Welcome to Hell.Yes, Breton, Virginia is Hell on Earth where all the criminals and murderers are placed to face their demise at the hands of Vampyres: the judges of morally right and wrong.I have to say after having just finished this novel, I found myself speeding through the rest of the pages to read the Epilogue - and I need
to know what happens next.
This was a delightful take on the Vampire genre. And as a good fan of Vampires, I have to say, Ronald Andrés Moore's Vampyres are a fresh take on, what I feel, Vampires have always been at their core: Creations for a purpose beyond themselves. Whether it be to take blood for the sake of surviving, or, in this case, existing to dish out justice to those deserving of it (and sometimes not).
Which leads me to the colorful cast of characters. Here we have a vast (and I mean vast) collection of characters that fill this claustrophobia-inducing novel with their differences. Even the town itself is a character, a low hanging cloud of amnesia hovering just above its mostly derelict buildings.
I don't want to give too much away, so I won't, but our heroes vary greatly from an amnesiac Vampyre named Michael, to a cast of (IMO) fiery orphans who have known nothing but their existence in the stifling town, to a renowned Vampyre Hunter with numerous tricks up his sleeve, an assassin, and two English Gentlemen, not to mention the various women that take up the fight to the soul suckers.
At its core NOCTURN is a tale. Simply put. A riveting tale of that morally gray area we humans always seem to dwell within. It asks the question, "What would happen if we got rid of our criminals and placed them within a town away from the good?" And it answers that question with a roaring romp through darkness, blood, and gore. Those that created this town are the wrong ones, but we can hardly spare a feeling for them because we're so swept up in the varying characters's dilemmas as they come to terms (slowly) with the fact this town that always exists in one year, is not all it appears to be. (But we feel rightly justified when everyone wakes up and takes the fight to those in charge.)
The baddies in NOCTURN are a slew of Vampyres, many of which, I'll be honest, I can't name right now, but I do remember Isaac, Rurk, and of course, Ruthven, a brilliantly crafted Vampyre that has lived far too long - so long he's let his power corrupt him to the point he's oblivious to any notion of humility - it's not for him, you see.
There's so much I can say about this novel, from it's origin of the Vampyres (they're Nephilim), to the different fantastic creatures that all descend from mothers of ancient (dark) lore, to the awesome characters, and the world that existed in this one town.
Mr. Moore has created a riveting tale that I believe any fan of Vampires (they're vicious, just like I like 'em), historical fiction, claustrophobic horror, suave Van-Helsing-type Vampyre Hunters, and the little orphan inside us all will enjoy greatly.
I greatly await the next installment in this series. Mr. Moore has crafted the Vampire story I didn't know I wanted to read. But I do now, and that's all that matters.
Keep your bite, Mr. Moore.
You're a blessing to the Vampire genre.