Synopsis | Reviews | Excerpt
My kid sister shrugged, trying to act nonchalant. "Dad might not like it if you get vampire blood in his trunk."
I slammed the trunk shut. "He's used to it. Besides, the blood will disintegrate along with the rest of the body when sunlight hits it."
Barely eighteen-year-old heroine Valentine Shapiro got a raw deal in the parent lottery. Her father was part incubus demon, and her mother's never forgiven her for that.
Life after high school is tough enough without having to go 15 rounds with your inner demon. Thrown out of the house by her mother, Val puts one foot in front of the other and does the only thing that seems to make any sense--she takes aim at the town vampires. A stake a day, keeps the demon at bay. (But don't call her Buffy. That makes Lola, her demon, very cranky.)
Herdark side makes everyday life a roller coaster, butmeans she's perfect for her night job as a bounty hunter.SanAntonio'svampires are out ofcontrol, and it's up to Val, her faithful hellhound Fang, and her new partner, a handsome San Antonio police detective, togetthe deadly fangbangers off the city streets.
Soon enough she finds herself deep in the underbelly of the city, discovering the secrets of the Demon Underground and fighting to save those she loves. Whether they love her back or not.
"The character development is amazing… Parker's world
building is fantastic… easy to read and easy to fall in love with!" -- Heather Almendarez, NetGalley
"The world-building in this story is great. . .best magical sidekicks" -- Kate McMurry, McMurry and August
"…the series was an absolute joy to read!!" -- Rose Selcer, GoodReads
"…This is an amazing series…extremely imaginative and
unpredictable…extremely fast paced with lots of action…I cannot
recommend these books enough…I don't want this series to end." --
Suzanne Finnegan, Paranormal Book Fan
"I highly recommend this book to all urban fantasy lovers. I can't wait to read the next book." -- Jamie Skinner, NetGalley Review
"I would defiantly recommend this to anyone who loves Paranormal Romance, strong, butt-kicking girls with attitude, and a fun fast read with mystery." -- Trisha Wolf, YA Bound Blog
"I absolutely loved this series. It ranks up there with the Chicagoland Vampire Series for me. It is a YA book but for the older crowd... I give this series a 5/5." -- Do Not Disturb My Books blog
"Parker Blue opened up a whole new door in the "vampire vs. demon" debate making (for once) the demons the good guys and the vampires the bad (who would have thunk it.) AND she did all of this while skirting the line between YA and Adult paranormal. The plot (thankfully) moved along at a nice steady pace, dueling between action and suspense (the who done it) and to add icing to the cake she had a few (very artfully crafted) angst scenes thrown into the loop. " -- KindleObsessed
"5 Stars...The best thing about Bite Me, though, has to be its characters, due mostly to the portrayal of their humanity--yes, even in demons and vampires...My favorite character has to be Fang. With his ability to sniff out vampires, telepathy, snarky humor, and motorcycle goggles, he's the cherry on top of the Bite Me sundae." -- Teens Read Too Reviews
"Parker Blue captures a humorous and authentic young adult voice in Val and keeps readers turning pages. Parker's book would be a popular addition to public libraries teen/fantasy collections. I look forward to the next in the series." -- Grinnell College Libraries
"Parker Blue creates a new vamp book with a kick-butt smart and snarky attitude of Buffy in Val and an awesome side-kick dog who can talk. It's perfect for teens craving more vampire books or those who love dark paranormal tales. And who can resist the title?" -- YA Book Nerd Blog (YA Librarian)
"...a unique (from my reading experience), interesting, and enjoyable read. I'm definitely looking forward to reading the next Demon Underground book." -- eHarlequin Community Reviews
"Parker Blue has laid the foundation for an excellent young adult urban fantasy series...Valentine Shapiro has all the makings of a great heroine--smart, sassy, and street savvy. Give her a faithful friend, Fang, who adds quite a bit of humor, and the pair is fabulous...BITE ME is a fun, exciting, action-packed tale that takes us into the dark side of society." -- NovelTalk Reviews
"Parker Blue gives Val a fresh voice, interesting situations...I definitely recommend this book as a "great read" and look forward to the next in the series." -- Great Reads Blog
"Bite Me is a captivating first novel." -- Em's Bookshelf
