Evelyn Lafont is a freelance writer and author living in Tampa Bay, Florida. Originally from New England, she likes that none of her shoes or body parts freeze during the short Florida winter. She is the married mother of two catlike furballs and hates doing housework of any kind.
on Nov. 20, 2012 :
This was a fast, fun read. The characters are great! Josie is spunky and funny, Gregory is smooth and mysterious, and Walker....what can a girl say about Walker! He is rough and crass, but you can see the soft and suave under the surface (it just doesn't like to show!). I was IN from the first page. Couldn't wait to see what would happen next and fell in love with Josie's personality! Gregory seems "off" from the start. Of course that could be the relationship cynic in me. If it seems too good to be true - it is. I enjoyed the interactions of Josie and Walker, I love the attraction that they each try to ignore. The story moves quickly and doesn't leave you hanging. I would have loved to see this story fleshed out more and moved from a novella to a full length story. I feel that the characters and the storyline could have sustained a longer book. If I had to say there was one thing that disappointed me - it would be that the story was over too fast. I can't wait for Volume Two!
(review of free book)
on Nov. 25, 2011 :
an enjoyable light read overall,a little slow in the middle, however I became attached to the characters and that's always good.Humor,romance and danger, good combination, worth taking the time for!
(reviewed 33 days after purchase)
on Aug. 25, 2011 :
An unexpected engrossing read. I mean literally "engrossing". Lafont's writing literally sucked me into the story until the very end of the book. It was a short read but it was a good one. It was funny, steamy, exciting and some how a bit angsty or maybe its just my reaction to things.
Anyways, I found the entire story perfect for me since its exactly what I wanted with the right amount of captivation, humor and unputdownableness.
I'm definitely getting the next book!
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
William (Dann) Alexander
on June 03, 2011 :
I never for a second thought I would even pick up a book of this genre. A vamp-romance book? Let alone a romance book?
Evelyn Lafont has a terrific sense of humour and paints her scenery well throughout. There were quite a few moments where I felt like things were coming down a bit and I started to lose interest, but then the story comes right back up again. Josie is a character that you want to protect from her own adventurous nature.
This is an enjoyable read overall, from a sharp-witted writer.
(reviewed 21 days after purchase)
Denise K. Rago
on May 16, 2011 :
Not to give too much away but I really enjoyed this book! I found it funny as well as enjoying the romance. Can't wait for Volume II.
(reviewed 23 days after purchase)
on April 15, 2011 :
It’s clear, that this is meant to be a light chick-lit with paranormal creatures spicing it up – I’ve read enough Harlequin romances to recognize it – so I’m going to review it as such.
We get to know Josie and start following her dream come true journey into the vampire world. If you think of any pulp romance story, you might believe in the beginning that’s what this is going to be, but it’s a bit more than that. Instead of one handsome male you have two – though it is easy to guess who’s The One – and there’s a dark twist closer to the end. Sure it is foreshadowed, but I didn’t expect it to go that far when reading chick-lit. However it was a refreshing turn and made the book something else than your usual pulp dose.
In my opinion the story suffers a bit from the way it handles the core romance and I would have wanted it to be elaborated. The way it is now just makes me feel uncomfortable of the whole thing. If it wasn’t such a major part of the story it wouldn’t matter that much, but because it’s the romance I count it for quite a chunk.
Josie is sweet and witty and comes off somewhat bipolar as a real chick-lit heroine should, but momentarily she seem to be too… gullible. Not sure if gullible is the best word, but I have a hard time finding a better one. In the beginning of the novella Josie had me full-heartedly on her side, but then the bath happened and I just didn’t know what to think anymore. It was too soon from every angle in my opinion, and I kept thinking who would let a stranger do that and not be freaked out in that situation. Of course in chick-lit the heroine rarely portraits the reality, but this was a bit too much for me, since I wasn’t able to relate at all.
The author doesn’t dwell too much on others than Josie, but since it’s a novella, it’s not really even expected. I think Lafont revealed us just enough of the characters so you can get a grip of them without interfering with the pace of the story. I did keep hoping that the mailman would have showed himself again later in the book, but he never did.
