Raphael Tarayaud has always known he was destined to have a vampire partner. He’s dreamed of his vampire from a very young age, and is determined to find his man. His best friend Kylian Raffier doesn’t understand the pull that Raphael feels to find his other half, but he goes along with Raphael on his search, mostly so that he can keep Raphael out of trouble. One night when the two men are out, Kylian meets Sebastien Noyer. Sebastian is a hero from the war so many years ago, and though Kylian never wanted a vampire partner for himself, he’d drawn to Sebastien in a way he’s never felt before.
Sebastien, for his part, has spent the last thirty years keeping his friend Jean Bellaiche alive after the death of Jean’s Avoue. Sebastien lost Thierry several years before, and has done his grieving. Though he still misses and loves Thierry, and always will, he’s ready to move on. Because of his determination to help Jean, he hasn’t been looking for a new companinon for himself. When he meets Kylian, the pull is instant and deep. It doesn’t take realize why he feels such a connection to Kylian. Kylian is a wizard, and Sebastien felt the pull before with Thierry. He knows that Kylian is his partner.
Kylian is reluctant though. He’s wary of a bite from a vampire, and doesn’t think he wants a partner. But his attraction to Sebastien is too strong, and they decide to give a relationship a try. Things are rocky in the beginning, with both men having doubts, and Kylian even pulls away. But eventually they get things sorted out between them. When they realize how deep their connection goes, they form a partnership.
But when Kylian has to go out of town for an extended period of time, and Sebastian gets sick when he tries to feed on someone else, things get terribly complicated. That shouldn’t happen to Sebastien. It only happens when a vampire forms an Aveu de Sang, which Kylian and Sebastien haven’t done. In fact, they can’t, as Sebastien already formed that type of relationship once before and the magic can’t be done twice. It’s a scramble for answers, and when the truth comes out, everyone is shocked. Especially because of what that means for Raphael and Jean. Kylian and Raphael aren’t all that they seem, and it’s going to turn the two vampires’ worlds on their head.
Wow! What a fantastic conclusion to an utterly fantastic series. I cannot say enough good things about this book and about the series as a whole. You know me by now, and you know this is one of my all-time favorite series. So I’m sure you’re not surprised to hear that I absolutely loved this book. I’d been waiting for it for a long time, and I have to admit I was a little worried that this book wouldn’t live up to the rest of the series. I shouldn’t have been. Tachna takes us back into this amazing world she has created and gives us depth and emotion riding on a fantastic plot. One that I didn’t see coming.
First, I have to say that if you haven’t read the Partnership in Blood series and Perilous Partnership, then this book will mean nothing to you. You have got to have the background and be invested in these character for this story to work. So run out and read them, if you haven’t already, and then pick this one up and devour it too.
This story started with the death of my favorite character. I knew it was coming, just by reading the blurb, and it still crushed me. I cried a bit. But it sets up the rest of the book so perfectly, I don’t see how it could have begun any other way. After that emotional beginning, we jump forward thirty years. Though it’s obviously way in the future, and essentially a century has passed since the first five books, Tachna doesn’t give us a futuristic world. I was perfectly fine with that, and I think that if she had, it would have detracted from the story. Instead it has sort of a timeless feel that we can all recognize.
Meeting new characters and having them integrate with characters I already knew and loved was a tiny bit of a struggle for me. In the very beginning, I had to remind myself how much time had passed. But that quickly dissipated, and I was pulled into the plot and I couldn’t put this book down. I had to know where it was all leading. I gasped out loud. I was shocked and elated as this story progressed, as the author masterfully revealed all the little connections. I loved how the characters were connected. I loved all the little things showed similarities, and where the differences were too. This book is fantastically written, and if you’re as invested as I am, you’re going to be amazed at all the little idiosyncrasies.
I’m being purposely vague, because you really have to enjoy this for yourself, and I don’t want to give a single thing away. But never doubt that this is a romance. Sebastien and Kylian are a wonderful couple, and I loved watching them work through their issues, fears, and doubt as they progressed toward what their relationship would be. Even knowing that it would turn out all right in the end, I was frantically turning pages as they navigated their trials, as new conflicts came up. Tachna does a really wonderful job of giving us believable conflicts for these two. First we see their internal struggles, and I loved the way they worked through those and got themselves mentally to the right place to have a relationship. And then there’s this whole other level of mystery that I absolutely loved. As the pieces were revealed, I was so satisfied with the way it worked and how consistent it was with what has come before.
Since I loved this book so much, you may be asking yourself why I didn’t give it a perfect five star rating. Well, that’s because of Jean and Raphael. I love Kylian and Sebastien, and I simply adored Jean and Raphael. But the truth is, Jean and Raphael aren’t given enough face time on the page. After the beginning, the focus of the story shifts to Kylian and Sebastien, and we stay with them for a long time. By the time we get back to Raphael, and what he knows that he is to Jean, the book is nearly over. Because of that, the resolution for Jean and Raphael felt a little rushed to me, and the very end, and Jean’s acceptance, way too quick. While I understood why Jean’s change of heart came about so quickly—and seriously loved the little things that Tachna put in here—I needed to see more of it and for it to take a little longer for Jean to get there.
But don’t let that deter you. This is a seriously awesome book, and a stellar conclusion to the series. So many questions I didn’t even know I had were answered, and I honestly loved every second of it. Read this series. You won’t regret it.
Sebastien Noyer has already had an Avoue, so he can’t form that kind of partnership with his wizard partner, Thierry. After all, the magic only works once. But Thierry won’t settle for that. He’s in love with Sebastien to the highest degree, and he wants nothing more than for his vampire to be able to let go of his beast and truly feed on him. Thierry wants the two of them to be bound as closely as possible. With the help of master wizard Raymond Payet, Thierry works out a ritual that will mimic the Aveu de Sang almost exactly and he and Sebastien will be bound completely. If it works.
This is a short story that takes place after Perilous Partnership and well before Partnership Reborn. It absolutely has to be read in order, as it’s just a snippet in the lives of our characters and without it, some events in Partnership Reborn don’t make sense.
It’s a fantastic little story that shows us the determination Thierry has to give his lover and partner everything that he is able. If the connection between them works, Sebastien no longer has to live in fear of one day hurting Thierry. And Thierry gets the benefit of having his vampire tied to him in every way possible. I loved seeing these guys again, and I loved that they were able to have what they had been missing in their lives up to that point. It’s very short, but incredibly well done. Absolutely fantastic addition to the series.
A review copy of these books was provided by Dreamspinner Press.