What happens when a determined werewolf and a skeptical vampire join forces at the request of an aging friend? Will they succeed in finding a way to rid themselves of their respective curses in spite of their natural hatred for each other or will they suffer at the hands of a radical and evil stem cell researcher who wants the fame and immortality he believes their blood will give him? 

"Spunky heroes.....crisp storytelling.....the straightforward prose, vivid action and moral crises of our favorite monsters will enthrall audiences...." -W.D. Gagliani (author, Wolf's Trap) for Horror World "Sue has a gift of bringing her characters to life, drawing the reader in to experience every emotion and scenery..." MaryAnn Boo British Fantasy Society Reviewer

Reviews - Editorial and Otherwise


. . .so compelling, and the stakes so high, it’s hard to put the book down . . . original and engaging. -- AurealisXpress - Val Clark

I couldn’t put it down. Getting inside her character's heads is just one reward you’ll receive in reading "Never Ceese." -- Jackson Free Press, April 19, 2006

From the Author

Sue Dent began publishing in 2005 by self-publishing her debut novel Never Ceese, the first in her Thirsting for Blood Series, after working with professional editor Arlene Robinson. In 2006 Dent secured a traditional publisher. That same year, Never Ceese made the Bram Stoker preliminary ballot for Superior Achievement in a First Novel.

"I highly recommend it and I can't recommend it enough!" wrote Nicholas Grabowsky author of Halloween IV who invited Dent to join him as a guest at the World Horror Convention in Toronto Canada.

A review by horror author W. D. Gagliani of Wolf's Trap appeared at who likened Dent's vampire and werewolf to the characters Felix and Oscar of the television sitcom the Odd Couple by writing, "Can a persnickety vampire and an uncouth werewolf share a Welsh castle without driving each other crazy?" (Cue pipe organ version of The Odd Couple theme.)

And even New York Times Best Selling author and author of Fireproof, Eric Wilson chimed in with a four star review solidifying rumors that Dent's work appealed to readers from a very closed and exclusive market--the evangelical Christian audience. And to drive that point home, without any indication that an award was eminent, Never Ceese was voted #1 Christian Horror at over authors who in fact write for that audience such as Ted Dekker and Frank Peretti.

Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Wanted it to Never Ceese!May 15, 2008
M. C. Pearson (Morganton, NC) 

At first? Reluctant. Next? Intrigued. By the second page? Thoroughly engaged. Sue has brought the urban mythos of vampires and werewolves to the spiritual plane. She causes her readers to delve into tragedy while hoping for redemption. Bravo! I eagerly await the promised sequel.

5.0 out of 5 stars Obsessively Readable!December 3, 2007

Richard has been cursed so long he can't even remember his life before he became a vampire. He spends his days with his long time friend, Penny, in his luxurious castle in Britain. Richard's world is forever changed when a young werewolf named Ceese arrives at his door claiming to be old friends with Penny. Ceese has also carried her curse for ages and she wants nothing more to be rid of it once and for all. Richard has long ago given up hope of ever being free from his curse and Ceese must convince him to hope again. Now vampire and werewolf must work together to discover a cure for the immortal curse that binds them both.

Sue Dent has done what few have dared to try, mixing elements of vampire and werewolf lore with themes of faith and spirituality. The result is an intriguing and exciting piece of fiction that is obsessively readable and entertaining on every level. Richard and Ceese are cleverly crafted characters who face insurmountable odds in their quest for redemption. Dent adds to the richness of the story by giving equal balance to both werewolf and vampire mythology. Many of these elements were familiar to me, with a few surprises that only added to the mystique of each character. The incorporation of faith is never forced and fits seamlessly into the storyline, making the messages of sacrifice and redemption that much more powerful in the end.

Never Ceese was a pleasant surprise to me and if it wasn't for Eric Wilson's Amazon review, I never would have picked it up. It's a shame that major CBA publishers aren't willing to pursue more "outside the box" fiction like Never Ceese. I'm glad to know there are publishers out there (like Writers' Cafe Press) who are willing to give these types of stories the recognition they deserve. I can't wait to sink my teeth into the sequel, Forever Richard.

