Reviewed by Tidal
TITLE: Art Theft 101
AUTHOR: Edward Kendrick
PUBLISHER: JMS Books LLC
LENGTH: 159 pages
Vampire Philip Archer and his team of successful art thieves — black panther shifter Duff, ghost Rob, and Duff’s human girlfriend Liddy — are asked by the handsome Ian Croft, a potential client, to break with tradition and rescue a kidnapped child. When the caper turns out rather differently than expected, Philip is bitterly reminded why he has remained single for so long. Yet, surrounded as he is by loving friends, he is not desperate. This is why, when he meets the newly-made vampire Ephram, he suppresses his attraction and focuses on being a mentor to the Fledgling.
Ephram was turned by Virgil Ionescu, an ancient vampire known for casting off his Children before they are ready. Living off the streets, Ephram’s future is precarious until he meets Philip. Ephram is immediately attracted to Philip and only too happy to be taken under his wing and taught the skills of surviving in modern New Orleans.
But Philip keeps secrets. Ephram can sense it, but he can’t penetrate the thousand-year-old Philip’s reserve. What will Ephram do when he discovers the big secret his new group of friends are keeping from him? Will his love for Philip trump all, or will he betray them? And, to complicate matters, Ionescu arrives unexpectedly in town, coming to check on his Child.
Phillip is a vampire and he owns a beautiful art gallery in the French quarter of New Orleans. Phillip leads a team of art thieves comprised of Rob a ghost, Duff a shifter and Liddy a human. The story starts with adventure and does not stop. The characters have all been friends long enough that they can be honest with each other yet still have enough autonomy that they have room for secrets and privacy.
Phillip is not afraid to take risks in his professional life but the last time he took one in his personal life he was hurt very badly and he is not ready to be vulnerable yet. He has a high code that he lives by in his work and his private life; both seem to have collided when old vampire Ionescu who seems to live by no code or discretion leaves his newly turned vampire Ephram to fend for himself.
Ephram’s lack of understanding how things work leave everyone open for exposure and danger and he falls into Phillips lap. The relationship between both Vampires’ starts slow and builds. I like that it is not forced and rushed. The storytelling in the book is great and we see the characters interact through several different situations allowing us to see them interact in many different levels and get to know them in a multi-dimensional way.
I like that the characters are not predictable or old rehashed wounded misunderstood heroes looking for love or redemption. The sex scenes are hot and it has a natural build up and does not seem to be tossed in as an afterthought. The characters interact well with each other and the book answers some questions that we wonder about as well as leaving us wanting to know more by the end of the book. It is the perfect size and I liked the ending.
Art Theft 101 is worth your time and money because it an exciting read that is well told and leaves you feeling satisfied and wanting more.