Night's Cold Kiss (Dark Brethren -1) by Tracey O'Hara

Night's Cold Kiss (Dark Brethren #1) by Tracey O'Hara

Dark Brethren series — by Tracey O'Hara.

Genres and Sub-GenresEdit

Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance / Sci-fi UF

  • In the end I decided that “urban fantasy romance” might be the best description for this story since the novel takes the best elements of both genres and blends them together ~ Love Vampires

Series Description or Overview Edit

✥ A modern alternate earth where paranormal creatures co-exist in a tenuous peace with the human race. A world where the shame of the vampiric Aeternus, the death-high addicted Necrodreniacs, hunt and feed on hapless humans. Where shape-shifting Animalians feud with each other. And where corporations can be run by actual magic-wielding witches. But there’s a veiled danger that threatens them all – human and parahuman alike. Stirring behind the scenes is the pure, beautiful evil of the Dark Brethren. ~ Maryse's book blog

✥ For centuries war raged between the humans and Aeternus vampires—until courageous efforts on both sides forged a fragile peace. But the rogue Necrodreniacs will never be controlled—addicted as they are to the death-high . . . and bloody chaos. Since witnessing the murder of her mother, Antoinette Petrescu has burned with fiery hatred for the vampire race—even for Christian Laroque, the noble, dangerously handsome Aeternus who rescued her. Now an elite Venator, Antoinette must reluctantly accept Christian's help to achieve her vengeance—even as he plots to use the beautiful, unsuspecting warrior as bait to draw out the bloodthirsty dreniacs. ~ Tracey O'Hara - Author: Dark Brethren

✥ This series has a unique blend of various supernatural creatures that exist alongside the human world such as vampires (Aeternus), Animalians (shifters of different animal species), witches, dragons, and so many more. ~

Lead's Species Edit

  • Venator: Vampire Hunter

Primary Supe Edit

  • Vampires, Vampire Hunters

What Sets it ApartEdit

Narrative Type and Narrators Edit

  • Third person narrative mainly from Antoinette Petrescu's perspective.

Books in Series Edit

Dark Brethren series:

  1. Night's Cold Kiss (2009)
  2. Death's Sweet Embrace (2011)
  3. Sin's Dark Caress (2012)

~ NOTE: there is a glossary in the back each book for the complex world-building.

Shorts, Novellas, Anthologies and Guides Edit

  • 0. Dante Rising: The Birth of a Venator (2015) ~ eShort, 12 pages

World Building Edit

Setting Edit



  • NYAPS Bunker: used by the NYAPS security team

Supernatural Elements Edit

✥ Vampire slayer, Vampires, witches, shapeshifters, mages, Dark Magic-wielders, Forensic witch, bear-shifters, Snow leopard shifter, apparition, dragons, evil Corporations, sci-fi elements, alien race, ,

Glossary: Edit

  • Aeternus: A race of vampiric people who must ingest human blood to live, although not the living dead of legend. They have created a symbiotic existence with the humans that feed them. Aeternus are either born of Aeternus parents or created when a human is embraced (see embrace below). Those born to Aeternus parents live as humans until their twenty-fifth year where they may or may not Awaken to become an Aeternus. Those who do not Awaken are known as Latents.
  • Venators: elite hunters who destroy the rogue Necrodreniacs—A type of bounty hunter who collects bounties for the capture or destruction of parahuman outlaws. Traditionally human, but in recent years, parahumans have joined the ranks. Each Venator must be trained, licensed and registered with The Guild before they are permitted to hunt. A Venator gains a license by passing a set of rigorous exams. Venators may specialize in various fields including Necrodreniac destruction, hunting of Dark Magic-wielders or tracking down rogue animalians.
  • Necrodrenia: A disease that develops when an Aeternus completely drains a human while feeding, resulting in a Death-high. Addiction is certain and immediate. Death is the only cure. When an Aeternus is in the grip of Necrodrenia they are known as a Necrodreniac or dreniac.
  • Necrodreniacs: aka "Dreniacs"—those vampires who have become addicted to the high they get—the "bad" vampires from killing humans, draining them dry.
  • Bestiabeo: shapeshifters
  • Animalians: Animalians are intrinsically part man and part animal, differing from shape-shifters. There are three main genera in the animalians: The ursians – man-bears; the felian–man-cats; and the canians–man-canines. Each genus is made up of several sub-genera; i.e. the felians have families of tiger, panther, lion, cougar etc. There is much infighting between the genera. Humans cannot be turned into an animalian – they must be born. But it is possible for a human to mate with an animalian whereby the child has a fifty-fifty chance of awakening to their animalian heritage. It is the same between the Genera–the child of two different genera will not know its genus until it awakens.
  • Animalian tribes: shapeshifter tribes—centuries-old blood feud has divided the shapeshifting peoples—forbidden to be lovers by death sentence.
  • Felian: Cat shifters—snow leopard shifter, tiger, panther, lion, cougar
  • Canian: Canine shifter—Wolf shifters,
  • Ursians: Bear shifters
  • Dragons: the first guardians of the veil between this world and the dimension where the Dark Brethren are trapped.
  • Alpha: The male leader of a Bestiabeo family. He is responsible for taking care of the day-to-day running of the clan or tribe of animalians and enforcing the laws, but he answers to the Council of Elders.
  • Glarachni: alien forebears of the Aeternus.
  • Facimorphs:
  • Abeolite: Worn by Animalians and Facimorphs, especially in urban areas, for the modesty of human society more than the wearer. The material is scientifically formulated to expand and stretch to great extremes to accommodate the changing shape. There are mesh segments to allow fur to grow through and there is an overlapping split in the rear to cater for a tail growing.

