I’ve been looking forward to writing this review for quite a while. This anticipation stems from two reasons: 1) HER BLOOD’S WARNING is an excellent vampire tale that introduces a new origin story for where blood-suckers come from, and 2) author Kymberley Cook lives right here in my little Arkansas town, Prairie Grove. Now, to be clear: I’m not giving her book praise because we reside in close proximity. I do not ever want to lead you guys astray with my reviews, so I always try to tell it like it is. But this is definitely a book you will want to pick up if you’re any kind of vampire fan.
If you are not familiar with HER BLOOD’S WARNING, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of the Tate Publishing website:
On a secluded farm in northern Arkansas’s Boston Mountains, Thadacus, a vampire, happens to be passing through. Someone else magical steps out into the night air to gaze at the bright moon, a girl, Rhymee Stewart. Their encounter is no coincidence. Thad is drawn to Rhymee, and he soon discovers that several ancient forces are conspiring to kill her because of her family legacy. Thad devotes himself to protecting Rhymee, but the forces attacking her are beyond his power to control.
Thadacus and Rhymee seem destined to be together, though it is painful for them to touch while Rhymee is still human. Their lives have long been connected, and it seems there is no way to live apart. Still, they are each the other’s toxin; being with Thadacus will pull Rhymee away from her family, and Rhymee’s very blood, which Thadacus must drink, could kill Thadacus. While she is human, she has deep magic coursing through her veins, which could react disastrously with vampire blood. As Rhymee is hunted by evil beings, time closes in on Thadacus’s decision to take her life into his own hands. Rhymee longs to join Thadacus as a vampire, but she fears the separation from her family.
In this new twist on the classic vampire tale, author Kymberly Cook fluidly weaves an original vampire mythology into the traditional lore. Western civilization comes together with ancient history and mythology, including Thor’s hammer, druid priests, and the code of chivalry. Will Rhymee and Thad go against nature and live together as vampires, or will Thad heed Her Blood’s Warning?
I am impressed with many aspects of this book. It is well written, the story is tight and intriguing, and the book is so ‘clean’ that my kids could read it. In a genre crammed full of eroticism and sensuality, it’s refreshing to run across a vampire story that focuses more on the tale itself rather than how horny being undead makes you. This is a true testament to Cook’s abilities as an author.
HER BLOOD’S WARNING is written well, although I will admit that the flow of the wording takes some getting used to; the sentence structure might appear awkward to some readers at first, but it’s easy to get acclimated with and then the story moves at a good clip afterwards. I particularly like how Cook writes with a simple style that conveys the intent of the scene and does not overly exaggerate unnecessary things.
The plot is interesting and, as mentioned, the backstory for vampirism and its creation in this world is truly fascinating. I can honestly say that I’ve never heard of anything similar, and this new take immediately drew me in. The characters are believable and I also like the fact that vampires are not treated as the social elite here. I think that cliche is way too overdone.
HER BLOOD’S WARNING is a great read and I highly recommend it. I am eagerly awaiting the next book because this one ends in a cliffhanger of sorts (not to give anything away). Kymberley Cook is a powerhouse to look out for, and I would wager her name will soon become synonymous with vampires much like Stephanie Meyer and Anne Rice. Check her work out for sure.