5.0 out of 5 stars Never Ceese Is Ever Dazzling September 14, 2007
Catherine Hassan (Cincinnati, OH USA) 

I just finished reading Sue Dent's tale of Never Ceese. I think the other reviews have already covered just about everything that can be revealed without giving too much away, so I will have to be satisfied in saying I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Normally, I am not one to read about vampires and werewolves; not my cup of tea. Other people, however, gave rave reviews that had me very curious. I was suspicious, but Ms. Dent has successfully blended the creatures of horror stories with sound Biblical principles. It teaches about faith and love without being preachy. Much of the subject matter is dead serious (forgive the pun), but Ms. Dent has included plenty of comic relief. Really, I love her offbeat sense of humor. I read it rather quickly since I couldn't put it down for long.

5.0 out of 5 stars Never Ceese ... Horror has found a new light! April 8, 2007

Sue Dent changes and clarifies the horror of the Werewolf and the Vampire!

In a well told tale, she reveals the evil behind the curses that have stolen the humanity of two tortured souls. This is a book that I recommend to the reader who is fed-up with the same drivel that has plagued the horror genre for years! Sue Dent has pushed aside the evil hero and revealed the tortured and damned souls of those cursed with Lycanthropy and Vampyrism!

As we are led through the lives of these very real characters we feel the heartache and the lure the curses promise if they partake of human flesh and blood. We also see that the truth of their feeding, it is murder and human blood will stain their souls and seal the curse!

Sue shows the light and how the Blood that was shed on the Cross can break the curse, if they'd only believe!

I recommend this book highly!

5.0 out of 5 stars Never Ceese, by Sue DentDecember 5, 2006
Kevin Lucia "Author" (Castle Creek, NY)

Werewolves and Vampires....oh my!

Centuries ago, two unfortunates were wronged in the worst way imaginable; they were cursed by evil forces they did not bring down upon themselves. One was made a vampire, a creature of the night, forced to find sustenance on the life-blood of others, and subject to whims and passions never meant for humankind to experience. The other was bitten by the wolf, and is now a prisoner to the wild beat of nature, running with the pack, lost in the primitive uproar of instinct and survival.

Perhaps worst of all: they are cursed to live with near immortality, to walk the face of the earth while those they love die, and if they do die while still in the grip of the curse; by either a silver bullet or a wooden stake, they will forever miss the chance of an eternity in heaven with those they love and care for.

They have one chance, as this unlikely pair is drawn together by unseen forces, to reclaim their mortality and a chance to pursue a normal life, a chance to go home to heaven when they die, and it lies buried in a riddle cryptic as it is contradictory, Two wrongs make a right. Richard, the cynical, sarcastic vampire and Ceese, a culturally naive werewolf inexperienced in the ways of human beings, leave the comforts of home and the wild behind as they travel from England to New York in search of the one thing they desire more than anything: an end to their curse.

However, working behind the scenes are forces that want them for other reasons, and none of them altruistic. As Richard and Ceese struggle to loosen the bonds on their souls, someone else lusts after what they have: immortality, power...and will stop at nothing until they have it for themselves.

In her first novel, Sue Dent has crafted an intriguing mix of two genres yet thought exclusive; Christian faith-based fiction and dark, noir-fantasy, and it comes off well. The key difference between her novel and others revolving around vampires and werewolves is its focus: Dent focuses on that which our two protagonists want most, an end to the curse and chance for a restored relationship with all that is good and holy, and not on the aspects of the curses themselves. However, her touch is light here: it is not a Sunday school lesson with a pretty red bow at the end; it is a story about enduring faith and love.

Richard is hopelessly sarcastic and cynical, evoking images of Tom Cruise's blond haired and egotistical Lestat, and Dent portrays Ceese as a poignant picture of what faith can do even in the thrall of the curse that damns her. Never Ceese is also rife with cultural humor and satire, and though the reader treads the dark streets of film noir and intrigue, they will find themselves chuckling out-loud just as many times as they shiver.

Ceese ends with surprising plot-twists that work well but perhaps could have been hidden a little better, and it may have a theological "bump under the rug" here and there - but who cares? It is a work of fiction, and a creatively imaginative one at that. The novel also successful wraps up the narrative while leaving a nice hook for its sequel Forever Richard.

5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!!June 24, 2006
Marybridget Lambert

Ok, I finished the book and all I can say is WOW. Well I can say more than that but really WOW. It came yesterday and I finished it last night. I couldnt put it down! Never Ceese may be one of the greatest werewolf/vampire sagas of all time. The story pulled me in, and wouldnt let go until I'd read the last word. It proves that monsters aren't always the bad guys, and that faith can help you through even the most supernatural of circumstances. Ending with a suspenseful cliffhanger, it left me begging for more. Bravo!

