Book Reviews

Spirit Sanguine (Sanguine 1) by Lou Harper at Harper Books

Genre Gay / Urban Fantasy / Vampires / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 06-January-2018

Book Blurb

Is that a wooden stake in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

After putting his innate vampire hunting skills into good use in eastern Europe, Gabe is back in his hometown Chicago, feeling adrift. At least, until he has a run-in with a sexy, young vampire who seems more interested in getting into his pants than biting into his neck.

Harvey Feng is half-Chinese, all vampire, and has a tongue as sharp as his fangs. He warns Gabe to stay out of the Windy City, yet he isn’t surprised when the slayer lands back on his doorstep. 

Against their better judgment, slayer and vampire succumb to their mutual attraction, but their affair attracts unexpected attention.

When Chicago’s Vampire Boss makes Gabe an offer he can’t refuse, the unlikely lovers are thrust into peril and mystery in the dark heart of the city. Together they hunt for kidnappers, a killer preying on young humans, and vicious vampire junkies.

However, dealing with murderous humans and vampires alike is easy compared to figuring out if there’s more to their relationship than hot, kinky sex.



Warning: Fangalicious man-on-man action, a troublesome twink, cross-dressing, and role-playing involving a fedora.

First Edition published by Samhain Publishing, 2013.

Book Review

As soon as I read the words "vegetarian vampire" in the description, I knew this was a book for me. The fact that I adore Lou Harper's writing didn't hurt either and that she'd taken on the paranormal world made me greedy to jump into this story! Of course, seeing as how the story involves a slayer and a vampire just made me think of a gay Buffy and Angel, and that pretty much cinched it for me. 'Spirit Sanguine' is made up of three stories that all involve the same characters, and details and information from each story cross in and out of the others.

Gabe is a slayer who's just returned home to Chicago after five years of killing vampires with his uncle in Eastern Europe. He's familiar with the routine and knows the script. Until he meets Harvey. The first time they meet, Harvey drugs him, warns him away from town, and leaves him at a distance of forty miles in a seedy motel. When Gabe goes after him, he shoots Harvey in the stomach, and Harvey yells at him, smashes his crossbow, and goes back into his apartment. Huh. The next thing Gabe knows, he and Harvey have declared a ceasefire and they're talking like two regular people. Gabe almost spits his coffee out when Harvey tells him he doesn't drink blood. "I'm a vegetarian and a Buddhist." Apparently Harvey has created his own nutritional drink that provides him with everything he needs. Go figure. The sexual attraction doesn't take long to overwhelm them and yep, they're hot together. Next thing Gabe knows he's come to the attention of the vampire boss for Chicago, Victor Augustine, who has a proposition for Gabe. Uh-oh.

Victor hires Gabe as his go-to guy—I suppose is the best description for it. This arrangement might seem a little odd but working for Victor also gives Gabe protection against vampires wanting to kill him because he's a slayer. His first job is to retrieve a pedophile vampire and return him to Victor for punishment. Oh yeah, Gabe and Harvey can most definitely do that. The second job involves a possible serial killer who might or might not be a vampire. This is where Victor introduces Gabe to Denton, who also does work for Victor. Denton can feel what the victim felt at the time of death when Denton is on the scene. Interesting. Now Gabe has a bunch of suspects but no clear motive as to why these two people have been killed. When he does figure it out, turns out there's a lot more going on here than Gabe expected.

The five years that Gabe spent slaying vampires in Eastern Europe? It would seem that those weren't really vampires. They are what happens when the transformation isn't done correctly. Which does explain why Gabe couldn't reconcile the vampires he's met in Chicago with the grotesque beings he'd been fighting. Gabe also learns that his uncle may have known more about these "partials" and about the death of Gabe's parents, in fact, his uncle may have been responsible for his parents' death.

Victor gives information to Gabe that one of the three vampires that turned Harvey, against his will, is back in Chicago and Victor wants him to capture the vampire and return him to Victor. After meeting with Harvey's good friend, Syl, a three hundred year old Romanian vampire, they learn that the men who turned Harvey were addicts of what vampires call dirty blood. Harvey is not thrilled to discover he's basically a vampire crack baby. Even more unusual are the strange phenomena that are beginning to occur between Gabe and Harvey and no one knows whether it's because Gabe is a slayer and the small tastes of his blood are doing it, or if it has to do with the bond that is developing.

Gabe and Harvey get sent undercover to Las Vegas to look into the vampire addicts and they also head to Vamp Con. Super Fun! While they're there they discover the boss of Vegas is an addict and in an interesting turn of events, Gabe and Harvey end up killing him, but it's what Victor wanted them to do, all along. Sneaky, sneaky.

Lou Harper has outdone herself with this tale. Gabe and Harvey were wonderful characters that I adored and their love story was almost seamless and sweet, but also intense and hot. The different mysteries and plots were fun to experience and I really hope the author plans on writing more of these characters and their shenanigans. Great job, Lou!





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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 239 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 17-March-2017
Price FREE
Buy Link