The Vampire's Seduction

( 38 )

Overview

When it comes to a wild and seductive nightlife, Savannah has bite.

Older than the United States and wealthy beyond his years, playboy William Cuyler Thorne is a vampire with a nice long undead life—one that includes a steady stream of admirers, a consistent supply of rejuvenating blood, and, best of all, a cover as one of Savannah’s most prominent pillars of society.

But all good things must end.

Now an ...

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Overview

When it comes to a wild and seductive nightlife, Savannah has bite.

Older than the United States and wealthy beyond his years, playboy William Cuyler Thorne is a vampire with a nice long undead life—one that includes a steady stream of admirers, a consistent supply of rejuvenating blood, and, best of all, a cover as one of Savannah’s most prominent pillars of society.

But all good things must end.

Now an ancient enemy has come for William from across the seas. It is his sire, Reedrek, the vampire who created him. And Reedrek will stop at nothing until all that is precious to William—his beautiful mistress, his stable of willing female victims, his glorious estates, and his good-ol’-boy vampire sidekick, Jack—is within his voracious grasp. But William has an arsenal of his own—one that is enhanced by the power of voodoo. And when these two bloodsuckers meet, there will be hell to pay.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Suspenseful without being horrific and sexy without being romantic, this debut from Hart (a pseudonym for the writing team of Virginia Ellis and Susan Goggins) adds nothing to the growing pile of vampire fiction except the promise of more to come. Vampire William Cuyler Thorne is a 500-year-old socialite living in contemporary Savannah, Ga. Passing himself off as a new family scion each generation since the Revolutionary War, William has acquired substantial wealth, social stature and a co-conspirator in Eleanor, a high-class madam who supplies women to satiate his bloodlust. Despite his savagery and anger issues, William isn't such a bad guy: his victims are all willing, he sponsors charity events, and he's even got a good-ol'-boy buddy, Jack McShane, a former Confederate soldier whom William turned into a bloodsucker. Life is good for the trio until the sadistic Reedrek, William's vampiric sire, shows up to make William pay for centuries of defiance. Luckily, William has his friends and voodoo princess Melaphia on his side-but can he retain their loyalty when the powerful Reedrek seeks to turn their allegiance? This foray into fangoria is atmospheric and occasionally funny, but surprisingly toothless; perhaps Hart will hit her stride in the inevitable second volume. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345479754
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/28/2006
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 802,944
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 6.84 (h) x 1.21 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Savannah, Georgia 2005 a.d.

Letter from William, a Vampire

My name is William Cuyler Thorne. I have been a soldier, a scholar, a wastrel, and a womanizer. But most important, I suppose, is the fact that among the many things I have been, I remain an unwavering killer of men. A predator.

Oh, I’ve taken my share of women as well, in temper and in pity, in hunger or merely in petulance. I have kissed the lips of some of the most beautiful courtesans on the planet before turning to baser needs. But always the blue blood of my savage ancestry, which runs so coolly through my veins, calls out for heat and for life. For sustenance.

I am a blood drinker.

I have walked the earth for five hundred years, plus or minus a decade. For two hundred of those years I was bound by kinship to hunt with my sire—a degenerate savage who deserved a righteous staking.

I remember what it was to be human, a time so long ago that I feel the vibration of mortal pain like the desperate tug of a rope falling into a bottomless grave. The tug no longer gives me pause. I am immortal, blessed, and cursed.

In the beginning of my undeath I fed as a soldier and since have watched men uncounted meet their doom. In my bloodlust I am a nightwalker, armed with flesh-tearing teeth like the Roman war dogs and with the sharp talons of the carrion crows who circle the battlefield. I kill the weakest and find life among the dying, feeding on the wreck of man’s foolish predilection for conquest.

The English and French fed me for nearly two centuries with their petty bickering; but then I set my sights on America and a bloody revolution of men wresting a country from other men. Being part Scots and part English in my parentage I should have preferred the “Redcoats,” as my rebellious New World neighbors called them. But I found the blood of the revolutionaries a wilder vintage, more vital and sustaining. No, I am not an avenger or a bringer of justice. Nor am I the sadistic killer I was created to be. I am merely the last spectral face dying soldiers see on the darkened battlefield before facing oblivion.

In the winter of 1778 I arrived in Savannah, a fading flower of a city. I carried with me a welcome supply of gold and the implied support of my newly chosen British surname—Thorne. The Brits had captured the city earlier that year and I had no reason to dispute them. There was plenty of bloodshed to go around. I have remained in the vicinity of Savannah for many reasons, including other murderous wars, but I see no need to broadcast my motives. Let’s just say that the city and its darker hugger-muggery suit me. As winter suits me.

Summer in these southern climes arrives with a glorious pressing heat that breeds bloodlust even in the mortal heart. Human nature being what it is, I find a steady, gourmand source in their casual bloodshed. Passions rise and humans die. There is something to be said for the term “red-blooded Americans,”and I sense their fury like a shark tracks a drop of blood in the outgoing tide.