"Bite Me by Parker Blue was wonderful! I just couldn't help but to keep turning the pages as the story moved forward... Parker Blue, I give you two thumbs up! Bring some more about Val Shapiro." - Books, Books and More Books Blog
"The pace is perfect, and as new characters are introduced and the suspense builds, the book becomes harder and harder to put down. I really enjoyed it and look forward to the next installment of Ms. Blue's Demon Underground Series." -- Unmainstream Mom Reads Blog
"Parker Blue has created a smart, sympathetic character facing a host of unique challenges. How Val responds to these demands is depicted in realistic terms and hits just the right note for an inexperienced, but strong young woman. -- SciFi Guy Blog
"Full of charm, wit and a kickin' attitude...I absolutely loved Bite Me! An adventurous ride with likable characters and a solid plot make this a top-notch urban fantasy." -- Wendy's Minding Spot
"Ms. Blue entertains readers with a sharp young heroine ready to take on anything life throws her way. Bite Me is well-paced, the paranormal action is plentiful, and the characters are nicely defined." -- Darque Reviews
"This book literally has everything: Love, betrayal, vampires, and a mystery. How much better can it get than that?" -- That Teen Can Blog
4 of 5 stars. "I loved the characters...the pacing was great...a good companion to the Morganville Vampire books." -- SomeoneReadItAlready.com
"Parker's voice is edgy and smart. I smile as I read because this book takes me back to my Buffy days--yep, that kind of smart and sharp-edged humor. Love it." -- The Bradford Bunch Blog
"...wicked fun. I loved the heroine--a YA character who felt real and had one tough attitude. Smart-talking, a fierce fighter...and Val (Valentine) had one heck of a funny sidekick, too. Non-stop action. Twists and turns. Monsters. Danger. And a cute hellhound. Come on, I couldn't ask for more." -- Cynthia Eden, author of Midnight Sins and Hotter After Midnight
The vampire jumped me again, but this time I was ready for him. We fought furiously, Jason determined to sink his teeth into my neck and rip my throat out, and me just as determined to stop him. Unfortunately, he liked close-in fighting, and I couldn't get enough space to reach the stake I had tucked into my back waistband.
I grabbed his throat and squeezed, but he wrapped me in a vise hold and wouldn't let go. He slammed me up against a brick wall, intent on crushing me. Trapped. Worse, the power I tried so hard to keep confined was able to reach him through my energy field in these close quarters and I could feel the lust rise within him as he ground his hips against mine. Pervert.
Though I was able to hold off his slavering overbite and incredibly bad breath with one hand, my other hand was caught between our bodies. He couldn't get to my neck, but I couldn't get to my stake either.
Time to play dirty. Remembering even vampires had a sensitive side, I kneed him in the crotch.
He screeched and let go of me to bend over and clutch the offended part of his anatomy. That took care of the lust. I hit him with an uppercut so hard that he flew backward, landing flat on his back on the sidewalk. Whipping the stake from its hiding place, I dropped down beside him and stabbed him through the heart in one well-practiced motion.
His body arched for a moment, then he sagged and lay motionless—really and truly dead.
Now that my prey had been vanquished and the demon lust sated, the fizzing in my blood slowed and stopped, leaving me feeling some of the aches and pains I'd inflicted on my body. It was worth it, though.
But adrenaline pumped once more when I heard a car door open down the street. The light was dimmer here between streetlights, but I was still visible—and so was the body I crouched over. "Who's there?” I demanded.
"It . . . it's me.”
Damn it, I recognized that voice. Annoyed, I rose to glare at my younger half sister. "Jennifer, what the hell are you doing here?”
She got out of the back seat of the beat-up Camry, white-faced. "I told you I wanted to come along.”
"And I told you not to.”
She shrugged, displaying defiance and indifference as only a sixteen-year-old could. "That's why I hid in the back of the car.”
Stupid. I should have checked. I usually drove my motorcycle—a totally sweet Honda Valkyrie—but on nights when I went hunting, my stepfather let me borrow the old beat-up car since it had a convenient trunk. Unfortunately, it was too easy for my little sister to creep into the back seat and stow away there. Obviously.
