October Releases

Monday, June 18, 2012

Indie Book Review: The Newfoundland Vampire (#1) by Charles O'Keefe

Author: Charles O'Keefe
Format: ePub
Release Date: April 12, 2012
Pages: 224
Publisher: Penumbra Publishing
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy

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Synopsis from Goodreads

Like every other geek alive, Newfoundland native Joseph O’Reily secretly wants to be a superhero. At thirteen he fantasized about being a vampire, and ten years later he’s still fantasizing – but mostly about a beautiful redheaded woman who has eyes only for him. The one thing different about Joseph’s adult fantasy is that, amazingly, it comes true one night when he goes to a local university pub. Cassandra Snow, literally the woman of his dreams, invites him to her place for an evening of personal pleasure. Of course he’s not going to say no. But when strange things start happening afterward, Joseph quickly learns that not all dreams should come true.

Cassandra has plans for him – forever. And those plans don’t include daytime activities. An animal lover and recent vegetarian, Joseph wrestles with all the weird changes he’s experiencing after his encounter with Cassandra. Eternal youth and amazing power come at a price that is perhaps higher than he can afford. The constant hunger for blood and the secrets Cassandra harbors test his resolve and his mental and physical limits. And then there’s the fact that a two-hundred-year-old vampire is after his head – literally.

Joseph’s night vision improves dramatically, giving him a glimpse of the darker side of the world and the terrible evil of vampires who walk among humans. As he tries to balance his regular life with the new reality of his vampire existence, he is determined to hold onto his personal convictions and what he values most – his humanity.


    I was asked to review this book a couple of weeks ago by author Charles O'Keefe. I gladly obliged since the book sounded very interesting. I read it and it was better than I thought it would be. The Newfoundland Vampire was a blast to read. O'Keefe created such a unique take on the vampire world with a rare sort of character to play the lead, a nerd. And I enjoyed every second of it.

    I love our lead character Joseph. He was quite adorable. A true geek through and through. He meets the girl of his dreams (well she meets him because he has trouble approaching women) named Cassandra, but he has no idea she is a vampire until it is too late. Joseph however has a knack for the paranormal and as always wanted to be something greater. He is a vegetarian and cares a lot for his friends and his families. One of the greatest things about this book is following Joseph and how he is handling his unexpected transition. Some vampire books have someone become a vampire and they just accept that they are bloodsuckers or we don't really find out how they really feel about it. I love that O'Keefe wrote it the way he did. I love that Joseph questions himself and doesn't just fall into typical vampire behavior. I love that even as a vampire, he still hangs out with his friends (love the role-playing scene) and still talks to his parents and takes care of his cat. Joseph definitely isn't your typical kind of vampire.

    As for Cassandra and O'Keefe knows this, I have a sort of love-hate relationship with Cassandra. On one hand I do love her because she is a very strong woman who goes after what she wants. On the other hand and what Joesph contemplates a bit throughout the book, she manipulates Joesph to get what she wants. I do believe she truly does love him, but I know there is more to what she is letting on. But I guess I understand considering her backstory. Cassandra has fought tooth-and-nail to get to where she is. I won't be too hard on her for bending the rules a bit. But the questions Joseph asks at the end of the book still have me suspicious of her. But she is a great heroine.

    The story was great. Cassandra wants Joseph to help kill her estranged, psychotic husband John Snow (not going to let this ruin my image of Jon Snow from Game of Thrones). John doesn't care about anyone or anything but himself. The whole war he has going on with Cassandra is more over a bruised ego. I wish we got more of his story, but he is a great villain in this book. I just wanted to know a little more of his take on things. I love Cassandra teaching Joseph how to fight (he already knows a thing or two about swords and knows martial arts). And I love that he teaches Cassandra about how you don't have to drink from humans. This leads to some interesting advantages, but I won't spoil it. But I loved it.

    O'Keefe has also left us with plenty of things to ponder about for the next book which will be very fun. We get to know something about Count Dracula (and his stamp in history). We also meet the Countess who definitely has an agenda, but I am not sure what she is up too. Also we get to know some of John's friend Donald. Honestly I am not sure which of the two scare me more. There was also something Snow hinted at that I feel had more meaning than Joseph thought. I am so excited about what more is to come.

     This book surpassed my expectations. It was sexy and lots of fun for geeks and non-geeks alike. Joseph is a character you would love to have around and having Cassandra at your back is just as good. That woman knows her stuff and doesn't take crap from anyone. A very good read for those looking for a different take on the vampire lifestyle. 


This book belongs to the following challenges*
BCC's Speculative Romance Challenge 2012 


  1. Great review, thank you!

    Pat Morrison, Penumbra Publishing

  2. Thanks so much for the review Diana! =) I agree John could have had more development. Don't worry you'll see more of the Countess and Donald in book 2, thanks again, excellent review :-)


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