--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
When St. Louis?s most powerful vampire comes to Anita Blake for help, she is faced with her greatest fear?a man capable of arousing in her a hunger strong enough to match his own.
Trust is a luxury Anita can't afford when her allies aren't human. The city's most powerful vampire, Nikolaos, is 1,000 years old and looks like a 10-year-old girl. The second most powerful vampire, Jean-Claude, is interested in more than just Anita's professional talents, but the feisty necromancer isn't playing along--yet. This popular series has a wild energy and humor, and some very appealing characters--both dead and alive. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
Anita herself has some interesting personal conflicts - she is a committed Christian who works with dark forces and kills a little too easily, and a very dainty and pretty-looking person who considers herself to be "tough as nails" (it makes it hard for the bad guys to take her seriously).
Each of the books is loosely based around a supernatural mystery and the ongoing story of Anita's life (she's 20-something at the start of this book). The writing is a little sloppy, but quite compelling, and the series steadily improves for the first few novels (the later ones get a little bogged down with Anita's issues).
1) SETTING: This is an alternate world where what appears to be 20th century humans coexist with vampires and other supernatural creatures. There are even laws that give vampires certain rights in this new world. Our brief glimpse of the world created is teasing in its possibilities and enjoyable.
2) CHARACTERS: Anita Blake is our main protagonist. She is a female version of a smart-mouthed detective from some stereotypical gumshoe story. She is a character who proudly displays her stereotypes but also enjoyable has a couple of traits that add something memorable. I liked the character enough that she is more the reason why I would want to read the next book than because the plot was maybe fabulous.
3) PLOT: Speaking of plot...it was a nice little mystery. I didn't feel that there were enough clues to who the "bad" guy was but the story had enough unexpected events that I kept reading. Story was overall handled well though I would have liked to see more "action" scenes vs. scenes that were potentially eruptive in action...if you know what I mean.
4) CONTENT: This book would be rated R for gore and violence. The "sensual" scenes were handled very professionally, were brief and were NOT graphic sexually...which I appreciated. I wanted a vampire, action, mystery and that is what I got.
OVERALL: I liked this book and if someone likes to read vampire books and have a mystery I'd recommend this in a heartbeat. Just because the covers of this series and the titles of the books may imply this is erotic horror, this book wasn't. If the rest of the series is, I don't know. But this was a fun little read that I really enjoyed.
Anita Blake is (as the cover says) Badddddddd with the capitol "B". This is my first Vampire book, I don't generally read gore but suprisingly enough it doesn't contain a lot of it. Descriptive fight scenes, gun battles, creatures of all kinds and "sort of" love story is what this quick read had to offer. I am not a Science Fiction professional reader so my review is actually coming from someone that is new to this genre it seems to me that Laurell K. Hamilton tried to mesh the world of Romance with Science Fiction and she did it (in my honest opinion) rather smoothly, don't get me wrong there is a slight reference of a "possible" attraction between 2 characters (sorry no spoilers here) but there isn't a lot of romance going on. The suspense is within the murders that are going on and the potrayal of the Nickolaus character (who reminded me a lot of the Kristin Durst role in "Interview with a Vampire")will haunt me for a day or two I am sure. The one thing that I was a little perplexed about was how did Anita develop some of her skills... but I do have faith a figure that these may be revealed in later books so I look forward to delving into the rest of the series.
I highly recommend this series if you are a Romantic Supsense Reader that needs a break from the "norm".