Ryker’s World Sucks

Fangs & Fairy Dust by Joynell Schultz is described by the author as “An Angels of Sojourn Spin-Off Novella.” This was a good chance to explore a writer style in a genre outside my usual preference. Unfortunately, this was a politically correct, social justice, simplistic tale disguised with fairies, vampires, and an omniscient, controlling body dedicated to stamping out evil when it first appeared so that evil could not develop to its full, powerful self. This tale will not motivate me to read more about Angels on sojourns.

Ryker is a 300-year-old vampire with guilt feelings. Over the course of his being, he has killed two human wives and one vampire wife. Now working for the Blood Board, he is charged with killing deviant vampires, those who kill their prey while feeding improperly other than doing the right thing, drinking just enough blood to survive. While on assignment, Ryker meets Aliza. Ryker didn’t intend to meet Aliza in the hospital; he was following a trail that indicated he might find his vampire prey. Instead, he found Aliza in a hospital in an extremely weakened state. She was going through a change, one which would require further visits by the vampire Ryker was tracking. Or so he thought.

Ryker got it wrong. The vampire he was hunting didn’t kill females. But something or someone was trying to hurt Aliza. Readers will find out the difference between fairies and vampires. Readers will learn the correct etiquette for taking blood snacks. Ryker, with guilt feelings over previous kills, does not want to fall for Aliza but this is the apparent romantic interest in the story.

The questions are: Will a Ryker and Aliza romance survive?  Will Aliza complete the change to be a vampire? If so, will Ryker kill her as he did with three former companions? This might have been a good story if it had been better disguised. It should have stayed in the paranormal sphere and not tried to teach humans moral lessons.

The first point that turned me off was “Perhaps the bartender would be the easiest meal, but he tried to not victimize women. His kind did too much of that already.” (Kindle Locations 189-190). Neither of the sentences contained the word “patriarchal.” I was impressed. The thought that the vampire world is more enlightened than the present-day human world might make many people yearn for a world that (literally) sucks.

The second turn off point appeared in an almost-dialogue between Ryker and Aliza. Ryker: “See, I’m a vampire. I’m evil to the core. Humans are my food, and I’m the predator. But I choose to overcome that. I chose a different path, despite my nature.”  Aliza nods. Again, with Ryker: “It took me two hundred years to walk a different way, but if you want to overcome your monster like I overcame mine, I’ll be with you if you want.” (Kindle Locations 1746-1749).

In a time long, long, ago in a universe where the language was Valley Speak, the response here would be “Gag me with a spoon.” I won’t read more by this author without downloading a free Amazon sample to make sure all Schultz novels are not written in this way. I gave this story two Amazon stars.

 

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