Blood and sex. Of course love, but not the way humans think about it.
This is the recurring theme throughout The Dancing Valkyrie, a story about Mary Hoffman, librarian by day and exotic dancer by night. Mary, needing some time alone takes a hike along a secluded upstate New York trail. She is saved from two predatory young men by Beth, a beautiful woman slightly older than Mary. The two join together for the rest of the trail, becoming romantically involved along the way. Beth, it turns out is a vampire, and quickly introduces Mary to the mystical world she lives in. After inviting Mary back to her castle, built by her brother, Joseph, in a remote area, Mary is seduced into becoming a vampire as well. Joseph and Beth are hundreds of years old, and pose as brother / sister, but are husband and wife, or, in vampire terms, father and daughter. Thus begins the fascinating story of Mary's transition from human woman to vampire.
This book is full of rich and incredibly descriptive prose that makes you feel you are in every scene. The dialog is both thought provoking and believable (or course we are talking about vampires), with an excellent mix of philosophical, religious and historical references mixed within the real time story.
The plot is not complex, as the story is more of a journey than a twisty-turny, keep you in the dark project. It is more than adequate, however, as you quickly become submersed in the protagonist's discovery process. Klein presents vampires in a light never seen before, and frankly one of the most inventive and most original depictions I've ever read.
This is an absolute must read if you are a vampire fan. It should be tempered with the fact that it is an erotic novel, however, the sex is an integral part of the novel's framework and not only necessary, but adds to the overall richness of the work. A pleasant surprise on the last page was: "TO BE CONTINUED".