Kiss of Crimson is the second in Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed series and is an improvement over the first for the simple reason that the hero; Dante is a lot more likeable that Lucan Thorne was in Kiss of Midnight. Another reason might be because all first novels have to also incorporate world building, introducing a cast of characters and sorting out who the good guys and bad guys are whereas obviously Kiss of Crimson doesn’t have that to deal with.
Dante is relatively young as vampires go and whilst all vampires must fight against the bloodlust that would turn them into rogues, his curse seems to be a vision of his own death. This is something that he inherited from his human mother who foretold her own death and that of his father.
As can be imagined this has given Dante a unique perspective on life in that he actively avoids commitment. After all, how could he live with someone when he knows how he will die? Fortunately for him, life has other plans for him and puts him in Tess Culver’s veterinarian clinic.
Like Lucan’s mate; Gabrielle was in the preceding book, Tess is special to vampires in that she is one of the few human females that can procreate with their species and as such she is a ‘breedmate’ with a teardrop over a crescent moon birthmark.
Also like Gabrielle, Tess is completely unaware of this and the vampire world until Dante arrives, bleeding all over the floor of her clinic. All she does know is that she is different to anyone else that she knows but like Dante has her own curse that has kept her from settling in one place for too long.
Tess is a great character and has already been through her own trials of life despite only being in her mid-twenties. It might be argued that she may have one TSTL (too stupid to live) moment but honestly, when taken to a compound full of vampires after being brutally attacked by rogues and then being confronted by what appears to be another rogue, who wouldn’t make a run for freedom and sunlight?
Whilst that relationship story is going on, there is also another plot with the introduction of Agent Sterling Chase of the Boston vampire darkhaven (where the general populace of vampires live) who has been tasked with working with the breed warriors in eliminating a new drug that can turn normal vampires into rogues. But it’s not long before this soon interweaves with Tess and Dante’s story.
And the use of Harvard? Brilliant.
One word of warning; the only thing that I didn’t particularly like is that being a friend of a breedmate appears to be unhealthy. Not spoiling anything, just saying.
In summary, an improvement over Kiss of Midnight so if you liked that and I did then you will certainly enjoy this with an interesting set up for Midnight Awakening.