From the blurb:
Love is a high-stakes game.
A century and a half ago, Ante Novak died on a Croatian battlefield—and rose three days later as a vampire. Now he haunts Las Vegas, stealing blood and money from drunken gamblers and staying on the fringe of the powerful vampire organization known as the Shadows. His existence feels empty and meaningless until he meets beautiful Peter Gehrardi, who can influence others with his thoughts.
An attraction flares instantly, bringing a semblance of life to Ante’s dead heart. But the Shadows want Peter too, and they’re willing to kill to get him. As Ante and Peter flee, they learn more about themselves and each other, and they discover that the world is a stranger place than either of them imagined. With enemies at their heels and old mistakes coming back to exact a price, how can Ante and Peter find sanctuary?
A fun, easy paranormal book from Kim Fielding in the Dreamspun Beyond line from Dreamspinner Press.
I'm not crazy about the Dreamspun line, to be honest, as the more Harlequin-style books don't quite work for me. However, I am crazy about Kim Fielding, so I figured I'd give this a shot.
Ante Up was a fast-paced, light-ish story. Sometimes, paranormal stories are really heavy or super angsty, but this was surprisingly light, especially from this author. I liked that this wasn't a depressing read, and it was fun to read something that kept me on my toes with lots of action.
Chemistry-wise, I was a bit meh. I think part of my issue was that Ante talks without contractions. I get why authors do that (yeah, we get that he is old, from a time that was more formal, and English isn't his first language), but it is really awkward to read. I always hate when characters talk without contractions because it sounds so stiff, so I think that hurt the connection between the two MCs, at least in my eyes.
It is also a little insta-lovey, which is sort of more or less expected due to the fact that it is part of the Dreamspun line. That fast race to feelings isn't really my thing, but I found that the two MCs fit well together, even if I wasn't totally on board with the emotions.
Overall, I was won over because the story was just plain fun. It won't be my favorite vampire story, but I would 100% read another book set in this paranormal world. I think there is a lot of potential there.
*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*
Enjoy, my friends!