Review: Hit List by Laurell K. Hamilton

Anita Blake book 20

Hit List by Laurell K. Hamilton, UK edition cover.

Title: Hit List (An Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, Novel)
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: 7th June 2011

Blurb:

We followed the fresh blood even though every molecule in my body was screaming at me to run. Run before dark. Run before the vampires come. Run.

My name is Anita Blake. The vampires call me ‘The Executioner’. So when a series of gruesome and spectacular murders occur in the Pacific Northwest, the local police call in me and fellow US Marshal Edward to track down a serial killer they are convinced must be a ‘monster’.

But I know that some monsters are very real. The Harlequin have been the bogeymen of the vampire world for more than a thousand years; they are a secret so dark that even to speak their name can earn you a death sentence. Now they are here in America, hunting weretigers and human police. And me.

The Harlequin serve the Mother of All Darkness, the first vampire. She was supposed to be dead, but only her body was destroyed. Now Mommie Dearest is back, determined to kill Edward and to possess me. And she doesn’t care how many have to die along the way.

Rating: **** (3 1/2 stars)
Review:

This is Anita’s twentieth book, which is kind of scary as the series seems to have been part of my life for a long time. In the last book, Bullet, lines were drawn in the sand and the fall-out occurs in this book. This book is more about Anita’s police work than it is about her love life – something which I really enjoyed. It’s also set outside St. Louis, so we get introduced to some new characters. But the book is not without its problems, which is why it didn’t quite make it to four stars.

We hit the ground running at the start of this book. The hunt has already begun, and we join Anita and Edward at their fourth crime scene and in a fourth city. The shit really has hit the fan. The Mother of All Darkness wants to reclaim her place as the leader of the vampires, she has already caused the European Vampire Council to flee before her and all that stands in her way are our heroes.

This book allows the reader a clearer view into the preternatural branch of the US Marshals. We get to see the new generation starting to come through, and hints about what this will mean for the ‘old guys’. It’s also clearly illustrated that the new marshals don’t really have any idea about what they will be expected to face…

Bernardo and Olaf also turn up in this book, helping to raise the tension – there is definitely something going on between Olaf and Anita, I look forward to seeing what the fallout will be. Olaf gets hurt in the line of duty, the outcome of which will, hopefully, be interesting to see in future books (and what it may mean for Anita). Although none of Anita’s main squeezes have any face time in the book, we do get to see a bit more of the bodyguards. And we learn a bit more about Nicky’s past from a surprising source.

This book was a page turner from the start. It was action-packed and a really enjoyable read. The action was fast paced, making the book a real page turner. The climax of the story was preceded by a brilliant build-up, but the climax itself I found a tad disappointing for several reasons – mostly because it seemed too easy. I was also left wondering where the rest of the novel was once I reached the last page, which is not necessarily a bad thing as it’s left me looking forward to the next book.

I can’t wait to see where Hamilton takes Anita from here.

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