Dell, Dec, 2007, $6.99, 370 pp.
Vampires who find their Breedmate, recognizable by a certain mark somewhere on their body, can have children. Their bond is a lifelong commitment and the woman doesn’t age as long as her mate is still alive. The Breed are a peaceable society and most of them live in the Darkhavens, which are underground and surrounded by the best security systems in existence. The Rogues have given in to their blood lust and have no care for human life because their craving is too strong.
The Rogues and the minions (Renfields) are controlled by Merek, the brother of Lucan who is in charge of the Order. Its mission is to kill the rogues while its counterpoint the Enforcement Agency believes in rehabilitation and looks upon the order as barbarous.
Elise lost her husband in the war against the Rogues and her son to the Bloodlust that made him go Rogue. She lives to kill them and nobody interferes with her until Tegan, a powerful agent in the Order, discovers what she is doing. Centuries of staying apart from his brethren are gone when he realizes how courageous Elise is. Though he tries to stop her, she puts herself in the middle of a war zone and he ends up giving her his blood to strengthen her. He avoids thinking about his feelings for her as they both concentrate on figuring out what plan Merek is working on. He finds Elise is a valuable helper and as the danger mounts he finds he cannot hide his feelings from her and himself any longer.
Lara Adrian has created a whole vampire culture that is separate from humanity and makes it feel vulnerable. Her latest and most exciting work will appeal to fans of Laurell K. Hamilton as her vampires have heart and care about each other and the humans who they could easily dominate as the Rogues want to do. Both Elise and Tegan have suffered great losses so when love comes knocking on their door, she is eager to embrace it while he fears getting hurt again. Both protagonists are complex likeable characters who endear themselves to the reader.