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Vampire Encounters: Second Chances

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~Coffee Time Romance, On-line Review Magazine
from Reviewer Cassandra Buckles
June, 2005

Rating: 4 Cups - "A Keeper"

Chance meets his soul mate at the moment before his death. He is offered an opportunity for eternal life as a vampire and to be with his love. But in his accepting the demon for the one he loves, he comes to learn that with the loss of his soul means that his soul mate is someone else altogether. But what happens when Chance’s soul feels betrayed?

What you will find within T.D. McKinney’s In The Lonely Dead Of Midnight is a poignant love that transcends time and space but is forever lost in between worlds.

In The Lonely Dead Of Midnight is a unique look at what happens after a man looses his soul to the night only to find out that he did not obtain what he wished for. T.D. McKinney has created characters that are complex and pull at you heart strings. This short story is unusual as it is wonderful.

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~Enchanted in Romance, On-line Review Magazine
from Staff Reviewer, Nikita
February 7, 2005

Rating:  4 1/2 Unicorns

Have you ever wondered what happens to the soul of a vampire? Some say the soul moves on to either heaven or hell when the body dies and is taken over by a demon, but in some cases it stays, walks the earth in search of something more precious than the promise of eternal bliss or in some cases eternal damnation.

Chance Dubois has been sucked into the family business once again after swearing to himself it wouldn’t happen ever again. His older brother Louis has put him into dealing drugs and pimping. He also sold Chance to men, forced him to prostitute himself to bring in money. Men paid a lot of money to have the young man that was so handsome he was unequaled in beauty by most. That changes when one night, the last night he swore to himself he was going to help his brother, he got killed, shot by the man he was supposed to bring drugs from. Lying on the sidewalk, bleeding to death he was lifted on to a woman’s lap. Looking up into her eyes he recognized his soulmate, he loved her beyond all else in just that one look.

Vivian Chadwick is a lovely woman, married with a son. Her family is not a conventional one, married to a vampire and mother to his vampire child who is older than her; she’s found happiness and love. She cautiously approached the fallen man and instantly felt a shock go through her the moment she looked into the most beautiful blue-green eyes she had ever seen, almost recognition.

Dying, Chance was offered immortality. Without hesitation he grasped the opportunity to be with his love forever. Will they be together? Or will they be separated once again.

In the Lonely Dead of Midnight is an unusual love story, but what vampire love is usual? T.D.McKinney has written a gripping tale of immortal love. Chance is given immortality but his soul searches for the love he has just found. Vivian has found that something is missing from Chance, not really sure what, just that it’s something. I enjoyed being drawn into Chance’s life, to find a love that will last forever is a beautiful thing to see.

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The Scary Reviewer 

~Love Romances, On-line Review Magazine
from Staff Reviewer, Valerie
October, 2004

4 Hearts from!

"Another in eXtasy’s Tarot series, this story is inspired by the Knight of Cups. This is the Knight of love: dreamy, sensitive and moody. On the negative side, he should be watched for depression. He’s fiercely loyal to anyone he loves, including family.

Love at first sight, this is what Chance Dubois felt as he lay dying and looked into the eyes of a woman who found him after he had been shot. Receiving a vampire’s kiss, he returned to this world. But his soul found no rest and continued to haunt the place of his death. A demon had possessed his body in the meantime. When hearing of hauntings, Chance and his new-found family go to investigate, and find Chance’s ghost still looking for his love. And his love is the wife of the vampire that changed him.

This story will remain with you long after you have read it. Vividly haunting, wonderfully written, T. D. McKinney explores the love that survives even death and the hereafter. Some readers may find the relationship between Chance and his brother Julian distasteful, but there is nothing at all graphic about it. The only sex scenes are between the ghost and his love, and they are very sensual and romantic. The reader will be drawn into the story from the very first page. Good characterization and a good plot will keep the reader turning the pages. Although a short story, Ms. McKinney has packed a lot in and the story is well rounded and complete. This reviewer enjoyed this remarkable story very much and highly recommends it."

