The Edge of Nothingness by Shayne Carmichael

The Edge of Nothingness by Shayne Carmichael

At the age of ten, Zach witnessed the death of his mother and the kidnapping of his sister during a vampire raid on their village. He watched as his mother’s killer was murdered by another vampire, then in turn Zach was saved from a burning fire by the vampire. For years, the memory of that night, and the face of the vampire who saved him have haunted him.


Talked into the insanity of a resistance backed raid on vampire territory, Zach comes face to face with the vampire he couldn’t forget.

Another completely new world. A world of vampires who rule and the humans they keep captive.


While The Edge of Nothingness wasn’t horrible, it had several significant problems. The plot was disjointed and had lengthy asides that had no connection to the story and added nothing to either characterization or plot. In addition, there was poor characterization with clichéd and stereotypical characters. There were a lot of discrepancies in the characters and plot with considerable violence for the sake of violence, which as a lover of vampire genre books I’m no stranger to literary violence but the setting and characters made most of the violence entirely unnecessary and no relevance except to add graphic gore to the book. 

Zach has a hatred of vampires since the raid on his family. He reluctantly takes part on the vampire raid but instead of fighting vampires, he is enraged at Brant’s cowardly action of hiding behind his foster brother Kurt. Zach later kills Brant viciously by smashing his head in against the floor while Night looks on indulgently, amused that Brant wouldn’t try to attack the vampire. This was disturbing not only for the violent gore but also seemingly out of character and the death is treated offhandedly then ignored for the most part. 

Furthermore Zach has a love/hate relationship with Night, often succumbing to his desire for the vampire, even going so far as to thank Night for everything he’s done and have wild sex together. Yet in the light of day, Zach pretends he still hates the vampire. This dichotomy was not explained and Zach’s hatred of vampires, while understandable, doesn’t explain why he’s willing to have sex with one repeatedly yet cling to his so-called hatred in the morning. It’s a worn plot device that is not given any fresh or new outlook to help it work. Unfortunately Zach doesn’t ever redeem himself when his emotions turn once again and his dealings with Night later in the book only further the contradictions of his character.

Also problematic is Zach’s sister, Kat, who is sixteen years old and impish while hopping in and out of Night’s lap making me question her age and giving the impression of a much younger girl. Night consistently says Kat is too young to be viewed sexually yet she’s given to her brother’s care so she can find a husband. Additionally Kat runs Night’s household and can give long monologues about the restraint and wonderful treatment the vampire has towards others. This dichotomy of her personality didn’t work very well and left the impression of a confused girl.

Night himself was sadly not much better. He falls in love with a human yet has to have wild, angry and destructive sex with another vampire to get over said human.  Unfortunately the biggest sin for me (within this cavalcade of sins) was that Night fell into a common trap regarding fantasy creatures. Here the vampire is not only omnipotent but he can’t be harmed, is unaffected by the sun, reads others’ thoughts, has incredible power, and he is a big, intimidating and powerful man within the vampire hierarchy, the sole voice for reasonable treatment of underlings awash a cliché evil vampire seeking to use humans poorly. So Night is infallible and his only flaw is loving a human but he then sacrifices their relationship for the greater good of, well it’s not exactly explained but I think it was because of Night’s morals.

The actual plot that involved resistance fights against the vampires and treatment of humans was weak and unimportant as the tension it provided was artificial and not well constructed. The aside regarding the berry business had no connection to the story thus far and lost my attention in the wandering conversations and budding business that Zach and Kat later abandoned when they returned to Night’s domain.

Overall this book took the easiest route and used a fantasy setting with vampires to avoid all the actual pitfalls of character flaws and geographic challenges. Instead of excellent writing to support this, the author was sloppy and inconsistent which is regrettable, as I’ve read previous offerings that were much better than this particular book. Unfortunately I can’t recommend this book, as much as I love vampire lore. 

But maybe you’ll feel differently! Get it here

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