And so I’ve given up the wandering life of a war dog, and now I reside in this city near the sea. The sharks and I are brothers. They fear nothing and cruise the watery darkness like silent sentinels waiting for the scent of the abandoned and dying, the flashing shock of hopelessness to draw them in for the kill. I live a gentleman’s life, attending evening social events, smoking cigars and drinking port in private gambling dens or exclusive bordellos, and walking the dark streets to feed my destiny.

I own all I wish to own of my adopted city. My “ancestral” home—since I am in effect my own ancestor—is centered on one city block on Houghton Square. The entire block belongs to me, along with a row of businesses bordered by the river. I find enterprise a mostly pleasant diversion to occupy my mind, while the riverfront assures private access to a dock near the port of Savannah.

Even monsters take vacations on occasion.

You might wish to know of my other pastimes and the small number of humans I trust. I am in no mood to speak of such things here. And I certainly do not divulge my true name or where I sleep when the sun is high and hot. My secrets are my own, as is the bounty on my traitorous, dark heart. These few scrawled lines were written only to warn that other beings walk beside you betimes. Beings you cannot fathom or interpret. Be wary of taking in strangers unawares.

Savannah, Georgia 2005 a.d.

Letter from Jack, a Vampire

My name is Jack McShane and I’ve been asked what I remember of being human. Of the days before William and I met.

I remember the hunger. And the fighting.

I remember a kid whose empty gut gnawed at him night and day. I dreamed of food—bread and meat piled to the sky, fruit from endless orchards, cabbage and potatoes from fields that stretched for miles. I had visions of butter and eggs to say grace over, of fat brothers and sisters and a rosy-cheeked mother. I don’t even remember their faces now. Hell, I barely remember my own. All I remember is hollow cheeks, listless eyes, and dull complexions. And my mother’s thin wails for those of us who didn’t survive.

I didn’t spend my days shooting marbles or playing tag like young boys are meant to do. My father, an immigrant dirt farmer, didn’t seem to know any way to raise his children other than to treat them like the slaves he couldn’t afford. Before his passage to America, he’d foraged and fought for food in the sooty, dank, urban hell of Belfast, darting up and down cobblestone alleys, dodging lines full of dingy laundry and heaps of garbage while trying to stay out of sight of bigger boys as desperate and hungry as himself.

In this new land of promised plenty, my brothers and sisters and I, the ones of us who survived, were raised on a diet of cornmeal mush and merciless beatings. All the time being told how lucky we were. My daddy beat me for not getting the milking done fast enough, for stealing an apple that could’ve been sold, for helping my sisters meet their measure of picked cotton. My mother was little more than a shell of a woman, without the will or the strength to challenge my father’s iron hand. When I got big enough to fight back, I did. By the time I was seventeen, I figured I’d better leave home before one of us killed the other, so I ran away to the grand city of Savannah where I worked the docks as a stevedore.

No sooner had I gotten a full belly and a dollar in my pocket than a war came along to damn me to a life of hunger and fighting again. A cruel blockade dried up the work and left poor laborers like me with no other choice than to join up with the Confederacy. By 1864, we were down to bug-infested hardtack and hot water that had only a passing acquaintance with coffee grounds.

After the demon Sherman torched Atlanta, his army headed east toward the sea on the Georgia Central railroad. They ordered three brigades of us in the Georgia militia from Macon to cut off the Federals on their way to Augusta to seize its arsenal and foundry. That was when we ran smack dab into U.S. General Charles Walcott and his men, part of Sherman’s right flank, not headed for Augusta, but for Savannah.

Confederate Brigadier General Pleasant J. Phillips, as poorly named a bastard as I ever came across, ordered us to charge—across an open field and up a hill—the Union troops entrenched behind a railroad embankment. Shaking as much from fury as fear, I looked around at what was left of the Georgia militia—a handful of able-bodied men like me and hundreds of old men and boys. I wanted to turn my rifle on that idiot Phillips, but when I heard the bugle call I started across the field with my comrades. I remember looking into the barrels of the Yankees’ Spencer repeating rifles and thinking that I didn’t survive hunger and merciless beatings just to wind up with a bullet in my brain.

Then I saw a blinding flash and felt a blow to my stomach that knocked me to the soggy earth.

The next thing I knew it was night, and I could feel that old familiar gnawing in my gut again. Only this time, it wasn’t hunger but a sucking wound setting free my life’s blood with every beat of my dying heart. This was it, then. All the fighting to stay alive had come down to my spilling out my life in a swampy field surrounded by the dregs of the slaughtered Confederacy. Nearing my last breath I cursed heaven as I had in my youth, not caring if it damned me to hell as it surely would.

The very next moment I sensed something near me, something both hot and cold, alive and yet not. Something evil . . . with a craving. And then it was looming over me, its eyes glowing like a hellhound’s, face and fangs dripping with blood.

It was William.

“You cannot save them now,” he said, gesturing to the corpses of my comrades around me. “Do you want to live?” he asked.

I did.

