William: A Sequel To Merrick by Claire Cray ~ Book Review by Feliz

MERRICK-2Title: William: A Sequel To Merrick

Author: Claire Cray

Publisher: Self Published

Cover Artist:

Rating: 2.75 of 5 Stars

Publication Date: 01/11/2015

Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)

Genre: Gay, Historical, M/M Romance, Paranormal

Blurb:

The story of William and Merrick continues in this sequel to the spellbinding bestseller Merrick.

In the summer of 1799, young William Lacy watched his carefree life go up in smoke when a night of mischief landed him in shackles. Beaten, jailed, and sentenced to a long apprenticeship in the dreary woods of upstate New York, William was braced for the worst.

But he wasn’t prepared to fall in love with his master, a renowned and reclusive apothecary — a man — by the name of Silas Merrick. And he damn well never expected Merrick to be a blasted vampire.

Now, nearly one year after that summer of mystery, longing and unspeakable pleasure, William is still waiting to begin the future with Merrick he was promised. But it’s not easy becoming a vampire. Not only has Merrick become more secretive than ever about his nature and his past, but his feud with the beautiful and ruthless vampire Theo raises ever more troubling questions about the dark world William is about to enter.

William is determined to unravel the mysteries and find his happily ever after. But to do it, he must resolve Merrick’s doubts for himself. Can there be love and joy in this life of death and darkness? And will Merrick ever learn to open his heart?

Set in New York and Boston several months after the events of Claire Cray’s bestseller Merrick, William is another haunting, sensual story of love and desire in the shadows…and the adaptability of the human spirit.

My View:

It’s been quite a while since I read this book’s prequel, “Merrick”, but I still remember how much I loved it. Even so, I reread it in preparation for this review. In “Merrick”, a silly prank gone wrong lands young bookdealer William Lacey as indentured apprentice with mysterious, reclusive apothecary Silas Merrick in the remote woods of 1799 New England. However, William soon realizes that Merrick is anything else but the cruel, monstrous master he feared him to be. Over time, respect and admiration turn into love. Even finding out that Merrick is a vampire can’t thwart William’s feelings for Merrick – nor prevent Merrick from returning those feelings. But in order to truly be with Merrick, William needs to become a vampire too. While William is more that ready to take the final step, Merrick (who loathes his vampiric nature) is reluctant to “turn” him. Until Theo, a friend of Merrick’s, appears on the scene, resolved to knock some sense into Merrick’s head – even if that means threatening William’s mortal life and or destroying a centuries old friendship.

What I loved most about both books was the fantastic sense of time and place, created by both William’s old fashioned narrative voice – very much in keeping with the period – and the vivid setting. I can’t even begin to imagine how much research must’ve gone into those two books to make them so authentic-sounding. This applied to “William” even more than to “Merrick”, because while the first book was mostly set in Merrick’s remote cabin in the woods, the events in the second book played out before a more urban background and involved even more of the manners and customs of that time.

Unfortunately, that’s also where my enjoyment of “William” ended. While in the first book I very much enjoyed the slow pace – how William and Merrick build rapport with each other, how their teacher/ pupil relationship gradually turned into more – that same slowness bothered me here. Nothing much happened really. William pines and longs for Merrick, who left him alone in his townhouse, only occasionally dropping by. William begs for Merrick to turn him, Merrick finds excuses to delay it. It was really mostly Theo’s delicious menace and flamboyancy that somewhat saved this book for me.

So, while I still loved “Merrick” on the second read-through and will continue to consider it among my favorite m/m vampire/paranormal reads, the much anticipated sequel turned out rather “meh” for me. This might be only me, though, others might very well think differently.

P. S. : “William” is supposed to be a standalone, but I would strongly advise against reading it as such, since the backstory in the first book makes many aspects of “William” much easier to understand.

Links

William: A Sequel To Merrick on Goodreads
Self Published
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
All Romance eBooks

I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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