Katie's Pick: Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Looking for a saucy series to sink your teeth into? Look no further than Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series. Book one in the series, Halfway to the Grave introduces the reader to Cat Crawford, a 20-something half human, half vampire hybrid who hunts vampires in her spare time. Cat has a personal vendetta against blood suckers: her mother was raped by a vampire. Cat tries to blend in with normal people, but she is stronger and faster than the average human. Not to mention when she feels intense emotions, her eyes glow an eerie green. All her life, Cat’s mother has drilled into her that all vampires are evil demons, and that she needs to hide her dual nature at all costs. Therefore, Cat puts her otherworldly skills to work dispatching vampires indiscriminately, trying to avenge her mother’s rape and quell her own misery.
While on a hunt one night, Cat gets kidnapped by a vampire that goes by the name Bones. Bones works as a free-lance bounty hunter and is convinced Cat is carrying out a bounty for his head. After a bit of interrogation, Cat tells him she’s a half-vampire hybrid who hunts the undead. Instead of killing her, as he originally planned, Bones offers her a deal: he offers to sharpen her vampire hunting skills and train her to become a bounty hunter like him. Cat reluctantly accepts the offer, and forms an unlikely partnership with the enigmatic vampire. Together they begin taking down the evil undead. By working with Bones, Cat begins to question her mother’s anti vampire rhetoric. Despite her best efforts, serious romantic tension develops between Cat and Bones. Bones makes Cat feel like a normal person instead of a freak of nature. Before Cat can blossom into a full blown demon hunter, the vampire bounty hunting duo are stalked by a group of killers that wish to end Cat and Bones’ vampire killing days. Loyalties are tested and Cat must make a difficult decision to save the ones she loves.
I was not expecting to enjoy Jeaniene Frost’s Halfway to the Grave as much as I did. Jeaniene Frost weaves romance, supernatural entities, satire, and action into a snarky and steamy read that proved difficult to put down. Frost builds a world that is quite similar to our own, with the addition of vampires, demons, and other supernatural entities. I particularly enjoyed the dual nature of the main character, Cat Crawford. At times, she’s incredibly self-confident. She willingly goes out to nightclubs in search of her vampire prey. Yet at other times, she lacks self-conviction and doubts herself. This dichotomy makes Cat more realistic and endearing to readers. Cat Frost’s characters are reminiscent of Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer, so if you’re missing Buffy and the Scooby gang, The Night Huntress series is worth checking out.
Availability: Book Rating: *** Stars (I liked it) Reviewer: Katie, Reference Librarian
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GENRE: First Person Narratives; Urban Fantasy THEMES: Women of Steel (Whether at the helm of a starship or on the throne of the Amazons, these women are seriously skilled, fully armored, and ready for quest or battle alike.)
STORYLINE: World-Building PACE: Fast-Paced TONE: Bleak; Steamy WRITING STYLE: Gritty
SUBJECT: Courage in Women; Independence in Women; Interpersonal Attraction; Kidnapping; Rape; Revenge; Sexual Attraction; Supernatural; Undead; Vampire Slayers; Vampires
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