"Hear me Richard Whitcomb. I call you from beyond. I call you to journey from the Unsee to the Seen. By blood and magic I summon you. Arise, Richard. Arise. Come to me now."
Kimber Treat is a necromancer who works with the police to solve murders which might otherwise go unsolved. She reanimates the dead and is able to gain the answers to questions no other person could know. Sometimes gleaning the motives and name of the killer. Once information is acquired, the dead are laid to back to rest. Reanimations are not always pleasant or easy as sometimes the dead have a hard time remembering what happened or dealing with their demise. With her latest reanimation, Kimberly immediately senses something isn't right. She feels a surge of power course into her from the Unseen, the shadowy place where all life begins and ends. She senses John Whitcomb isn't the only one residing in his body. With some extra help and effort from the Medical Examiner's staff Richard permanently enters his eternal slumber, but not before one of the doctors is bitten. What no one realizes at the time, however, is the beginning of a zombie apocalypse had just been set into motion. The world as we knew it has just come to an end.
Awakening is an interesting new series, and I'm curious to see how it will evolve. From the first pages of the book, we get a first hand account of how the zombie apocalypse begins. Something in the Unseen is wrong and has brought darkness into the human realm via the reanimation of the dead. While a vampire can't become a zombie, no one is completely immune to the zombies. Vampires are the least vulnerable but can die a horrible death from whatever infects/possesses the zombies. Additionally, they are able to use their strength, agility and speed to their advantage. In a short period of time, the condition spreads as zombies bite and infect more people.
Kimber is put in a very difficult situation as Duncan, a vampire she's known for the past two years, tries to convince her to resurrect a vampire who's been dead for over a hundred years for the vampire Queen. Already knowing something isn't right with the Unseen and compounded with the fact reanimating someone who has been dead as long as Eduardo (the vampire Queen's mate) has been would not bring back the individual back as they once were, she refuses. Now Duncan will have to decide where his loyalties lie--with his Queen or with the woman who he feels strongly for and has let down in the past. He has a clear cut decision to make because most likely one will have to die.
Overall I gave this one 3 1/2 out of 5 roses. I enjoyed the book, but didn't feel we got to know the characters as well as I'd like. The mutual attraction is very strong and I wish we'd gotten to see it develop from the very first moment these two met, or at least got the full story of what originally happened. I kept wondering if this couple were somehow connected to Cynthia's other series, Warriors of the Rift, but after racking my brain I couldn't recall them. I'd love to see a prequel novella about how these two met and what happened. Perhaps we'll learn more in one of the next books? On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a SHOWER rating--a cold shower is necessary (need I say more?). Some books should come with a warning--make sure your significant other is handy or your shower is in working order. lol I felt the love scenes combined with the colorful language used had this one leaning toward an erotic read, but poised precariously on the fence.