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Title: Oxford Blood
Series: The Cavaliers #1
Author: Georgiana Derwent
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, New Adult, Vampire
Format: ebook, Paperback
Length: 304 pages
Purchase Now: Amazon
About the Book: A Tale of the Posh, the Privileged and the Paranormal…
The Cavaliers are the most elite society at Oxford University – rich, powerful, and beautiful. No one realises that they are no ordinary students, but a group of aristocratic vampires from the English Civil War. For four hundred years they have groomed the most promising students to run the government, police, and finance in the way the vampires wish, granting them eternal life in return for absolute obedience.
When Harriet French arrives at Oxford University from her working class northern state school, she’s prepared for a culture shock, but not to become embroiled in the Cavaliers’ scheming and bloodlust. Harriet thought she’d be busy enough juggling her demanding tutor, new friends, and the murky world of student politics. But now, she must find the rebel vampire who is killing off the members, stop the Cavaliers from orchestrating a massacre of the year’s most beautiful and successful students, and defy the Society to be with the man of her dreams.
Oxford Blood is a British, adult, paranormal romance. It’s a tale with vampires that aren’t afraid to kill and a heroine who’s not afraid of sex or her own ambition.
Building a world that is unique and yet familiar, Georgiana Derwent has set the scene for an enjoyable romp at Oxford University. The premise provides potential for an engaging story with two cleverly conceived and intertwining story-lines, and I had great hopes.
Sadly, early in the book feels quite rushed with no real building of Harriet’s character, and she continues on rather superficially and clothes-obsessed for most of the story. A bit more backstory and building her crushes and the background of her relationship with her mother, or lack thereof, would have helped to make her more relatable. Additionally, for a relatively sheltered northern girl, arriving in Oxford and discovering that vampires exist and are befriending her should have resulted in more than the near utter laissez faire attitude she does adopt. All simple fixes, with a few more pages dedicated to building her as carefully as the descriptions of her clothing and the University buildings.
The vampires are connected to several upper-echelon families: having more information about them, their impact on the English society as a whole, and their connection to Harriet’s family could have been more fully flushed out. The two stories are coexisting within one book rather than integrating into a cohesive whole: and while we have glimpses into the vampires early lives during the English Civil war, those passages are also glossed over without great detail and depth that would have provided insight into the characters.
With the rushed feeling and the few continuity errors, the tying together of loose ends did provide some answers in passing; although it does create a neat opening for the second of the series. It was a fun read that was highly frustrating at times, and not particularly demanding if one is willing to overlook the flaws. I didn’t dislike the book on the whole, more disappointed that the reality of the story didn’t live up to the terrific premise.
I received an eBook copy for purpose of honest review for Full Moon Bites tours. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
About the Author:
Georgiana Derwent read History at Oxford University. Aside from the vampires, The Cavaliers Series is an exaggerated but fairly accurate portrayal of her time there. She now works in London and lives with her fiancé. He’s been very supportive throughout the writing of her books, mainly because he likes to claim that all the most attractive characters are based on him.
Georgiana fell in love with vampire novels after reading The Vampire Diaries back in 2000. At the time it was a struggle to find any similar paranormal romances, a situation that it’s fair to say seems to have been rectified in the last few years. She now loves paranormal series, fantasy novels, and modern literary works in roughly equal measure.
Ever since her teens, she wanted to write a vampire series. Ever since going to Oxford she wanted to write a book about her experiences there. During a dull few months between finishing university and starting her graduate job, she had the idea of combining the two and The Cavaliers Series was born.