Temptation Calls by Caridad Pineiro
(Silh. Int. Mom. #1390 $4.99, PG) ISBN 0-373-27460-2
Temptation Calls is the third book in “The Calling” series (following Danger Calls and Darkness Falls. In this story, Caridad Pineiro focuses on the issue of domestic abuse utilizing the structure of a novel about vampires.

In fact, Temptation Calls could be a primer for those who are reading a story featuring vampires for the first time. In detail it discuses how they come to be and graphically describes the several ways a normal or undeadperson can be changed into a vampire.

She also describes their daily lives, their vulnerability to sunlight, their inhuman speed and apparent mastery of levitating their bodies through the air, their feeding habits, socialization skills and their anxiety in dealing with emotions.

Samantha Turner, born in the 1800s, was an abused wife who lost her unborn child as a result of injuries inflicted by a raging husband. When he later died, she found work in another household and one night while running an errand Samantha was accosted, raped and turned by a vampire into one. Since then, she has spent her life providing what ever she can for abused children.

Now Samantha is running a shelter and one night she manages to save three children from a drive-by shooting. Her inhuman speed permits her to do so, but she is shot. The wound disappears almost immediately, which drains her energy. Those she couldn’t save draw the investigative powers of NYPD detective Peter Daly. His baggage is a deceitful ex-wife, but nonetheless the mutual attraction begins to grow. Needless to say, Samantha is unwilling to disclose she is a vampire.

The plot expands as vampire friends of Samantha begin to disappear. The missing persons or vampires become the focus of an investigation, and some of the police force has ties to the vampire world. The suspense part of the story apparently had its origins in a prior novel and it comes to a resolution here. It is sufficiently well described to stand alone.

Pineiro does a good job with her characters and their evolvement. The scenes are well set and character descriptions are vivid, with dialogue that carries the plot forward.

Newcomers to vampire novels with find Temptation Calls a most informative read. Aficionados of the vampire genre will be interested in reading her earlier vampire stories.

--Thea Davis

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