These are the first four Anita Blake books, before Hamilton went off the rails with the S&M stuff. (One of the later books is titled Narcissus In Chains. There is a reason why.) Anita isn't the unstoppable ubermonster she later becomes. She changes during the course of the books, positively in some ways, negatively in others. (Mostly, she starts on a trip down a certain river in Egypt wrt her two boyfriends. The last line of Circus of the Damned: "Most women complain that there are no single, straight men left. I'd just like to meet one who's human." Nor is her sex life the only thng she's in denial about.) Character development is _not_ in short supply. Not only does Anita change, but so do most of the supporting characters. (Except, of course, for those who get killed off. And as this is a series of books about vapmires, werewolves, and zombies, being dead doesn't necessarily mean you're written out of the series.)
In these books Anita starts as an ordinary zombie queen (she prefers 'animator') who's a consultant for the St. Louis police as well. Except that it's established in the very first chapter of the very first book that she's not quite as ordinary as she thinks she is. Think of that chapter as the headwaters of the Nile. By the end of The Lunatic Cafe it's clear to all (except her) that she's _way_ more than ordinary. An ordinary zombie queen would have been long since dead. Permenently.
In addition to vampires, ghouls, flesh-eating revanant zombies, hostile zombie queens, werewolves, wereleopards, wererats and other weres, and necormancers, Anita has her problems with just plain humans with guns. Anita's got guns of her own and knows the Master (vampire) of the City and the local alpha werewolf very well indeed (see that last line of Circus of the Damned) and has friends in the local police and another, well, 'friend' may be too strong a word, who likes to give her UZI submachineguns as gifts. There is a _lot_ of action to go with the character development. Those who don't like blood should stay clear. (Those who don't like kinky sex should avoid the last two books...)