Review: Kiss of Pride by Sandra Hill

Tuesday, April 24

Title:  Kiss of Pride*
Author: Sandra Hill
Series: Deadly Angels #1
Genre:  Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Avon Romance
Format: Paperback, & E-book
Date/Year:  April 24, 2012
Reviewed by: Andrea

*This book was provided to the reviewer by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Summary from the publisher:


Is he really a Viking with a vampire’s bit? An angel with the body of a thunder god? A lone wolf with love on his mind? Alexandra Kelly, his prey, thinks Vikar Sigurdsson is either flat-out crazy or he’s trying to maneuver her into his bed--which is hardly where a professional reporter should conduct an interview, tempting as that prospect might be.


Until Vikar does something a teensy bit unexpected, and Alex begins to wonder whether her mystery man could really be everything he says he is: a Viking Vampire Angel on a thousand-year-long mission with his pack of sinful brothers—and a man who’s finally found the woman of his dreams. By then, Vikar is already wrapping his chiseled arms around Alex’s body...and sinking his wicked fangs right into her neck. If this is sin, why does it feel so good?

My Musings:

The last few years have been tough for Alex.  Two years ago her husband and daughter were murdered.  Since then she has been living one day at a time waiting for the day the murderers are brought to justice.  Luckily her boss is also a close friend and, for the most part, he has been taking it easy on her.  One day he has had enough of her depression and tells her she needs to start living again.  He has the perfect assignment to help with that.  She is to go to Transylvania, Pennsylvania and interview a “vampire” that is renovating a hotel.

Vikar is actually a viking vampire angel, AKA vangel.   He is exactly what I expect in a 1000 year old Viking, which is both domineering and condescending.  Those qualities make it all the better when he is brought to his knees by Alex. 

This is my extremely simplified explanation of Vikar’s world: 

Lucifer had his army of vampires, Lucipires, and Michael the Archangel decided he needed his own army of vampires, hence the birth of the vangels.  The lucipires tempt sinners in order to get more souls in hell and the vangels try to save those souls.

Before I get into my thoughts on the book I have to confess something, I avoid Christian themed books.  They generally require belief and at least general knowledge in a base theology which I don’t subscribe to.  That makes them difficult for me to enjoy.  I have read a lot of fallen angel types of books and this has never been an issue for me until this one.  I had no idea what I was getting into when I picked up this book.  All the religion talk was a turn off for me and something I struggled with throughout the story.

The book begins with a prologue which explains the birth of the lucipires and vangels in detail.  It’s dry reading and pretty religious.  I made it to page 12 and was seriously considering giving up on it.  I pushed on, despite my initial reaction, and I’m glad I kept reading.  Once I reached the present day story and got to know the world in which Vikar lived, I was hooked. 

The romance between Alex and Vikar was believable and entertaining.  Alex is a non-believer and Vikar is a vangel so that created a few issues.  Vikar gets punished when he commits sins, no cursing or premarital sex for vangels.  Watching Alex and Vikar walk the fine line of not having actual sex and limiting themselves to near-sex was entertaining and creative.  They also have inner dialogues with themselves which were funny.  It took a while for me to get the author’s humor, it’s quirky and a little corny but I enjoyed it. 

I was surprised at how interested I was in the war between the lucipires and the vangels.  I liked that aspect of the book just as much as the romance.  I loved the interactions between Vikar and his brothers as well as the vangels working under them.  It had a frat house vibe with everyone picking one each other and pulling pranks. My only complaint about the storyline is that it got a bit monotonous in the end due to the romance stalling out and the battles taking over.  I can overlook that though because the rest of the story was so good.

This wasn’t an easy book for me rate.  I absolutely loved the characters, the romance and the war but the constant talk about sins and religion was irritating and at times it came across as preachy.  It’s difficult for me to reconcile the two in order to come up with an overall rating for the book.  Hill has an interesting take on a common paranormal theme.  If you like Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed series or Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark Hunter series you might like this one, give it a try.  I figure if I could like it despite my aversion to the religion, then most readers who enjoy this genre will probably love it.


Overall:  3.25 stars
Sensuality level:  3

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lorimeehan April 24, 2012 at 7:56 AM  

I love Sandra Hills books. Her humor is corny but she is so funny. I'm also nit into inspirational books but I'll probly give this one a shot. Thanks for the honesty of your review.

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