For Violet Lee, a chance encounter on a darkened street draws her into a world beyond her wildest imaginings, a timeless place of vast elegance and immeasurable wealth – of beautiful mansions and lavish parties – where a decadent group of friends live for pleasure alone. A place from which there is no escape…no matter how hard Violet tries.
Yet all the riches in the world can’t mask the darkness that lies beneath the gilded surface, embodied in the charismatic but dangerous Kaspar Varn.
Violet and Kaspar surrender to a passion that transcends their separate worlds – but it’s a passion that comes at a price…
I’m not afraid to admit that I love a good vampire story. I’ve been interested in the parallels between appetite and desire since reading Bram Stoker’s famous Dracula and writing a seminar paper on the subject. (Ahhh, college.)
I love the opening scene of this story. The writing is strong and poignant, and the sheer unexpectedness of the violence in what I thought was a YA novel caught me off guard (in a good way!). To me, YA novels tend to pull their punches when it comes to violence, but The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire started off with a bang. And the political implications of that violent act teased in the first few chapters had me hoping that momentum would keep up throughout the narrative.
But then the story switched gears. All the political machinations seemed to take a back burner to the angsty romance between Violent and Kaspar. I’m all for brooding heroines/heroes–I’m obsessed with Batman here–but the level of angst seemed unwarranted to me. That’s just my opinion though, and I’m sure the plot has its fans and advocates, but I’m not one of them.
My main critique with this story is how it evolves. The story at the beginning felt vastly different from the story at the end, as if Gibbs changed gears midway through writing and decided to tell a different story. To me, it didn’t evolve organically, and the changes didn’t make sense. I applauded her effort to connect the two but it still felt like two stories stitched together rather than a single, cohesive narrative.
Overall, I’d give it three out of five stars. Gibbs can paint a scene, and I appreciated how she utilized detail to convey the setting, but I just couldn’t get over how disjointed the plot felt. That being said, I’m immensely impressed with how popular the story is. Especially after learning that this was first published on Wattpad and then published through Harper Voyager. That is a wonderful accomplishment and I hope Gibbs is proud of what she achieved.