It's Beta Club Day! On today's agenda, one of my favorite genres, paranormal romance. So, I hope you'll take the time to take a look and let the author know what you think.
For newbies: If you haven't been here on beta club day yet, don't be afraid to jump in with your comments. All feedback is welcome as long as it's constructive. And if anyone has an itch to be critiqued, the rules for submitting to the Beta Club are under the "Free Critiques" heading at the top of the page.
Alright, please read through the author's excerpt, then provide your feedback in the comments. My detailed critique is below.
Author: Mishi (check out her site here) Title: The Calling Genre: Paranormal Romance
Maire ran to the man who lay face down in a heaping mess before her, his head mass of blood and hair. “What do I do?” she gasped, kneeling down beside him. Then it hit her, “Cell phone! Iris, can you help him while we wait for an ambulance?” She asked, fingers fumbling in her purse for the tiny phone.
“Don’t worry about calling for help; it’s not needed,” the angel assured her, placing a finger on the vampire’s head. Instantly, the wounds began to close.
“Are you kidding me? Look at him!” The blood terrified her, “There’s no way he could survive that kind of a beating. You know how much damage a demon can do when they possess people.” Glancing again at his head, “Not that I’ve ever seen one up close and personal like that. There’s no way this guy will survive without some medical attention.”
“Should I try to move him, he can’t possibly be able to breathe like this.” She inched closer as Iris watched. “I will not to panic if his face is worse,” she whispered, reaching out to him. “I hope I don’t do more harm than good by doing this.”
“Oh thank God, he’s fine on this side!” She sighed. Reaching for a tissue, she muttered, “He’s a little pale and cold to the touch, but this is much better.” She reached for his jugular, trying to find his pulse, “His heart is beating too slow, should I perform CPR?’
Touya felt warm trembling fingers on his neck. The air was thick with the scent of human fear and flowers-irises-of all things. He felt energy beaming down on him; soft and pure as it pulsed against his skin-nothing like the energy of the demon he had been fighting. With fangs out, Touya sprang to a sitting position, and found himself staring into a young woman’s panic filled eyes.
“Iris, it’s another demon!” She cried and scrambled backwards.
Trying to get to his feet, Touya growled angrily, “Do not insult me, I’m no more a demon than you are!”
He looked around himself for the power that he felt, Where are they? Are they in the building waiting to gun me down? It doesn’t matter, I need blood and I need it now! He looked back to the man lying out of sight near the dumpsters. If I have to feed, it’s going to be on someone tainted by evil, and not this innocent woman. But she gets to watch for that demon crack.
Even in his weakened state, Touya moved faster than human eyes could follow, and with a sharp jerking motion, he had Mr. Baseball Cap in his grasp. The man moaned with the shock of being on his feet. “Stop complaining,” Touya grumbled, “I just took enough to get the demon out of you. You can complain when I’m done, because this will not be pleasant. Next time you’ll think twice before asking a demon to possess you.”
Rising to her feet, Maire walked over to him as he cradled the stranger in his arms.
“Oh God, you’re drinking his blood!” She gasped, her hands flying up to cover her mouth.
Touya stopped to look at her, “It’s how I heal. Sorry that it displeases,” he said, with an edge of sarcasm before returning to his business.
“Darn it, Iris! Why didn’t you tell me he was a vampire?” She looked behind her, her voice holding heavy with anger.
The angel was leaning against a wall with her arms crossed over her chest. Her tone dry, she asked, “Would you have believed it?”
“Considering that I talk to you on a constant basis, I think I could handle the information. What the hell do you think?”
“Oh calm down, sweetie, I was only playing it out the way I was told. I don’t write the dialog, I just deliver the lines.”
He bit his thumb and placed a drop of blood on the wound showing on the man’s neck. After seeing the marks vanish, and releasing the hold over the man’s mind, Touya let him fall to the ground. I need to get out of this alley and find someone else; this guy’s given me all he can. He looked down at his shirt, which was ruined, Home and shower…I won’t find anyone if I look like a mob hit!
He wiped his mouth, turning to the young woman, he glided towards her. “You didn’t see what happened here. You will go home and sleep…”
“Whoa, hold the Jedi Mind Tricks, I don’t think you can make me forget this,” her hands out in front of her as she backed away from him.
Stunned, Touya looked her over. “Your mind is too strong for you to be crazy. Maybe I was wrong about that.” He reached out with his mind and found silence. Flustered he asked, “Who the hell do you keep talking too?
Maire felt that old familiar panic creep into her voice,“Iris.” It was more of a plea than an answer, but Iris was more than happy to keep herself hidden from the vampire.
“Iris?” He spun his hand, gesturing her to continue.
Turning to face the angel, she cried out, “Come on, Iris, stop playing around!”
Iris shrugged, “I can’t help it, I’ve not been told to reveal myself.”
Marie threw up her hands and yelled, “Great, just great. Thanks God, thanks for making me look like a total nut again!”
“Well, at least you know you’re crazy.” He said with a harsh chuckle, picking up his sword. Moving towards his coat, “I would’ve liked to take some of the shock from your mind, but oh well…it’s not like anyone will believe you.”
She whirled to face him, “I’m not crazy. I was sent here to find you. I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do now, but I’ve got instructions to stick around. The salvation of your soul depends on it.”
Below is my detailed critique. Please select FULL SCREEN to view, then once the document is open RIGHT CLICK to ZOOM and view the comments. Alright, so what do you think? Are you hooked? What did the author do well? What things could be improved? Agree or disagree with my crit?
Thanks ahead of time to all of you who comment and thanks to the author for volunteering!