Friday, June 22, 2012

Review : Jessica Rules the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

*Warning: This review may contain spoilers. Read at your own risk.

Release Date: January 9, 2012
Publisher: Harcourt
Pages: 320
Source: ARC

The Story:

The highly anticipated sequel to Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side.

It’s one thing to find out you’re a vampire princess. It’s a whole other thing to actually rule. Newly married Jessica Packwood is having a hard enough time feeling regal with her husband, Lucius, at her side. But when evidence in the murder of a powerful elder points to Lucius, sending him into solitary confinement, Jessica is suddenly on her own. Determined to clear her husband’s name, Jessica launches into a full-scale investigation, but hallucinations and nightmares of betrayal keep getting in her way. Jessica knows that with no blood to drink, Lucius’s time is running out. Can she figure out who the real killer is—and whom she can trust—before it’s too late?

via -- Barnes & Noble

RatingTHREE Gold Stars!!!

My Review: One word: FIERCE

Last year, when I was at BEA (BookExpo America) and strolling through the aisles, I just happened to spot a lone short stack of ARCs off to the side on the floor going unnoticed. And, of course, I was ecstatic when I realized it was Jessica Rules the Dark Side. Consequently, I couldn't wait to crack the cover open since I enjoyed the first of Beth Fantaskey's novels, Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side.

Beth Fantaskey first drew me into the simple life of horse-loving 17-year-old Jessica Packwood, a much loved daughter who lives on a farm with her adopted parents, who finds out she is vampire royalty in Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side. Jessica's entire world overturned when the handsome but arrogant and dangerous vampire prince Lucius Vladescu claims her to be his betrothed vampire princess bride. 

Having uprooted her life to Romania to become Antanasia Dragomir, the biological daughter of Mihaela and Ladislau Dragomir and the successor of Dragomir clan of vampires, she realizes that ruling the dark side isn't a walk through the park, and she just may have bitten off more than she could chew. "It's one thing to find out you're a vampire princess. It's a whole other thing to actually rule." Not only does Jessica have to learn how to rule a country of vampires or fall prey to the vicious vampires that are waiting for a reason to overthrow her but when her husband is framed for the murder of a powerful vampire elder and sentenced to solitary confinement until, Jessica must find the courage to become Antanasia, the woman, the regal vampire ruler instead of just some weak American girl and prove Lucius' innocence.

With the aid of her best - human - friend Mindy Stankowicz and Mindy's vampire lover Raneiro Vladescu Lovatu, Jessica embarks on a quest to clear her husband's name and uncover the real murderer. Which works perfectly for Mindy since she's dropped out of college and her too zen boyfriend, Raniero, chucks his surfer dude ways to revert back to his very sexy former deadly assassin lifestyle. In trying to Raniero finally starts acting like the strong, mysterious vampire Mindy always knew he could be and she yearned for. But, Mindy soon realizes the meaning of being careful what you wish for. In a race to save Lucuis from impending death, together, Mindy and Jessica learns what it means to be the love of a powerful vampire, that people aren't always what they seem. And the murderer may be closer to them than they think.

Moreover, love Beth Fantaskey's voice in her works and enjoyed it when she took on Mindy's and Raneiro's voices in Jessica Rules the Dark Side. Readers get a better insight into Jessica's best and Lucius' Italian cousin and the next in line successor Raniero as characters. On that note, I would read their stories if Fantaskey decided to do a spin off just for them.

To top it off, what I appreciate most from Fantaskey was her effort to sate her readers' appetite for Jessica - Antanasia - and Lucius' story. By our request she actually wrote a short story of Jessica and lucius' wedding and posted it on her website for us to read for free. Not only that but she let us be apart of Jessica's story by having votes on details such as the location of wedding should be, what should be done at the ceremony, what Jessica's dress should look like and more. 

Overall, Jessica Rules the Dark Side, Beth Fantaskey's sequel to Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side, is a tale of fierce love and a couple of girls discovering who they really are and finding their way in the world. A world where vampires exist. Fantaskey did not disappoint in her continuation of Jessica's story. I'm definitely rooting for more installments to the Jessica's Guide duo.

Here is one of my favorite quotes from Jessica Rules the Dark Side:

Mindy & Raniero: I reached down and grabbed Raniero's hand in the sand. He let me take it, and it felt good and cool against mine. "So, what is it? Taco or burrito?"

"I would like a vampiro," he said, grinning at me like an idiot. He was always bugging me about becoming undead now. "When do you allow me to make you mine forever? It is a good life, if you stay away from the violence." - Page 308

***Check out Beth Fantaskey's website for more information about her and the Jessica Rules the Dark Side: HERE

Happy Reading!


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