“Do you swear to serve me as long as you exist on the earth?” he asked.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 38 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(16)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

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(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 38 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    exotic exciting thriller

    He is a vampire over five hundred years old, lives in Savannah and has all the wealth, power and women he wants. Life is good for him and Jack, William¿s sire and Jack is one of the few beings he cares about partly because he created him and partly because of his winning personality. They live together though Jack doesn¿t know much about being a vampire but his loyalty to William is unique and will be needed in the days ahead because William¿s sire, the truly evil Reedrek who killed is wife and son, is coming for him. --- William has been smuggling the young vampires who want to leave their masters out of Europe and Reedrek has picked up his trail. William¿s sire is stronger and more powerful than his fledgling but the younger has other weapons, including the use of voodoo that makes it questionable what will happen when the final confrontation takes place. Reedrek gets his hooks in Jack by promising him the power that William denied him it remains to be seen who Jack ultimately gives his loyalty to cause it might make a difference on the outcome. --- Raven Hart humanizes William and Jack so that readers can empathize with them and their problems. Although William has a healthy sex life and lovers he cares about, his heart is buried with his wife and son killed by his enemy. The vampires in this book seem so very real, (including the villain) that readers will start to wonder if they actively exist. William and Jack have heart if not souls and they care about people both vampires and humans making them easy to like. THE VAMPIRE¿S SEDUCTION is an exotic exciting thriller. --- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Great Series!

    If you love vampires, you'll love this series! It's funny, romantic, sexy and scary--everything you want from vamps!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Yeah...NO!

    One of my favorite characters is the vampire. If it was a movie, book, or t.v. show with a vampire character I've probably read it or seen it. And the majority of books or movies I've liked. This is NOT one of the books that I like. Most of the times I can read a book in two days or less. This book took me a week. I just couldn't get into it no matter how hard I tried. Can't recommend this one but the are other vampires out there such are the black dagger brotherhood or the night huntress series.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2014

    Wonderfully written

    I love this series. I've read the books several times and cannot wait four book 6

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2013

    Great read

    I really enjoyed this book despite the horrific covers

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2013

    Love It!

    Love It!

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  • Posted May 30, 2011

    YOU MUST READ THIS!! AMAZING

    If your thinking of buying this book then please just do it, its such an amazing book, once i got into it i could not put it down and the next books are even better. You will fall in love with the characters, i just cant rate it enough. It exciting and i just cant wait for Raven to bring out more. LOVE IT

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  • Posted January 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Very...interseting

    I was looking for another book to satisfy my thirst when I came across this one. I was not bad, but it did take me a while to get into it. And I can say once in it was not so bad. The best parts for me happened towards the end of the book. I might just read the rest in the series...might

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  • Posted April 17, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Surprising Find

    William has left his sire to become his own man in the New World. He has made a name for himself. A king in his own right. He is helping the vampires of Europe escape their evil sires, by shipping them as cargo on one of his many shipping boats. Only, on his newest shipment he gets a lot more than what he bargained for. HIS sire has come after him. But what is William supposed to do, afterall a vampire cannot kill his own maker?

    Jack is a good ole boy, mechanic from Savannah, GA. He wants nothing more than a simple life at high speed pace. Only problem is, he is a vampire. He can't have the luxury of a simple life. Expecially now. He has figured out his vampire Pappy hasn't been straight with him about the rules and ways of the vampire. Then he runs into someone who offers to teach him all he has been left in the dark about. The man he deems his Evil Grandpappy.

    Is Jack willing to betray his maker for power? Is William willing to teach Jack the things he needs to know in time to save himself?

    I liked this book. It was hard for me to get through because it is not my favorite writing style. There are two points of view throughout the entire book. I still give it a 4, the story is good and it keeps you guessing.

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  • Posted December 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Over all..... pretty pleased

    For her first book, I have to say that it was very good. It did take a bit to really get into it, but once I did, I could not put it down. Way to go Ms Hart!

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  • Posted August 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    interesting

    Absolutely loved every part of it!!! This is one of my favorite vampire books. Its a keeper and I've also recommended it to a few friends, who enjoy it as well. Everything I want in a book is right here. I've read the first 4 and they are pieces of work! Amazing!

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  • Posted July 25, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    This is the best vampire novel I've ever read!

    This book truly has it all: an exciting plot, well-developed characters, steamy sex, vampire rituals in detail, romance, humor. The two main vampires are fantastic: brooding, uber-sexy William and funny, sexy Jack, his apprentice. I loved every page of this and went right back to buy the other 5 books in the series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2008

    WOW!

    Totally amazing is what i call Raven Hart's vampire series. An outstanding read. Got to be the best Vampire series on the selves yet!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2006

    Wonderful book

    This was an outstanding book. William, a 500 year old vampire, lives the good life, and Jack, Willim's sire, lives in a mostly normal world. The story is told from William and Jack's perspective. One chapter will deal with William's viewpoint and the next chapter will switch to Jack's viewpoint, but will pick up right where William left off. Jack is uniquely funny. I loved his humor. William reminded me of Jean Claude in Laurel Hamilton's Anita Blake series. This book was well worth the read. It had a good plot, read easily and gave you great insight into the city of Savannah. I highly recommend this book to anyone that loves vampires.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 38 Customer Reviews

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