Friday Fire Reads Presents: Vampire P.I.
Author Madison Thompson masters paranormal romance and mystery with Vampire P.I.
You can find more on author Madison Thompson (M.T.) down below my book tease!
Book Rating: 5 Evidence Markers
A serial killer thriller with vampires lurking in every alley? I'm in!
Madison Thomspon, now to be referred to her pen name M.T. has expertly crafted a paranormal serial killer mystery that stars Claire Knight, a new detective on the force with sharp instincts, and relentless dedication.
Her first day on the job in Detroit, she jumps at the chance to go to a crime scene, unfortuantely another victim of the serial killer known as the Drainer. I'm a huge fan of stories set in real cities, especially ones that aren't regularly featured, like Detroit because to me, I can connect to the story much better.
M.T. introduces us to the scene without too much detail to lose us, but with enough so that you're on the edge of your seat.
It was reported that the bodies of the victims looked like they had been a part of some kind of ritualistic mummification process, dried and almost unrecognizable.
M.T. Chapter 1: Let's Get Started
Of course, the protagonist's first crime scene does not go the way that Claire thinks it will.
In the middle of assessing the body, the street lights in the alleyway flicker, and her instincts go on high alert. M.T. vacuums us into the scene, and I could not keep my eyes away from my phone as I felt myself become the main character.
It feels like that moment in a horror movie when something is watching you from beyond the flickering light
M.T. Chapter 2: The Crime Scene Border
M.T. writes her descriptions in a way that even if we've never seen a crime scene, we know how it feels, and we can all relate to feeling empowered and feeling terrified at the same time.
This is when I thought we were going to see her catch a glimpse of the murderer fleeing the scene of the crime, but M.T. throws us a curve.
The man that comes through the ominous alley is in fact a P.I. assigned to the case, Nathaniel Ballard, and our main character isn't fooled by his slick answers and his composed attitude.
I see his coal black eyes absorbing the light from the police cruisers as well as every detail of my face.....
There is a hint of genuineness in his smile, but also a gleam in his eyes that mock me.
M.T. Chapter 3: Nathaniel Ballard
Yet, this helpful, intelligent P.I. isn't what he seems.
Claire bristles at this civilian P.I., Nathan, being so easily allowed access to sensitive files, not to mention the crime scence.
How is it possible that he knows so much about all of these murder cases?!
Her intuition beckons her to investigate this man. She wants to learn as much as she can about him because there is just something about Nathaniel Ballard that doesn't add up.
My gut tells me there is more to this story than meets the eye....
If this Nathaniel Ballard has any secrets, I will find them.
M.T. Chapter 4: Trust and Verify
What I especially love about this romance novel is that both characters aren't automatically drawn to each other physically or emotionally.
In fact, they both start at-odds with each other, and with Claire suspecting the love insterest, Nathaniel, could be involved in, or possibly guilty of several murders, there are a lot of obstacles in front of them.
However, the fact that they both have the same goal: finding the Drainer and stopping him from murdering more innocent people bring them together, albiet begrudgingly at first.
Standing nearby, just over the body is my number one suspect – Nathaniel Ballard.
M.T. Chapter 5: Document Delve
What exacerbates this is that Claire, our protagonist catches our handsome P.I. Nathaniel at a Drainer murder scene before the police were even on the scene!
Just a little sus.
And things do not go well for either of them. This just further devides our sharp main character and our mysterious love interest. Though our love interest does admire Claire for the same qualities I mentioned earlier, it is for those very same qualities she finds him suspicious.
She reminds me of someone I knew nearly a century ago. She too had spirit and heart as well as dedication for what she fought for.
M.T. Chapter 6: Days Gone By
Though most of this tense and enthralling romance story is told through Claire's POV, we do get chapters from Nathaniel's, and when we do I relish those as well.
M.T. accomplishes the impressive feat of capturing two completely different character's voices by writing their voice and perception of events, people, and emotions in diverse ways using different language.
