PUBLISHER: Avon Books
RELEASE DATE: 22nd July 2010
FORMAT: Paperback, 470 pages
A new war is dawning! The Three Laws of the Vampire Federation: 1. A vampire must never harm a human 2. A vampire must never turn a human 3. A vampire must never love a human DI Joel Solomon has a secret: he believes in vampires. But a ritual murder in the Oxfordshire countryside is just the first incident in a horrifying chain of events drawing the Detective Inspector into his worst nightmare. Are vampires really claiming fresh victims? Alex Bishop is an agent of the Vampire Intelligence Agency (VIA), tasked with enforcing the laws of the global Vampire Federation and hunting down rogue members of her race. But when the Federation comes under attack from an uprising led by the traditionalist vampire Gabriel Stone, Alex finds herself fighting for survival. From the streets of London and Oxford to the canals of Venice and the mountains of Transylvania, Joel and Alex are plunged into a deadly game of cat and mouse as the war between the Trads and the Feds threatens to destroy them – and everything they believe in! (Goodreads)
UPRISING by Scott G. Mariani is a fast-paced vampire novel with action occurring across the world, taking you on a ride through London, Italy and Transylvania to name just a few.
We begin with a flashback to Joel Solomon’s past, in which he saw his parents get murdered by a vampire before his grandfather was turned. Before the transformation, his grandfather asks him to kill him, so young Joel is forced to behead his own grandfather. Since then, he has put any notion of vampires behind him and become a police detective.
He is called to a case involving two teenagers that changes his whole perspective of the world. Believed to be a drug-driving case, teenage Declan Maddon has crashed his car late at night and is found in possession of ecstasy. However, he appears to be sober and claims that his girlfriend has been kidnapped by vampires. This brings back all of Joel’s old memories that he has tried to lock away, especially when Declan tells him details that can’t easily be dismissed.
Our other protagonist is Alex Bishop, a vampire who works for the Vampire Federation, a secret organization that polices vampires and vampire transformations. Any vampires that don’t obey the rules are hunted down by agents like Alex, and then murdered using Nosferol, a specially developed drug that kills vampires at the slightest touch.
“The twentieth century changed everything. Internet, communications, surveillance. The world’s a pretty small place now. That’s why the Federation was created, to maintain a low profile for the community.”
Alex is sent in pursuit of Gabriel Stone, a vampire refusing to adhere to the rulebook, who is leaving a trail of human bodies in his wake. He is accompanied by his psychotic sister Lilith and a host of vampire henchmen, and is the vampire responsible for the trouble in Joel’s neighbourhood. Gabriel wants vampires to return to the old ways, keeping to the shadows before the drug Solazol enabled them to walk in the sunlight. His tyranny knows no bounds, and it is up to Joel and Alex to stop him, going in pursuit of the legendary Cross of Ardaich, the only relic that might weaken him.
I loved the plot of this book, as there was always something going on, with a great number of action scenes throughout. The integration of the two main characters was written well, as I didn’t find myself looking forward to one person’s story more than another’s. I also felt that they came together at the right time, as it wasn’t too drawn out or too underdeveloped. However, the only problem I did have when they came together was the instantaneous love that appeared to occur between them, as it definitely felt rushed and unrealistic.
As for the characters, Joel was a really interesting character, as he has his childhood memories to contend with, and the knowledge that he killed his own grandfather. All of this emotional drama is mixed up in his revelation that vampires really do exist, and it is purely his research that leads the search for the Cross of Ardaich. I also liked how he was the only one who believed in Declan’s story, as the other officers pass it off as a drug-induced hallucination.
Similarly to Joel, it is clear that Alex has her own past to deal with, as it is implied that her lover was killed before she became a vampire, and that she still misses him despite the fact that over a hundred years have passed. She was strong and sassy, and not afraid to disobey her direct orders in order to get the job done. Even though she was a vampire she had strong morals, and believed in the idea of the Federation even if she didn’t agree with all of their actions.
For the first book in the series it definitely had enough momentum to keep me hooked, and I would be interested in seeing where the story progresses from here. The ending is left open, and I think that the cliffhanger is just enough to leave some questions answered and others not. Considering how the plot between Alex and Joel is left, this could take some very shocking twists in book two.
This book was a great read, and really reinstates vampires as horror figures with the harsh ways that they murder and torture their human victims. The integration of the two main characters was well-written as they come to join forces, although I really didn’t like the instantaneous love between them. There were also elements of the action scenes that felt way too convenient, as if they were written for a film rather than a book.
BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER
- The Cross
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