Groups & Organizations:Edit

  • Dark Brethren: nebulous group shouted in mystery—behind many of the city's crimes involving the magical community.
  • CHaPR—Council for Human and Parahuman Relations:
  • Guild: Organization of Venators—trained bounty hunter of parahuman outlaws.
  • Guild Academy: Venators gain a license by attending The Guild Academy in their final year of training and passing a set of rigorous exams.
  • NYAPS security team:

World Edit

“We, the Aeternus, are the closest form of our alien forebears, the Glarachni. The alien race is long gone, but we their children live on…”

✥ The Aeternus are a vampiric people rather than vampires. They exist on blood, are fatally allergic to the sun, are more long lived rather than immortal, have a heartbeat, but are NOT undead. Like all the parahuman races that inhabit my alternate version of modern day earth, they are a genetic blending of an alien race with the indigenous life forms of the planet. The Aeternus don’t kill their source of sustenance, but rather live in a symbiotic relationship with humans. It always appeared to me that if you needed living blood to survive, why not leave your hosts alive. ~ Tracey O'Hara, Book Chick City guest post

The Necrodreniacs however are probably more like the traditional vampire in that they prey and kill their human meals. They are addicts, not so much addicted to the blood, but they literal rush they get from draining a person of life. They are Aeternus who have crossed the line and there is no coming back from it. ~ Tracey O'Hara, Book Chick City guest post

✥ There have been thousands of years of conflict between humans and parahumans, a war that's been happening in secret has finally reached an uneasy truce. But now this peace is threatened by the awakening of an unspeakable evil. If peace is to be salvaged a task force is formed to halt the madness. A blood feud has divided the Animalian tribes for centuries, pitting the wolf against the leopard in fights to the death. But past hostilities must be put aside in light of the scourge that is now upon them. For the killer they seek is but the first sign of a blossoming terror rising up from their long-buried pasts: the all-consuming nightmare of The Dark Brethren. ~ SFBook reviews

The Dark Brethren is a mysterious organization behind many of the city's crimes involving the magical community. The people who once comprised this group are no longer corporeal and need new bodies to inhabit in order to bring about their dark reign of terror. By book three, there are bloody symbols found in a series gruesome murders stands for the Dark Brethren, Bianca and McManus are desperate to stop these killings and find the missing babies before the Dark Brethren can finally manifest themselves fully into the world. ~ Fresh Fiction

✥ This series is compised of a team dynamic showing a wonderful comradely between characters making this an ensemble piece with each character having their own amount of strength and fighting skill, relying either mainly on brains or braun. Together they work as a team and are constantly protecting each other from both emotional and physical harm, a devotion that only endears them to the reader more. ~ Black Lagoon

Protagonists Edit

✥ 1. Night's Cold Kiss (2009)

  • Antoinette Petrescu: Antoinette is a Vanetor, a hunter of the creatures of the night who can’t control their inner beast. She has been training her whole life for this and her hatred for the Dreniacs has only fueled her determination to be the best hunter she can be. As a six-year-old kid, Antoinette witnessed her mother’s brutal murder and had to deal with her father’s death in an accident after he hunted and killed her mother’s murderer. Over 16 years later and Antoinette hasn’t gotten over her past and starts seeing that monster from long ago again, but the only thing scarier than having those nightmares is realizing that she is awake. ~ Bookish Life
  • Christian Laroque is a Aeternus, a vampire, and he was the one who took Antoinette and her brother as kids to a safe place, after their mother’s death. Christian has a past of his own that he has to deal with, but he is brought back to Antoinette when a series of cases start to look like The Troubles of 16 years ago and he needs her on the case. ~ Bookish Life