The way M.T. frames the love interest's thoughts, and the voice of his character is completely different from main character's. You can really get into his head as a vampire, and his initial thoughts and feelings on Claire. He admires her even though he is apprehensive about how much she suspects him.
Though Nathaniel is nervous around her because he knows she is exceptional at her job, he also is amused at just how fixated she has been into her information deep diving into him.
His brow hardens before a smile, a full smile, spreads across his face.
M.T. Chapter 7: Let's Chat
Claire is quite obviously not amused by his reaction of her interrogating him on his dubious presence at the crime scene before even first responders arrived.
She even takes him into the station and questions him, but doesn't get very far when she is stopped from interrogating him due to his impeccable record with helping out the department.
Is the protagonist's obsession with figuring out everything there is to know about Nathaniel really helping the victims of these murders, or is she nto something and everyone else around her are just blind to an obvious suspect?
Or, is she onto something else entirely?
There is no way those are actual fangs, right?
“You…” [Claire] breathes.
“I can explain.” [Nathaniel Says]
M.T. Chapter 9: You
After a horrifying encounter, which I will not spoil for y'all, Claire sees something that even all her years on the force and schooling cannot explain. Nathaniel just so happened to be at the right place at the right time once more, but this doesn't benefit in in the least.
Because now, he's shown a side of himself he's been keeping hidden for over a century.
And he showed it to Claire, who wants nothing more than to figure out everything about him, and expose him.
M.T.'s novel made my adrenaline pump each time I scrolled, while wrenching my heart out. I never saw what was coming next.
I hope M.T. is cheering herself on for this hypnotic, stirring story because I am.
How does a vampire explain to a human that someone has fangs? Like real fangs that can bite, puncture, and draw blood?
How can Nathaniel possibly gain Claire's trust after what she's seen?
How can Claire possibly find a serial killer who run a block in a blink of an eye?
Can Nathaniel and Claire find a way to work together and get closer, or is it too late to catch a killer?
For a real true crime thrill, switch off the podcast, and go read 'Vampire P.I.' on either Webnovel, Dreame, or iReader.
Now, onto what you've really been waiting for: My exclusive author interview with Madison Thompson!
1) Which part of your book was the most fun to write?
I think the most fun parts to write had to be the forensic descriptions of what was going on at the crime scenes because I am a nerd for crime shows and the sweet date scenes between Nathaniel and Claire. Personally, I would enjoy the rooftop date.
2) What do you find is the most difficult part of being an indie author?
The most difficult part of being an indie author is actually finding enough time to dedicate to creating and writing. I have a full-time job, help with my family catering business, and I maintain several writing blogs.
Needless to say, I am busy. I would also say that a difficult part of being an indie author is finding the right writing community to pursue different ideas and testing your readers.
The blogs I maintain are some of the best places to try different stories and receive feedback in a casual environment.
3) What piece of advice do you have for indie authors looking to either self-publish or to try to strike out on their own?
Advice? Write about what you enjoy and don't be afraid to release something that isn't perfect. Find a casual, fun story you like writing about and release it on a platform under a pen name. Writers block kills creativity and, sometimes, you might not be in the mood to write a particular story.
Write what you feel like and publish casually. It allows you to receive feedback as well as publishing experience. You can also build a fan base from there.
For years, I was paralyzed with fear that my work wouldn't be well received and that it wouldn't be perfect. Don't be afraid to put yourself out there, even if it's under a pen name, and don't be afraid of feedback.
About the Author:
Hello, my name is Madison Thompson, your friendly neighborhood tech savvy crafty author friend. I have always enjoyed writing and have years worth of scribblings on scraps of paper stowed away in books and binders.
I was encouraged to write by my family and by one of my elementary school teachers who told me that, one day, she would be standing in line at my book signing. I have always aspired to fulfill that dream.
At any given time, I have a dozen story lines running in my head. When I'm not chasing those stories down, I am crocheting dragons, composing music, practicing photography/digital art, or leading a dungeons and dragons campaign.
I also love a good forensic show and a great playlist to keep me creative.
Thank you for reading, and as always, Embrace the Paper Hurricane!