Frightful Friday is a weekly meme in which I feature a particularly scary or chilling book I’ve read that week. Feel free to grab the button & join in! Be sure to include a link to your post in the Mr. Linky at the bottom of this post!
This week’s book is The President’s Vampire by Christopher Farnsworth:
For over a century, Nicholas Cade has served as a covert agent, bound to protect the President and the citizens of the United States from supernatural dangers kept hidden from the average human being. Cade is the President’s vampire, bound by a blood oath sworn in the days of Andrew Jackson’s presidency.
By this blood, you are bound: to the President of the United States; and the orders of the officers appointed by him; to support and defend the nation and its citizens agains all enemies, foreign and domestic; and to serve it faithfully for all the days you walk the earth.
Cade resides in The Reliquary, the secret space under the Smithsonian’s Castle. He shares this space with stuffed corpses of creatures typically only seen in horror movies.
In The President’s Vampire, Cade and his “handler” Zach Barrows, are investigating a devastating virus that turns humans into blood-thirsty lizard-like creatures. The virus is spread by bodily fluid, making it even more deadily. It causes the physiology of a human to transform: skin turns into scales, muscles contract faster & with a greater amount of strength. The frontal lobe of the brain shrinks, the part that controls impulse & reason. The ganglia, which controls motivation & appetite, grows in size.
This isn’t the first time Cade has witnessed the effects of this vius; it has popped up in various locations all over the world in the past centry and a half. “Casualties” of this virus include Bin Laden himself. Someone close to the White House is involved with this recent outbreak.
Cade believes The Shadow Company is involved, a secret agency within the CIA that is responsible for handling all activities kept hidden from the President. The Company did what it had to do to complete it’s mission; including creating partnerships with those beings Cade has sworn to protect the country from. Cade & Zach have to find the source of the virus before it wipes out the world’s population.
The President’s Vampire is the second book in Farnsworth’s Nathaniel Cade series (see my review of the first book, Blood Oath). I liken Cade’s character to an immortal version of James Bond. He’s got style, he’s got intrigue…he’s got fangs. He also has emotions; those weren’t lost in his transformation into a vampire. He genuinely cares about the man he’s sworn to protect, even though this man changes every four years or so.
I was mildly irritated with Zach’s character in this first book. He was a bit of a wimp, I thought. That has changed! He apparently grew a backbone and is now prepared to risk his life to protect his country (and even Cade!).
The President’s Vampire combines the best attributes of an amazing thriller with a bit of the supernatural, resulting in one pretty phenomenal book! Some authors seem to succumb to the “sophomore slump” with their second book, but in my opinion this book exceeds the previous! Yes, there is a bit of blood & a bit of gore, but nothing over the top or unnecessary. Highly highly recommended.
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