Saturday, March 6, 2010

Once Bitten by Kalayna Price

Book Details
Once Bitten by Kalayna Price
Paperback, 272 pages
2009, Bell Bridge Books
ISBN: 0980245397
Series: Book 1 of The Haven

Kita Nekai, on the run and the smallest of her shifter clan-a calico cat among lions and tigers-is being hunted. She was expected to accept her role as her father's successor whether or not her cat was up to the task of leading the clan. She disagreed. Now she's less than a step ahead of the hunters, bone-tired, cold, and living hand-to-mouth in the city of Haven. And that's the high point of her day. She's also drugged, "accidentally" turned into a vampire, and sentenced to death for recklessly creating a rogue shifter who tortures its human prey. She's got seventy-two hours to find the rogue, evade a city full of hunters, prove she's not responsible for the rogue, and keep the vampire council from killing her. All while sorting out an apprentice mage, a married ex-boyfriend shifter-hunter, and the vampire who made her.

Once Bitten turns the shapeshifter genre into something brand new. The origins of shapeshifters are explained in a way that is surprising, yet somehow logical. The focus is on the spiritual, the soul, and gives the definition of shapeshifters being dual-natured a slightly different meaning than is normally seen.

There are many supernatural types featured in this book. Shapeshifters of all flavors, demons, magic-users, vampires are all strongly focused on with the possibility of others lurking in the shadows. It is becoming more common to find series with many different creature, yet Kalayna Price has managed to differentiate the world she's created from the others. She gives enough information for the reader to fully grasp the types without inundating them with unnecessary lore that can become cumbersome in large quantities.

What happens when a shapeshifter is made into a vampire? At this point, we just don't know and neither do the characters. We do see enough to know that we'll learn eventually and that it's going to be knowledge painfully acquired.

Once Bitten contains an absolutely fantastic take on a vampire council that I could not have loved more. If you're going to have a vampire community, you know a council is inevitable. The four vampires briefly shown in Once Bitten are each so distinct that they could each carry a series all there own.

Kita has issues with just about everything but it fits the story and what we learn of her past and personality. The name fits the character in its sound, uniqueness and beauty. She's strong and weak, scared and fearless. She's real and human without ever being human at all.

This is a series to keep your eye on. It has the potential to to be listed among the best and brightest of the genre. Kalayna Price has created something truly spectacular here.


Kalayna Price's


  1. I've never heard of this author ever! Thanks for the heads up!

  2. This book sounds pretty great! Just added it to my 'to read' list! Thanks!

  3. At first this sounded a lot like Shifters by Rachel Vincent (which I would recommend). However, after reading your review I think it sounds different enough to give a try. Thanks!

    Tara SG -

  4. Great review! I have this one on my Kindle. I'm looking forward to reading it. I'm hesitant to try new authors sometimes. Your review might be the push I need :)

  5. This one looks great, it's on my TBR.
    I found you on the Book Blogger Hop.
    Here's where you can find my blog and contest.
    P.S. I love your shot glass rating system!

  6. I really, really enjoyed this book as well and I'm looking forward to reading the second in the series. I have it on my laptop but I'm really wishing I had a Kindle or Nook for it!

  7. O thanks for the review. I have this one on my kindle and haven't tried it yet :)