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He was watching me.
I sensed his presence weeks before I saw him. Day after day, I peered out into the woods beside the lake house, unable to shake the feeling that someone was out there. But I never caught a glimpse of him. Eventually I convinced myself it had to be my imagination, that spending so much time by myself was starting to mess with my mind.
I was so wrong.
So begins Nathaniel Logan’s story. Nate is a twenty two year old college student, reeling after a recent breakup while struggling to find his way in the world. He’s spending the summer at his stepdad’s lake house in Northern California, where he’s supposed to be “finding himself.” But what finds him instead will alter the course of Nate’s life forever.
(Thanks again to Karrie Jax for her lovely art work!)
Nathanial goes to a cabin in Northern California to recover from his most recent heartbreak and to figure out what he wants to do when he “grows up”. While there he drinks a lot, ponders his navel, and finds a portrait of a man from 1927 who captivates him.
He finds himself dreaming of this man and creating an entire dreamworld around him. He also finds himself being “watched” or at least that’s how it feels.
One day, in a drunken rush, he injures himself and realizes that his dream guy, the man in the picture and the feeling of being watched are all the same being – Nikolai.
At first he can’t reconcile all these until Nikolai finally admits to being a vampire – a true monster – something inside him he can’t control and so evil he insists upon being chained up lest he hurt Nathanial unwittingly in times of severe emotion.
Of course, there’s more to the story – but that’s the compelling drama that makes up the bulk of this fascinating book.
Quite unlike so many vampire stories, Nikolai doesn’t love being a vampire, he doesn’t want to convert Nathanial to “save him”, he hates who he is when the vampire takes over. He’s centuries old but in some ways quite naïve as well.
Both Nathanial and Nikolai have so much to learn from each other as they learn more about themselves and one another.
The love between them is deep and affirming. The sex is very hot and the quandary they find themselves feels very authentic and is handled as realistically as a fantasy can be.
I loved the ending – but I’ll always wonder just what will happen in the years to come since Vampires never die…
This was quite a difference from the other Alexa Land stories I’ve read, but just as good if not better.
I highly recommend this with 5 of 5 hearts.