5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Christian Speculative Fiction!January 13, 2008
Deena Peterson "The Deena" (Marysville, CA)

"Never Ceese" is the tale of a vampire and a werewolf who seek what we all seek deep down in our souls...redemption. Both were cursed unwillingly, and both have fought all their VERY long lives to never pass on that curse to another, but to cling to their beliefs that were ingrained in them as children.

Ceese finds herself lured to the castle of Penelope and Richard against her will, not certain what she will find once she arrives there. Richard isn't fond of visitors of any kind, and especially not visitors of Ceese's nature.

But Penelope persuades them both to accept one another and that they can help the other break the curse that binds them, thus giving them the ability to choose their own final destiny.

I know it sounds so far fetched that two of the most unimaginable creatures and most make-believe beings could have such strong desire for the things of God...but believe me, IT WORKS! And it makes the lure of God's redemption all the more powerful to see it played out in a work such as "Never Ceese".

This book will stretch your imagination to its farthest reaches, and almost make you believe...but not quite, because believing in something Sue writes so well is just, well, not something I find myself wanting to do!!

I'm giving "Never Ceese" five out of five bookmarks, with a tiny cross as a charm...because that is where our destiny changes, no matter who we are or where we're from. It all starts and ends at Calvary.

Happy Reading!


5.0 out of 5 stars A fast-paced, exciting, and enjoyable readApril 9, 2007
Rachelle A.C.Y. (Philippines)


Never Ceese breathes some new life into the classic urban fantasy werewolf/vampire genre, synthesizing paranormal and Christian fiction to create a YA-spiritual fantasy that does not only entertain and delight but also mystify the mind and stir the soul.

Sue Dent has brought Christian fantasy to a whole new level in her debut novel, Never Ceese. Humorous, but refreshingly defiant, the story is elaborately played out through flashbacks and narratives with excellent dialogue that almost feels like a movie on its own. With an intriguing and well-researched historical/scientific extrapolation, the story explores spiritual concepts without bogging the reader down in endless detail. One-dimensional folkloric beings are skillfully recreated into realistic three-dimensional characters that the reader cannot help but sympathize with. The plot line, on the other hand, twists and turns, with evil plans, double crosses and plenty of back stabbing between humans, vampires and werewolves.

From the character interactions, to the adventure and plot line, to the emotional roller coaster of Richard, Ceese, Penelope, and Cassie, Never Ceese is a sure winner! If you haven't read a horror vampire/werewolf story, this is a great book to start with and if you've read plenty in this genre, this would definitely make it to your keeper shelf.

5.0 out of 5 stars Yes they can...November 28, 2006
Kris St. James "Soli Deo Gloria" (USA) 

Fellow Southern author Sue Dent's first book Never Ceese is a story about a werewolf named Cecelia and a vampire named Richard. So far, so good. These are your typical, classical horror characters who live for the night and are prone to feast on the flesh of others. People you can rely on. And she doesn't deviate from the myth and lore that surround them. Well, not much.

The story begins as the vampire Richard encounters an unwanted guest in his English manor. A nosy neighbor is suspicious that Richard is the cause behind the mysterious disappearance of his goats and nearly catches him in the act, if it weren't for the visiting werewolves in the area. Enter Ceese, the young werewolf maiden who's arrived via invitation by Richard's aging companion, Penelope.

The two immediately do not get along and would, but for their adoration of Penelope, have torn each other to shreds. But, there is more at work here than the mere gathering of mythical immortals. Penelope is dying and she has one last request for her dearest friends: love one another.

This is the overall theme throughout Dent's interesting tale of "two who were wronged", who eventually--painfully--learn to work together to solve another mystery and defeat another monster unknown to them all, an evil geneticist who seeks the answer to immortal life through researching--and hunting--mythical creatures like vampires and werewolves. He will stop at nothing to succeed.

Dent's characters do differ from the stock one's we're all accustomed to in a very important way. They are not mindless, brutal killers. Bloodthirsty, yes, but they are constantly resisting the urge to kill, and, thus, curse another human. Feeding on rodents, goats, virtually any warm-blooded animal helps to satiate the never ending thirst for blood, but how long will they be able to resist that most delicious morsel man? There is a chance that their curses can actually be lifted if they can find the strength within to resist their selfish natures and act selflessly toward another. Will they succeed? That same basic choice lies before us all every day...

