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Publisher's Summary

"Marry the devil...or die." That's the ultimatum Belle Harrison, vampire slayer, just received from a demon. Belle has only one response: To hell with him.  

Turns out it's not that easy, though - apparently the devil doesn't know the meaning of the word no. Lucky for Belle, three pantie-melting vampires come to her aid. Three hot vampires she can't resist. Hey, we all have our vices. Hers just happen to have fangs.  

She's going to need these three to help her thwart the devil's marriage proposal and defeat the terrifying dark force that wants her dead.

©2018 Holly Ryan (P)2018 Holly Ryan

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A good quick read but lacks world building

I was a little disappointed with the world building. The story relies on the reader/listener knowing something like 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' when it comes to what the MC is. It's a miracle she's still alive considering she got her golden letter proclaiming she was the slayer at they tender age of nine. She didn't have help, tutors, or resources. You don't even know who sent the letter, which honestly is so odd and flimsy. She just sneaked out of the house and killed adult vampires in the cemetery the night after receiving her letter. Which brings me to--she only hunts at the cemetery only. Why? We don't know why she hunts vampires or if she only hunts vampires. Or even if there are other paranormals. She senses things but we don't know if she senses non-humans or just evil. She knows about demons but how? Then she meets the three vampires and after very little thought, accepts their offer. Again, why? She's never crossed a vampire she hasn't killed, so as far as she knew all vampires are bad. It's like she's an automaton. she kills vampires because she's told to and doesn't have any opinions on what she does every night. Since there is a lack of world building there is no depth to the story, making the relationship between the slayer and vampires carry the story.

If you can suspend disbelief, what story there is was pretty good, but I felt as if it was cut off in the first third of a book just as the story was picking up steam. I kinda hate when a story is broken apart like this. The three vampires are distinct and it's easy to remember who is who. I wish she spent more quality time getting to know them because I had a hard time imagining they had anything more than just mutual like through sex. The narrator did an excellent job and I liked the distinctness between the characters' voices. Did the plot intrigue me enough to give the second book in the series a try? I don't know.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

No hickeys, but they know just where to bite

**I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Holly Ryan. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.**

While I wish the relationships between Belle and her vampires had been better developed, I have to say that I really, really enjoyed this book! The plot was well developed and the characters were likable. There were several layers of goings-on, and I have a sneaking suspicion that the conflict that got 'wrapped up' in Book 1, isn't really all that resolved. It was just...too easy.

Belle was a fun character. She's strong, sassy, resilient, and with just enough sorrow in her past to make her relatable. Slaying aside, her life felt familiar; she's alone, trying to juggle a job, school, keeping a roof over her head...it's a struggle many readers will recognize from their own lives. Her sense of humor had me laughing out loud more than once. My only complaint about her was how quickly she started sexual relationships with the three supernaturally-hot vampires. It would have been nice to see a little more build-up and development there. I like the guys, but I didn't feel like we spent enough time getting ot know them for me to really feel more than mild affection. I'm hoping they'll get more developmental attention in Book 2, because they seem like they could be fabulous characters.

Now, as much as I enjoyed the characters and the story, I have some questions. How on earth is someone chosen to be a Slayer and expected to perform the job with absolutely no proper training or instruction? Belle is completely self-taught, so either she's been REALLY lucky or vampires in this world are weenies. The explanation she's given about the old ones being smart enough to stay away from her makes sense, but it doesn't excuse this particular plot hole.

Melissa Schwairy was a fabulous choice for narrator. Her reading voice is smooth, with enough inflection to convey the right mood for the setting, and she makes each character distinct without overdramatizing them or giving them silly accents. Her lack of accent seemed appropriate for what felt like a midwestern heroine in a typical, small, midwestern town. The recording quality was excellent, with no distracting volume changes, background noises, or overly long pauses between chapters.

Bottom line: I'd definitely recommend this book to those who like their romance paranormal, their heroines strong and sassy, and their plots intriguing. The fact that it's a steamy reverse harem is almost a bonus!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

This Is Just The Beginning

Rating: 4.5 Stars

I like paranormal romances but am not fond of the term Reverse Harem. For me, the term is just a replacement for the term menage. I think part of the change is because people don't like that term. If it turns you off, I really don't think that it can be applied here. Being the first in a series, I find teaser to be more accurate.

This was my first listen for both the author and the narrator. Our author reminded me what I loved about the paranormal romance genre. When multitasking I found this was a great way to get to know both women. Ms. Ryan took me back to what I loved about the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series. Ms. Schwairy was great at telling me a good story but I could not picture her as our main female character - her voice didn't have me picturing a young woman. That didn't stop me from enjoying the book though. When she first starts the story, that I listened to a second time, I decided that I will have to go back and listen to this around Halloween. What better time to get up close and personal with the unexplained?

There were just a couple of issues. One being that the story was too short. Good news is that it just gets me ready for the second book. The other issue I had was with the audio. As Ms. Schwairy was talking I heard things that weren't a part of the storyline. A couple of times it sounded like she was in a place that had nothing to do with our slayer, our vampires, or the demon. The other audio issue was that in a couple of spots I could really hear our narrator swallow - again nothing to do with the characters. Those were things that I could overlook because she kept me interested in Ms. Ryan's tale. And I'm glad to see that I'll see more of Belle Harrison in book two - oh and let's not forget the three hunky vampires. If they need another neck mine's available.

I voluntarily reviewed an Audiobook copy of this book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Reverse Harem with a great plot.

I am always wary of reverse harem books but I read the synopsis and the title and thought I would give this one a go. I am so pleased that I did. Holly Ryan has given the series an intriguing start with Vampires Don't Give Hickeys.

There is so much story and the intimacy seems to flow with the story. There is a really good plot and lovers of sexy Vampire / Slayer fantasy stories should give this one a go. Obviously as a reverse harem story there is plenty of lusty moments and to be blunt, they are sexy not sleazy.

It was a story that captured my attention from the first to last word and I am now going to listen to the second in series.

I cannot fault the narration by Melissa Schwairy it was so well voiced with distinct character voices and fabulous vocal acting, scene setting, and intensity. The sexy scenes sound sexy and flowed with the story.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.