The Fallacy of Eternal Love: Romance, Vampires and the Deconstruction of Love in Linda Lael Miller's Forever and the Night and For All Eternity

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Vampire and romance fiction despise the limits established by temporal 'finality' and offer their readers the opportunity to vicariously transgress known and inescapable facts of human existence, namely, that all things must age, decay and, eventually, die. Against the existential vacuum generated by our lack of knowledge about what awaits us 'in the aftermath' - the aftermath of life, the aftermath of love - they offer the exciting possibility of sustainability, durability and eternity. [...] Eternal love is even offered as a metaphysical alternative that endows life with meaning. (111)


in the vampire romances by Linda Lael Miller [...] the romantic concerns that characterise both genres - fear of finality and search for companionship - are more fully explored. Miller's Forever and the Night (henceforth FAN) and For All Eternity (henceforth FAE) - the first two instalments of her four-volume vampire saga - cannot simply be reduced to vampire fictions that happen to contain amorous vampires, but are truly romances - constructed around a lovers' quest for eternal love - which have vampires as protagonists and which operate within the contours of vampire conventions, concerns and paraphernalia/iconography. (113)


The love the protagonists experience is expressed in religious terms and is regarded as eternal. In fact, it transcends physical attraction to become a communion of souls, a boundless, porous, limitless metaphysical sublimation capable of relieving pain and loneliness. Yet, even though their love is supposedly eternal, their relationship is doomed, since the vampires' mortal lovers are trapped in the limits of human existence, irremediably sentenced to ageing, decline and death. [...] Miller establishes that vampirism is not an acceptable option for her human protagonists. (121)

Obviously since these are romances, the protagonists do end up together, but I thought I'd avoid spoilers.