Title: The Blood and the Vow Order of Lazarus, book 1
Author: Saranna DeWylde
Published by: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Published Date: January 3, 2013
Narrated by: Hollie Jackson
Length: 10 hours and 26 minutes
Audiobook purchase link: The Blood and the Vow
With his dying breath, Samara Frank’s father bids her to find the Templar Krestien de Godfrey. Only he can protect her and the ancient Sumerian relic they unearthed in a Mayan burial chamber in Belize. It’s a piece of the mythical Adama Tablet and a prehistoric alien god with a cult following called the Covenites will use everything in their power to get the tablet – from the Ark of the Covenant and the Spear of Longinus to Samara’s own damaged sister, Sierra.
Krestien de Godfrey is a man haunted, the bastard son of Godfrey de Bouillon, Duke of Lorraine and Defender of the Sepulcher, he was born only to continue The Blood – an ancient line of divine kingship that goes back to Christ and Cain. A Saracen blade took his left eye and marred his face, but ambrosia from the Grail gave him everlasting life and he’s lived in service to his Order. He can never atone for all he’s done, but Krestien will settle for the quiet peace of eternal sleep after he secures the Adama Tablet. Samara is a woman of The Blood, the only thing for which this Templar may break his vow of chastity, but she’s the first to look on Krestien’s scarred face with desire. She was raised on tales of his greatness and finds him a hero in the flesh, all the more real for his demons. The Adama Tablet could make her career as an archeologist, but after she sees his suffering, Samara is determined to help Krestien find the peace he seeks.
The call of Blood to Blood is irresistible, but will it be enough to light a candle in the darkness and save them both?
©2011, 2012, 2013 Saranna DeWylde (P)2014 Saranna DeWylde
My Thoughts: This is a story which brought to mind Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code. It is a fascinating blend of mystery, paranormal, historical figures, biblical myths and science fiction. It had me completely enthralled.
I initially picked up this audiobook because of the narrator. She does a terrific job bringing to life every aspect of a good story. I cannot say enough about her ability to ‘act’ the part, as she did impeccably in this story. Her mellow voice is very flexible and portrays emotion with perfection. In this story she used a range of nuances in dialogue: sass, humor, laughter, fear, anger, and erotic inflection . A wonderful performance, indeed.
Krestien de Godfrey is a good man full of honor, and has vowed to uphold the code of the Knights Templar. He is only what his order made him. He drank from the Grail, giving him eternal life. But he is tired. Tired of the wars he has battled in, and tired of life. The horrors of all that killing haunts him. After one thousand years of life, he now requests Lazarus to put him to rest. Lazarus has asked him to do more thing for him, for the Knights Templar. He is to protect Samara, a woman of the Blood.
Samara, an archeologist as is her father, hadn’t known she was a woman of the Blood. She is very intelligent, a genius, and deep thinker. She feels one can die within, even though physically alive, when the person stops learning. She loves her work as an archeologist and aches to discover the past, but finds more than she bargains.
Her life changes when she meets Kristien. How? It becomes dangerous. Is she be up to the task? Were her skills enough to stay alive? Is Krestien de Godfrey’s protection enough? Would he even be willing to protect her since he’s eager to ‘rest’?
When Krestien tries to locate Samara, he finds two women fighting. One is a Covenite, his enemy, the other is Samara. Samara is mortally wounded. She’s going to die if he doesn’t save her with his special life-saving powers given to men of the Order of Lazarus. He saves her. He has little choice. Just seeing her, he is drawn to her, a woman of the Blood. Samara was much like a siren.
Krestien’s great flaw is his willingness not to fight for something he doesn’t feel he deserves. He belittles himself so much, hope can’t be born to change his life.
I particularly like Sierra, the Covenite, who attacks Samara. There are many layers to who she is. Her past is complicated, manipulated by twisted minds.
Subplots are interesting and they set up future books in the series. Such famous figures in history are interesting to be part of this story – Sir Galahad, Achilles and Joan of Arc. Ms. DeWylde weaves a mystery, mixed with fantasy and the paranormal creating a fantastic fast-paced world.
About the Author: Saranna De Wylde has always been fascinated by things better left in the dark. She wrote her first story after watching The Exorcist at a slumber party. Since then, she’s published horror, romance and narrative nonfiction. Like all writers, Saranna has held a variety of jobs, from operations supervisor for an airline, to an assistant for a call girl, to a corrections officer. But like Hemingway said, “Once writing has become your major vice and greatest pleasure, only death can stop it.” So she traded in her cuffs for a full-time keyboard. She loves to hear from her readers. Keep up with releases, events and access to special content by signing up the Saranna DeWylde newsletter here: https://www.facebook.com/sarannadewylde/app_100265896690345
About the Narrator: Hollie Jackson, H. R. Jackson Taking her own love of storytelling, not just for her own work, but that of others, Hollie (aka Narratrix) found her true calling in the vocal booth. With a range that goes from the innocent to the risqué, across all genres, Hollie’s voice brings characters of all types to vibrant, compelling life, letting you sit back and allow the words to wrap around you.
She grew up getting lost in the world of poetry and prose, and truly enjoys sharing that with others through spoken word. Stories are, after all, meant to be spread by any means necessary, right? Everyone has a story to tell…and Hollie loves to bring those stories to life, one word at a time.
You can find her online at http://www.hrjackson.com, on Twitter @hrjacksontnc, and on facebook at /authorhrjackson