Frostbitten, by Charlotte Stein
Published by: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: November 28, 2016
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Shy nurse Cora both dreads and lives for the moments she sees Zeke, an orderly at the hospital where she works. Zeke is too handsome, too compelling, too much, and seems totally unaware of Cora. But before she can bring herself to his attention, an explosion rips through the hospital Christmas party.
Zeke has noticed Cora—in fact, he’s so irresistibly drawn to her that he saves her from the explosion by turning her into a vampire, much to the jealousy and resentment of his partner, Merrick. Zeke hates being a vampire, and now that she’ll live, doesn’t want Cora to suffer his fate. If they can both resist the overwhelming instinct to bond, joining their bodies as Cora draws her maker’s blood, she might be able to return to her normal human life.
As Merrick uses every erotic trick to keep Zeke distracted from the blood passion, Cora becomes more and more drawn to both of her reluctant captors. And more and more happy to abandon her old life in exchange for an eternity with two hot immortal lovers. All she has to do is convince Merrick and Zeke that being a vampire isn’t all that bad.
Paranormal / Vampires
Charlotte Stein’s books have always been hit and miss for me. I have absolutely loved a few of them (Deep Desires, Telling Tales, Power Play) because when she gets the mood and the tone just right, it does something for me. Other times, though, the magic isn’t quite there and unfortunately, Frostbitten lands largely in latter territory.
What makes Stein’s voice unique is her heavy reliance on inner dialogue. You won’t find pages and pages of conversations between her MC’s. Instead, you get one POV, a ton of dirty thoughts and the most delicious descriptions of physical arousal. And generally, this works quite well. Frostbitten relies on the same technique but somehow it doesn’t manage to engage the reader in the same way. I just didn’t feel invested in the characters this time around.
I think short stories are probably the most difficult thing to write. You have so little time to lure your reader in and make them care about the characters and the storyline. Generally, this is Stein’s forte and I have struggled to figure out why Frostbitten didn’t quite click for me. I think it just comes down to the fact that this particular story needed more time to play out. Merrick and Cora had an enemies-to-lovers thing going on and that kind of relationship needs time and tension to really make it work. Neither were present in this story.
This is a good story that just missed being a great one. Had a few more pages been invested in building up the UST between the Cora, Merrick and Zeke, I think this book would have been off-the-charts hot. As it was, however, Frostbitten left me just a little bit cold.
Charlotte Stein is the RT and DABWAHA nominated author of over fifty short stories, novellas and novels. When not writing deeply emotional and intensely sexy books, she can be found eating jelly turtles, watching terrible sitcoms and occasionally lusting after hunks.
Charlotte Stein can be reached at:
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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.