I love this book and cannot wait for more of this series.
Nick St George tries everything he can think of to keep Danielle from opening her
cupcake shop in his area. The reason? Nick is a vampire and he really does not want
humans wandering around finding out they exist. He is frustrated
because his compulsion that he uses on humans doesn’t work on Dani.
SLEEPING WITH THE ENTITY is funny, sexy and will make you fall for the vampire genre
all over again. Cat Devon brings readers in with characters that will make you want
to see if maybe there really are vampires and maybe it wouldn’t be a bad thing
to run into one.
This is the first of a three part series and cannot wait to see what Ms Devon has in store for us in the next installment.
SLEEPING WITH THE ENTITY by Cat Devon
“All the good men are taken,” Daniella Delaney said. “The rest are vampires.”
As soon as she spoke the words into her iPhone, the hairs at the back of her neck prickled and a shiver slid down her spine. They really had the air conditioning cranked up in this Chicago bar and grill. The place was almost as cold as her pink fridge back home. Sure, it was a warm Indian summer October day outside, but come on.
Tugging her thin black sweater tighter around her, Daniella continued her phone conversation with her good friend Suz Beckman. “I’m telling you, they’re vampires. Sucking the energy and enthusiasm right out of you. So don’t hook me up with any more blind dates. And you know who else is an energy suck? The head of the local business association. I have no idea what they have against me opening my cupcake shop in this neighborhood, but he’s sadly mistaken if he thinks he can get rid of me. I’ve worked too hard to let anyone stand in my way. I’m meeting him here in a few minutes, and if he thinks he can push me around just because I’m wearing a sweater set, he’s in for a big surprise.” She’d no sooner said the words than a man appeared at her side seemingly out of nowhere.
“Can I help you?” His deep, smooth voice startled Daniella.
He had a tall rangy build and was dressed all in black. His dark hair was on the long side, and he had the thickest lashes she’d ever seen on a man. His eyes were a surprising shade of wickedly stormy gray. Radiating toughness and sex appeal, he had Mick Jagger-like chiseled cheekbones and fierce yet almost poetic lips.
She’d never been a Rolling Stones fan, however. She preferred her men polished and polite. Dangerous bad boys weren’t her cup of tea.
“Gotta go,” she quickly told Suz before ending her call and turning her attention to the man standing beside her. “And you are?” she said.
“The manager of this establishment.”
“Oh. Well in that case, perhaps you can help me. I did try to order some food when I first arrived but was told that wasn’t possible. It’s strange having a bar and grill that doesn’t serve meals.”
“The regulars don’t come here for the food. They come for…the ambience,” he said.
It was all Daniella could do not to laugh as she studied her surroundings – the moose head over the bar, the plastic mackerel beside it, the Chicago Blackhawks hockey jersey lopsidedly stuck to the wall with duct tape. “Right. Because the place has such great ambience.” She shook her head in disbelief. “Look, I don’t mean to cut our conversation short but I have an important meeting scheduled to take place here with—“
“Me,” he interrupted her. “Your meeting is with me. I’m Nick St. George.”
Great. The man wasn’t just the manager of the place. He was the owner and the head of the neighborhood chamber of commerce. At least she hadn’t called him a downer vampire during her phone conversation with Suz as she’d been tempted to. “You couldn’t have said that sooner?”
“I could have,” he acknowledged, “but I chose not to.” He sat in the chair across from her.
“Well, it’s nice to meet you at last. I’m Daniella Delaney, but you must already have figured that out. Anyway, I won’t take up much of your time. I’m sure you’re a busy man. I wanted to meet you face-to-face so that we could go over what exactly your objections are to my opening my business.”
“I don’t object to you opening your business. Just to opening it around here.”
“I’m going to change your mind.” Daniella reached into her tote and pulled out a folder with photos of chocolate-frosted cupcakes on it. “My business will be a powerful addition to the neighborhood, improving the local ambience…which is clearly needed, I might add. I’m going to spruce things up and offer yummy cupcakes. Come on, what’s not to like about that?” She didn’t give him a chance to answer – just kept going. “I made hard copies of some of my promotional ideas for my business. Flyers, coupons, that sort of thing. Or I can show you the entire presentation on my laptop if you’d rather do it that way. Which would you prefer?”
“Whatever brings you the most satisfaction.” His voice rolled over her like warm honey.
She frowned at him. Why was he staring at her so strangely? Was the man flirting with her? Why? She was hardly a raving beauty. Not even close. She was pretty nondescript. Brown hair, brown eyes, an okay nose and mouth. Nothing special.
She’d chosen to wear a professional outfit of black pants and light-weight sweater set with a string of pearls. Again, nothing special.
Was he deliberately trying to throw her off her stride? “You know what would give me the most satisfaction?” she said. “You stopping your protest about me opening Heavenly Cupcakes.”
“You don’t really want to open your store in this area.” His words had an almost hypnotic rhythm to them.
“Yes, I do.”
He frowned and stared directly into her eyes. “No, you don’t.”
“Yes,” she said emphatically. “I do.”
His frown deepened, and those stormy gray eyes of his narrowed.
She laughed. “You seem surprised,” she said. “Did you really think you could get rid of me that easily?
“I believe you may turn out to be more challenging than I expected,” Nick said slowly.
“I’m sure I will,” she said cheerfully. “A lot more challenging.”
* * *
Nick couldn’t believe how difficult this was becoming. He might look like a regular bar owner but deep down he was very different. He was a vampire struggling to stay under the radar. He’d overheard her talking about vampires on her phone. At first his concern had been that he and the rest of his friends had somehow been found out by this cupcake maker.
He no longer thought that was actually the case but there was still something strange about her. He supposed it was ironic that he, the vampire, was calling her, the human, strange. But the truth was that he didn’t know what to make of her.
His job as a leader was to protect his clan and keep her out. The more humans who hung around the area, the bigger the chance was that their vampire community would be discovered. He had no doubt her business would be a success but he couldn’t allow that to happen. It was much too risky.
When Nick had first set up this meeting he’d had thought it would be an easy fix. His buddy, fellow vamp and body artist Pat Heller from Pat’s Tats next door, had even mockingly kidded him that it would be a piece of cake. All Nick had to do was use every vampire’s favorite weapon – mind compulsion – and Daniella Delaney would obey him.
It hadn’t worked. He’d never had a human resist him before. She was supposed to respond to his vamp thrall by agreeing to do his bidding. All the others had for centuries.
He’d established direct eye contact and done his vamp thing. But instead of surrendering, cheeky Little Miss Cupcake had laughed. She’d actually laughed.
Like all vamps, Nick had a superior sense of smell. He could tell by her scent that she wasn’t a vampire herself. But there was something about her…
“Do you have a cold?” she suddenly asked him. “Allergies?”
“You were sniffing.”
Nick glared at her. Daniella eyed him suspiciously. And so she should. He could eat her for breakfast.
This ARC copy of Sleeping with the Enitity was given to me by St. Martin’s Press in exchange for a honest review.