Notturno by Z.A. Maxfield

MLR Press

Contemporary Vampire (M/M)

ISBN: 978-1-60820-034-4; 978-1-60820-035-1

Reviewed by Sabella



Adin Tredeger lives what he believes is a perfect life. He is a tenured professor teaching something he loves, he gets paid to travel the world in search of historical erotica, and he has a date at every port.  Now, he has discovered the ultimate in historical erotica Ė a gay illustrated book that goes from racy to downright raunchy.  However, Adin canít shake the feeling that he is being stalked because he possesses this prized book. Following his suspicion, he switches the book with another and hides it.  His fears become true when he wakes up from his long flight from Frankfurt to LA in a slight fog and finds that his carry-on has been stolen.  But Adinís paranoia has paid off because he had hidden this invaluable book somewhere else.

When Adin crosses path with the same man that bewitched him on the plane in his hotel, he canít help but feel that the man and the missing briefcase are connected.  What Adin finds is something he never thought existed Ė vampires. And the book he irreverently referred to as historical porn is actually Donteís erotic personal journal. How will Adin survive repeated encounters with vampires and threats to his life?

Notturno is a complex, dark tale loaded with suspense and intrigue.  Adin is a childish character that has spent his life doing as he pleases with little consequence.  Now faced with the possibility of death and a mysterious lover that doesnít seem to return his attention, Adin seems to grow up and realize that life is more that a series of one-night stands.  Donte, the putative vampire of the book, is appropriately broody and melodramatic fitting well with all the pre-conceived ideas about vampires.  The romance angle is a little hard to buy as Donte and Adin spend little time together, but Adin spends quite some time reading the journal written by Donte centuries ago.  Also the suspense angle is built up to such a degree that itís almost a letdown when the intrigue is ďresolved,Ē yet several strings of the plot remained untied at the end.  All in all, Notturno is not the best work Iíve read by Z.A. Maxfield, which was disappointing, as I am a great fan and generally love everything Iíve read by Maxfield.


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