I am a member of the Goodreads reading/writing site. We will often write reviews of each other’s Indie books, of which there are many excellent ones. I really enjoyed one, entitled Sebastian: The Life of Sebastian and Hanna Greene, and its sequel, Sebastian Two: Dark Times Arising, both written by Elizabeth Johnson. They are wonderful stories about an indelible vampire romance. My reviews of them follow.
Sebastian: The Life of Sebastian and Hanna Greene
Can you imagine, on your eighteenth birthday, stumbling over your father’s lifeless body in a lonely alley, a father with whom you had had a wretched relationship, no small part of that due to his drunkenness? Then, mere moments later, a woman grabs you and sinks her teeth into your neck—with the predictable result–and that woman turns out to be your mother, who you thought had died ten years prior?? It gets worse–the mother, who teaches you to live among humans without murdering them, gets killed by a pack of humans seeking revenge, as they stake her through her heart and burn her. Seeking revenge yourself, you go on a murderous rampage—-but one night you kill a woman carrying a couple of bags–and right after the murder you hear from one of the bags, a baby’s cry—and you discover a baby girl, only days old with big beautiful blue eyes. You name her Hanna, after your mother.
I just completed Sebastian: The Life of Sebastian and Hanna Greene. This was actually the first work I have read in this genre. I’ve never read Anne Rice, nor have I been a devotee of the many vampire movies which engulf us now—so I confess to having a little resistance to this novel going in. However, that resistance was quickly swept away as I embarked on this absolutely masterful tale about Sebastian and Hanna. It is a work that takes place in England, New York, South America, Italy, and France, and contains humans, vampires, wolves, and dogs. It beautifully describes the passions, the tenderness, and the love between Sebastian and Hanna—-but also the secrets and the deceits. I felt there was a constant struggle going on within Sebastian—a struggle between his head (what he should do) and his heart (what his gut compels him to do), and, due to his life and circumstances, that heart can turn black. Danger lurks at every turn and this book contains wonderfully frightening and hideous villains. The author takes us on this journey with a straightforward writing style, without pretence, which perfectly matches the story being told. I strongly recommend this book to all readers, even those like myself who would not normally gravitate to a book in this genre. Fortunately for us, I believe we have a sequel coming.
Sebastian Two: Dark Times Arising
I just completed Sebastian Two: Dark Times Arising, the second in a series of books about a bizarre vampire world by author Elizabeth Johnson. I will reiterate what I said in my review of the first book, which is that this is hardly my favorite genre of book, in fact far from it. However, Ms. Johnson weaves such an incredible tale, with such great characterizations, that I could not put it down.
The book starts where the first book ended, with Hanna Greene, upon learning that Sebastian had earlier killed her birth mother (or did he?), decides she must leave the very charismatic hero, who is her passionate boyfriend/lover. This sets in motion a chain of events involving many of the characters from the first book—of course, Sebastian and Hanna, the omniscient head vampire Mason Benedict, and the two separate sets of three malevolent vampire brothers.
New characters are either brought into the story or given greater emphasis. They include Hanna’s birth mother Hope Lane, the powerful Hilda Denali, the ultra-deceitful witch Ruth, and the deceased Isobel’s beautiful mother, Margret. The action in this book spreads further afield to Mexico, Nigeria, Pacific islands, and Japan.
I don’t want to give away any of the story but I will add there is one great kick-ass vampire battle near the end of the book you won’t want to miss. And of course, it ends unresolved, which means we need to see the next book! I strongly recommend this book, even to non-vampire fans, as I did the first one entitled Sebastian: The Secret Life of Sebastian and Hanna Greene. You won’t be disappointed.