Scottish Folklore Mixed with a Vampire Curse…
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
With over 700 ratings on Goodreads, some very favorable, others quite mixed, I knew I was stepping into a book that I’d either love or hate. So I went ahead and bought the audiobook because I really liked the narrator’s voice in the audio sample. Part of enjoying a paranormal JAFF for me really has to do with letting go of my ideas about the story being “true to Austen” and enjoying the story more for it’s unique plot line. Darcy’s a dhamphir, which means he’s half-human and half-vampire, with some pretty “dark” vampire desires, so how much further from Austen can we go here? Once I went along for the ride, I have to say, I wasn’t disappointed!
With that stated, I found that I fell easily into enjoying the audiobook version of this story. The narration is actually quite good! I loved the narrator’s voice, which doesn’t always happen when I listen to an audiobook, and the story had plenty of “Pride & Prejudice” romance and intrigue to keep me glued to my speakers.
I actually enjoyed the book so much, that I bought a used paper copy online right away so that I could read it when listening to the audiobook wasn’t an option for me. So, within a couple of days, I found myself listening to the book in my car, on my wireless speaker when I cooked dinner and did housework, and then, reading from my paper copy as the need arose to do so.
Regina Jeffers certainly included an array of research involving various historical accounts of vampires, dhamphirs and other paranormal creatures. The Scottish folklore added a touch of depth and interest to the story. I loved the way Wickham was woven into the story too, as we begin this story with Darcy saving Georgiana from Vampire Wickham. From there, Darcy enters Elizabeth’s life in Meryton and gratefully, the story really diverges here from canon “Pride and Prejudice.” We are treated to a very flirtatious and “sexy” Darcy and Elizabeth, who seemed to “get” each other rather quickly after their initial meeting.
However, what Darcy doesn’t know is that Elizabeth is actually trying to discover his “secret” because her Aunt Gardiner has shared some intriguing and disturbing information about Darcy with her. Yet, as the two spend more and more time together, through mostly clandestine meetings, which I loved, they discovered more about each other, including the connection they shared through their very own ancestors.
As Darcy and Elizabeth developed a true spirit of camaraderie, they teamed up with Georgiana, Colonel Fitzwilliam and Mrs. Annesley, (yes, Mrs. Annseley!) to learn everything they could about the vampire curse. I was surprised that it was really Elizabeth who organized more of this quest for knowledge than Darcy, but I thought the way they made new discoveries and grew to really trust each other was well-developed within the storyline. I also loved the supporting roles played by Georgiana, Colonel Fitzwilliam and Mrs. Annseley because they each played a different, yet crucial role in unraveling the mystery of the vampire curse.
Darcy and Elizabeth’s characters did seem to take quite a few more liberties with each other in this book than they usually do in a JAFF book. Darcy seemed out of character when he would call Elizabeth a pet name, such as “vixen.” Elizabeth felt a bit out of character by allowing Darcy a pretty close physical relationship with him before any marriage took place between them. I found these characterizations to be the biggest flaws in the book for me, yet I still came to really enjoy their romance because it was original, filled with a good amount of angst and had a really satisfying conclusion! The vampire part of the conclusion was settled in a satisfying manner for me, but what I really loved was the way the romantic storyline was resolved with Darcy and Elizabeth. I actually read the last chapter in print because I couldn’t wait to listen in the car the next morning for the conclusion and then I listened to the last chapter twice the following day because I thought it was handled in a really tasteful and provocative manner.
Regina Jeffers also left some questions here that could inspire her to write a sequel to this book. If she does, I’ll be equally inspired to read it!
“Vampire Darcy’s Desires” was a really engaging and romantic paranormal surprise for me. I am thrilled to offer my readers an opportunity to win an autographed paperback copy of this book. Please leave a comment or a suggestion about this blog in the comments section by November 4rd to enter this giveaway. Winners will be announced on this blog on Nov 5th. This giveaway is open to US residents only!
Thank you to Mrs. Jeffers for her support and generosity with the launch of my blog!
Here is a short videoclip of Regina Jeffers that I think you’ll enjoy, where she discusses why she pursued writing this book:
Here is a post about the book from Regina’s blog this week, which also includes an excerpt from this book: