Oh Rissa…how do I hate thee? Let me count the ways! Rissa is the character you love to hate. She appears in chapter one of book one, and my beta readers all hated her by the end of the first chapter.
Rissa was once a mortal, but she has already been turned when you meet her in the book. She is the conniving mate of the master vampire, Alec. Alec’s character was written such that he needed someone who could carry out his will, and Rissa is all too eager to please her mate.
She was born into wealth, and has led a pampered life. She is rich, and beautiful, and is used to getting her way with the snap of her fingers. She can’t imagine a life without money and privilege, and looks down her nose at those not inside her circle. She has been drawn to Alec because of his wealth and power, and his handsome good looks. Although this is not Alec and Rissa’s story, they will play heavily through the series as counterparts to Shade and Kate. The story hints at Rissa having relationships with other vampires before she met Alec, as she is pulled in by their power. She quickly realizes that Alec is even more ambitious than she is, and she is willing to do anything to help him succeed…as long as she doesn’t break a nail in the process.
She sees herself as a diva, and is not above a good pout or a temper tantrum if it will get her way. These tactics work on others, but go largely ignored by Alec, who has no time for her drama.
Her relationship with Alec is one of a dom/sub which is not completely consensual. However, she wants Alec, and Alec makes the rules. Alec uses sex and feeding to control her behavior, but in the end, Rissa must be Rissa, and her defiance always costs her.
Every story needs a good antagonist, and Rissa is as good as it gets. As one beta wrote, “Sometimes I would feel sorry for her, but then I would remember…oh wait, this is Rissa, nevermind.”
Poor Rissa. There is one who loves her though. He really loves her, and it’s not Alec. You’ll have to read the books to figure that one out. I don’t write spoilers in the blog!