Writing: Lafont’s way of writing is fast paced and light – even when things get a darker turn – and her novella is an easy and enjoyable read. For a chick-lit the style is pretty perfect. She does overuse certain techniques in the writing, especially in the end where it gets tiresome. Other than that it shows that Lafont took the novella to a professional editor, since there’s no sign of many fundamental mistakes you usually can spot in a self-published eBook.
I can easily recommend this as an enjoyable light read to all you who enjoy your chick-lit with a twist. I think the novella would also please those who don’t normally care for paranormal elements in their books.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
Zoe E. Whitten
on March 31, 2011 :
The Vampire Relationship Guide Volume 1 is subtitled Meeting and Mating, but probably should have been labeled UR Doing it Wrong. While the writing is engaging and the world building fascinating, the narrator’s stunning lack of perception drags down the second half of the novella. The ending is further hampered by a bad guy plot so hideous, it’s no wonder it failed. I’ve seen better criminal plots hatched by first graders for a cookie raid.(And the first graders didn’t get caught.)
But let’s start with what works, and why it works. We’re introduced to Josie, a bridal shop worker who has an obsession with meeting and bedding a vampire. She’s offered the chance to attend a party of a well to do vampire named Gregory, and so dressing up fancy, she head out to hook up. Josie and Gregory meet and hit it off well, and as Josie leaves she meets another vampire, and that meeting doesn’t go so well. These introductions work well for me, and I initially loved Josie’s random strange questions or comments. I also liked the little glimpses into the background of this world’s vampires. They have a good mix of familiar tropes as well as some new ideas to help keep the monster fresh and interesting to learn about.
The second vampire Josie met at the party introduces himself the next day as Walker, and then proceeds to act like a jerk over, and over, and over. And yet, “there’s something about him” that Josie can’t help but like. Oy. I had a similar problem with the characters in Amanda Hocking’s Switched, and for the exact same reason. Nothing in the dialogue or the character’s actions hints at physical or emotional attraction, and yet the narrator tells me over and over how very hot the vampire is, and therefore, that overcomes their absolutely boorish behavior. Aaprently female heroines are so lonely that the first guy to look at them is worth jumping, even if the look they’re getting is a scowl of contempt. This kind of “attraction” makes Josie look so desperate for a approval that even when both guys are treating her like crap, she sticks around. Hey, at least it’s attention, right. Bleh, this is not a good quality when combined with her other bad traits.
The story moves to a big conflict for the final chapters, and when the bad guy steps out to reveal his plans, I wanted to weep with baby Jesus. The plan is poorly thought out, and the reasons that the bad guy chose Josie make no sense.
So, this leaves me in a bit of a pickle. Here we have a story with solid writing, many charming moments of wit, and with vampires who are a combination of familiar and new aspects that make the world building intensely interesting. But Josie’s method of world building is asking hick questions that aren’t even appropriate as fifth date material, much less the first. If Josie and I were on a date, I would expect her to say “So...you used to have a dick, huh?” That’s exactly how tacky she is in broaching vampire topics. And while the world Josie lives in is fascinating, once we get to that first set of dates, Josie reveals why she’s still single as she nears her thirties. She’s a goober who likes the taste of her own shoes. She has to, because she keeps opening wide to shove both shoes inside.
The vampires have an interesting background, and this is a world where vampires are out in society, something you don’t see often. It’s a unique enough view that if you can overlook Josie being a hick, the book isn’t bad. But even being a hick myself, I was frequently face palming at how tacky she was. Think of this as a brief road trip with someone you sometimes wish you could sex up, only to wish you could drown her voice out with the radio a few minutes later.
I’m going to give The Vampire Relationship Guide Volume 1: Meeting and Mating 3 stars and recommend it to fans of vampire humor and urban fantasy series like the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries. And being charitable, Josie didn’t rub me the wrong way nearly as badly as Sookie, or as Wendy from Switched. I was able to make it through Josie’s book, while I dropped Switched and Dead Until Dark early on. So call that a tepid endorsement of Josie as being the least cloying of the three.
(reviewed the day of purchase)