Friday, April 26, 2013

Review: Call of the Vampire by Gayla Twist

Call of the Vampire (The Vanderlind Castle Series: Book 1) by Gayla Twist
Publisher: CreateSpace
Release Date:  March 29th 2013
Genre: YA Paranormal/Romance
Source: Bought
Format: E-book

Goodreads Summary:
 Aurora Keys has dreamed of the Vanderlind Castle ever since she was a little girl. But the fiercely private Vanderlinds keep the massive structure strictly off limits to visitors. Until one night, the wealthy family throws a party —- not just a small soiree, but a huge black-tie affair. No one from the town of Tiburon, Ohio, is invited —- not even the mayor. But Aurora’s best friend, Blossom, has a foolproof plan for the two of them to sneak in.

At first, everything goes smoothly: the girls enter the castle undetected, and there is free champagne. But then the handsome Jessie Vanderlind sweeps Aurora into his arms, crushing her to his chest and whispering, “I knew you’d come back to me.”

Aurora understands it is a case of mistaken identity, but she feels connected to him somehow. And the boy is so beautiful, she believes she would be happy if he never let her go.

Once Jessie realizes he is mistaken, his smile quickly changes to a scowl. “You must leave,” he tells her in a low, urgent voice. “Immediately. Come! I’ll find a way to get you out.”

Unbeknownst to Aurora and Blossom, they have snuck into the home of one of the most prestigious vampire families in the world, and it is doubtful the two young women will ever be allowed to leave. Aurora’s resemblance to Jessie Vanderlind’s lost love just may be the only thing keeping them alive.

My Review:
I would say that Call of the Vampire is one of those books that are hidden gems. Why do I say this? Well, because it's one of those books that you find by accident, or has been recommended to you by a friend, that you have never heard of before, but turns out to be a great read. This book may be a paranormal romance about vampires but it didn't feel heavy, not on the paranormal side or on the romance side; it was a very light and fun read, with just the right amount of romance and suspense. Nothing overdone and that's what I liked about it. The writing in it was very easy to get into. Very fluid.

What really caught my attention in this book was the plot-line of having a vampire running into a human who looked like his past love at a ball. It's like a Disney movie, but with vamps and just a tad more darker. And I can't help it. I just love storylines like that. Remind me of the show 'The Vampire Diaries' where the main character Stefan, a vampire, is attracted to Elena - a human girl who looks just like his huge epic love back in the 1800s. We have a similar vibe in this book in the sense that we quite don't know why both people resemble each other so much or why one of them reminds the vampire of the other person he knew originally. And basically, the story revolves around the unraveling of that mystery.

The main characters in this novel were incredible. The story is told from Aurora's point of view. She is feisty, loyal, and intelligent. Her reactions to finding out about a hidden supernatural world were pretty realistic. It's not like this girl was totally comfortable and amazed at liking a vampire. She constantly scolded herself mentally and reacted like most people would by thinking: Am I crazy for liking a vampire? Yes, I might be. Her thoughts on things were really honest with just the right touch of sarcasm. Jessie Vanderlind on the other hand, our resident vampire, who is of course, gorgeous - Yup. No Dracula looking vamps please - had an incredible sophistication to him, due to the fact that he's lived for, like, a hundred years. And though he was really strong and fierce in his actions, this vampire had a sensibility to him, an innocence, a loneliness, and a longing that were quite touching. In that sense, his soul was very youthful. I kinda had the feeling that despite having lived for decades that he was still trying to understand life and love, just like any young person who feels lost.

The secondary characters in this novel were also amazing. We had Blossom who is Aurora's best friend and who on the outside might be seen as the typical cheer leader, even mean girl type of person, but who in reality, was a pretty good friend, pretty smart, and feisty herself. Aurora's mother was an amazing character. A therapist who helps young troubled girls. She was so present in the life of Aurora - a rarity in Young Adult novels who sometimes tend to forget that characters indeed do have families. There was also Aurora's great grandmother who was crucial to understanding the mystery between Aurora looking just like Jessie Vanderlinds first love. I also loved Viggo, a large man with a Russian accent who works in the Vanderlind castle who kinda reminded me of Lurch from the Addams Family movies.

My favorite part of this novel had to be all the confrontations that Aurora had with villains or creepers. Because Aurora has a mother who is a therapist who helps counsel troubled young women, her mother's advice on how to deceive or tackle an encounter with a creeper are always on the forefront of her mind. And when indeed Aurora had to fight or verbally scold one of the villains in the story, she was so smart about it and very fierce. She wasn't the damsel in distress type. She would either confront the person who was harrasing her or find a clever way to avoid them or deceive them and she also was protective of her friend Blossom and her safety. She would deconstruct every move her opponent made and really I just thought all her tips were amazing to read because there are, well, always creepy peeps out there. Us gals always have to be on the lookout. And, well, anyone for that matter. So the safety tips in this book were a surprise but a very welcome one. I just really thought it was a clever addition to this story.

Last but not least, we do have an incredibly evil villain named Viktor who could pass off as Voldemort's younger brother. This guy was just awful and pure malice. So predatorial in his actions. 

This book definitely ends on a note of mystery. Things are not completely resolved and there is still a lot of things gone unclear in Jessie and Aurora's relationship, so, I kinda need that sequel - pronto.

My rating: 4/5


  1. I'm glad to see strong female leads in books.

    1. Same here, Brandon. I think that it is awesome! :)

  2. Love the Gothic cover.
    Have to run over to Goodreads now and it to my TBR.

    1. I hear you on the cover. I love it, too.

      Yay. I'm glad to hear that. I think that you would like this one.

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Emma! :)

  3. I love stumbling across a brilliant read by accident. Surprises like that are always fantastic. :) I haven't heard of this one before, but I'm definitely curious about it now. Aurora, too, sounds like my sort of character. Great review!

    1. I know, right? Same here :)

      I'm glad to hear that. Hope that you get to check it out soon.

      And thanks so much.

  4. Fantastic review Jennifer. I'd actually marked this as 'maybe' the other day but your making me want to read it now :)

    1. Thanks so much, Suzanne!

      Really? Yay. That is awesome. To me, this was a really fun read. I hope that you get to check it out soon! :)

  5. Love finding hidden gems :D I am a bit jaded to vampire books, but this one sound interesting! Definitely the story-line!

    Love a strong female character, and Aurora seems to have all the qualities I like in a feisty main character!

    Great review! I might have to check this one out!!

    Magen Corrie
    ~Corrie the Book Crazed Girl

    1. I don't blame you. There are just so many vamp books out there. You can't help but be a bit skeptical sometimes, but this one was a really cute and light read! ;)

      Oh my gosh, yes! Aurora is a really strong female lead. I thought her character was awesome.

      && Thanks so much, Magen! :)

  6. Love hidden gems! And I also love that premise - even if I have seen it before in the Vampire Diaries. So glad you enjoyed this one and appreciated the characters so much!

    1. Thanks! :)

      I know, right? Same here. Hidden gems are my favorite!

      Thanks so much for stopping by!


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