Author: Martha J Allard
Publisher: Automatism Press
Rating: 4 stars
Buy Links: Amazon
Received from Author
Blurb: It’s 1983, Los Angeles, and Trace Dellon, lead singer, knows exactly what he wants: the white heat of the spotlight. When his band Black Light is offered a record deal, Trace grabs for it, eager to move up from their club gigs. He will do anything it takes to make it.
Asia Heyes, bass player, knows what he wants, too. It’s not the fame or the adoration of fans and groupies. It’s Trace. It’s always been Trace. Though it’s been unspoken between them, Trace’s other lovers and his audience push Asia aside.
With the contract, Albrecht Christian comes into their lives. He is a man with everything but what he needs to live: the energy that runs just under Trace’s skin. Unfortunately, even Trace isn’t enough, and Albrecht finds himself starving.
Rock and roll, like magic, requires both love and sacrifice.
Review: Black Light is going to hit the big time. Trace Dellon is going to make it happen. Asia Heyes isn’t so sure he wants his band to hit the big time, but he’s so in love with Trace he’ll follow him anywhere. Albrecht Christian has the money and connections to make Black Light hit the big time, and he’s fallen in love with Trace at first sight. Christian’s money and contacts make everything change. Many things stay the same, though. Asia is still deeply in love with Trace and Trace still needs the attention and adoration of everyone in the room. Asia doesn’t know how much Trace needs him in return.
There are major events in this book I don’t want to spoil. I will say I would not classify this book as a standard romance with a typical HEA ending. The book does end on a happy note with declarations of love, but I would categorize this book very much as literary fiction. When I say I would classify this book as literary fiction it’s not because of writing style. Events occur in this book that are very uncommon in the romance genre. I think this is a very worthy book and would heartily recommend it to people who read more than romance, but if you’re someone who simply prefers a book where two people meet, fall in love, and end up together I don’t think this book would be for you.
Technically, this is a paranormal book about people who feed on the energy of those around them through their skin. This book screamed to me it was about co-dependence, toxic relationships, and emotional manipulation. The parallels between Tommi and John’s relationship and Asia and Trace’s relationship were profound. In addition to the feeding on energy aspect of the vampire type characters, their partners could become addicted to being with them even though it slowly killed them. Draining them of life. Again a member of Black Light showed a real world analog to this with his heroin addiction. Weird was killing himself, but it felt too good to quit.
This book is written in present tense which I do not like. Usually, the most I can hope for is that I stop noticing it. I don’t feel it contributed anything here. Unfortunately, once I realized it’s a book set in the near past written in present tense it began to feel kitschy. Regardless of whether or not that was the intent, I rolled my eyes just a little.
This book allowed me to bear witness to the fact love can be ruinous. Escaping a bad relationship can be equally ruinous. Life and love are not easy, nor are they for the faint of heart.