06 September, 2016

The Vampire's Mail Order Bride by Kristen Painter #review

Pages -  372 pages
Publisher -  Sugar Skull Books
Publication Date -  June 1, 2015
Link -  Amazon
Genre -  Paranormal Romance
Sexual Content -  Mild
Language -  Mild


Welcome to Nocturne Falls, the town that celebrates Halloween 365 days a year.

The tourists think it's all a show: the vampires, the werewolves, the witches, the occasional gargoyle flying through the sky. But the supernaturals populating the town know better.

Living in Nocturne Falls means being yourself. Fangs, fur, and all.

After seeing her maybe-mobster boss murder a guy, Delaney James assumes a new identity and pretends to be a mail order bride. She finds her groom-to-be living in a town that celebrates Halloween every day. Weird. But not as weird as what she doesn’t know. Her groom-to-be is a 400-year-old vampire.

Hugh Ellingham has only agreed to the arranged set up to make his overbearing grandmother happy. In thirty days, whatever bridezilla shows up at his door will be escorted right back out. His past means love is no longer an option. Not if the woman’s going to have a future. Except he never counted on Delaney and falling in love for real.

Too bad both of them are keeping some mighty big secrets...


It was written rather well -- I'll give it that.

And, the story line, though played out, was still kind of interesting and why I read to the end.

Hugh read well and was an entirely believable 'fictional' character, but Delaney James, no.

Explains my 3 stars.

Now, here's where things went wrong for me.

The toughest part about trying to read this story was the constant reminder that it was written by a middle-aged soccer mom who wanted to infuse herself into Delaney's character.

Cliché overload had me cringing my way through this story and also had me setting it aside more times than I should.

A bit like this...

No, actually, it was a lot like having to sit through this class or watch the video.

It begs the question: what was she thinking?


And, granted, we aren't privileged to know Delaney's actual age (can we think of a new name, please? This one is getting real old real fast), but a lot of readers remarked that this reads like a NA or even a YA romance.

Do young adults talk the way Delaney does in this story?

both excerpts from the Look Inside at Amazon

Cringe-worthy discomfort to have to read throughout a novel.

Are teenagers and college students even knowledgeable of antiquated speech, much less antiquated phrases more in line with a grandma?

Not to mention her overly expert memorization of 'baking' facts.

Even if they do hear their granny talk that way, would a YA or NA want to repeat those same words/phrases?

I'll bet not one of the students in the above video appreciated their teacher's introduction to her class, and even as old as I am, I do not appreciate being forced to make my mind think one thing while it is being told another.

I tried to wrap my head around the 'concept' but couldn't get past the visual of a middle-aged woman just shy of becoming a grandmom sneaking into a vampire's castle somewhere in the south and falling in love with him.



As for its being a Mail-Order Bride story, the answer is no.

She's a fake on the run from a supposedly mob boss 'boss' and ditches him inside a nondescript office building where she steals a file, reads the information, and decides to run off to this southern town to lay low for a while -- posing as the possible bride whose identity she's stolen.

This is where the plot holes enter the picture.

The people who work at the New York omiai office must not be good at their jobs to let something this confidential and inexcusable go unnoticed -- and for such a long time.

How is it that a vampire isn't capable of 'sniffing out' a human at any point in any encounter?

Let me rephrase that: how was it possible for Hugh to immediately notice and usually disdain contact with humans OTHER THAN Delaney?

Why wasn't the uppity Maine coon more clever and sensed something odd long before Delaney had? Very juvenile name for a cat, btw (but no surprise, either).

Is it really possible for two complete strangers to just meet, shack up w/out insecurities, and fall in love w/in days and hardly any time to get to know one another better?

They had sex within days of meeting one another.

The author pointed out in the very beginning that Delaney wasn't interested in or looking for love, much less marriage, so why was it vital that the two fall in love right away?


Delaney didn't offer much to a man who swore off love and relationships for close to 400 years, yet Hugh liked her because she was 'snarky' -- m-hmm.

Disjointed and choppy flow, bad (inappropriate) word/phrase choices, and having the leads find all the puzzle pieces too quickly numerous times made for a predictable and uneventful read.

I'm not interested in anything else by the author because I'm confident they will all read the same way as The Vampire's Mail Order Bride.

There's only so much cringe I can tolerate, and having to do it on a nightly basis makes for a restless sleep.

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