Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

I post my reviews to:

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I am always looking for more places to post my reviews.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

My Familiar Stranger: The Order of the Black Swan

My Familiar Stranger: The Order of the Black Swan (Book 1), Victoria Danann, 2012, Kindle e-book

Elora Laikin is pushed into an interdimensional portal just before an assassination attempt. Imaging being run through a blender and flayed alive, at the same time, and somehow surviving. Also imagine being dumped in the middle of a super-secret military base. It's the headquarters of an elite unit, who are part of a 600-year-old Order, and whose purpose is to kill vampires.

When she recovers, Elora meets Storm, Kay and Ram, the members of the team before who she made her "entrance." Interdimensional travel is supposed to be impossible, so the three don't know what to make of her. They also can't help but notice that Elora is gorgeous. She shows them that she knows her way around the world of martial arts and fighting. Ram is something of an overgrown adolescent; he is a 6-foot-tall elf, who mates for life, and seriously messes up the courtship process with Elora.

Going up against vampires in the field, Elora shows more resourcefulness than brains. Many missing person reports seem to center on a Manhattan night club. The four get jobs there and keep their eyes open. An attack occurs, and Ram is seriously injured. In the tunnels under the cities, Elora is betrayed, and left naked and chained in a locked jail cell, with a couple of hungry vampires. Does she survive? Does Ram survive? Who does Elora "choose"? Is it possible to find true love while fighting vampires?

This is a really good paranormal story. It is just strange enough, without overdoing it. The romance part is well done, too. This is very much worth a sequel. 

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