Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Stake-Out (Paranormal Detectives Book One) by Lily Luchesi

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This review was written by: B and C
Received: ARC from the Author
Publication Date of Book: May 2015
Pages: 128
Stars: 4.25/5

You think anything not human is an enemy.  You kill first and ask questions never.  Not every paranormal creature is evil...
-Stake-Out

Detective First Grade Daniel Mancini was supposed to be following a possible homicide suspect, but what he found instead was a far cry from the supposed human killer.  Alarmingly, he discovered a bloodthirsty, murdering vampire with no qualms when it came to slaughtering the human population.  Daniel has no idea who to tell about this sudden and unnerving development, but when he finally does describe what he witnessed, Daniel is forced into early retirement.  Now this formerly skilled detective is sitting at home, depressed from being let go after failing his psychological evaluation.  No one can possibly understand what he has been through or even comprehend that he is telling the truth . . . until two years later.

One evening, the beautiful Detective Angelica Cross knocks on Daniel's door and asks him the unthinkable: to join the Paranormal Investigations Department, a secret branch of the FBI.  She believes without hesitation that Daniel really did see a vampire, a supposedly fictional creature of the night that should only exist in legends and works of fiction.  Angelica even knows who the vampire was.  The creature that ruined Daniel's career was none other than the 200 year old Vincent, a rogue and viciously bloodthirsty vamp.  Daniel's not sure if he wants to delve into this new world where make-believe creatures actually exist, but he's sure as heck not going to let an immoral thing strike an innocent victim again, especially if that thing ruined his career.

Together, Angelica and Daniel must work as a team to take down one of the maddest, blood-crazed vamps to roam the streets.  However, the two have to battle with their differences, prejudices, and feelings towards their work and each other.  It doesn't help either that one of them has secrets harbored and festering in the dark.  Daniel can't fathom the idea of supernatural creatures being anything other than evil, but Angelica understands that only certain ones are corrupt and have fallen into immoral practices.  However, despite their obvious differences, the growing attraction between the two partners can only mean trouble.  On top of that, Daniel is beginning to have sudden, unexplainable visions from the past.  What do these mean?  Can Daniel and Angelica really put a stop to Vincent?  Are the two falling in love?  Are all supernatural creatures vile things?  Who is the enemy here?  Read Stake-Out to uncover the answers if you dare!

"That's the difference between you and I -- you see life as a game to win, no matter the cost. I see it as a precious gift to cherish."
        -Angelica

Our Thoughts:
Lily Luchesi has created a story full of paranormal thrills, including vampires, werewolves, witches, hunters, supernatural powers, danger, heartbreak, excitement, and a devastating love story!  What more can a girl ask for?  All of our favorite things were combined into one story.  From page one, the novel held our attention, and our breath caught as we read the last page.  It can easily be agreed upon that vampire lore has been heavily explored these past several years, but we believe that Stake-Out holds its own.  The characters were kick-butt and intriguing, creating both a strong atmosphere and reading experience.

Angelica added a depth to the story and proudly represented females everywhere.  C and I have an extremely hard time finding female characters that we actually enjoy reading about.  Too many of them are whiny, unpleasant, indecisive, passive, or are just blind followers.  Others have low self-esteem or retain this complex where they think they need a man to rescue them instead of saving themselves.  Now, we're not saying that these are terrible qualities or characteristics that lesson someone's worth; it's just that they are often qualities that are exploited or implemented so frequently that a girl seems weak.   Angelica was just the opposite, though.  She a true breath of fresh air.  Angelica Cross can easily be described as headstrong and independent.  However, she also doesn't fit in among humans or supernatural creatures extremely well, a fact that she doesn't let bring her down.

There were quite a few elements that made Stake-Out unique for us.  For one, there were several lovely references to the fantastic show Supernatural.  (Cue the fangirling!)  There were also quotes/lyrics at the beginning of each chapter.  This made for a distinctive reading experience, smoothly setting the mood and tone for the pages it was representing.  The flashbacks were also a favorite of ours.  SPOILER The memories created an addicting atmosphere that we rapidly ate up.  We also loved the early interactions between Angelica and Daniel.  The entire idea of the male protagonist being reincarnated was brilliant, creating a catastrophic love story with implications during present day.  END OF SPOILER  Yes, it was easy for us to guess Angelica's secret before it was revealed, but this surprisingly didn't ruin the story for us in any way.

If you're looking for a quick, satisfying paranormal read, Stake-Out is the perfect book for you! There were great characters, backstories, and romance.  Lily Luchesi has won two fans today, and we eagerly anticipate the sequel!



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