From the Ashes by K.L. Kerr

From the Ashes by K. L. Kerr(Cover picture courtesy of K. L. Kerr’s website.)

For a simple eternity, all Michael Roman has to do is let it all go: the mystery surrounding his maker’s murder, the memory of his mortal life, and the basic idea that killing is wrong.

“From the Ashes” chronicles Michael’s early vampire life spent fighting on the Tournament circuit and falling for another vampire’s familiar.

This is a Blood of Ages Companion Novel. It can be read independently of or in addition to the Blood of Ages series by K.L. Kerr; if reading as part of the series, it is advised to read at any point after “The Genesis (Blood of Ages, #1)”.

[Full disclosure: I received a free ebook copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]

In The Genesis we got to see Fox through the eyes of another person.  But in some ways I actually like the companion novel From the Ashes even better because we get to see Michael’s evolution from regular guy to Fox, the toughened Tournament fighter.

The plot is not exactly fast-paced in the beginning because it focuses more on Michael’s character and his transformation to a vampire.  Of course in the beginning he has no idea he’s a vampire until the mysterious Vincent rescues him from a police officer determined to turn him in to the ACA.  After that the plot is a little slow while Michael gains his bearings in this terrifying new world of vampires.  But then the plot starts to pick up when Vincent decides it’s time Michael became useful and throws him into the Tournaments to prove his fighting capabilities.

It’s there that poor Michael meets Amy, who is the familiar of Chino, the Tournament organizer.  Falling for another vampire’s familiar isn’t exactly the greatest thing to do and it explains why Michael is so distant toward Catrina in The Genesis.  Sometimes companion novels or novellas don’t really add any backstory or greater understanding of the world of the original novels, but this is certainly not the case with From the Ashes.

Sure, I suppose you could read From the Ashes before you read The Genesis, but then The Genesis won’t be nearly as awesome if you already know Fox’s tragic backstory.  I don’t think reading From the Ashes will be required to understand the second book in Blood of Ages, but it certainly gives Fox and Dayson city a lot more depth.  If you loved the first book, I highly recommend reading this companion novel.

I give this book 5/5 stars.

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