for a dime-novel-romance but this wasn't bad. Do pick it up if you want a quick read on a rainy day but don't expect anything epic...

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2014

    It's so so

    Not much of story line.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 2426 Customer Reviews

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