Friday, March 15, 2013

Book Review: Bite me, Your Grace

England's "vampire craze" causes much vexation for the Lord Vampire of London, Ian Ashton. To save his reputation, Ian enlists aspiring authoress Angelica Winthrop without realizing she has hidden plans of her own.

Angelica Winthrop's life goal is to ruin her reputation, avoid marriage, and become a gothic authoress like her idol, Mary Shelley. To find inspiration for her new story, she breaks into the home of Ian Ashton, Duke of Burnrath, not knowing she will be coming up against the Lord Vampire of London. Romance sparks and reputations are at stake. But who knows the real difference between fact and fiction?

Bite Me, Your Grace was a disappointment on a couple of levels.  I was expecting a fun wallpaper historical romance with vampires, a smart heroine and humor (kind of like Minda Webber's books), which I guess was my first mistake.  This is by no means a bad book, its just...Angelica is so annoying.  She's an utter harridan!


This was kind of how things went:

Mother: Angelica!  You need to behave!
Angelica: I refuse to behave as a lady must! I will RUIN MYSELF! :flings self into ruination:
Ian: This damn female...I should marry her and maybe possibly get these people off my back about being a vampire...ho young lady!  I shall save you!  You shall be awesomely celebrated!  Also lots of passion!
Angelica: Married to a vampire? Never!  I will show you how smart I am! And difficult! And political! And strongly against women being marginalized!
Mother: Oh my smelling salts!
Ian: All you are are doing is proving how different you are and how right I was.
Angelica: I'd rather be poor and destitute! As long as I can write it doesn't matter!
Ian: :shows Angelica the poor and destitute lifestyle:
Angelica: :immediately horrified by the stench: Maybe I will marry you I mean it can't possibly be as bad as all that right?  I mean I can still do whatever I want...

So on and so forth.  The book is literally one idiotic notion of Angelica's after another as she attempts to either a) get Ian to not marry her, b) get Ian to tell her more about his vampire lifestyle for her Gothic writing or c) both at once.  After they marry it only gets worse because she then falls into the 'Oh the sex is so good!  Why does he not love me?' angst.  I don't know Angelica, considering you spent half the book trying to convince him you shouldn't marry?  Or maybe because you're idea of communication is to say how strong and independent you are and then run off doing something stupid?  She gets drunk at Almack's and kicked out just to prove she shouldn't get married for pity's sake!

I realize she was meant to be a 'strong' and 'socially progressive' woman, but instead it seemed like she was a child having a tantrum because no one would listen.  Why did she have to be a Women's Rights Activist AND a gothic romance author AND cross dress AND not want to be married or have children AND hate everything about the ton AND be virtually friendless?  Mind you she's also an immensely wealthy heiress who's apparently gorgeous.

Meanwhile Ian, who's a couple centuries old and has not apparently ever fallen for a mortal before, finds her simply refreshing.  Personally I think he just likes having to save her.  Oh he's Lord of London and is super powerful and super wealthy and super this and super that, but for a guy who's ready to take some poor writer's head off for writing a satirical novel (that may or may not be about his vampire self) he's awfully jolly about sharing everything with Angelica.  Only to wonder why his gothic romance obsessed wife would try to write a gothic romance about it.  Ian you knew what you were marrying when you married her, don't acted surprised when the crazy woman who broke into your house (for research!) ends up, well, being crazy even after you marry her.

Honestly it sounds like I dislike the book and really I only disliked Angelica.  She  Every time she spoke I was taken out of the story.  Yeah I can see why folk want her dead.  Your mileage may vary though, so take this as a cautious recommendation.