Sue Dent hails from Mississippi and her Southern knack for good story tellin' shines through brightly. The story is geared more for a teen audience, but I found it a fun read. The pace was exciting as the relationship between these two creatures began to develop from sheer hatred to tolerance to true devotion and Well, you'll have to judge for yourself, as there is more to Ceese and Richard than you may think. The action is almost cinematic and the dialog very engaging. I felt I knew the characters as the story progressed and I believe teens everywhere will identify with them as well. I found myself racing ahead in my mind as I tried to piece the mystery of their strange connection together as well as eager to see how they would work their way out of a hopeless situation.

But the best aspect of Never Ceese is the message of hope. If two cursed humans can find a solution that removes their torment, then perhaps that same hope is available to us? Perhaps there is a way out of the self-indulgent, self-centered existence we all find ourselves cursed by. Never Ceese will certainly entertain you as well as challenge you and I believe it will make a welcomed addition to any reader's bookshelf.

5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome, Must Read, Book!June 27, 2006
Brook Phelps "Matt5verse6" (California, USA) 

Sue Dent brings together two icons in the fantasy world with her "visual" writing in "Never Ceese"! As a big fan of movies and writing like that of J.K. Rowling and now Sue Dent, I was swept up by the story of Cecilia "Ceese" Collette Porter and carried away on a journey to discover the mystery behind being cursed as a werewolf and how to break it. Dent wastes no time telling the story and readers hit the ground running as early as the prologue! But the werewolf curse is only the beginning!

Ceese travels to reunite with her friend Penelope Cromwell who has the key to breaking her curse. While with Penelope, Ceese meets the Vampire Richard Bastone and soon finds she has a connection to him beyond that of Penelope and their curses. But before the curses can be broken Penelope is gone from their lives! A mystery, adventure, love story ignites as Ceese and Richard travel to New York and team up with Cassie (Penelope's granddaughter) and Rodney who are left to pick up the pieces where Penelope left off.

I found myself running with the characters, dodging to escape the villain Henderson all the while experiencing the upside down world of being a vampire and werewolf, and trying to find the remaining clue to breaking the curse of the undead. Oh yeah, and did I mention romance? I loved "Never Ceese" and anxiously await the sequel entitled "Forever Richard" (as the handsome, mysterious Richard is my favorite character of course)!

"Never Ceese" is truly a MUST READ book!

5.0 out of 5 stars Never Ceese ~ A message of hope and love!June 27, 2006
Rita Garcia "Dr. Rita" (Chino Hills, CA)

Sue Dent is a new kid on the block, but she is destined to be the most popular. Her first novel, Never Ceese, will captivate you from the first page. Her characters jump right off the page, making you laugh, cry, and worry for their safety, and we're talking vampires and werewolves! Combined with her message of hope and love makes, Never Ceese, one of the best novels of our time. Get to writing Sue. I really need to read the sequel, Forever Richard.

Rita Garcia

5.0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC!June 25, 2006
Rebekah Depp "Becky" (Crumpton, MD USA) 
This book was just amazing! Fantastic! Incredible! I absolutely loved it and I couldn't put it down! Sue Dent is a incredible author and did a fantastic job on this book...Now I have to wait patiently for "Forever Richard" to be released!


5.0 out of 5 stars Realistic vampire & werewolf story, great stuffMarch 22, 2012
K. Sozaeva "Obsessive bibliophile" (Athens, GA USA)

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book through a giveaway. No stipulations were placed upon my receipt of the book, but I feel an honest review is appropriate in exchange.

Synopsis: What happens when a determined werewolf and a skeptical vampire join forces at the request of an aging friend? Will they succeed in finding a way to rid themselves of their respective curses in spite of their natural hatred for each other or will they suffer at the hands of a radical and evil stem cell researcher who wants the fame and immortality he believes their blood will give him?

My Thoughts: This is an interesting and different take on the same old vampire and werewolf stories. In Sue Dent's world, vampires and werewolves suffer from a very similar curse,which leaves them young, strong, immortal - and completely missing a soul. In this world, many werewolves go feral, living decades with wolf packs and away from people. And, interestingly, if they don't transform periodically they will forget how.

