Reviews for Blood Oath

Booklist Reviews 2010 May #1
In his thrilling debut, Farnsworth combines the current trend of supernatural fiction with the always popular political thriller. The president's most loyal secret agent is Cade, a 140-year-old vampire who is dedicated to protecting the U.S. from supernatural threats. Farnsworth posits an entire secret history behind the major events of the late nineteenth, twentieth, and early twenty-first centuries, even hinting at a supernatural cause behind the 9/11 attacks. Ambitious, young White House staffer Zach discovers Cade and his history after being assigned as Cade's new handler. The job may come with top secret clearance, but no one can ever know what Zach is doing, a rather difficult pill to swallow for the power-hungry agent. In their first adventure, Zach and Cade learn each other's histories and together struggle to save the country from some nearly unstoppable zombie soldiers whose only reason for existence is to kill humans. Sure to be a hit with thriller fans willing to go with the vampire premise. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2010 February #2
There are secret agents and then there are secret agents, like the undead predator protecting the White House.Debut novelist Farnsworth expands his cinema-ready concept for a screenplay into this rousing if ridiculous mash-up of spy stories and vampire vogue. Our point of view is provided by swaggering D.C. political operative Zach Barrows, who is rewarded for his service as deputy director for White House affairs with the weirdest appointment ever. Secret Service Agent Griffin takes the new kid into a secret trophy room hidden in the Smithsonian's Castle, where a young, pale warrior awaits. Barrows soon learns that he's to be the liaison to Nathaniel Cade, a real-life vampire who was drafted into service after he was pardoned by President Andrew Johnson in 1867. Cade's role is to protect the country from ghouls and bogeymen that make al-Qaeda seem friendly. Like all good bloodsuckers these days, Cade can go out during the day and only drinks animal blood. "Someone has to hold the line," Griffin says. "That's what we do. We fight every incursion they make. They invade; we repel. Forget the War on Terror, Zach. This is the War on Horror. And you've just been drafted." Farnsworth does an admirable job of integrating his clichéd creation into American history (Nixon wants to unleash his pet vampire against Woodward and Bernstein, but Cade's deal precludes it) and into a juicy techno-thriller story. This first entry finds a rogue scientist, Johann Konrad Dippel (the inspiration for Mary Shelley's Frankenstein), plotting to use the corpses of American soldiers as weapons. The book, complete with clipped prose and wildly unbelievable action sequences, strongly recalls the supernatural thrillers of Matthew Reilly. Fun stuff if you like this sort of thing, but its amalgamation of concepts from Twilight, 24 and CSI make it feel like it was cooked up in a focus group.A paranormal thriller begging for a slot in airport bookshops. Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Library Journal Reviews 2010 March #2

The President has a vampire. Screenwriter Farnsworth's series debut asks the reader to set aside disbelief and buy into this premise, among other more fantastic concepts, and it's almost easily done with his adept writing style. The galley's back cover promises a hero that can out-Bauer Jack Bauer, and Nathaniel Cade does just that with his preternatural talents. Bound by voodoo to serve the President as his secret agent, Cade is truly inhuman, but the villain he's up against errs more toward the inhumane and has a terrifying scheme. To balance out Cade's vampire coldness, we're given young agent Zach Barrows, a wisecracking spin doctor who is not at all prepared to believe the world is not what he's always thought it to be. VERDICT Lacking humor, this is no Sookie Stackhouse paranormal mystery, and readers may find themselves as confused as Barrows seems to be throughout the novel. Recommend only to readers who would enjoy a preposterous supernatural twist on Vince Flynn's thrillers. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 1/10].--Stacey Rottiers, Ann Arbor, MI

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Library Journal Reviews 2010 January #1
No word on what evils he'll be fighting in this series opener, but the new secret agent charged with protecting the President is a vampire named Nathaniel Cade. No, I don't think this is the tipping point for the vampire craze. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2010 March #1

This action-filled debut by scriptwriter Farnsworth reads like a cross between P.N. Elrod's historical vampire adventures and Thomas Greanias's conspiracy thrillers. Nathaniel Cade, "the president's vampire," swore to fight on the side of President Andrew Jackson and all his successors. In the present day, Zach Barrows, a rising political star caught canoodling with the president's daughter, suddenly finds himself training to be Cade's handler after tough, wise special agent William Griffin retires. As they try to stop Cade's old nemesis, Dr. Johann Konrad, from creating an army of Frankensteinian monster soldiers, they uncover a deeper government conspiracy. Entertainingly plausible historical documents at the beginning of each chapter and a sense that this fight is just a skirmish in a larger war help elevate the book above its sometimes bland characters and their predictable motivations. (May)

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