Review: Nocturne by Syrie James

Publication Date:  January 4th, 2011
Vanguard Press
Format:  Hardcover, 224 pages

When Nicole Whitcomb’s car runs off a Colorado mountain road during a blinding snowstorm, she is saved from death by a handsome, fascinating, and enigmatic stranger.
Snowbound with him for days in his beautiful home high in the Rockies, she finds herself powerfully attracted to him and soon comes to realize that the feeling is mutual. But there are things about him that mystify her, filling her with apprehension—and Nicole can’t shake the feeling that he doesn’t want her there.
Who is Michael Tyler? Why does he live alone in such a secluded spot and guard his private life so carefully? What secret—or secrets—is he hiding?
Nicole has secrets of her own and a past she is running from—but Michael understands her better than anyone she has ever known. Soon, she is falling as deeply in love with him as he is with her.
But as the sexual tension between them builds, the clues mount up. When Nicole learns the terrifying truth—that her host is an ages-old vampire who is torn between his love for her and his desire for her blood—there’s nowhere for her to run but into the blizzard raging outside, and he’s the only one who can save her life.
Filled with unexpected twists and surprises, Nocturne is a page-turning, haunting, and deeply romantic story of forbidden love that will grab your heart and not let go.

This book was sitting on the Teen Fiction shelves at my local bookstore. I picked it up because I was drawn to two words that were on blurb of the book: FORBIDDEN LOVE. What can I say? I’m a total sucker for this type of romances, no matter how much of a cheese-fest the book turned out to be.

Thankfully, Nocturne, didn’t turn out to be a big ball of cheese. In fact, this is probably one of my favorite romance reads of the year. I found out much later that this book didn’t belong in Teen Fiction section; I think it was placed there by mistake. First of all, the characters were adults; and second of all there were explicit sex…well, explicit by my standards.

After attending a friend’s wedding, Nicole drove through a snow storm en route to the airport. Unfortunately for her, the rental she was driving skidded off a mountain road that ended up buried in a ditch. She was saved by an enigmatic recluse, Michael Tyler, whose distaste for company was as obvious as his masculine beauty. Forced to suffer each other’s companionship, Nicole and Michael fought their attractions with one another, (futile though as it may be) and discovered each other’s past. They found love along the way but had to face the brutal fact that the two of them together was pretty much an impossible reality.

I rarely pick up adult fiction on my bookstore jaunts. I think it was by divine intervention that I found this book.

I absolutely loved it!

The snowstorm created a more eerie, mysterious backdrop to this sensual vampire tale. The characters were well drawn that captivated me from page one to the last. Their conversations were very intelligent and every scene screamed sexual tension. Michael’s inner struggles to fight off his true nature were as palpable as Nicole’s constant need to discover more about her very private host.

It’s got an amazing plot that didn’t drag nor was it told at a break-neck speed. Each layer of Michael’s identity was revealed in such a way that made me feel like rushing on to the next page.

Although this book didn’t end the way I would have liked it to end, I still don’t feel a single regret for gushing about this absolutely heartrending novel.

Syrie James’ writing is exquisite as is her talent for taking her readers to historic voyages. The lady knows a thing or two about history, that’s for sure. I’ve only read one of her works in the past, The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen, which, I’ve enjoyed very much. And after reading Nocturne, I think I’m going to check out her other works as well.

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