Sunday, August 5, 2012

Review: Forever and the Night

Title: Forever and the Night
Author: Linda Lael Miller
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Pub Date: Orig. November 1993, Penguin Group; this eBook version April 2012, IGLA
Format: Nook Book
Source: Purchased from BN.com

Synopsis (from BN.com)

Neely Wallace, having stumbled upon an unsavory secret concerning her employer, a U.S. Senator, is on the run. Her main goal is simple, to stay alive. The last thing she needs or wants is to fall in love—especially with a time-traveling vampire like Aidan Tremayne. Aidan has some complicated challenges of his own to meet, since a number of very bad and very powerful former humans are out to drive the proverbial stake through his heart. 

My Thoughts

Linda Lael Miller was one of the first romance writers I read, and one of very few that I have kept up with from time to time over the years when I feel the urge to pick up a romance. When I noticed she had independently re-released this vampire romance on ebook, I thought I would give it a try (it's only $4.99, after all, and I love a good vampire story) and see what her story from nearly 20 years ago was like. Well, as I recently discovered when trying to re-read a book of Miller's recently after a long hiatus, I seem to be discovering that I don't care for her books as much as I used to.

To begin with the technical, something odd happened with the translation of this title to ebook. Spacing is off and there are bizarre instances when a number "1" will appear instead of the letter "I". I think there was also an instance when the word "Mend" appeared where I think it should have been "friend"? I'm not sure; it was really, really strange -- and unfortunate that it should go to mass market in that condition. But enough about that -- I do think it deserves mentioning, but let's move on to how I felt about the story.

And as for that, I felt... not much. I easily skimmed at least the last half of the book. The story was dull, most of the the characters were lifeless and one-dimensional, save one (thank goodness for Valerian!), and I am beginning to question why I liked Miller's writing. Granted, this book is nearly 20 years old, so I think I should re-read a recent work of Miller's before questioning my loyalty to her books. There was just SO much of that clich├ęd, over-the-top, flowery writing of the romantic scenes that I found myself rolling my eyes. If the story had been better, I could have lived with it, but the story was pretty lame and there was very little to like about Neely or Aidan, which makes it pretty difficult to find any connection with the book at all. And I am so sick of the "oh, I barely know you, but I know that I love you with my entire being" device.

So... yeah... I don't have a lot of great things to say about this one. There are two reasons I am not just giving this book one star. The first is the character Valerian. Given how little we see of him, it is amazing how much more vibrant he is than either Neely or Aidan. I expect that a future book in this series must be devoted to him, but I will not be reading the rest to find out. The second reason I didn't completely blast the book is one that would be considered a spoiler, but this book has been around so long it hardly seems worth worrying about that. Aidan Tremayne is a vampire who doesn't want to be a vampire and will do anything to change back into a mortal man. I haven't read any stories like that out of the various vampire books I've read over the years, so it was refreshing for me. I just wish it had been enough to save the story for me.

My Rating
2 stars

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