I enjoyed these characters, and felt that, at least as far as vampires go, Dent's ideas more truly match with the legends and lore than many modern vampire tales. After all, without a soul how could one comprehend, let alone feel, human emotion? I felt that the solution was maybe a bit too simplistic in the end, but at the same time the conclusion was satisfying. I think people who enjoy the vampire and werewolf mythos will enjoy this book. I certainly did!

4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic and original!June 23, 2008
Janna R. Ryan (Nebraska)

The concept of this book intrigued me and so I was anxious to read it when it came in. I started and finished it in the same day because I just couldn't put it down. I was impressed with the subject matter (the supernatural has always fascinated me, but it is very difficult to find supernatural writing from a Christian perspective). The characters are well written and believable and I must say that the settings are pretty amazing as well. It starts in one part of the world and ends in America and I felt like I took the trip with them. I did figure out one of the mystery parts in advance but that didn't take away from the rest of the story.

I am really looking forward to the next book in the series which is supposed to come out this year. If you like the supernatural or have teens that do, then you would love this book!

5.0 out of 5 stars December 18, 2010
Rev. Stephen Wilson
Recommendation: Excellent

Originality - 5/5
Writing Style - 5/5
Plot - 5/5
Characters - 5/5
Aesthetics - 5/5


Can werewolves and vampires be saved? That's the question in Sue Dent's novel, Never Ceese.

This is a Christian fantasy novel about a werewolf named Ceese and a vampire named Richard, who are both on a mission to break the curse of what they are and regain their salvation. It's captivating, edgy, humorous, and realistic - the perfect combination of light and dark. I especially appreciated the tangibility of each of the characters. They are dynamic and memorable and Sue has a wonderful gift for taking us inside each of their minds to make us feel what they feel.

The story begins in early America and quickly brings us to modern day. Among Ceese and Richard's allies are an old, psychic woman, her great-granddaughter, and some surprising characters from the past.

Their enemies include their darker natures, a scientist who wants to learn how he can use their curse to live forever himself, and three questionable college students.

If you're looking for a great read with werewolves and vampires, look no further! Stephenie Meyer has nothing on Sue Dent! And look for the sequel, Forever Richard, which will be reprinted soon.

5.0 out of 5 stars The Strength of FriendshipsApril 13, 2009
Yellow30SciFiReview (VA USA) 

As a vampire, Richard never expected that a werewolf could help him overcome the curse that was given to him hundreds of years ago. Likewise, as a werewolf, Ceese has little faith that Richard could in turn help her with her curse. Yet it is the determination of their close friend, Penny, that brings Richard and Ceese together for the good. The vampire and werewolf struggle to look past their differences and get along, but what Richard doesn't realize is how close Ceese really is to him. Meanwhile, a professor of stem cell research takes advantage of an enthusiastic college student's research; a possible cure for vampires and werewolves through the stem cell process. The professor, Dr. Henderson, is only in on the research for his own diabolical plan of becoming immortal. Richard and Ceese struggle to find the cure they have been longing to have, while narrowly escaping from Dr. Henderson's attacks. With the odds stacking against them, can Richard and Ceese find the cure that has eluded them for so long?

Sue Dent's novel, Never Ceese, kept me turning pages to read more and snagged my interest almost immediately. Being a fan of vampire and werewolf novels, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Dent's novel. With a modern twist to the traditional vampire and werewolf stories, this novel keeps the reader interested while weaving a creative and original plot. Any vampire or werewolf fan should pick up a copy of this book. I would recommend Never Ceese to all.--Ashley Ligon

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book, even for an initial skepticAugust 31, 2007
A. Egley (St. Peters, MO USA)
I recently finished reading "Never Ceese" and I LOVED it! I must admit, that at first I was a bit wary, as I've never been into werewolves and vampires much, but Sue Dent does an awesome job making them seem completely human. I loved the story of redemption and sacrifice, and I can't wait for the next book, "Forever Richard."

5.0 out of 5 stars A Groundbreaking NovelMarch 1, 2007
By Jill Elizabeth Nelson (Minnesota) 

Who would think an author could write a faithbased novel about vampires and werewolves where the cursed ones are the good guys? Well, Sue Dent pulls it off . . . and she pulls you into her story. Even when her main characters aren't on their best behavior, the reader still roots for them as they valiantly resist unimaginable temptation. The ending satisfies, but leaves plenty of room for a sequel. This is a good book to hand people with a taste for the horror genre, but could use an entre of Gospel hope in their reading diet.

