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The Laughing Corpse: An Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Novel Paperback – Aug 2 2005

4.4 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (Aug. 2 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425204669
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425204665
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #680,553 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

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Harold Gaynor offers Anita Blake a million dollars to raise a 300-year-old zombie. Knowing it means a human sacrifice will be necessary, Anita turns him down. But when dead bodies start turning up, she realizes that someone else has raised Harold's zombie--and that the zombie is a killer. Anita pits her power against the zombie and the voodoo priestess who controls it. Notice to Hollywood: forget Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Anita Blake is the real thing. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


Hamilton just keeps getting better and better. ("St. Louis Post-Dispatch") Anita Blake is one of the most fascinating fictional heroines since Scarlett O'Hara... ("Publishers Weekly", starred review)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
"The Laughing Corpse" by Laurell K. Hamilton, the second novel in the addictive Anita Blake - Vampire Hunter series, is a fun-filled thrill ride that will have readers craving more. Even better than the first of the series, this book grabs the reader by the throat and doesn't let go. Full of page-turning suspense, this book is escapist reading at its very best!
When Anita Blake, tough-as-nails vampire executioner and necromancer, is offered a million dollars by Harold Gaynor to raise a 300-year-old zombie, she has no choice but to decline. A zombie that old can only be raised one way - with a human sacrifice. Mr. Gaynor is not at all pleased with her refusal, but Anita will not be bought or threatened.
Unfortunately, when incredibly violent and gruesome murders start occurring, apparently perpetrated by a flesh-eating zombie, Anita realizes that someone else has raised Gaynor's zombie.
Anita seeks the help of the country's most powerful voodoo priestess, Dominga Salvador, in hopes that she might know about the killer zombie. However, when Anita refuses an offer to work with Dominga, it puts her on the voodoo priestess' list of enemies.
Anita is left fighting off Gaynor's goons, a murderous zombie, and all the nasty preternatural monsters Dominga Salvador can send her way, which makes for some great reading!
On top of all her other troubles, Anita must deal with the advances of Jean-Claude, the new Master Vampire of the City. Although Jean-Claude is mind-numbingly sexy, Anita refuses to become involved with a vampire. But Jean-Claude doesn't give up that easy, and his witty and sometimes wicked exchanges with Anita are truly entertaining.
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By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Jan. 11 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Zombies make awesome murder weapons. And when your anti-heroine is able to raise zombies, they make an excellent source for a horror/mystery plot. Laurell K. Hamilton's "The Laughing Corpse" has plenty of grotesque horror and zombie-related nastiness, as well as some clever social questions. But she fails somewhat in creating a convincing mystery story -- not to mention a tolerable heroine.

After rejecting psycho-millionaire client Harold Gaynor (who wants a very old zombie raised, requiring a human sacrifice), Anita is called out to look at the scene of a crime that seems to have been committed by zombies. So she starts investigating possible suspects -- including Dominga Salvador, a malevolent old vaudun priestess who has found a way to keep a zombie ensouled.

Unfortunately some very nasty things -- both living and dead -- are trying to stop Anita's investigations, both into the zombie murders and Harold Gaynor. With the solicitous assistance of Jean Claude and a fellow animator, Anita is able to find more and more information on the zombie-related murders -- and it turns out that Salvador and Gaynor may be working together.

Laurell K. Hamilton was pretty clearly shooting for an "old pulp noir mystery" feel in "The Laughing Corpse" -- acid-tongued anti-hero, grimy urban atmosphere, nasty big-shots, and a series of mysterious deaths. So she fills it with many descriptions of guns, dismembered bodies and creepy-crawly scenes (such as Anita holding a moving bird foot).

Her dialogue-heavy writing does tend to be lean and mildly hard-boiled, with a distinctly horrific vibe (prostitute Wheelchair Wanda tells Anita about Gaynor's sex games). But Hamilton has a rather clumsy style: endless sentence fragments ("Not resurrection. I'm not that good. I mean zombies.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Laughing Corpse is the second book in a great series. Those who already know that they like vampire novels, anything at all that features a vampire, can skip this review, and likewise, those who hate the whole idea of vampires can skip it. But for those trying to decide whether or not to read more of this genre, or whether the one vampire novel you've already read was a fluke, it may help to have some ways to categorize these novels. Thus: BunRab's Standard Vampire Classification Guide. First, most authors of vampire novels approach from one of the main genres of genre fiction; thus their background may be primarily in romance, or in science fiction/fantasy, or in murder mysteries, or in horror. Second, many vampire novels come in series; knowing whether this is one of a series, and where in the series it falls, may be helpful. Then we have some particular characteristics: - Is the vampire character (or characters) a "good guy" or a "bad guy"? Or are there some of each? - Are there continuing characters besides the vampire, through the series? - Are there other types of supernatural beings besides vampires? - Can the vampire stand daylight under some circumstances, or not stand daylight at all? - Does the vampire have a few other supernatural characteristics, many other supernatural characteristics, or none other than just being a vampire? (E.g., super strength, change into an animal, turn invisible) - Does the vampire have a regular job and place in society, or is being a vampire his or her entire raison d'etre? - Does the vampire literally drink blood, or is there some other (perhaps metaphorical) method of feeding? - Is sex a major plot element, a minor plot element, or nonexistent?Read more ›
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