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An Absolutely Wonderful Story
Reviewed by: Linda Tonis -- The Paranormal Romance Guild Review Team
This is a paranormal romance, and if you are looking for the usual evil creatures creating bloody mayhem, then this is not the book for you. This is in every way a true love story. Boy and girl meet and sparks fly, only in this case the man is keeping secrets. Secrets that could ultimately mean the end of the relationship. Can love overcome all?
Twenty-one year old Katelyn Corbin's life was changed forever by an act of violence that left her parents dead. Two drug crazed men intent on robbing her parent's store panicked and killed them both leaving their bloody bodies where Katelyn discovered them. She now finds herself having to move from Atlanta to Charleston SC to live with her aunt and uncle, leaving behind the college she was attending and her friends.
In addition to the horrible nightmares that Katelyn has every night, reliving her parent's death, she now has to start her senior year in college at a new school where she knows no one. Fortunately for Katelyn she meets her new roommate, Alexis Gordon, and they become instant friends. But, her life is about to take another unexpected turn when she meets James Thomas Dubois. James is a large contributor to the college and lives in a huge old mansion known as Whitehall. The chemistry between Katelyn and James is instantaneous.
Little by little Katelyn falls in love with James, and the feeling appears to be mutual, only there are things about him that have Katelyn seeking answers. Why is James so different? How does he always seem to know what she is thinking? Why does she seem to be able to hear him in her mind? If she asks her questions, will the answers change her feelings for James?
Is Katelyn's love for James enough for her to give up all she knows and all she is to be with him? James confesses all to Katelyn and leaves it her decision as to what she wants to do. He is so much in love with her; he refuses to take her choice away from her. Katelyn has experienced a lot of tragedy in her young life with her parent's death, so can she truly make the right decision when it comes to James? Has she finally met the man, no matter what he is, who can bring her peace and security?
We watch as Katelyn and James' love grows over a period of time and we learn all there is to know about James' past. As I stated earlier there is no violence, no evil supernatural beings causing havoc, just two people in love, and I couldn't wait to read the end to learn the outcome.Although quite different from any other paranormal romance I have read, and I have read many, I enjoyed everything about this story.
No Unnecessary Angst
Reviewer: Teresa Dees
There are a lot of paranormal, specifically vampire, romance novels floating around. I’ve read my share of them. What, if anything, could this author bring to the genre that would be different?
I was impressed by the vampire’s natures. There was no unnecessary angst. They were quite happy with their transformation. They embraced their new natures. Or maybe, not so new, since most humans consider humanity to be the top predator. They sensibly exercised self-control and this particular group showed survival and compassion are not mutually exclusive. The characters are engaging and I did want to know what happened next. I particularly enjoyed the secondary and even tertiary characters. They were just as rich as James and Katelyn without upstaging them.
I like the teasing view of the whole paranormal world surrounding the unsuspecting humans and would like to see more of that. I will definitely read more of this author.
Reviewer: Helena Ferrell (Mama’s Reading Break)
"Gift?" I asked shockingly, "That's what you call it, a gift? You're talking about taking away my life ... and you call it a gift?"
This book was a lot different than I expected. I've only read two or three of each of the series that the blurb says this book will appeal to, but this book caught me off guard. Instead of being the fast paced action story that I had expected, this was a slow and beautiful tale of the gift of love. Out of every vampire story I've ever read, I've never read a story that considered turning another into a vampire a gift. Although at first I found this extremely odd, it grew on me. It was just a different aspect on vampirism that I hadn't come in contact with yet.
The Master of Whitehall
Reviewer: T. Petty (BK Lover)
I came into this thinking I was reading another ‘Twilight’ but boy was I wrong. Katelyn is dealing with a great tragedy, her parents taken away, she's moved with her aunt starting a new school. In her last year of college, thinking about the future what to do with the rest of her life. Kate meets new roommate Lexi, becoming instant bff’s. Cut to the first meeting with the Master of Whitehall James Dubois, mysterious beautiful gentleman. Kate knows there's something about him, not sure if she should stay away or get to know him. When James meets Kate it’s love at first sight. She's the first woman in years he wants to really know him, but has to approach with caution. The more time they spend together makes it obvious they are meant to be. James hints at his real self, Kate wondering if she's ready to know what and who he really is. Kate takes his reveal much better than expected and she quickly agrees to join him -forever. I love how attentive and caring their relationship is, James is the perfect mate, always thinking ahead giving Kate everything and anything she needs before she even realizes what she needs. Their coupling is fast, but I guess when you know, you just can't pass up that beautiful all-consuming love. James teaches her how to be an immortal and we learn about his past and his maker Charlotte Ann. A great addition, she is daring, intriguing, and a little naughty- not always a bad thing. I don't think I ever read such tasteful, sexy time before. Never grotesque or raunchy without becoming the dreaded YA. Great story, can't wait to read about BFF Lexi next!
