Book Review: Fiona’s Guardians by Dan Klefstad

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When a vampire seduces you, death is minutes away. When she hires you, you’ll soon wish you were dead.

It’s a truth known to every guardian who worked for Fiona, including Daniel. Aside from managing the day to day chores and keeping her protected, he manages an investment portfolio to buy stolen blood from hospital workers. The 250-year-old Fiona needs 10 pints of human blood every night. As a result of this, Daniel and Fiona are always on the lookout for police, but fail to notice their gradual encirclement by Mors Strigae, an ancient order of monks dedicated to the extermination of vampires. Gone for a century, the monks start a new war when they destroy Fiona’s sire. This time, her vampire family is pushed to the edge of extinction — and the humans who serve them are hunted and executed.

After 35 years, what keeps him loyal? And will he ever be allowed to leave?

It’s publication day for Fiona’s Guardians by Dan Klefstad and I am delighted to be reviewing the book in celebration. Happy publication day, Dan, and my thanks for the digital copy of your book, which I have reviewed honestly and impartially.

I am in no way a connoisseur of vampire novels by any stretch of the imagination. When I was searching my library for examples of the genre to use in my Instagram photo for this book, I had far fewer to choose from than say, legal thrillers or romance novels set in cafes. Therefore, I may not be the best judge of how great an example this is of the oeuvre. I am not a massive reader of horror. In fact, it specifically says in my review policy that I don’t review horror. How, then, did Dan persuade me to read his book? I’m not quite sure, he is obviously a silver-tongued charmer that has a way with words, and this book confirms this is true.

Lover of horror or not, expert on vampire novels or not, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Fiona’s Guardians. It is a fresh, modern take on the genre where Dan has brought vampires, their feeding techniques and the tools used by their adversaries to hunt them down are all very twenty-first century. The book is fun and smart and pacy and I fairly raced through it at double-quick speed.

The author has created some really interesting characters in this novel, from the vampires and their clan (I especially like the idea of feisty female vampires kicking ass and fighting the ancient vampirical patriarchy), their guardians (humans on the side of blood-sucking vampires, a fascinating dichotomy) and the zealous order of monks chasing them down. The interplay between the different groups makes for an action-packed narrative, provactively imbued with moral questions of who are really the evil characters in this book; it may not be who you think.

All in all, this book is endlessly entertaining, even for people who wouldn’t normally read horror novels of vampire stories. It is not overly-gory or scary, but witty and amusing and diverting. If you are looking for a Halloween read that won’t make you want to sleep with the lights on but will provide you with a few hours entertainment, this is the book for you.

Fiona’s Guardians is out today in paperback and ebook and you can buy a copy here.

About the Author

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