The Vampire Voss by Colleen Gleason is the delightfully decadent debut novel set during the time of regent England.
The book begins with a prologue that sets the tone of the relationship between vampires Voss Arden, Viscount Dewhurst and Dimitri, Lord Covingdale as well as providing glimpses into each man's personalities.
Voss Arden, Viscount Dewhurst is truly the Victorian equivalent to the Anne Rice's, Vampire Lestat. Since making the pact with Lucifer, his existence has been full of self indulgences and the pursuit of all manners of extreme pleasure. Voss' uncanny ability to acquire all sorts of tasty bits of information; subsequently selling said information to the highest bidder is another example of his rakish nature. Although driven by the need to protection himself in the battle between Dimitri and Cezar Moldavi, he does not use his knowledge maliciously. It is pretty clear from the moment Voss see Angelica that he desires her, his restraint from indulging in his otherwise notorious carnal activities are at constant odds with his nature. I found myself repeatedly laughing at his numerous attempts to enthrall the lovely Angelica and his unnatural bad luck to have an innocent jest turn into a bad situation. Voss is like the little brother that just will not go away and will do anything to gain the attention of his big brother; in this instance Dimitri, Lord Covingdale.
Romantically speaking the trials and tribulations of Voss' romantic pursuit of the delicious Angelica Woodmore; sister of the vampire hunter Chas Woodmore, a woman with "The Sight" and a ward of Dimitri's, is hilarious. Although Angelica is hampered by society's etiquette and what is deemed proper behavior, I love how she still manages to skirt many obstacles in her pursuits of her need to assist other less unfortunate women. A prophetic dream leads her to a chance encounter with Voss and things are never the same.
The book displays all the rigors and proprieties of the period and its narration is dutifully laced with all the distinctive airs of the Victorian age; from Voss' Chevalier approach to acquiring a bit of evening's entertainment, to the Dimitri's dispassionate mannerism, to angelica's wishful maidenly desires. The classic Victorian undertones are further displayed in Ms. Gleason's methodical approach to story-telling. Laced with subtle innuendos and sly play on words, the Vampire Voss is a journey into the life of a Dracule that has embraced every facet of what it means to be vampire and revels in each indulgence. The use of the Vlad Tepes lore as a basis for the origins of the Dracule is ingenious and adds yet another layer of excellent world building to the series.
I did enjoy the vampire Voss, though the novel may have progressed a bit faster with an added bit of urgency at the beginning. I highly recommend it and can't wait to read "The Vampire Dimitri"
In 19th Century London, vampires live alongside the uppercrust members of Society...
Even after centuries of lust, hedonism, and women, Voss, the Viscount Dewhurst, rarely finds himself bored. As a member of the Dracule, he is a rogue of the first order, a man who loves nothing more than a warm woman, excellent vintage, and even a puzzling challenge to keep his mind active.
But when one of his seemingly harmless manipulations sets him on the path to seduce the beautiful Miss Angelica Woodmore, things become a little less simple…a lot more passionate…and definitely more complicated.
And when the most evil vampire of the Dracule puts Angelica in his sights, Voss will have to risk everything to save her…and possibly his own soul.
**Also published under the titles LUCIFER'S ROGUE and THE VAMPIRE VOSS**