Alpha Showdown 2016 Round 4: Gin Blanco vs. Raphael


VBC: Home of Alpha ShowdownThe Alpha Showdown is underway, and already proving to be a good one. There’s stiff competition this year, just look at the bracket!

It’s time for a break from the vampires and the shifters. It’s time to think about raw power. In round 4 we’re pitting elemental against archangel.

Who will advance in the Alpha Showdown, though?

We’ve lined up excellent bloggers to fill you in on why each alpha deserves to advance. Read the pitches, and then make the call.


You know her from: Elemental Assassin by Jennifer Estep
First appeared in: Spider’s Bite (VBC Review | The Book Nympho Review | Amazon)
Supernatural status: Elemental – Ice and Stone Magic

Championed by: Jennifer at The Book Nympho

When I was first exposed to Gin in Spider’s Bite, she was stabbing a bad guy in balls for molesting the women who were under his care in a physic ward. Pen through the balls is a killer alpha move!

Spider's Bite by Jennifer Estep // VBCYes, Gin is now a retired assassin, but she protects the innocent and has a code; never kill animals, children or innocents. Gin may have started out killing people for money but now she is more of a Robin Hood figure . . .

“I’m just wondering how exactly I went from being the Spider to the Robin fucking Hood of the greater Ashland area… Instead of stealing from the rich, I’m stabbing them to death for the poor.” – Venom (book 3)

Gin is almost never without her five-point arsenal—silverstone knives, one up each sleeve, one in the small of her back, and one in each boot. But when in doubt she can use anything as a weapon . . .

“Have I ever told you how scary it is that you think of heels in terms of their possible shiv potential?” – Deadly Sting (book 8)

Even when there’s not a potential shiv around, Gin can still call on her elemental talents. She has two, which is very rare but what’s even more special about her talents is that both is just as strong as the other. She can harden her skin by using her Stone Magic or she can make lock picks with her Ice Magic. She’s also been known to make a few ice daggers to take out her adversaries, the perfect weapon since it melts when she’s done with it.

Now that Gin has taken down the big bad Queen of the Ashland Underworld, she finds herself in the role, but don’t worry, Gin still sticks to her golden rules of not hurting the innocent. What better way to keep an eye on the crime lords in Ashland but to be the head of them?

The Alpha Showdown is all about who’s the most alpha and yet when we talk about the male characters we have to through in the sexy part. I feel like we should leave out the sexual part and look at the character’s strengths but if you guys want to talk up the sex appeal then I could totally be gay for Gin Blanco (and she wouldn’t need her little white pills with me LOL). She kicks ass, loyal, confident, and owns a BBQ restaurant. She is the kind of gal that kills to save her family and friends. She always takes care of her lover, Owen and she cooks some of the most amazing foods. What could be sexier?

Whether Gin is serving up triple chocolate milkshakes at The Pork Pit or serving up bad guys at the end of her knife, you can guarantee that the service will come with a smile.

“Sure, just give me a second to put away my smokes,” Finn said. “I wouldn’t want them to get damaged when we talk to Smith.”

I frowned. “Damaged? Why would they get damaged? And with what?”

“Knives, magic, blood, big, fat sloppy man tears as Smith begs for mercy,” Finn said. “You know. All the Gin Blanco specialties.”

He was right again. Those were my specialties. – Spider’s Trap (book 13)

Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh // VBCRAPHAEL

You know him from: Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh
First appeared in:
Angels’ Blood (Amazon)
Supernatural status:

Championed by: Jo from Wicked Lil Pixie | @kindlejo_jo

Can we just start by saying: ARCHANGEL <– Hello! Born of two powerful archangels, Raphael’s rise to power was the stuff of legends. He doesn’t just lead a small band of vampires or a group of shape shifters like you’d find in your run of the mill paranormal/urban fantasy.

Nope—Raphael creates vampires, commands angels, and rules over all of North America. He inspires such loyalty that the other archangels in the Cadre of Ten both covet and fear his “Seven,” warriors that willingly give their allegiance to Raphael and are bad ass enough that more than one of them have been in this same showdown. <- Let that sink in for just a minute, his subordinates are that bad ass, and they respect and follow HIM.

Raphael is physical perfection, so physically and mentally powerful that he has to temper himself when dealing with almost any other being on the planet, and wicked smart making him the total alpha package. *wink wink* Raphael is as alpha as they come. He is ruthless without being overtly cruel, he is intimidating but fair, and best of all he’s willing to have a little fun. He takes calculated risks but never unnecessary ones.

A true leader, Raphael allows those around him to do what they do best which means he and his territory come out for the better from each altercation. All that before he allowed Elena into his heart and made her an angel. MADE HER AN ANGEL. I mean, yeah—biting your lady love and changing her into a vampire or a shape shifter is cool and all, but it isn’t anything new. An angel though, with wings and everything? Yeah, that’s much higher on the Alpha scale than blood sucker or sometimes wolf.

All joking aside, as the Guild Hunter series progresses, so does our archangel. He has become somewhat tempered with Elena’s humanity without losing his edge or his calculating efficiency.