And I should have known Jen would try something like this. I'd made the mistake of telling her about my little excursions, even giving her some training on how to defend herself in case she ever encountered one of the undead. She'd been eager to learn everything she could, but Mom had gone off the deep end when she found out, especially when Jen had come home sporting a few bruises.
Mom had forbidden Jen to talk about it again and had threatened me with bodily harm if I even mentioned vampires around my little sis. Lord knew what Mom would do if she found out about this.
Jen stared down at the dead vamp and grimaced. "I've just never actually seen one of them before.”
"A dead vampire?”
"Any kind of vampire.”
Was that censure in her voice? "That's what he was,” I said defensively. Mom was right—Jen was far too young and innocent for my world. I had to find a way to keep her away from all this. "I don't stake innocents.”
"I know. I saw.”
"Dammit, Jen, you shouldn't have come. If's dangerous.” And if one hair on her pretty little head had been harmed, Mom would have my head on a platter.
"Yeah, well, we can't all be big, strong vampire slayers,” she said. She tried to make it sound sarcastic, but it came out sounding more wistful than anything.
I sighed, recognizing jealousy when I saw it. I knew Jen envied my abilities—my specialness—with all the longing of a teenager who wanted to be something extraordinary herself. Of course, it was the demon inside me that gave me advantages she didn't have. All of my senses were enhanced far beyond normal, including strength, speed, agility, rapid healing, and the ability to read vamps' minds when they tried to control me. Unfortunately, my little sister had no clue as to the price I paid for those advantages.
And she also had no idea how much I envied her. Fully human, with All-American blond good looks and plenty of friends, she had everything I had always wanted and could never have—true normalcy, not just the appearance of it. With my Jewish/Catholic, demon/human background and the melting pot that went into my heritage, I felt like a mongrel next to a show dog. My lucky half sister had managed to avoid the bulk of my confusing heritage since we shared only a mother.
But I couldn't say any of that—she wouldn't believe it. "Help me get the body in the trunk,” I said tersely.
I usually had to do this part by myself, but why not take advantage of Jen's presence? Besides, participating in the whole dirty business might turn her off for good. I unlocked the trunk and opened it.
She hesitated. "I thought—”
When she broke off, I said, "You thought what? That he'd turn into a neat little pile of dust?”
She shrugged. "Yeah, I guess.”
"I wish it were that easy.” I took pity on her. "And he'll be dust soon enough—when sunlight hits him. Come dawn, I'll make sure his ass is ash.”
Jen grimaced, but I wasn't going to let her off that easily. It was her decision to tag along—she'd have to pay the price. I grabbed the vampire's feet. "Get his head.”
She stared down at Jason's fangs and the small amount of blood around the stake in his heart and turned a little green. "Can't you just leave him in the alley?”
I could, but then Jen wouldn't learn her lesson.
Well, damn, I sounded like Mom now. Annoyed at myself, I snapped, "We can't just leave him here for someone to trip over. What's the matter? Too much for you?”
She shrugged, trying to act nonchalant. "No, I just thought Dad might not like it if you got blood in his trunk.”
"He's used to it.” Besides, the blood would disintegrate along with the rest of the body when sunlight hit it.Jen gulped, but I have to give her credit—she didn't wimp out on me. I'd expected her to blow chunks at the least, but she picked up his shoulders and we wrestled the body into the trunk.
Jen wiped her hands on her jeans and stared uneasily at the casket. "Is he really dead?”
"Mostly,” I said, then grinned to myself when Jen took a step back. There was still the remote possibility Jason could heal if the stake was removed from his heart. But for that to happen, his friends would have to rescue him before dawn, tend him carefully for months and feed him lots of blood. Not likely.
I shrugged. "But the morning sun will take care of that.” I closed the trunk.
Just as I locked it, the headlights from a car blinded me and a red light from its dashboard strobed the street.
"It's a cop,” Jen said in panic.
Not good. But it didn't have to be bad, either. "Relax. Let me handle this.”
The plainclothes policeman exited the unmarked car. "Evening, ladies,” he said, obviously trying to sound friendly, though he came across as wary and suspicious.
"Evening,” I responded.
