Reviewed by: Book Addict

Afterlight by Elle Jasper

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Published November 2, 2010 by NAL/Signet-Eclipse

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Afterlight, the first book in Elle Jasper's Dark Ink Chronicles series, is about tattoo artist Riley Poe. She owns and operates Inksomnia Tattoo in downtown Savannah. Orphaned, she cares for her fifteen year old brother. But when Seth is taken by a cult of old vampires, Riley gets a fast and furious tutorial of all things that go bump in the night. Her teacher and ally is the vampire Eli Dupre. Together they will save not only her brother, but the city of Savannah, from a bloodthirsty evil lurking in the dark.

For a complete review which may contain SPOILERS, please click 'Read More' below:
Riley Poe is not your average shy, soft spoken, girly girl heroine. In fact, she is none of these things. Riley is a kick-ass tattoo shop owner (with tats of her own), who is also fiercely protective of her little brother, and loyal to anyone she calls friend. When her brother takes an ill-advised trip to the local cemetery, their lives are changed forever. Seth and his friends inadvertently unleash a pair of ancient vampire brothers from their crypt. And trust me, these are NOT the good kind of vamps. Seth begins acting strangely - sleeping more than usual, fevers, levitation?! and acting out that is not in his usual character. Riley turns to her friends - Preacher and Estelle, her Gullah neighbors, Nyx, her spunky tattooist co-worker and best friend and her vampire savior, Eli. (And yes, he IS the good kind.)

A centuries old pact is revealed between the Gullahs and the Dupres. (Along with his mother and father, Eli also has two brothers and a sister.) They will all have to work together to stop the Arcos brothers and their new minions. Riley learns her blood is like catnip for vamps. This doesn't stop several smokin' hot hook-ups between her and Eli. One of my favorite scenes was the preparation for infiltrating the Panic Room club. Riley gives Eli a Goth makeover, complete with eyebrow piercing. His brothers also get sexy makeovers. The story ends in a way that made me anticipate the next one, while wrapping up most of the current plot points.

I really enjoyed the refreshing character that is Riley Poe. She's strong and determined, and doesn't conform to what society says is the 'norm'. All of the characters in Afterlight are extremely likeable and well developed. I admit to having skimmed over some of the lengthier descriptions of Savannah, and I was a bit confused when the Gullahs were first mentioned, but all-in-all it was an excellent first novel for the Dark Ink Chronicles.

Book 2 of the series, Everdark just released on June 7th. And look for Book 3, Eventide, due out late this year.
 


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