Apr 14 2013 11:30am

Vampires...In Space! Why Such a Rare Breed?

Break Out by Nina CroftSeemingly ages ago, author and Star Trek guru Jacqueline Lichtenberg wrote about alien vampires in her books Those of My Blood (1988) and Dreamspy (1989). Given their mix of science fiction, fantasy, and romance, the stories are among the forerunners of paranormal romance.

Fast forward to 2012: Nina Croft’s Break Out (Entangled Publishing) hits the virtual shelves. Break Out features a supernatural-based vampire hero in a futuristic setting. It’s a lighthearted action-adventure space opera romp about a space pirate vampire who joins forces with the heroine to rescue her brother from the maximum security prison of a powerful corporation.

As a vampire living in the far future, Rico has emotional baggage, but he’s not highly angst-driven. Given his history, he’s a Friend of Old Earth, so there are quite a few Old Earth references. At one point he plays poker with actual cards—no holographic card deck for him!

In terms of mythology and the cultural mindset toward vampires, Rico is still a mythical being in that world. He’s a known space pirate, but people like Skylar, the heroine, have only heard whispers about his true nature. On the other hand, his crew knows exactly what he is. He bares his fangs a time or two and has glowing eyes. The fact that he seems only mildly concerned about hiding his true nature raises the question about how humans from a technologically advanced culture would react to an ancient vampire in their midst. Would they even fear him?

Rico’s crew perceives him as a supernatural monster, but also a safe one who is (mostly) in control of his cravings. The story touches upon the theme that Rico has been considered a monster no matter what time period he inhabits.

I’m not sure Break Out fully addresses the “What if?” speculation of a vampire-in-space scenario, but from what I’ve heard, the next book, Deadly Pursuit, fleshes out more of the world.

Tangled Hunger by Tina ChristopherThen there's Tina Christopher's Celestial Surrender series, a trilogy of erotic sci-fi romances from Ellora’s Cave. The titles are Tangled Shadows (2011), Tangled Hunger (2012), and Tangled Indulgence (2013). I’ve read the first two (book one is m/f/m and book two is f/m). These stories feature vampires and angels in a futuristic setting. And lots and lots of scorching sex.

Where Nina Croft’s Break Out is action-adventure/Firefly oriented, Christopher’s Celestial Surrender is more character-driven. In this world, the vampires and angels are alien in origin and have an antagonistic relationship. Space faring technology exists and various planets have been colonized. The stories kind of circle back to what Jacqueline Lichtenberg was doing in the late '80s, only with heavy duty erotica elements. The erotic journey is front and center.

I would tag the first two books as the ultimate “take me away” futuristic fantasies in that the heroines unabashedly pursue their desires for pure sexual release with a being who’s a psychically powerful “Other.” One nice subtext, however, is that the closer a couple (or threesome, in the case of Tangled Shadows) becomes and the more trust they have in one another, the greater their ability to bring about peace.

What do you think about paranormal characters in a futuristic setting? Is it an appealing mashup? Given the popularity of vampire romances, why haven’t we seen more of them in space or future time periods? Or are supernatural characters better off in paranormal worlds?


Heather Masseyis a lifelong fan of science fiction romance. She searches for sci-fi romance adventures aboard her blog, The Galaxy Express. She’s also an author in the subgenre. To learn more about her published work, visit

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1. huntece
Well now I need to read about space vamps :)
I think the concept of taking those present day urban fantasy worlds and speeding forward in time to see what these societies look like ina technological future is an interesting idea. This could be a cool twist on both the fantasy and scifi genre
2. eva lefoy
I love the concept! I like UF and SciFi and don't mind seeing them mixed at all! I would love to see a Star Trek vampire in space fanfic some day too...
3. Elizabeth Campbell
Yeah, vampires in Space, it's an odd mix, even though they're both speculative fiction. I recently read In Conquest Born by CSFriedman. The main character is very subtly a vampire and the crux of the story discusses subjugation and exploitation as the real vampire.
4. Laurenkusa
For some humourous semi-vampire space adventure/romance, you can also check out Robert Frezza's books McLendon's Syndrome and the VMR Theory. Both are from the 90's.
5. james braselton
hi there star trek vampier alwsoume faster then light speed time travle star gates halo ring transpoters escape pods food areads quaters replicaters led lights fiber optics solar wind black hole energy shopping malls movie theaters briges engering rooms turbo lifts
6. Samantha Lienhard
I'd been recently wondering why there weren't more vampires in space. Glad to hear of more examples and know I'm not the only one interested in the idea.
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