cover image Time Without End

Time Without End

Linda Lael Miller. Berkley Trade Pub, $7.5 (368pp) ISBN 978-0-425-15042-9

Valerian, a 600-year-old vampire, is packing the crowds into one of the biggest rooms in Vegas with his magic act. Then, when an unknown enemy targets his female assistants for murder, that's the cue for homicide cop Daisy Chandler, a Kinsey Milhone-type gone cute. Unbeknownst to Daisy, she and Valerian have been lovers through the centuries, doomed to finding and losing each other time and again. Miller recounts both Valerian's past and Daisy's previous incarnations (all of whom are infinitely more appealing than the 20th-century models). Because in each new life, she has no memory of her past, Daisy must learn to love Valerian over again. From the couple's first encounter as star-crossed medieval lovers, readers are treated to heart-wrenching scenes that showcase the couple's past trials. Just when it seems as if their present romance is similarly doomed (an ancient curse and all that), Valerian discovers clues to his enemy's identity and grasps at the single hope that might allow him to stay with Daisy. Daisy's jarring appearances and flat wisecracks make for an unfortunate juxtaposition with Valerian's sophisticated polish, but Miller (For All Eternity) compensates for this with her engrossing historical characters and period atmosphere. (Nov.)