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~In The Library Reviews, On-line Review Magazine
from Staff Reviewer, Cyndi Witkus
October 28, 2004

The Knight of Cups is the knight of love. He loves, he desires, but in the reverse, he can be sad, depressed. His love is real and he's willing to do it all for love.

Julian and Chance are bound through vampiric blood and also by love. Though neither had meant for it to happen, it had. They were brothers and there was beyond that love to something special. Yet, something was troubling Julian. It sprung from when he started another office to protect the human mother and baby that had become part of their family. There were sounds that had no source, words with no one to utter them, and they were getting to him. What made it worse- it was his brother's voice, Chance's. The house was where Chance had died 22 years earlier, to become a vampire.

What they face when they reach the home is not like anything they've ever dealt with before. Chance's ghost haunts the place, searching for the woman, his sire mother, Vivian. How can they help the ghost to find peace, that part of their soul that goes when the demon comes in that makes them part vampire, the duality of soul that not all feel- such as Vivian or her new lover, Royce? When Vivian faces the ghost Chance, can they find what has been missing? More importantly, what is missing for each of them?

This story is a new twist on vampires, ghosts and the meaning of love and souls. T.D. McKinney takes a new turn in this bold tale between instantaneous love and what a man will do in order to return to that love. The ending is one you don't expect nor is the resolution provided by those who survive in the end. This is a tale of the Knight of Cups, that of love both the good and the harsh sides. This is one tale that will surely haunt you when you think on what you'd do for that kind of love- even through the years.

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The Scary Reviewer 

~Fallen Angel Reviews, On-line Review Magazine
from Staff Reviewer, Amanda
November 29, 2004

3 Angels Rating!

Chance Dubois lives a life few could comprehend, but one he is grateful for. Twenty years ago, as he lay dying, a beautiful woman begged her sire to save him. In saving him, Chance finds that not only was his life reborn, but also his heart. His new life has offered him friends, family and love. Only as a spirit manifests and begins to haunt those around him does he begin to wonder if he is in fact living. If so, then why has the spirit come?

The Tarot Card, Knight of Cups portrays the knight of love. The love of this knight is passionate and endless. T.D. McKinney has captured the spirit of the card perfectly in her work, In the Lonely Dead of Midnight-Tarot: Knight if Cups. Her portrayal of Chance and Vivian as well as Chance and Julian is unique, as is the love that binds them. The explanation of souls and love is thought provoking as the author tests the bounds of true love. Her use of the paranormal enhances the storyline but it is her portrayal of love that is the most engaging. The author shows us an abiding love that knows no time or limits; even death can't stop it.

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The Scary Reviewer 

~The Scary Reviewer, On-line Review Blog
Genre: Suspense/Intrigue
February 8, 2005

Rating: 5/5  (highest rating)

Part of the eXtasy Books Tarot Series, In the Lonely Dead of Midnight is a very deep study of the eternity of love. Does the soul die with the body or live on? In this short story, Ms. McKinney attempts to answer that very question.

Twenty-two years before, Chance DuBois was shot by a drug dealer while completely a transaction for his criminal brother. As he lay in the street, bleeding to death, he looked into the eyes of an older red-headed woman who captured his heart in an instant. Offered a chance to remain with her for all eternity, Chance eagerly accepts an offer of immortality as a vampire. Now, that vampire has discovered his ghost haunting the place of their murder, waiting impatiently for a chance to be with his love again.

For Chance, this is a shock. Is he Chance Dubios or is the ghost? It's a quandry. Made even more complex when Vivian, the woman his mortal self loved so deeply, comes to the site. Now, the spirit has another chance with his soulmate - but it could cost Vivian her life.

Like all of Ms. McKinney's books, In the Lonely Dead of Midnight has bits of everything. There are multiple layers, complex relationships, and love affairs that defy imagination. This is a subtle book, taking careful reading to fully discover ever nuance of the story, very rich in detail. Within a few short pages, Ms. McKinney introduces a very interesting family of vampires and a love that never dies.

The only drawback to the book is it's short length. It doesn't detract from the story, just leaves you ready to beg for more and more stories about this family. There are certainly more tales to be told. Here's hoping that In the Lonely Dead of Midnight is just the first of many books about this clan.

Repeat after me: Encore! Encore!

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