Though he tried to appear like a guileless rookie, I wasn't fooled. He might only be in his mid-twenties, but he had the watchful alertness of a pro. He hooked the thumb of his right hand in his belt, making it easy to draw a weapon from that bulge under his left arm.
As he came closer, I could make out his features. He was about six feet tall with short brown hair, a straight commanding nose, and a solid bod. Totally hot. I might even be interested if he were a little younger and lost the suspicious attitude.
The demon inside me agreed, wondering what it would be like to enthrall him, get him all hot and bothered, feed on all that lovely sexual energy. That was the problem with being part succubus lust demon—ever since I started noticing boys, the demon part of me had been lying in wait, urging me to get up close and personal, wanting to compel their adoration, suck up all their sexual energy.
I'd given in once, and the poor kid barely survived. But not this time. Not again. I beat back the urges, which was pretty easy since I'd just satisfied the lust by taking out the vamp.
"What are you doing here?” he asked.
"I'm sorry, Officer . . . ?”
"Sullivan. Detective Sullivan.” He flashed his badge at me.
I smiled, trying to look sheepish. "My little sister snuck out of the house to meet her boyfriend, and I was just trying to get her back home before Mom finds out.”
"In this part of town?”
"Yeah, well, she doesn't have the best of judgment. That's why she had to sneak out.”
Jen gave me a dirty look, but was just smart enough to keep her mouth shut.
He didn't look convinced. "Got any ID?”
"Sure—in the car.” I gestured toward the front of the vehicle to ask permission and he nodded. Shifting position so he could watch both of us, he asked Jen for her ID, too.
I retrieved my backpack and handed my driver's license to the detective along with my registration. He glanced at them. "Your last names are different.”
"Yeah—we're half sisters. Same mother, different father. We have the same address, see?”
He nodded and took both IDs back to the car to speak to someone on the radio.
"Ohmigod,” Jen said in a hoarse whisper. "What if he finds out there's a body in the trunk? We'll go to jail. Mom and Dad will be so pissed.”
"Just relax. Everything should come up clean, so there's no reason for him to even look.”
Sullivan finished talking on the radio then handed our IDs back.
"Can we go now?” I asked with a smile. "I'd like to get Jen home before Mom finds out she's gone.”
"Sure,” he said with an answering smile. "Just as soon as you tell me what's in the trunk.”.
"Nothing,” Jen said hastily, the word ending in a squeak as she backed against the trunk and spread her arms as if to protect it. "Just, you know, junk and stuff. Nothing bad.”
Oh, great. Like that didn't sound guilty.
Still casual, he asked, "Would you mind opening it for me?”
Yes, I did. Very much. Swiftly, I mentally ran through the options. I couldn't take him out—I didn't hurt innocents. Besides, he'd just called in our names so they'd know we were the last to see him. Taking off wasn't an option, either—he knew who we were and where we lived.
Demon lust fizzed in my blood, the succubus part of me that allowed me to enthrall men, bend them to my will and make them willing slaves. You could take control of him, force him to let you go, a small voice whispered inside me.
Heaven help me, for a moment, I was tempted. But I couldn't do that. I couldn't take advantage of humans like that. I'd promised the parents—and myself—that I'd never do it again.
My only choice was to do as he asked and hope he'd give me time to explain. Crap. This was so not going the way I planned.
Gently, I moved Jen aside, unlocked the trunk, and braced for the worst.
He lifted the lid and stared down inside. He didn't even flinch. Good grief, was the man made of stone? Expressionless, he asked, "Vampire?”
This was so surreal. I relaxed a little, hoping I might even be able to come out of this without getting into major trouble. "Uh, yeah. The bloody fangs are a dead giveaway.”
He gave me a look. The kind that said I wasn't out of trouble yet and he didn't appreciate smart-ass comments. "Why did you stake him?”
Why? He was staring down at the dead undead and he wanted to know why?
Jen blurted out, "Because he was drinking some guy's blood.” She shifted nervously. "I saw it all.”
The cop nodded. "So did I.”
I gaped at him. "You did?”
"Yeah, I was just calling for backup when you waltzed up and tapped him on the shoulder.”
Crap—I'd been so self-involved I hadn't even noticed the unmarked car. Note to self: pay attention!