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The Greyfriar (Vampire Empire, Book 1) by…
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The Greyfriar (Vampire Empire, Book 1) (edition 2010)

by Clay Griffith, Susan Griffith

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3084036,210 (3.94)17
Member:kayceel
Title:The Greyfriar (Vampire Empire, Book 1)
Authors:Clay Griffith
Other authors:Susan Griffith
Info:Pyr (2010), Edition: 1, Paperback, 301 pages
Collections:Adult, Read but unowned
Rating:****
Tags:audiobook, vampires, fiction, fantasy, 2012, war, steampunk, strong women

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The Greyfriar by Clay Griffith

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» See also 17 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
The Greyfriar occurs in the future, but, as is typically the case in such post-catastrophe scenarios, life for humans is anything but modern and computerized. The vampire attacks left humans with nothing, and the only technology humans have been able to harness is steam power. Thus enters the steampunk aspect of the narrative.

The vampires are an interesting blend of myth and new creation. These vampires drink blood and survive by subjugating humans to their will. However, rather than the mythical undead, these vampires are nothing more than a subspecies of human, a parasite that exists because humans exist. There is even some question whether they are truly evil or simply selfish in their needs. This aspect of the story raises a lot of questions about origins of species all of which are unfortunately left unanswered at the end of the novel.

Most, if not all, of the characters are little more than caricatures. Adele is the not-so-hapless princess gifted with great but as yet unknown powers. Her fiancé is a braggart, the proverbial bull in the china shop and utterly incapable of nuanced thinking. There is the ineffective king and his manipulators, two kings in fact. Then, we have the one character with the potential to change everything, with Adele’s help of course. None of these characters evolve overly much, which is a shame because character development would be one way to improve the story.

James Marsters, as always, is impeccable as the narrator. He brings with him his talent for voices and uses it with maximum effect to differentiate the characters. In fact, the characters come alive under his ministrations. He captures their emotions and unspoken motivations even when there is none called out in the narrative. He takes the time to understand the characters and this care shows in the three-dimensional quality of his narration. Mr. Marsters is a natural storyteller, and any audiobook he narrates automatically improves as a result.

In fact, it is Mr. Marsters’ narration which saves the story from becoming pure drivel. Without his added emotional depth, the story would falter from melodrama and weak characters. In many ways, the story is nothing more than a steampunk spaghetti western with vampires, which is only a good thing if one likes that those genres. The narrative hodgepodge also draws on too many modern vampire clichés to be truly unique. These vampires do not sparkle, but one still manages to fall in love with a human and vice versa. The Griffiths get points for creativity, but in the end, The Greyfriar is still just a mediocre amalgam of genres and literary devices that provides nothing but superficial and highly predictable entertainment.
  jmchshannon | Sep 5, 2014 |
A book that didn't suck. ^_^ ( )
  JennyJen | Aug 14, 2014 |
Vampire Empire, Book One: The Greyfriar is a mix of paranormal, steampunk, and post-apocalyptic life. We are introduced to many of the key players that one can assume we will continue to see. Princess Adele, Greyfriar, Senator Clark, and one nasty vampire Prince who is set to take the throne as well as the whole world.


You see, back in 1870 the vampires let themselves be known to all of mankind. In a well developed and plotted sweep that lasted only two years, the vampires undid the human world. Cities as we know them fell to their hands, and the people fled south to regroup. Now, in 2020, humans have been rebuilding, strengthening, and waiting for the day to start a major war against the vampires.


One of the largest nations is the massive Empire Equartoria to which the Princess Adele is the rightful heir. When she is sent out on a mission tour, her air ship as well as the accompanying ships, are attacked by Prince Cesare the heir of the vampire clan in England. While his right hand woman, Flay, tries to secure the Princess, a mysterious man appears out of nowhere to save the day.


Greyfriar comes to the rescue of the Princess, and tries to keep her safe. He wears a mask over his face to cover his identity, and he's armed to the hilt with guns and swords. Princess Adele feels safe by his side, but she has no idea of the deep secrets he hides. The clandestine mask he wears is only the sheer beginning of who, or what, this man is.


Will the Princess and Greyfriar thwart the plans of the twisted vampire Prince? Can Adele accept what lies behind the mask? Tsk, Tsk... You will have to read it to find out!


I had a good feeling about this story just from the cover. It is such a lovely cover, really. Air ships, a good looking duo, dressed to kill – literally kill! But then I opened up the book, and found myself enthralled with the story presented to me. Each page is filled with conflict, action, mystery or suspense that kept me hanging onto to every word.


I think the characters are highly developed, and I loved the word painted scenery of desolate Europe. I enjoyed the descriptions of the steam powered ships, as well as the other little knick knacks here and there. If it weren't for the vampires, I wouldn't of minded living there.


Then there was the end, and my heart sank just a little bit. Then I remembered, “Hey, this is only the FIRST book!” I am really looking forward to the next part of the series. If you're thing to read is alternate history, steampunk, or action than pick this one up for a downright good read. ( )
  AuthorRaeZRyans | May 24, 2014 |
Believe the hype. I could stop here but I'll explain. The writing is superbly strong, Adele our heroine is an amazing girl to look up to, the world is rich and interesting to explore, the romance is realistic, well-developed and engaging. Minor characters are given more than two lines and their characterization is a stroke of genius. This book has some of the most well-written relationships I've ever come across - Adele and her brother Simon's relationship is spot on and endearing, the authors are incredibly warm and generous and it shows in the characters they create. I loved this book. ( )
  RubyScarlett | Nov 11, 2013 |
3.5 stars ( )
  mearias | Sep 23, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Griffith, Clayprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Griffith, Susanmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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In 1870, vampires took over the northern regions of the world, forcing the surviving humans to flee to the southern hemisphere. Now the year is 2020 and Princess Adele, a human, is on the verge of coming to power just as a final war with the vampires is approaching.… (more)

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