Masterpiece!!! Master of Whitehall
Reviewer: Kim Shaw (Little Red's Book Reviews)
Romance! I read just the first couple of lines and I was hooked. This book had my attention from the very beginning to the very end. I can't wait for the next book in the series. Not knowing anything about the book except the title and the authors name the whole book had surprises. Katelyn had to start over her life over after the brutal murder of her parents. When Katelyn started college she met her roommate Lexi. They became the best of friends. Katelyn meets James and makes her dreams come true. I don't like spoilers so I don't want to get too much into the book. Rick does an excellent job with the writing. There is a couple of descriptive sex scenes in the book. Rick wrote a wonderful love story between Katelyn and James.
James is a fascinating person. Very Mysterious in certain ways but a wonderful character who is so loving and caring. Lexi a great friend to Katelyn who faces a challenge in the book. This has to be one of my favorite books. I LOVE IT!!
The Master of Whitehall
Reviewer: Leslie Fear, The Indie Bookshelf
From the beginning, I realized quickly that this author wrote his story through the eyes of the female heroine, Katelyn; and I was intrigued. The book started out fairly solid and I was sincerely enjoying that unique perspective, alone.
This is an age old story of a young college woman, Katelyn, who is swept off her feet by a handsome and chivalrous vampire named, James. He can read her mind and speaks in a 19th century tone that immediately invites the reader in. James is also able to communicate to Katelyn telepathically and the love story that develops between these two is believable and quite enjoyable.
I will say the development of each character was rich and flowed nicely. I enjoyed the history Veal created and appreciated the fact that he took the time to research a specific era of time for each of them. Veal wrote a nice paranormal story and gently takes the reader on a simple yet enjoyable journey. The writing is well done and even steamy at times.
“Stands Above the Rest!!!”
Reviewer: Stephanie Beetham
This novel begins with the murder of Katelyn Corbin's parents, which ultimately lands her in Charleston, South Carolina. Unaware that she is surrounded by more than just traditional college students, Katelyn, along with her new found friend Lexi, unexpectedly meet a stranger that will forever change their existence. The gripping tale that follows, as Katelyn and Lexi are introduced to the paranormal world they had no idea coexisted with their own, is bound to have you "lusting" for more.
Each of the characters, beginning with Katelyn, are uniquely described and allow the reader to acutely visualize each one of them as a realistic person. This timeless story personifies a magnitude of emotions ranging from heartache, lust, revenge, and ultimately LOVE. This is no traditional vampire novel. It absolutely stands above the rest. The author cleverly blends the romantic genre with twists and turns of revenge and blood lust that will keep you on your toes until the very end.
As far as transcendental novels go, this is by far the most intriguing. The author effortlessly fuses the worlds of the mortal with the supernatural, while still making the storyline pleasantly believable. The reader is hooked from the very first sentence, and is enchanted until the very end. The people and places in this novel are so real, which is compelling in itself.I found myself wanting more every-time I tried putting it down. Fortunately, I was able to start on book two of the saga, 'Lexi's Legacy', to satisfy my "hunger" for more. I would highly recommend to anyone partial to vampire/romantic novels, to indulge in this saga. You won't regret it!
A Unique Novel
Reviewer: Mary Ann (R&M Fab Book Reviews)
I just finished The Master of Whitehall and was really surprised at how good this adaptation of the vampire story was. Katelyn is a lovely young woman who becomes a strong vampire with the loving assistance of James Dubois, the Master of Whitehall. The story drew me in, slowly at first, but then I found myself racing from page to page to learn more.
Mr. Veal has done a wonderful job in capturing the sensuality that makes most of us intrigued by vampire lore. There is a certain beauty in the creatures he portrays as well as in how he weaves history and humanity in to the tale as well. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel. I will confess that in my haste to learn more, I may have missed something, and now that I have finished the story, I intend to go back through it yet again, as I feel there is some small detail that may have escaped my attention.I am honored to have had the privilege to read such a unique novel. I can only hope to be able to read more from this amazingly talented author soon. I hope that you consider purchasing your copy of The Master of Whitehall. If you enjoy reading about vampires and are willing to let go of some of the common myths that surround these creatures, then I assure you, you are in for a literary treat. So, on that note, I wish you very happy reading indeed!