5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining read about vampires & werewolves in Christian worldDecember 12, 2006
Christina Lockstein "Christy's Book Blog" (Oconto Falls, WI USA)

Never Ceese by Susan Dent is a fast-paced thrill-ride of a story. Richard has struggled with being a vampire for too long, so when his long time friend Penny makes a deathbed request for him to work with a young female werewolf named Ceese, he takes on the task, and they both hope to be released from their curse. Dent does a terrific job of removing vampires and werewolves from the realms of the occult and putting them back in the world of God. Because of their curse, neither can tolerate praying or speaking about God or holy things. Richard and Ceese both fight furiously because of their natures at first, but eventually learn to work together and lean on each other. Penny's "granddaughter" Cassie tries to help the duo in their quest, but soon a mad scientist is on their trail to steal their immortality. Dent keeps Christianity as a background in the story without making it over the top or preachy. Her characterizations are strong, and even the small actions they make give the reader a better feel for them. There's a touch of romance in the story, but not where you expect it. My one small complaint with the story is there is little explanation as to how Richard and Ceese go from bitter enemies to loyal compatriots when they arrive in the US. I'm really looking forward to the next book Forever Richard, and hopefully Dent will include a little history about how vampires and werewolves came to be. The description of the new book leads me to believe it will be full of surprises and another good read.

5.0 out of 5 stars Wendy Lynn Decker reviews Never CeeseOctober 2, 2006
W. L. Decker (USA) 

Not an avid reader of science fiction/fantasy, I assumed vampires and werewolves to be emotionless and cold. However, Sue Dent uses a creative and unique style that engages the reader and enables them not only to connect with these characters, but to feel deeply for them. I loved this book, and look forward to the sequel, Forever Richard. I would recommend it to the most unlikely reader of sci-fi/fantasy, and for those who frequent this genre to get a copy now, you'll love it!

5.0 out of 5 stars Can't wait to read Forever Richard- Sue Dent has me hooked!!!September 12, 2010

This is a great book. I have so many questions that I can't wait to have answered when I read Forever Richard! I think we can all relate to Ceese's and Richard's characters, even though they are supernatural beings. This book was very intense to read in a good way, not cheesy like those many vampire books that are out there now. This book had a traditional feel to it that makes it lasting- not your cheesy trendy vampire cheap reads. Sue Dent's writing has value! Read it now!

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and refreshing! Highly recommended!April 17, 2010
Rachael Wade (Orlando, Florida)

A feisty vampire and loveable werewolf team up to find a cure for their curse- only they aren't quite sure how it's possible just yet. We join them as they follow the direction of a mutual loved one on a journey to the Big Apple to pursue a supposed cure for their cursed state. Skeptical yet determined, they encounter a friend there who they have been told can possibly lead them to a doctor who may be able to help provide them with some answers.

At the onset of the story, Ceese, the meek yet comically scrappy werewolf finds her way to Richard, a vampire who isn't thrilled about her visit, let alone enthusiastic about embarking on an adventure with her into the unknown to remove a curse he isn't even sure he wants lifted. With some convincing however, he agrees to cooperate and sets out to find the cure with her and along the way is reminded of who he really is.
Temperamental and edgy, Richard the vampire lends some amusing sarcasm to the mix as he and Ceese constantly butt heads throughout the quest for their destination. As we follow them from the English countryside to the city that never sleeps, the snarky relationship that develops between the two of them is entertaining and their bickering lends a few good laughs.
Once in New York, with the help of a few new friends and a run in with some pesky enemies, they find themselves at the mercy of a treacherous mad scientist who desires the ticket to immortality for himself' the doctor they were told can help them with their curse. Here we are introduced to the heartbeat of the story and see both Ceese and Richard find everything they were looking for as they realize the answers were buried deep within them all along.

This genre is right up my alley. I love supernatural, fantasy fiction involving this particular kind of lore. All of that aside however, I can point out what I personally enjoyed about the elements of this story and why I have such commendable things to say about it.

Sue has a knack for fresh, sharp storytelling. Each significant event that takes place is unapologetically to the point, but always seasoned in such a way that we as the reader connect with the characters and understand their emotion and motives. The result is we end up pulling for them, wanting what they want' even when we aren't sure exactly what it is they are after yet on a larger scale. She presents a unique concept with an unconventional take on vampire and werewolf lore and throws in some witty humor, creating an enjoyable journey for the reader who feels invested in the character's pursuits.