“But it is legend that ambrosia only rises when—”
She held her breath.
“—an archangel loves true.”
The world stopped. The air particles seemed to still above her, the molecules suspended as she stared at the magnificence of the man who held her in his arms. “Maybe I was just biologically compatible.” It came out a ragged whisper.
“Perhaps.” The possession of lips against her neck. “We have eternity to discover the truth. And in that eternity, you will be mine.”

~Raphael and Elena in Angels’ Blood


Who are you putting your money on: the assassin or the archangel?

At the request of Alpha Showdown voters, we’re leveraging traditional polls for the voting, but also keeping reading for your chance to win awesome books. Your to-be-read pile could always use more. Trust us. Each poll will be open for 48 hours.


Participating in the Alpha Showdown is all about fun, and free books equal fun, right? We hope you’ll find lots of great new reads during this year’s Alpha Showdown, and to help that along, we’re giving away some stellar reads.

For Round 4, we have a copy of Kate Baxter’s The Last True Vampire. If you like Black Dagger Brotherhood books, you’re going to like this one.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

66 Responses to “Alpha Showdown 2016 Round 4: Gin Blanco vs. Raphael”

  1. Janie McGaugh says:

    I choose Raphael!

  2. Tilly says:

    Raphael every time! One of my favorite authors!

  3. susan emans says:

    I’ve got to vote for Gin. We need some girl power.

  4. Yvonne A. says:

    Raphael, but Gin is great tooo.

    This time the descions are very hard

  5. Alison R says:

    Hmmm, I want to say Gin but I think Raphael would whoop her ass, so Raphael it is

  6. Maggie says:

    Yay! Raphael! I voted!

  7. Kelsey C. says:

    Raphael! Nalini Singh is my crack author, must read everything she writes.

  8. Chiara says:


  9. Nora Bell says:

    I choose Gin! She is such a bad a…

  10. Lori A Hill says:

    Oh, come on! How can you trust anyone who is “physical perfection”? Vote for Gin, who helps those everyone else has forgotten.

  11. Laura says:

    As much ad I love Raphael, if anyone could figure out a way to kill him it would be Gin. She could kill anything!

  12. Liliane says:

    You’re really making this hard xD well, let’s go Raphael.

  13. Aliyah says:

    Oh, this is so hard… But I would go for Raphael

  14. Sherre C says:

    Gin needs to win!!! She’s so awesome!!

  15. Liz S says:

    Raphael for the win!

  16. Leona says:

    While I love Gin she doesn’t hold a candle to Raphael…sorry

  17. Karin Anderson says:

    It’s so hard! I love both, but Gin is gonna have to be my choice.

  18. Rachel says:

    There was no hesitation. I chose Raphael!!

  19. Competition is fierce this year! I couldn’t believe it when I saw my beloved Raphael was pitted against Gin (and me against Jennifer TBN!).
    May the best *cough* archangel *cough* Alpha win 😀

  20. snapdragon says:


  21. Victoria Sloboda says:

    Easy, voted for Gin :).

  22. Kamelia says:


  23. Susan Anzalone says:

    Raphael is so badass! Sorry Gin!

  24. Shannon Norwood says:

    Gin for the win!!!

  25. miki says:

    i like Gin but raphael is definitively my favourite^^

  26. Nicole says:

    Raphael all the way!

  27. Kimberly Curington says:

    Raphael! Raphael! Raphael!

  28. Jess1 says:

    My vote is for Gin. She has some slick moves.

  29. Jess says:

    Gin can defeat any villain that she goes up against

  30. Jolie says:

    I’ve only just found this competition – this is so cool. Love it.
    Have to vote Raphael in this round b/c he’s crazy perfect plus I’ve not read Gin’s stories so can’t back her – yet. She’s been added to my TBR as of now

  31. Melissa B says:

    Chose Gin… cause Raphel is on my TBR pile! (hangs head in shame)

  32. Bube says:

    Raphael for the win 😀 🙂

  33. Tais says:

    I don’t know why, but I never really liked Raphael. So, my answer definitely doesn’t involve him.

  34. barbara says:

    Raphael, all the way!

  35. Sarah says:

    since this is a fight for who would win in a showdown, my vote definitely has to go to Raphael, he would make her a pile of ashes instantly.

  36. Corrina says:

    Raphael, of course. Though I have mad love for my girl Gin.

  37. Heather says:

    I JUST read/reviewed Kate’s THE DARK REVIEW recently, and was lamenting that I hadn’t read the other books first! LOL I would love to get my hands on that.

    I had to go with Raphael, just because… well, he’s THE ALPHA of all Alphas.

  38. Cara Scott HaveBook WillSurvive says:

    I voted for Gin

  39. Katie says:

    I really need to catch up on my reading….haven’t read either

  40. Shannon says:


  41. Well, I don’t know Raphael, but I do know Gin. So I gotta go with Gin.

  42. Caro Blatter says:

    Love the Elemental Assassin, but sorry Gin. I had to vote for Raphael.

  43. Angie says:

    Gin! My girl has always won even when the foes seemed too strong. Go Spider!

  44. Brad says:

    I will go for Gin Blanco now if it was a battle between Gin and the Guild Hunter would be a harder battle!

  45. Dawn Roberto says:

    I always love Gin and have to vote for her 🙂

  46. SHELLEY S says:


  47. Kyndall Overstreet says:


  48. Elizabeth says:


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