Rovers are what vampires call themselves. Forced to move from town to town to avoid detection, vampires chase victims and each other alone and in packs.

Jesse and his mentally slow brother Edgar have been circling the United States for almost a hundred years. When Jesse sees Johana, a human woman who is the spitting image of his lost great love, he can’t help but ask her out on a date. Unfortunately, the date goes horrible wrong resulting in all three being chased across state lines by a band of rovers called the Fiends.

Meanwhile, human Charles is searching the country for the killer of his son, Benny. He runs into a strange old man with a similar life story. It’s the eve of the nation’s bicentennial and the fireworks are just about to start.

I wondered why a book about vampires was classified as a mystery/thriller. But I was intrigued enough by the synopsis to give it a read. I am so glad I did. Even with blood, gore and death aplenty, Rovers is ultimately almost a literary fiction that happens to be about creatures that feed on human blood. After all, vampires are the definitive outsider.

The book has a slow motion almost dreamlike quality. Despite the pacing, it is incredibly hard to put down. The characterizations are so well done that even as a gang of vicious vampires argue over who gets to kill an innocent baby, you understand and sympathize with their needs. The author is so skilled that I only realized it after I was done with the book. And I am still thinking about it days after I finished it.

So, if you want to see a master at work, and feel like something completely different than what you usually read, pick up Rovers. You won’t be sorry (though you may be tired after staying up half the night to finish it like I did). 5 stars and a favorite!

Thanks to Mulholland Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.

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