Sunday, June 15, 2008

Paris Immortal – review


Author: S. Roit

First Published: 2008

Contains spoilers

The Blurb: “When Trey meets his new legal clients, the stunning Michel and his equally striking partner Gabriel, he can’t believe his luck. The rumour in the office is that the pair can be difficult at times; they have a staggering number of assets to manage and are elusive during the daytime hours.

“Trey settles into his new Parisian home, making friends and meeting romantic interests, but none so fascinating as Michel and Gabriel. There’s something familiar about them, about their peculiarities, and Trey can’t shake the feeling that he’s missing something important.

“They seem kind enough, if distant at times, and as Trey’s life becomes more complicated, they appear to want to protect him.

“But what if they’re the ones putting him in danger?”

The review: The blurb to this novel gives a pretty good synopsis. Trey is an American lawyer who has moved both into corporate law and to France due to his guilt at successfully defending a guilty man (whom he had believed innocent). His new clients attract his attention with their otherworldly beauty and he takes his boss’ warning regarding the clients to be homophobia. Trey himself is bisexual and through the book gets entangled with a mysterious woman he calls PK and Geoff, a Spanish waiter. Despite this he is obsessed with his clients.

Of course they are vampires and the book itself is a romance, though one might call it high romance, a search for acceptance and love. The attraction and love Trey feels for the vampires and they, certainly Michel, returns puts him in danger from other vampires in the employ of Vicont, a vampire with a particular dislike for Michel.

The danger also comes from being close to the vampires, as they embody a power that could cause a mortal mind to snap. Luckily, though he doesn’t know it, Trey is a sensitive and has met Gabriel before – something lost on Gabriel who has memory issues and muddled for Trey as he was eight years old.

We do get some lore, but not too much, as the book is in first person – primarily from Trey’s viewpoint. What Roit does, both brave and clever, is write in present tense – this, of course, ensures that a level of risk remains for the character unlike past tense when we know they likely survived. Roit also, occasionally, flicks the viewpoint to Michel to give a wider perspective. What we do discover is that most vampires cannot go out into the sun, though Michel can to a degree, that they are very strong and superhumanly fast and can read and confuse mortal minds. We know that ripping a heart out will kill one and they corrupt to dust. Vampire blood aids mortal healing.

As I read the book I found the whole thing fulfilling, however once I finished reading questions emerged in my mind. Why was Robert (Trey's boss) wary of the vampires – did he know what they were or was he homophobic? It is never answered. What was the history between Michel and Vicont? It is never really revealed. What are the secrets from Trey’s past that might be unearthed back home in Louisiana?

Hopefully Roit intends to expand on these themes in a future book and the book is not necessarily lacking for the sake of them, as they were not missed during the reading. This has much to do with the fact that, for the majority of the time, we look at the world as Trey sees it and he does not know the answers. What we have is a gothic romance that seems perhaps less melodramatic than it could have been and benefits from that. It is a fascinating study of the thoughts and feelings of someone seduced by an immortal and I enjoyed the read. 7 out of 10.

2 comments:

sroit said...

Hello,

I'd like to thank you for the kind review! I also wanted to let you know this is indeed, the first book in a series. The second should be available in October.

Thanks again!

S.Roit

Taliesin_ttlg said...

Thank you, I look forward to the second part