✥ 2. Death's Sweet Embrace (2011)

  • Kitt Jordan: Animalian, a Snow Leopard shifter who has joined the Academy as an instructor on parahuman forensic pathology. Her motivation is the enrollment of her twin daughters whom from she has been estranged since their birth after being banished by her Pride. For Kit, things are further complicated by the return of Raven – a wolf shifter, and the father of her twins, and her families antagonism. In addition, Oberon, the head of security and Kit’s late brother’s partner, hopes to recruit Kit into his elite team of investigators to deal with a ritualistic serial killer on campus and an escalating threat from a society once thought mythical. ~ Book'd out
Her dream is to be reunited with her estranged daughters and to make peace with her pack. It seems to be within her reach, until she’s called to be part of a task force hunting down a brutal serial killer. Kitt has to work alongside Raven, with whom she has a rather tragic history, and it seems that there’s still something between them. Despite the attraction, Kitt knows that getting involved with Raven again will pretty much scuttle her chances of a reunion with her pack and her daughters. ~
  • Raven Matokwe: Animalian werewolf—Years ago Raven was accused of killing Kitt’s husband and there is a bounty on his head so they have not seen each other in years. They have a pair of twin daughters together as well. Raven arrives and after all the time he’s been separated he’s still in love with Kitt and determined to have her back. Their history is complicated and dangerous for Raven but despite the risks, he wants her. He’s quite a noble hero as well. He abandoned his pack years ago to see that his daughters were raised well and kept safe. ~ Fiction Vixen

✥ 3. Sin's Dark Caress (2012)

  • Dr Bianca Sin: Forensic witch and a member of Oberon’s elite team—called in by NYPD homicide detective Lancelot McManus when young women are found brutally murdered, an infant ripped from their womb and the Dark Brethren’s mark painted nearby in blood. She is a forensic specialist and also a witch but has never bonded with a familiar, a necessary process for a witch to come into full power. In Sin’s Dark Caress her powers are activated when her pendant hatches to reveal a dragon, Kedrax. Dragons are the first guardians of the veil between this world and the dimension where the Dark Brethren are trapped, and Bianca’s new power, along with McManus’s surprising birthright, are crucial in preventing their escape.
  • Lancelot McManus: NYPD homicide detective—

Sidekick Edit

  • Name: / What: / Sidekick-to: / About: / Book First Seen:

Characters Chart Edit

Characters What About
Antoinette Petrescu Venator job to hunt down and kill the evil and insane Necrodreniac vampires;
Christian Laroque Aeternus vampire, CHaPR Intel agent "Crimson Executioner"; rescued her as a child; forced to work together to find killer; becomes vampiric Aeternus;
Viktor Aeturnus helps Christian finc killer;
Oberon bear-shifter helps Christian finc killer; heads elite task force;
Nici brother Antoinette's brother;
Kitt Jordan #2 Snow leopard felian, forensic teacher joined the Academy as an instructor on parahuman forensic pathology; dream is to reunite with daughters, make peace with her pack;
Raven Matokwe wolf canian
Seph and Cal hybrid were twins twin daughters of Kitt and Raven; estranged from the mother since birth by the pack; attending the same college Kitt teaches at;
Cerebus pet dog Victor's pet dog; strong character; 
Bianca Sin #3 Forensic witch
Lancelot McManus NYPD homicide detective

To expand the table, in Edit–Visual mode, right-press on a Row of the table (Control-press on a Mac)—choose add Row or Column. Or, in Source Mode: copy-paste rows.

Tracey O'Hara

Tracey O'Hara — author of Dark Brethren series

Author Edit

Tracey O'Hara (Australia)

Bio: Tracey O'Hara grew up reading Stephen King, Raymond E. Feist, and J.R.R. Tolkien, where she developed her taste for adventure and the paranormal thriller. When she's not writing, reading, or listening to heavy metal, she spends time with her husband, two sons, and three cats. The author of Night's Cold Kiss, she lives in Australia. Night's Cold Kiss was shortlisted in the Best Horror Novel category at the 2009 Aurealis Awards and won the Novel with Romantic Elements category at the Romance Writer's of Australia 2009 awards.

