This is the first book in the planned Vampire Gene trilogy that is planned by author Paigan Stone. Gabriele Caccini is about the fictional nephew of Giulio Caccini (a real historical character - the man who effectively invented opera). Gabriele becomes a vampire after being seduced and bitten by Lucrezia, who then spurns him, leaving him to spend the rest of his life searching for a mate to share his immortality. The quest is unsuccesful and Gabriele has to re-invent himself each generation, killing hundreds of yourng women in the process - not altogether unwillingly.
The book picks up the story when Gabriele is a student in modern Manchester. There are realistic and erotic descriptions of his attempts to find his mate. Gabriele has been used to total control over his life and circumstances but that facade crumbles when he is drugged at a party and makes love to a girl who is very much not his usual type.
The story is very well told and the reader is presented with numerous flashbacks to Gabriele's early life in Medici Venice. The author has an impressive knowledge of vampire literature and tradition, and the book is also well-researched with the right amount of technical and historical detail to create a totally believable context for Gabriele's adventures and increasingly meditative search for an explanation for his very existence. There is also a dark and bloody episode in the New York vampire club scene.
Gabriele Caccini is well-written as ou would expect from an author with a MA in Creative Writing. It is an interesting examination of some old legends seen partially through the eyes of the vampire himself. The book includes a measured but integral and appropriate amount of blood and sex. The relationship between vampirism and eroticism is already well and widely understoodd and Paigan Stone is able to write sex scenes that are realistic and arousing while at the same time using them to develop her theme of the raw power of the vampire. It is his hideous but compelling supernatural nature that helps ensure that his victims are not entireley unwilling to feed him.
Overall the book is fast-paced and at the end of every chapter I wanted to know what would happen next... I look forward very much to the second book in the trilogy.