Human/Vampire hybrid Gabriel Brimstone walks between the worlds of the living and the dead. He hunts vampires and slays them with remarkable ease. However, the years have taken their toll on him physically, mentally and emotionally. Guilt-ridden Brimstone must wrestle with his innermost demons by acknowledging his thirst for human blood.
While on the hunt for the elusive vampire, Valimus, Brimstone joins a local chapter of AA to face his addiction. Unfortunately, the demons of Culver’s Bay are circling and they smell his internal struggles.
As Brimstone’s fragile psyche begins to crack, he learns of a centuries old prophecy that could spell the end of humanity as we know it. Valimus’ endgame is learned and Brimstone knows that it resides within a man known as Richard Stoker. Who is Stoker and what does he have to do with Valimus’ plan for world domination? Will Gabriel Brimstone stop this vampire apocalypse and come to terms with what he is?
She was running through the dark claustrophobic nightmare. The labyrinthine hell of steel and brick intertwined with steel tubing. She could see in the dark. They could all see in the dark. However, that did not dampen her fears. The hounds of hell were nipping at her heels. They were coming.
They were coming!
Her breath came in ragged gasps. Yes, they could breathe. They didn’t need to, but for the newly Turned, it was an instinctive reaction. It seemed like the normal thing to do.
She was far from normal. She was dead, but she was going to get deader if she slowed down.
The pace was hard to keep with the knee deep water. She sloshed through it as fast as her slim legs would take her. Her mind told her that she was tired, even though it could have pushed on indefinitely.
Please, help me! her mind cried.
The sounds of multiple assailants growling and splashing feet drew ever nearer, nearer, nearer.
The vision vanished as violently as it appeared. The images were snapshots of someone else’s terror. The daydreams had been pursuing me all day. It was the same thing: a woman in a sewer being chased by something. Whatever it was, it was many and hungry.
Returning to the present meant returning to my own problems. My biggest one occurred last night. When you fall off the wagon, one of the first things you’re supposed to do is contact your sponsor. For me, falling off the wagon meant nearly draining a vampire of her blood and leaving her and her husband to suffer at the hands of blood-crazed vampires.
Who would’ve thought that there’d be no chapter in our Book about that one?
So I sat in a 50’s-styled diner and tried to drown my sorrows in strong black java, but it did not make me feel clean.
Not many things made me feel clean these days, even in the sterile conditions in which I find myself. I nursed the coffee Flo sat in front of me. “One’s on the house,” she said with a sympathetic smile.
I must’ve looked as bad as I felt. There’s nothing worse than falling off the wagon.
Focus on the mission, I thought. Don’t dwell on the failure. Take each day at a time, The Book tells us.
From my jacket pocket I pulled out a driver’s license. It belonged to a man I buried, screaming but undead, in a Nevada desert years ago. His name was Winthrop. He was the director of a mental institute named Amhearst.
I knew him as a bloodsucking fiend named Malfric.
His license led me to this town, a town filled with shadows and humming with a magic that was threaded throughout the pavement, in the midst of its urban soul.
I remembered the look on her face when I sank my fangs into Miranda Baltimore’s neck. The look of surprise was the most horrible part of it all. It was like I was betraying her. This game of cat and mouse I’ve been playing with them had rules. As of late, I have been breaking them. Usually, I was the good guy and they were the bad guys. I would find out their schemes and try to foil them like some Saturday morning cartoon. Lately, however, I have not been such a good guy. I’m not sure where I fall in the hero/villain categories. A hero would not have left humans to die in a club populated by the undead. A hero would not let his archenemies be torn apart, much less join in and help to kill one of them.
I never pretended to be a white knight, but I never thought I was a killer.
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Ok… so I started this book thinking it would be your “typical” vampire hunter story replete with good old fashion paranormal violence and vampire killing. The book cover was a little strange, but I was willing to give it a chance based on the recommendation of a friend. As I read I was still convinced it was a very typical story, though I did like the idea that the main character chose to deal with his “thirst” by applying the principles of AA. As I kept reading I realized that this is not the usual story of hunting the undead. It has some very cool twist that will make you want to read it again to find all the things you missed the first time through. There are some plot transitions that could be smoother. However, those disjointed moments give insight to the internal world of the main character. It is good effort for a new writer and it was nice to see someone take this genre into new territory. I look forward reading more from Mr. Browning.