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Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite
Vampire Iniquity by Eileen Sheehan is the first book in the supernatural fantasy series, The Tugurlan Chronicles. Dan Tugur was not always a vampire hunter, but when his friend Shen seeks his help, he is violently introduced to a sinister world where Dragomar, the vampire leader, is concerned only with the continuity of his bloodline. Dan is captured by the vampires, brutally mangled, and forced to perform a mock martial arts battle. Once Dan escapes, he learns of his family's legacy as vampire slayers. He recruits his cousin and returns to the den of iniquity to eradicate the evildoers, solidifying Dan's return to hunting and a profession that becomes deeply personal and terrifyingly dangerous.
Eileen Sheehan gives Dan the space to tell his own story in Vampire Iniquity, and in doing so we are able to journey with Dan in a first-person narrative for a fully immersive experience. Dan's aiding Shen is the catalyst that starts Dan's character arc and, by shifting to an omniscient point of view among the vampires, readers see how the transition to a hunter is made. It is a tragic start, but it is just the start of the big-picture goal of ousting these horrific entities and gunning for one in particular. Sheehan keeps the pace moving without disruption to depicting that all-important intersection of the human and the supernatural worlds, and witnessing an outsider become the ultimate insider. As a woman of Asian descent, I did find the portrayal of characters like Mei-Lien to fall into culture trope territory and that is unfortunate. Beyond this, the story is quite good and while there are nods to traditional vampire lore, Sheehan goes for her own fresh spin and sets her book apart in a heavily saturated genre.