Monday, December 28, 2009

Top Ten Vampire Romance Books

Just because I don't read a lot of vampire fiction doesn't mean I don't like it. I have been reading about vampires since I read Interview with a Vampire decades ago. I have read Bram Stoker, the Vampire Diaries, Twilight and many others in between. I remember when finding a book with vampires as main characters was hard to do – thus most that you did find were just really well done novels with engaging stories, great characterizations and worth involving yourself in.

The Dark Series
By Christine Feehan

Two types of vampires populate this series: the alpha males who seek their true mate to hang onto their souls and the soulless beings they can become if they lose those souls. The series combines a wild mixture of passionate, soul-searing love with mindless, bloodsucking terror. The horror and romance combine to make a heady mixture of tales with a real kick.


Interview with a Vampire
By Anne Rice

Rice's vampires are unique, in large part because they were first in many ways, but unique because they are not caricatures. They are good. They are evil. They are tragic. They are wicked. Louis' self-loathing combined with Lestat's hedonism take you on an exotic journey through a world where the vampires are aliens who live among us.

The Southern Vampire Mysteries
By Charlaine Harris

So much to love in this series that mixes deep woods sensibilities with gothic darkness. The series has more than just vampires, but the premise began with them and Eric (vampire Sheriff) remains one of my top favorites. With ten books in release and another three on the way, a television series and more – what's not to love about the steamy, southern gumbo that is the life of Sookie Stackhouse in the little town of Bon Temps, Louisiana.

The Last Vampire
By Christopher Pike

Suspecting the detective she killed in self-defense is stalking her, a vampire becomes a high-school student to befriend the detective's son, with whom she falls in love. Sita is an ageless vampire who brings a unique perspective to her story. Written more than fifteen years ago, the series embraces vampire mythos with a depth of passion and feeling. Sita's return to high school is marked by her self-awareness that takes her beyond the typical high school dramas.

Lost Souls
By Poppy Z. Brite

Brite wrote this novel when she was 19 years old and I rank it among some of the best that I've ever read. A book packed with teen rage, violence, drug abuse and darkness speaks to the angst of the teen soul. In the novel, Nothing (the character's name) goes to New Orleans to learn about himself and his vampire family. The tale is a thrilling combination of fear and horror that engages you with the dark and brooding tone.

Those Who Hunt the Night
By Barbara Hambly

Hambly is one of my favorite fantasy authors and this vampire novel is one of those sleeper hits that you almost forget you have on the shelf until you stumble across it in the middle of the night looking for something to read. In Edwardian London, someone is hunting vampires during the day while they sleep – defenseless and killing them. The vampires bring in an Oxford professor named James Ahser to help them whether he likes it or not. The former agent for the British government is strong-armed by the vampires who threaten to do away with his wife if he doesn't - so what is the man to do? The tale is exquisite and definitely worth reading repeatedly.

Undead and Unwed
By Mary Jane Davidson

More chick lit than vampire novel, this book is laugh out loud funny. Betsy is an out of work secretary who is flattened by an SUV and wakes up a vampire. The woman's complaints coupled with her unique place, as a prophesied vampire queen is so ironic that even when you are gaping in shock, you can't stop laughing.

The Blood Books
By Tanya Huff

Take an ex-cop with an eye problem turned private detective, her former partner on the force and a vampire who just happens to make his living writing bodice rippers and you have the perfect ingredients for a noir series that tempers humor and romance with horror. The novels were actually turned into a TV series for a while which was as enjoyable as the books themselves!

Accidentally Dead
By Dakota Cassidy

I love humor, Cassidy always delivers on the humor quotient with a good dose of romance, and you have to read it to believe it fun. Nina Blackman is a dental assistant who is bitten by a patient and wakes up to find out she's a vampire. Makes you wonder what kind of medical insurance covers that!

Dracula
By Bram Stoker

Of course he makes the top ten, he did it first. What I love about this novel is that many of the mythos we associate with the vampire are founded in this book. What most don't seem to recall is that Stoker's vampires could move by day, they just didn't have their powers or very much of them. The novel is a must read for anyone who loves the vampire, the passion and the darkness.

Did your favorite vampire novel not make the list? No worries, I haven't come close to reading them all and I've gotten a lot pickier about what vampire novels I will read as time goes on. So feel free to share what your favorites are or even your own top ten!


6 comments:

  1. You MUST read Maggie Shayne's Wings In The Night series (I don't know why they're called Wings In The Night. They all have Twilight in the titles... Should have been called the Twilight
    series). She was writing vampire romance way before Stephanie Meyer and all these others people keep talking about. Twilight Hunger will forever be my favorite vampire romance novel.

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  2. Two of my favorites made you list: Interview with a Vampire and The Southern Vampires series.
    I'd like to take it for granted that you have read most of the rest of the Vampire Chronicles by Ann Rice - but just in case...
    The rest of the books in the series are wonderful - right up to and including Memnoch the Devil. It's a bit hit and miss after that one.

    I have also recently added "Blood Vice" by Keith Melton to my list of fav vampire books. His Vamps are the real deal and there is romance. I am so impressed with how this book is written, because to be honest I wasn't expecting much given the plethora of lame, bandwagon jumping Vamp books out there. If you liked 'Interview' then you will enjoy this one.

    That's my 10 cents! ;o)

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  3. i've recently read night huntress series ... its really good !!!!!!! try it ...

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  4. I'm so glad you included Dracula! It's such an obvious classic that plenty of people would forget it! And thanks for the rest, too, I read a lot of vampire-themed romance books, so the Blood Books sound really good!

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  5. I recommend 'The Silver Kiss', and if anyone knows of younger girls 10-14ish where full romance novels may not be okayed, who are desperate to read more about vamps, then Vampire Kisses and Got Fangs are good.

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    Replies
    1. whos The silver kiss by??

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