Going into this I wasn't sure what to expect, but what I got was an unexpectedly compelling story that was fast moving and plot-dense, full of action and violence and suspense. This is the sort of vampire story that's likely to appeal to fans of more than just BL - while the romance is certainly there, there's nothing here to earn the 18+ rating, at least in this volume. What really surprised me was how quickly I was sucked in by the story, and how surprised I was to reach the end of the book - it really just flew by. Initially, I thought that this was going to be a flaw - the beginning of the story is rather abrupt, and just flings the reader into the midst of the story, but the structure makes much more sense when it becomes clear how much larger the actual story is. The characters were interesting, with new elements and angles coming out as the story progressed to add new depth and shading. There were even some funny points to balance it all out. I really enjoyed this book, and can't wait to get my hands on the next volume. --Mania
Lou is a portrait street artist who one winter afternoon catches the eye of Sein, a mysterious gentleman. Sein commissions Lou to pain for him a portrait of his true face. What Lou doesn't realize, until after a particularly violent session of where Sein destroys several of his canvases, is that his new patron is a vampire.
Realizing this fact though, Lou speculates a real reason why Sein would want to commission him, is to want to confirm his existence, within a portrait. Since the length of time has passed so long, that Sein doesn't remember how he looks like. Now Lou agrees to stay with him, until the image that he draws satisfies Sein. Still, Lou feels satisfied that he has found his ideal model, so he wants to stay by his side for as long as he can.
Lou finds out some detail of Sein that he didn't know, concerning his grandfather - with Lou being the same likeness as his grandfather. There is love/attention competition from the deceased as well as several other sutors that would vie for the attentions of this vampire.
Like any yaoi story, their relationship develops, but Vampire Portrait is a pretty serious and dark story. There are no sex scenes in this book, but with the 18+ rating, probably in the later books there is going to be something serious. Volume 1 ends with a pretty juicy cliffhanger, so now I am waiting for the sequel. Hope that Juné won't take too long in releasing the novel. --The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society Miscellanea and Ephemeron
Vampire's Portrait managed to be provocative and alluring, even without any sex scenes. Sein is the tortured vampire, tired of his eternal life of solitude. Lou is a naive painter, and the grandson of Sein's former lover. Lou is intimidated by his cold benefactor, a man who emotionlessly destroys his paintings once he's presented with them, chiding him for not capturing his true essence. When Lou realizes that Sein has no reflection, he starts getting a little suspicious. When he cuts himself and Sein is driven is drink his blood, his fears are confirmed...his new boss is a vampire!
Lou can't help but be drawn to Sein, mesmerized by his charisma. He is moved by Sein's inability to see his own reflection, and wants to do nothing more than paint portraits of him. As he falls for his employer, he is caught up in the deadly world of vampires. Sein's friend, Adam, doesn't take kindly to Lou and his eagerness to offer his blood to Sein, and Sein's enemy, Verloren, is downright scary as he tries to force Sein to reveal his true form. I have to commend Lou for not running off in terror by the nightmare he's gotten caught up in.
This was a suspenseful read, with an engrossing world and characters that I quickly grew to care for. The plot gained momentum as the story unfolded, introducing many horror elements as Lou becomes a pawn in Verloren's hands. The book left me wanting more, despite the fact that I don t really like horror stories. Will the promise of Lou and Sein's love ever be fulfilled? I can hardly wait to find out. --Mangacast