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The Harlequin [Mass Market Paperback]

Laurell K. Hamilton
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 30 2010 Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter (Book 15)

Into Anita Blake's world-a world already overflowing with power-come creatures so feared that centuries-old vampires refuse to mention their names.


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The Harlequin + Danse Macabre + Skin Trade
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of bestseller Hamilton's solid 15th adventure to star vampire hunter Anita Blake, Malcolm, the priggish head of the Church of the Eternal Life (the vampire church), is so desperate for help in dealing with the Harlequin, a troop of vampire enforcers and spies so feared vampires are forbidden to speak its name, he turns to those he considers sinful and corrupt—Anita and her sweetie, Jean-Claude, St. Louis's Master of the City. The Harlequin may have targeted Anita and the powerful triumvirate she has forged with Jean-Claude and Richard Zeeman (aka Ulfric of the werewolves). According to the rules, the Harlequin must make contact through delivery of a mask—white to indicate they are watching, red for pain, black for death. Anita receives a white mask, but the members of the Harlequin aren't playing by the rules. Shorter and more tightly structured than the previous entry in the series, Danse Macabre (2006), Hamilton's latest should prove more satisfying to longtime fans with its straightforward supernatural politics and steamy (but not extreme) sex.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Hamilton's latest should prove more satisfying to longtime fans with its straightforward supernatural politics and steamy (but not extreme) sex Publishers Weekly Death and gore galore ... Hamilton writes with ease and vigour ... Great fun SHIVERS I was enthralled - a departure from the usual type of vampire tale which will have a wide appeal to any reader hunting for both chills and fun Andre Norton The fights are fast and furious, with guns roaring, claws rending and wisecracks by the dozen. OUTLAND --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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MALCOLM, THE HEAD of the Church of Eternal Life, the vampire church, sat across from me. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
By Lawrance M. Bernabo HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
"The Harlequin" is Book 15 in the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series and the first one to come out since Marvel started publishing its comic book adaptation of Laurell K. Hamilton's first book in the series, "Guilty Pleasures." That graphic reminder of how good those early novels were, when the emphasis was more on horror and a whole lot less on sex, made me a bit wary when I started reading "The Harlequin," especially given how disappointed I and countless legions of fans have been in Hamilton's recent novles (and not just the Anita Blake ones). But while I have to admit that it could be a case that things have been down so long it looks like up to me, bottom line is that I found "The Harlequin" to be the best Anita Blake novel in years. We also have the nice little irony that in this novel she actually lives up to her title of being a Vampire Hunter, which has rarely been the case in the series.

In virtually every novel our heroine manifests a new power, from the ability to raise an entire graveyard of corpses to forming her own triumvirate with Damien as her vampire and Nathaniel as her beast to call, which makes the main triumvirate with Jean-Claude and Richard even more powerful. Now Jean-Claude has his own bloodline and in the world of vampire politics this is a seismic event and back in the old country the Vampire Council is taking notice of what is happening in St. Louis. As "The Harlequin" begins (and this time the title refers to people rather than a place), somebody is apparently doing something about it and the threat is so bad that if Jean-Claude tells Anita about it they are all going to die. Fortunately, Anita trusts Jean-Claude well enough that she is willing to take his word even though it cuts against her grain not to make her own decisions.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars "What's a little sex between allies?" June 6 2007
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
The Anita Blake series started off well, continued for awhile, then took a sharp plunge down into the literary abyss of bad porn.

Well, "The Harlequin" scrabbles PARTLY back out of that abyss, but Laurell K. Hamilton's fifteenth Blake book still suffers from a surfeit of squickly sex, constant sexual ramblings, and a promising plot that gets swamped by the sex-with-Anitacentric politics of vampires and weres.

First a vamp cleric tells her of a threat so terrible that he can't name it, then a movie night with Nathaniel leads to a strange warning -- a white mask. Jean-Claude reveals that it's the warning of the Harlequin, a cruel vampire police who can warp their victims' minds. And apparently Anita and her string of adoring lovers (plus the still-upset Richard) have upset them.

And the politics of the situation are getting quite nasty, with alliances between weres and vamps getting nasty as they try to all have sex with Anita for power and influence, and Anita repeatedly getting hit by her various "beasts." And if they don't manage to kill the Harlequin soon, then Marmee Noir will reawaken -- and the Harlequin will be working for her.

"The Harlequin" sounds promising at first -- it's almost a hundred and fifty pages before Anita has sex with anyone. It's been several books since Hamilton could boast a length like that, and at first glance it seems to be promising a return to prior form.

Unfortunately, the sexless parts even duller than actual sex would have been: talking/remembering/agonizing about sex. There's two long chapters devoted to Nathaniel wanting Anita to tie him up and hurt him during sex, and Anita getting squeamish about it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Used Book: The Harlequin Aug. 2 2012
By Leslie
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I ordered this book used from awesomebookscanada and it came in about a week. It was described as "Used-Good" and I am satisfied with the condition it came in. The pages are pretty clean, spine intact. The dust jacket has some wear around the edges and back, and the top of the pages when the book is closed is a touch dirty. Considering this was used I am more than happy with my purchase.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What's a little sex between allies? Jan. 24 2008
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The Anita Blake series started off well, continued for awhile, then took a sharp plunge down into the literary abyss of bad porn.

Well, "The Harlequin" scrabbles PARTLY back out of that abyss, but Laurell K. Hamilton's fifteenth Blake book still suffers from a surfeit of squickly sex, constant sexual ramblings, and a promising plot that gets swamped by the sex-with-Anitacentric politics of vampires and weres.

First a vamp cleric tells her of a threat so terrible that he can't name it, then a movie night with Nathaniel leads to a strange warning -- a white mask. Jean-Claude reveals that it's the warning of the Harlequin, a cruel vampire police who can warp their victims' minds. And apparently Anita and her string of adoring lovers (plus the still-upset Richard) have upset them.

And the politics of the situation are getting quite nasty, with alliances between weres and vamps getting nasty as they try to all have sex with Anita for power and influence, and Anita repeatedly getting hit by her various "beasts." And if they don't manage to kill the Harlequin soon, then Marmee Noir will reawaken -- and the Harlequin will be working for her.

"The Harlequin" sounds promising at first -- it's almost a hundred and fifty pages before Anita has sex with anyone. It's been several books since Hamilton could boast a length like that, and at first glance it seems to be promising a return to prior form.

Unfortunately, the sexless parts even duller than actual sex would have been: talking/remembering/agonizing about sex. There's two long chapters devoted to Nathaniel wanting Anita to tie him up and hurt him during sex, and Anita getting squeamish about it.
Read more ›
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