Dark Prince

By Christine Feehan

Leisure - August 1999

Vampire (Carpathians) Romance

What you are about to read is not so much a review of a book, but rather a tribute to Christine Feehan for the intriguing Carpathian world she has created and one of the most fascinating series of books I have ever had the pleasure to read. There are currently 7 stories released in the series. I had decided to wait awhile to read the first book. I read DARK PRINCE at the beginning of August. (At this point, I must warn any reader not to start any of these books during a workweek. You will become very involved in the book and will absolutely not want to put it down - even if it is 3:00 in the morning.) I had enough willpower to read the second book DARK DESIRE (0-505-52354-X: December, 1999) the following Saturday. The weekend after that I read both DARK GOLD (0-505-52375-2: April 2000) and DARK MAGIC (0-505-52389-2: July 2000) I then forced myself to wait another week to read DARK CHALLENGE (0-505-52409-0: November 2000) and DARK FIRE (0-505-52447-3: August 2001). Just this month, another story was included in the anthology AFTER TWILIGHT (0-505-52450-3: September 2001). The title of her novella in that anthology is DARK DREAM.

DARK PRINCE introduces the reader to the world of the Carpathians. The Carpathians are a race of people who are not vampires - but can become them. They are sensitive to the sun, feed on the blood of their prey (yes, humans), and have unbelievable powers. Mikhail Dubrinsky lived the curse of any male Carpathian several centuries old that had not found his lifemate. His world had no colors. He felt no emotions. He had the memories of feelings, but he could not actually feel them now. As Prince of the Carpathians, Mikhail had existed in a world of muted grays until he knew that he must now choose to face death, or risk turning into a vampire. He held no hope of finding his lifemate, and his strict code of honor would not allow him to wait until the beast overtook him. He had just made his decision when she came to him. She brought color into his world. He could feel emotions. She was his lifemate - and he would never let her go.

DARK DESIRE is my favorite. This is the story of Jacques, brother to Mikhail. Years had passed since Mikhail had found his lifemate, and the society hunting vampires (and Carpathians) had captured, tortured, and buried Jacques alive. Only one could hear his call, feel his pain - his lifemate. This is my favorite of all the stories - very intense emotions between all of the characters. Also, all of the characters we came to care about from DARK PRINCE are reintroduced. (Note to Christine - there is a certain Carpathian male from this story whose story I am expecting!)

DARK GOLD brings the readers to San Francisco - a city under the protection of the Carpathian Aidan. He had been sent there to hunt vampires. One night, he discovers a vampire who has captured a young boy and his older sister - the woman who is his lifemate and brings the true emotions of what a family is and how it feels back to him.

DARK MAGIC. Gregori's story. Once you've read DARK PRINCE, you know that I need not say more.

DARK CHALLENGE introduces a new band of Carpathians - and brings hope to the race on the verge of extinction. Julian discovers his lifemate is surrounded by males - which is the bane of any male Carpathian.

DARK FIRE continues with another story from the newly discovered band of Carpathians. This is Darius's story. He was the leader of their group who rescued them when they were all children. The invaders had come to their village and wiped out their families. He'd held them together over the centuries with power, strength, perseverance, and the memories of the love he once could actually feel for his family. Now, the newly hired mechanic allowed him to have those feelings as more than just a memory - he could feel again.

DARK DREAM is in the anthology AFTER TWILIGHT. We return to the Carpathian Mountains as Falcon - an ancient believed dead to the Carpathians we've already met - returns home. With no hope of ever finding his lifemate, and fear of turning vampire begins to overwhelm him, he meets the one who brings him color, feelings, hope and friends.

Thus ends my Christine Feehan Dark Series read-a-thon. Unfortunately, I don't think that she will be writing fast enough for me to read one each week. I am, however, comforted with the knowledge that the world she has created continues to evolve and new, exciting characters are introduced that I expect to read about in the not-so-distant future. Thank you Christine.

Kathy Andrico - ReaderToReader.com