The Humans, Yet Vampires, at Whitehall
Reviewer: Doctor Barbara Ebel
This book captured my attention even though vampire stories aren't on my long TBR list. The skill here is that author Rick Veal writes Katelyn's story in the first person's point of view and pulls it off exceedingly well. You feel like Katelyn has curled up beside you as your best friend and is intimately sharing her present, past, and future unusual life circumstances. Enjoy the cool, vulnerable human beings who just happen to be vampires in The Master of Whitehall!
A Paranormal Romance – Charleston Style
Reviewer: Megan Broutain (meganblogs.com)
“I found myself looking up into the most intense, emerald green eyes I had ever seen. They were deep and inviting like a pool on a hot day. They actually twinkled as I found myself being drawn into their depths … so comforting, so mesmerizing … I wanted to just dive right into them. Just as suddenly they changed and I got the profound feeling that they were searching back, into the very depths of my soul. I literally shivered in my chair at their sudden coldness even though I was unable to look away.” Excerpt, page 27, “The Master of Whitehall”
The story opens with Katelyn in the throes of a recurring nightmare, the one she keeps having since she discovered the bloody, murdered bodies of her parents, the most horrific and devastating event in her life. After the tragedy and her move to Charleston, to resume her senior year in college while living close to her aunt and uncle, Katelyn is finally settling into a routine and finding a semblance of normalcy, making friends and planning her future, when she meets the mysterious and magnetic James, the Master of Whitehall.
The Master of Whitehall is the story of a friendship that transcends death, but mostly it’s the story of the love that blooms between Katelyn and James, despite seemingly insurmountable differences between them, namely the little matter of James being a … vampire.
To me, this was as time-honored a chick-lit as they come, even though it is essentially a paranormal romance. Yes, yes, he’s a vampire and she’s his Pygmalionesque love interest, there are some violence and story twists, but far more interestingly, this is a book written by a male author, in a first-person female character’s voice. Rick Veal got so under the skin of Katelyn, espoused her sensibilities so well, that I was totally blindsided by his gender. As I’ve previously stated, I love a story with detailed descriptions and lengthy analysis of nuances, so I was not at all thrown by the deliberate pace, though I can appreciate how some readers might. Also? This took me back to the Harlequin books I used to sneak-read when I was a teenager… ahhhh, good times!
This timeless story personifies a magnitude of emotions that range from heartache, lust, revenge, and ultimately LOVE. The author effortlessly fuses the worlds of the natural with the supernatural, while still making the storyline pleasantly believable. This is not a traditional vampire novel. It absolutely stands above the rest.
Stephanie Beetham – Reader/Reviewer
The eerie opening dream sequence in Veal’s novel creates a sexy inevitability. An enticing supernatural plot with an initially frisky pace …
… an intriguing vampire romance that captured my imagination, and is completely unique to any other stories I have read in the past.
Book Reviews by Lynn
… this book was awesome! It gives a totally new spin to vampires and what we typically expect from them. I definitely recommend The Master of Whitehall to anyone that loves YA or paranormal romance!
Mom of Two Book Reviews
What made The Master of Whitehall stand out was the attention to detail during the 'changing' between human and Vampire.
Loaded Shelves Blog
… a beautiful tale of the gift of love.
Mama’s Reading Break
… in every way a true love story. Although quite different from any other paranormal romance I have read, I enjoyed everything about this story.
Paranormal Romance Guild Review Team
… far more interestingly, is that this is a book written by a male author, in a first-person female character’s voice. The author got so under the skin of Katelyn, espoused her sensibilities so well, that I was totally blindsided by his gender.
A truly unique story … not your everyday vampire book … a refreshing change.
The Kainas Book Blog
The love between the two characters is simple and pure. I found myself captivated by the beautiful descriptions and world that the author has created.
Winter Haven Books
The author has done a wonderful job in capturing the sensuality that makes most of us intrigued by vampire lore. A real literary treat.
R&M Fab Book Reviews
I HAD to know what happened next. The story was that engaging. I even remember thinking that I would finish this one, and then I would be done, but now I have to read the next book. I grew to care about the characters, and they became real to me.
Christine Grey, Reader/Reviewer
“Great Vampire Story!”
Reviewer: Lynn Worton,
This is an intriguing vampire romance that captured my imagination, and is completely unique to any other stories I have read in the past.
Katelyn Corbin is a fantastic character. She has had to deal with the brutal murder of her parents, and a gut wrenching move to live with her Aunt and Uncle. She is vulnerable, but has an inner strength that she doesn't realize is there, until she meets James Dubois, the Master of Whitehall. I liked her character very much.
Alexis (Lexi) Gordon is Katelyn's new friend at college, and they get on very well. I was going to say like sisters, but these two don't seem to fight like I used to with mine! However, they have a fantastic camaraderie.