In my book, caring about what the characters care about and rooting for their endeavors throughout the story is a crucial factor to establish for the reader as an author to achieve good, solid storytelling. It is a definite plus for me if the author does it in a way that leaves me with something substantial to think about long after I've read it. That is something I consider to be an essential component of a "good read," no matter who the author is. Never Ceese met those "standards" for me, and at the end I felt like I really wanted to know more about these characters after reading this first installment. If you're up for something avant-garde and original, check it out.

5.0 out of 5 stars More Please :)February 22, 2010
Ashley J. "Peace&Joy"

Love it! It's nice to read a vampire/ werewolf book that doesn't make me feel like I need to take a shower because of all the filth. I found it easy to identify with the characters. Their feeling and actions were very believable. I recommend getting both books (Never Ceese and Forever Richard) at once, because you won't want to wait to find out what happens next (I sure didn't).

4.0 out of 5 stars An Extraordinary DebutFebruary 20, 2010
John Guenther (USA) 

I had originally bought this book for my Mrs. but decided to read it, as well, since the plot sounded intriguing. I wasn't disappointed. In a manner eerily reminiscent of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, but laced with a style that need make no apologies for its freshness, Sue Dent takes us on a grand tale of Richard the vampire and Ceese the werewolf. Richard and Ceese's lives are inextricably woven together and this pair, who under other circumstances would be bitter enemies, will have to unite on an adventure that blends a unique Gothic setting with the tough, American streets of New York City. This type of fiction is typically the last thing one would find on my bookshelf--particularly when I could not see how any author could blend Christian principles with this genre--but I made an exception in Sue Dent's case. Glad I did and I look forward to reading the sequel, Forever Richard. This book demonstrates a wonderful debut from a new pro.

5.0 out of 5 stars An uncommon vampire / werewolf tale.February 6, 2010
Fr. Ernesto M. Obregon "Orthodox priest" (Trussville, AL) 

Here is my short opinion of the book:

Ms. Dent has written a book that both follows some of the typical "rules" for vampires and werewolves and yet twists those typical rules in new and interesting ways. I will not give away that part of the plot, but suffice it to say that Ms. Dent has come up with a new and novel way to cure both vampirism and lycanthropy.

This is the story of a vampire and a werewolf who are pulled together by a mutual friend so that they may achieve their dream of being cured of their curse. Yes, Ms. Dent views both vampirism and lycanthropy as spiritual curses that can be physically transmitted by the bite (or clawing) of a cursed person. But, the curse does not become permanent unless the infected person deliberately passes the curse on to another human being. Both Ceese, the heroine, and Richard, the hero, have kept themselves from passing on the curse despite the evil pull of their natures and despite the fact that their emotions are deadened by the curse. (One supposes that this is so in order to make it easier for the curse to force the infected person the infect someone else.)

But, more than that, without being preachy or even overt, it is clear that this is a book written by a Christian who has put a lot of thought into what a vampire/werewolf tale would look like if it were written totally within the worldview of a Catholic Christian. Like G.K. Chesterton, she writes a fantasy tale that never preaches while clearly calling you to think about how life really works. Actions have consequences, one can struggle for holiness, self-sacrifice is the way the world really works, and change sometimes begins with suffering.

But, Ms. Dent never makes the mistake of focusing the story simply on their inner struggle to break the curse. No, she puts in a fair helping of adventure, by way of a truly evil character. But, the truly evil character is not another supernatural creature, but a non-supernatural person who is not your classical vampire hunter or mistaken hero.

I highly recommend that you buy this book.

5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Put it Down!!July 22, 2009
SisterSonlight (St Petersburg, FL USA) 

I just recently found this book through Writers Cafe Press. What a pleasant surprise! It was intriguing to read about the spiritual struggles of a werewolfe and a vampire! I was immediately hooked and found I didn't want to put the book down until....oh no! I finished it! Thankfully the sequel is out so I can grab it up quick.
I found the writing had a comfortable flow, I enjoyed the characters and their interactions with each other. Great dialogue! I especially liked Rodney, he cracked me up! To me, it is a treasure to enjoy a book so much that I can't put it down til its done. This was a treasure! Well done Sue!

