Quincie P. Morris is busy these days trying to get her uncle's vampire-themed restaurant Sanguini's to successfully open, though things have been complicated by the murder of their chef Vinnie (possibly by a werewolf) and by the fact that her werewolf best friend Kieran doesn't get her not-too-subtle hints about liking him. Soon, she has to transform the restaurant's new chef Brad into a vampire sexpot who will lure in customers while her uncle and the police keep getting in the way of her relationship with Kieran.
Despite the cover, Tantalize is much more like the Charlaine Harris type of vampire book rather than Meyers' Twilight series, and Quincie's voice was funny and made the book a fast read. And though the main character isn't POC, Kieran is half-Latino, half-Irish, and the surrounding cast has several POC in the sidelines.
I figured out the central mystery right away, although I didn't get all the plot points down, and the most interesting part to me was how the book details Quincie's growing investment in the restaurant and what that bodes for her personal life. The ending is a little too rushed; I could have used at least one more chapter to figure out how everything ended up and to tie up more loose ends, but all in all, it's a good debut into the paranormal YA genre for Smith. I'm very much hoping that her next book is even better, and glad to find another POC author writing in one of my favorite subgenres.
- buymeaclue's review