James Dubois is a fascinating character. Although he's a vampire, he is a quintessential gentleman. He is intrigued with Katelyn and her situation. He decides to get to know her better by inviting her to his plantation house, Whitehall.
This is a unique vampire romance. I loved the story, and found myself easily picturing the characters and the settings. I found myself not able to put the book down! Told from Katelyn's, Lexi's and James's point of view, this story swept me away! There are some other characters that are notable: Charlotte Ann, James's maker, and Dale, a rogue vampire that they meet. Each of these characters have their own story to tell, and it was interesting reading their back stories, and finding out their special talents.
As I reached the end of the story, I was struck at how the author had created a family that individually are strong, but together are extremely formidable.Rick Veal has written a heart-warming romance. I would be interested in reading more books by this author. There are some scenes of a sensual nature that are a little on the hot side, so I do not recommend this book for younger readers. I do recommend this book if you love paranormal romances with sexy vampires. - Lynn Worton
Some Editorial Comments From Our Readers and Reviewers
A Selection of Full Length Reader Reviews
A True Vampire Love Story
Reviewer: Michelle’s Book Ends
"My name is Katelyn Corbin, I'm twenty-one years old, and a senior in college - or I will be in a few hours when I get to school. The nightmare I was having was about the murder of my parents last April …"
This story opens with Katelyn wrapped in nightmares of her parent’s death. Murdered in their store in Atlanta, she is left trying to cope with this tragedy. Katelyn leaves to go stay with her aunt and uncle in Charleston South Carolina. It’s there she goes back to college. While meeting with her new friend Lexi, she meets a mysterious man ... James Thomas Dubois, The Master of Whitehall Manor.
She is interested in him, but overwhelmed by him and her current life. She's still grieving, still adjusting to this new life. After James invites Katelyn and Lexi to visit his splendid home their connection grows and still continues to confuse her. Uneasy feelings including a voice in her head that she can't figure out.
James and Katelyn come to an understanding. He can turn her into what he is … but it's now her choice. Will she become like James? He is a vampire after all. He offers her a new life. Can she make this change? Is she willing to die to become reborn as an immortal?
Such elegant and descriptive writing. The story makes you feel like you can see Whitehall Manor and the large oaks that line the drive. You can feel the words come to life. The author did a wonderful job capturing the female essence of Katelyn. Well written characters. A twist or two with a lovely backdrop.
Will Katelyn allow James to change her? Will the decisions divide them or bring them together? A modern day vampire story with touches of historical overtones. Set in a time and place that still feels like you're going back in time even to this day.
An opportunity arises for revenge. Will James let Katelyn take the reins or will he help her avenge her parent’s death? Bittersweet circumstances that Katelyn must face and more choices to be made. Now that a decision has been reached they must learn to live with these choices.
This is the kind of story that makes you wish vampires were real. Then again, how do we know they don't exist? Maybe the author is sharing his secrets with us. I really enjoyed this book. I love how it ended. I look forward to reading more in this series. It was a fun and entertaining book. I live in Louisiana, not far from New Orleans - surely if they exist I may be able to find one there?
"Then he stood, and reaching for my hand, I followed him off the veranda and into the darkness. The first thing I noticed was that the darkness...wasn't that dark anymore. I could clearly see the flowers in the garden, the backdrop of trees, and even hear the soft movement of the individual leaves as the breeze softly tickled them. I looked up and saw literally millions of stars filling the clear night sky like I had never seen before.”
A Bit More Gentle Vampire Story than Most
Reviewer: Douglas C. Meeks
Finished the The Master of Whitehall yesterday and enjoyed it a lot. The story is basically a love story within the "old vampire meets young girl of his dreams" type scenario which worked quite well. If I had known what I was getting into I might have approached it a bit different mentally since I kept waiting for the always present big "evil thing" to appear..... and it never does, quite a shock to many of us who have been reading bloody vampire novels for years. Those of us who have read the Elemental Mysteries cannot help but make comparisons to A Hidden Fire: Elemental Mysteries Book 1 but this novel while enjoyable never reaches the depth of character development in that story but does keep you interested enough to keep reading. At the end of the book you are a bit shocked to find you have been reading a book which is more about friendship and romance with only a touch of the violent world of PNR/UF vampires we have become accustomed to reading. In case I am being too vague I should mention there IS violence and killing but it is FAR from the main thrust of this book. I would have to give this a 4 Star rating and a recommendation of a good book to read when you have had too much of the normal sex and violence that most of our darker PNR/UF novels travel in, this one is more about the light. In reading the above I think I may have given the impression there is NO violence, not true, but it is not the thrust of this book and it is firmly set in the revenge/justice setting and I am very remiss in not saying you will LOVE the ending!