5.0 out of 5 stars Taking the Horror Genre in new directionsAugust 2, 2007
R. J. Luedke (Dallas, TX)

This book stacks right up there to any book in Ann Rice's Vampire Chronicles, but without the erotica. Dent adds new layers onto the mythos of the vampire and werewolves that makes you almost believe they could exist in our world. In addition, the Christian foundation of the story blends seemlessly in this world of fantasy Dent has created and adds that answers the age old question...can the undead ever be released from their curse?

Robert James Luedke, is the author/illustrator of Eye Witness: Acts of the Spirit and Eye Witness: A Fictional Tale of Absolute Truth.

4.0 out of 5 stars Not your typical horrorApril 26, 2009
Caprice Hokstad (Escondido, CA United States) 

I admit it: I resisted reading Never Ceese. Why, you may ask? Assumptions. First of all, it's a story about a werewolf and a vampire. Sue was invited to the World Horror Convention and short-listed for the Bram Stoker award. From these facts, I inferred that Never Ceese was a horror novel and I abhor the horror genre. But then another reviewer I respect said that she didn't consider it horror at all. What? How can a vampire and werewolf story NOT be horror? After reading it, I agree, but let us just say that this got me thinking.

Secondly, I somehow missed the fact that Sue considers her work Young Adult. So once I got it through my thick skull that Never Ceese was YA, I thought to myself, "Hey, even if it *IS* horror, how bad can it be if it's geared to kids?"

Then there's the fact that Sue's sequel was contracted by the same publisher that put out Frank Creed's Flashpoint (The Writer's Cafe Press). So that gave Sue a lot of credibility by association. And lastly, I was offered a review copy for free, so I ran out of excuses. I broke down and read it.

So, is it horror? I guess that depends on your definition. Either I don't dislike horror as much as I thought or Never Ceese is not horror. I lean to the latter, but I'm not in charge of assigning genres to other people's books! No matter what you call it, it's certainly not like any other horror.

How many times have we read vampire/werewolf stories where the changling/beast is just some monster to be hunted and killed, rather than a real human being who might not have chosen that existence? Yet the other extreme doesn't sit right with me either, where the beast and his/her powers become "cool" and the darkness is embraced. Sue Dent has avoided both failings in Never Ceese.

First of all, the vampire and the werewolf are sympathetic characters rather than the typical monsters. Becoming a vampire or werewolf is portrayed as a CURSE rather than something to be sought or embraced ...well, almost. The evil stem cell researcher (antagonist) in Never Ceese seeks the curse as the ticket to eternal life, not caring about the consequences involved with such a choice. He is clearly deranged and immoral in most of his dealings, even extending to his students.

By contrast, the two protagonists have taken great pains over the centuries not to pass on their curse to others. As the story opens, Richard, the vampire, has stopped pining for a cure, but he still retains enough of his former morality to refrain from dooming anyone else to the fate he suffers. Cecilia (Ceese) is the werewolf who has dealt with her curse by spending majority of her cursed existence in wolf form. She has also worked hard to keep from giving in to the seductive pull of the demons which beset her, urging her to become a killer and to spread her curse to others. Ceese holds out much more hope that a cure can be found and the curse can be overcome.

Ceese and Richard don't get along very well at first, and there is quite a bit of fighting, much of it rather humorous. Now, since I am not in the target audience, it's probably irrelevant that I found the bickering a little tedious. We all know kids can argue ad infinitum so they probably wouldn't even notice. The opposition does eventually end and the two cursed humans form a truce in order to seek out the cure to their conditions.

I don't want to ruin all the plot points, but let me say that the ending was a surprise, and a pleasant one at that. I was impressed with the way faith intersected with mythology to form an enjoyable tale.

This is the same inside text as the hardback (which garnered the Bram Stoker nomination) but with a less expensive binding. And while I'm hardly objective about the stunning cover model (because she's my daughter), I think most would agree that it's a definite improvement over the original cover.

5.0 out of 5 stars A fun and safe readAugust 11, 2009
Dori Herndon (Shreveport, LA United States) 
I like good adventure, fantasy, and science fiction stories. However, most I find offensive and they fill my mind with images I would rather not have. (I know, I'm a bit of goody goody) So, it was nice to have a good adventure with interesting monters and no worry of hurting my conscious. Plus there was a little spiritual encouragement for bonus.

However I did find the book a bit confusing in places. There were some things that were hard to keep up with and some characters had names that were too similar. It was worded akwardly in places and a few things didn't make sense to me.
Still I wanted to give the book five stars because I hope more books like it are published.

No comments:

Post a Comment