Title: Wanted: Undead or Alive
Author: Kerrelyn Sparks
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Love at Stake (Book 12)
Publication Date: March 27, 2012
Format: Paperback, 384 Pages
ISBN-10: 0061958069 (Harper/Avon)
ISBN-13: 978-0061958069 (Harper/Avon)
Reviewed by: Kristie
He’s a vampire from the big city . . .
Phineas McKinney thought New York City was tough, until he was attacked by Malcontents—evil vampires who consider mortals to be snacks. Saved by the good vampires, Phin swore to devote his now undead life to stopping the Malcontents. He’s got his job cut out for him when word comes that their enemy may be hiding in Wyoming. What does a city boy like him know about horses and campfires? Good thing he’s got Brynley Jones with him . . . if only she didn’t hate every vampire on earth.
She’s a werewolf princess . . .
Bryn believes vampires are seductive and charming, and that makes them dangerous. So she’s more than a little annoyed about teaming up with Phin, even if he is the only bloodsucker able to make her inner wolf purr. But as they hunt down the new leader of the Malcontents, danger threatens . . . and Phineas and Brynley discover a passion that will rock the foundation of their supernatural world.
Quick & Dirty: Hilarious paranormal romance that follows a werewolf and a vampire’s hot, sweet, sexy and sometimes tumultuous relationship.
Opening Sentence: “Get real, Phineas! You can’t expect me to believe this crap!”
I have never read a Kerrelyn Sparks novel and I was a little leery about jumping into a story twelve books into a series. Yes, I was a little overwhelmed by the huge cast of characters and who is married to whom and what kind species they are but ultimately Wanted: Undead or Alive was a story about Phineas and Brynley. A story that was hilarious, sexy and entertaining.
Phineas McKinney aka Dr. Phang aka the Love Doctor aka the Blardonnay Guy was transformed into a vampire five years ago. He begins the novel trying to convince his brother, Freemont, that he is a vampire including filling him in on his various nicknames. Freemont takes a little convincing before he realizes his brother isn’t playing a huge joke on him. He then insists on being Phineas’ agent since his Blardonnay commercials have women falling at his feet. There are many tongue-in-cheek jokes between the brothers that come off ridiculous but are still funny.
Phineas is being interviewed on live television about his role in the Old Spice commercials; oops I mean the Blardonney commercials. He takes the opportunity to tell off his employers and declare that he hates working for them and that he pretty much believes in the Malcontents ideologies. The Malcontents fall for this and take Phineas back to their lair to their queen Corky (such a queenly name). Unfortunate for them, Phineas has a tracker device planted on him ready for backup so they can take Corky prisoner for her “crimes”. Sadly, the best laid plans go to waste and Corky escapes.
The gang at MacKay S and I believe Corky has escaped to Europe or Russia and break into groups to go search for her leaving Phineas to stay behind and act as security for the home office. A few days into the search Phineas receives a tip that a busty blonde attacked a man in Wyoming. He is the only vampire that can be spared to investigate this clue. Since he is going into werewolf territory he looks for someone who can help him and look after him during his death sleep. He is paired with the only wolf that can be spared, Brynley.
Brynley fully intends to tell Phineas off but instead agrees to go to Wyoming. She is reluctant to go back home but her wolf is impatient to run free in the Wyoming wilderness. She knows the area and helps Phineas with his investigation all while she tries to hide her identity. She doesn’t want her father to know that she has come back home for he will force her back into a life that she ran away from.
Phineas and Brynley appear to hate each other. It is easier to pretend to hate someone when you desperately don’t want them to know you are crushing on them. It doesn’t take long for their attraction to be revealed but they both believe they are not right for each other. They are a mixed race couple in more than one way, he is a vampire, she is a werewolf, he is black and she is white. He grew up a poor boy from the Bronx while she grew up a Princess in the werewolf world with plenty of wealth. But these two opposites soon learn they have a lot more in common than they thought and when these two come together the sparks fly and it is H.O.T.
The novel does start off a little slow; it was a full 75 pages into the book before Brynley even shows up. The plot moved quickly from there. The point of view switches between them more often instead of staying on one character for a long time. Some of the jokes can be a little annoying especially Da Freeze jests but the truly funny jokes outweigh the annoying. The tension to the plot is enough to keep me reading but not terribly spectacular.
Overall, Wanted: Undead or Alive was an entertaining read. I was invested in the relationship between Phineas and Brynley and was excited when they finally hooked up. If I have the time I would really like to catch up on this series and get to know the other characters better.
“You took down the ladder.” She spotted it on the cellar floor.
“I don’t need it. I can levitate in or out.”
But she couldn’t. “You don’t want me coming down there to check on you?”
“No need. Once I fall into my death-sleep, I’m not going anywhere.”
“You’re just afraid of what I’ll do.” She straightened with a smile. “I think I’ll draw a rainbow and unicorn on your chest with permanent markers. It’ll be so—“
“Don’t you dare,” he growled, suddenly behind her.
She squealed, jumped away from him, and teetered on the edge of the open trapdoor, her arms flailing.
He grabbed her and pulled her back against his chest. “It’s okay. I’ve got you.”
“No!” She spun away from him and shoved him hard in the chest. “Don’t ever attack me from behind!”
“I didn’t attack you. I rescued you.”
She glared at him, her heart pounding, her whole body trembling. Tears blurred her vision, and she blinked them away. Her inner wolf hissed. Dammit. She hated to show any weakness. “You teleported behind me. Don’t ever do it again.”
The Love at Stake Series:
10. Vampire Mine
FTC Advisory: Harper/Avon Books provided me with a copy of Wanted: Undead or Alive. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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