Book Reviews

Eternal Samurai by B.D. Heywood at ICINI Publishing

Genre Gay / Futuristic / Paranormal / Vampires / Romance / Yaoi/Manga
Reviewed by Alex on 29-June-2013

Book Blurb

Tatsu Kurosaki Cobb, the last of an ancient samurai house, will not stop until he takes the head of the vampire that butchered his family. But his vow of revenge means he gives up on any hope for that once-and-forever love. Then he crosses swords with Saito Arisada, second-in-command of Seattle’s vampires and the most beautiful creature Tatsu has ever seen. The sexual chemistry between them is pure, hard, and undeniable. Unable to accept Arisada might be the killer, Tatsu begins a dangerous game. A game driven by the all-consuming thirst for blood that will force them to the extremes of love and hate.

Fukushu, vengeance. It is all that has sustained Saito Arisada for eight-hundred years. Sohei monk turned vampire, he has searched for the returned soul of his lover who betrayed him and the Temple of Mii-dera. Arisada believes in only one thing—taking the head of the traitor. Yet, when Arisada sees that soul shining from Tatsu’s emerald eyes, his hatred shatters. He wants Tatsu in his arms and in his bed and in his heart. But Arisada’s samurai code of honor demands nothing less than Tatsu’s death. How can Arisada kill his unmei no hito—his soulmate?

From a bloody battlefield of feudal Japan to a world where humans and vampires fight for survival, Arisada and Tatsu must choose. At stake is not only love but honor.

Warning: The book contains sexually explicit scenes, violence and adult language that may be considered offensive to some readers. This book is for sale to adults only.


Book Review

A visceral torrent of delicious prose mixed with intoxicating, smoky sensuality of the best kind, I absolutely adored this sweeping action-packed romance of “a love that cannot be,” between two oath-bound martial artists.

Saito Arisada, a 800-year-old vampire warrior monk, clings to his last vestige of humanity and remains among the living only to seek the reincarnated soul of his former lover and betrayer, Koji Nowaki. On the eve of his human death, Saito made a sworn oath to find his betrayer’s soul in its new body and slay him. Tatsu Cobb, a samurai-trained, motorcycle-riding young human, is on a quest to find and exact vengeance upon his sworn enemy, the vampire who slaughtered his entire family. Each of these two men hold the key to the other’s oath, but their all consuming love pits them against each other and their inner selves as they struggle to embrace both vengeance and love, in a time when humanity and vampires are enemies.

From its opening line to its heartrending and exquisite end, I was hard pressed to put this book down, but at 361 rip-roaring, action-packed pages, I was forced to read it over a series of days as I do work for a living.

So, let’s see: I’m going go out on a limb and say that for me, the story reads like the best Japanese vampire/science fiction, action anime or manga ever. The fact that it has a yaoi edge added a cherry to the top of this beyond magnanimous, gritty, and captivating love story. Yaoi fans, think Ai no Kusabi with sword-fighting and vampires; yeah, that great a love. The author has an amazing gift for creating descriptive pathos and atmosphere with a primal rhythm, lyrical style, and flexible restraint, which I have only previously found in music and dance. Equally balanced between, grimness, formality, beauty, and fierceness, I daresay everyone will find much to love between these pages; the book is rich fodder for the imagination.

Lovely and poignant flashback passages sent me to the Buddhist temple of Mii-dera in Nippon, Japan to inhale the background story of the beautiful warrior monk, Saito, and his exquisite, ambitious lover, Koji. Equally riveting passages had me inhabiting a young Tatsu as he navigated the steamy waters of first love with the handsome, virile Native American, Sage, who released him upon realizing Tatsu’s destiny. More poetic and aesthetic prose revealed the background of the story’s villain, Sadomori, and shed a luminous, heartfelt light on how love and betrayal can haunt, twist, and deepen to vile hatred and raw evil in the span of a moment.

All of my senses were fully engaged as I inhabited the body of each character introduced, leaping, slicing, biting, and meditating in turn, and I happily wallowed in stench, decay and fecal matter, to traverse the glorious terrain of Earth in 2024. But for me, the true beauty of this novel, was in the incandescent emotional portrait of the once in a life time love between Tatsu and Saito. The ethereal atmospheric passages of their sword fights, and their angst-ridden emotions as they struggled to contain their yearning for a love that cannot be, were mind blowing. I greatly admire the fierce dedication the author had in bringing these two charismatic figures to life. I want more: more books, a film, and an anime series…and some balljoint action figures. Yeah, it’s that good. Run, don’t walk, to get your copy now, apparently a sequel is in the works; I for one will be eagerly awaiting it.

Thank you, B.D. Heywood, for this incredible story that touched me deeply and more than fulfilled the promise its initial pages held. In a word “Powerful!”





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Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 356 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 15-January-2013
Price $4.99 ebook, $12.99 paperback
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