Contributors Edit

Cover ArtistsEdit

Other Contributors:Edit

  • Audio Book Narrator: — Source:
  • Editor: — Source:

Publishing InformationEdit

  1. Night's Cold Kiss (2009)
  2. Death's Sweet Embrace (2011)
  3. Sin's Dark Caress (2012)

Book Cover Blurbs Edit

BOOK ONE—Night's Cold Kiss (2009): The tension between the Aeternus, an ancient vampiric people, and humanity has been mounting for over a century. But when rogue vampires begin to drain humans in order to achieve an illegal blood-high, all bets are off. After the death of her parents, Antoinette Petrescu devoted her life to becoming one of the top Venators, the elite hunters who destroy the rogue Necrodreniacs. Her kill count is legendary and her skills superb. But now the serial killer who killed her parents has returned. And to stop him Antoinette must join forces not only with the Aeternus, but also their most legendary killer. One that is both dangerously attractive, and involved in buried secrets of her past. More dangerous still, a dark attraction grows between them—one that could doom both races. ~ Goodreads | Night's Cold Kiss (Dark Brethren, #1) 

BOOK TWO—Death's Sweet Embrace (2011): After centuries of secret conflict, humans and parahumans have reached an uneasy truce. But unspeakable evil now threatens the tenuous peace. Teenaged shapeshifters are being slaughtered by a sadistic serial killer who rips their still-beating hearts from their paralyzed bodies. A task force forms to halt the madness, including the vampiric Aeternus Antoinette Petrescu, as well as Kitt Jordan and Raven Matokwe, members of enemy Animalian tribes . . . and forbidden lovers. A centuries-old blood feud has divided their shapeshifting peoples, and if their passion is discovered it will doom them both. But past hostilities must be put aside, for the killer they seek is but the first sign of the all-consuming nightmare of The Dark Brethren. ~ Goodreads | Death's Sweet Embrace (Dark Brethren #2)

BOOK THREE—Sin's Dark Caress (2012): An ancient darkness has risen from the ashes . . . and terror has been loosed upon an unsuspecting world. Forensic witch Bianca Sin has never seen anything like it: homeless teenage girls torn to pieces by dark magic in the cold shadows of the city. More terrifying still is the symbol written in blood on an alley wall—the unmistakable seal of the Dark Brethren. Teaming up with NYPD homicide detective Lancelot McManus and an elite task force headed by the shapeshifter Oberon DuPrie, Bianca knows her worst fears have finally come to pass. A new war of annihilation is looming that will plunge the worlds of vampire, shapeshifter, and human into chaos—and two adversarial tribes locked in uneasy truce will need to take up arms together to save the children. Trust will be essential for Sin and McManus, as the hunt forces them to confront their deepest terrors. For the ultimate evil is no longer approaching. It's here. ~ Goodreads | Sin's Dark Caress (Dark Brethren, #3)


First Sentences Edit

  1. Night's Cold Kiss (2009) — Antoinette crept along the alley, unknown shadows pressing in on her from the darkness.
  2. Death's Sweet Embrace (2011) — The excited babble of female voice floated down the hall toward Gideon.
  3. Sin's Dark Caress (2012) — Bianca Sin strode past the flashing emergency-vehicle lights to the crime tape strung.

Quotes Edit

Trivia Edit

Awards Edit

ARRA Award Nominations (Australian Romance Readers Awards):

  • Favourite Paranormal RomanceThe Final Wish, by Tracey O’Hara
  • Favourite Sci Fi, Fantasy or Futuristic RomanceSin’s Dark Caress, by Tracey O’Hara

Tracey O'Hara - Author: ARRA Award Nominations

Read Alikes (similar elements) Edit


General Tone:


See Category links at bottom of page

Notes & Tid-bits Edit

Author: I like to describe the Dark Brethren novels as series of books concentrating on a central group of characters similar to what would happen in a TV series. Each book has a self contained story with a different heroine and hero but there are themes that are carried throughout the series. I hope to continue the series in this vein, even with the possibility of re-visiting a previous hero and heroine’s story in future books. ~ Tracey O'Hara - Dark Brethren Series Reading Order ~ Maryse's book blog

✥ This book is marketed as Urban fantasy but I found it in the Romance section - for once, I think the bookshop has it right. Though it was gritty, it had the happy romantic ending that is the trademark of romance novels, and several sex scenes scattered throughout. ~ Goodreads | Shannon

See Also Edit

Category links at bottom of page

External References Edit


World, Characters, etc:

Series order:

  1. Night's Cold Kiss (2009)
  2. Death's Sweet Embrace (2011)
  3. Sin's Dark Caress (2012)


Interviews, Guest Posts, Author Commentary:




Community, Fan Sites:

Gallery of Book Covers Edit

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