I thought I have read gothic novels before but I guess I was wrong.
This book has 2 short stories. One about a vampire and his sick wife and the other about a woman and her ex-lover who died and was "resurrected" in another person's body. Vampire & The Sick Lady
I liked Tom better than whatever-her-name-was. I think Tom the vampire was better drawn out as a character whereas the sick lady was......sick. Her condition was such a prominent theme that I had difficulties imagining her being anything else. I imagine a big selling point would be their romantic relationship but whenever I read about their intimate relationship I could not help but think: how is she supposed to survive passionate sexual act with her tuberculosis? She had trouble breathing and coughed often. I pictured her to be someone suffering from severe asthma and the practical person in me kept wondering: isn't this kind of dangerous???
In the end things turned toward the vampire theme where the sick lady was turned into another vampire and lived (by dying). All in all I enjoyed reading about Tom more than anything else. He was supposed to be older, somewhere near 40. He seemed mature and steady. I appreciated that. The Dead Man and his Ex-Lover
This is truly a morbid story where the hero was dead. Somehow someone put his soul/spirit into another man and he lived on as a bonekeepr, some kind of a grave guard. The heroine Lenore wanted to go on a ship and become some kind of a pirate where the catpain was woman? He proposed before he died and the woman turned him down (I don't understand why?) He died and finally they met again when her father passed away. But of course she did not recognized him. So the story began: should I tell her or not? No I cannot tell her.
Again the hero in this book outshined the heroine in my eyes. I could not quite see the heroine as a character. The way she was written did not endear her to me whereas I felt I knew the hero and his POV better.
I have a feeling that romance is only one of the themes in these books. I am always more curious about how the writers would depict the relationships than anything else. These 2 books while being successful in creating alternative worlds, did not capture my heart. But as gothic novels they have captured my attention.
My final point, is the same for all the short stories I read: they are just not long enough for me. I feel that I did not know the characters enough to read about their sex life. lol If ever there is such a thing. In the end I went with 2 stars because 2 stars meant "it was ok" and that is exactly how I feel about them.