Ghosts of Memories by Barb Hendee

Ghosts of Memories: A Vampire Memories Novel
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Well, that was a surprise… I’ve been reading and enjoying the Vampire Memories series for a while now, and I wasn’t aware that this would be the final volume.  I’m definitely sorry to see it end.  Ghosts of Memories wraps up the conflict among the world’s few remaining vampires.

(Description nicked from B&N.com.)

“With her vampire protector Philip Branté and their human companion Wade Sheffield, a former police psychologist, Eleisha Clevon searches the world for isolated vampires—and offers them sanctuary. She wants to provide a home where she can teach them to follow the Four Laws that will protect them and their kind.

But not all vampires want to live by anyone’s rules but their own. Christian Lefevre has been posing as a psychic, catering to the upper crust of Seattle society by making contact with their dead loved ones—and leaving his clients faint and weak after each encounter. Now Eleisha must confront the most deadly predator she has ever faced—or lose everything she has fought to protect…”

One of the interesting things about this series is that it features a vampire—Eleisha—who possesses her own power but is often at the mercy of other vampires.  It’s quite a change from the all-powerful, miraculously-endowed characters of other novels.  Of course, all of the vampires in this series have a similar degree of power and vulnerability, which isn’t something you see too often.  I can’t say that it lends the vampires humanity, but it keeps them from being so far beyond our experience as to make them remote.

The newest vampire, Christian, fits this mold.  He needs to have someone dependant on him in order to feel in control of his life.  It’s this predilection that leads this story to its featured conflict.  There’s also the usual backstory of where this vampire came from, how he was sired, and his connection to Julian, the rogue vampire hunting down all elders of his kind.  I do enjoy the glimpses that we get of these characters, whether or not they’re sticking around as part of the tale or not.

As you know if you’ve read this series, Julian has been a murderous force throughout all the books.  Since this is the final novel, you can expect resolution of his pursuit of Eleisha and her friends.  The only thing is that Christian is heavily involved in that resolution.  Given that he’s a newcomer to the story, and Eleisha and most of her group have been around since the beginning, I wish that the long-running characters had been the driving force behind Julian’s final downfall.

Still, there are plenty of opportunities for mayhem in this book.  Most of the characters get a chance to shine one last time before the story ends, including a couple “switching sides” during this last confrontation with Julian.  I’m sorry that I won’t be reading any more about these characters, but I can certainly say that I enjoyed every one of this series’s novels.  Ghosts of Memories is a fitting end to a series that may not have the punch of more popular vampire stories, but instead has an appeal all its own.

Also by this author: In Memories We Fear, Memories of Envy, The Mist-Torn Witches

This review appeared on Owlcat Mountain on October 31, 2012.

Series: Vampire Memories
ISBN: 9780451464842
Publisher: Roc
Page Count: 336
Publication Date: October 2, 2012
Acquired: Provided by the publisher as an e-ARC through NetGalley
Author Website