Guilty pleasures, p.29
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       Guilty Pleasures, p.29

         Part #1 of Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series by Laurell K. Hamilton
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  It was a three-book contract, so I knew that there would be more Anita Blake adventures. I had a contract and money in hand. Yeaha!

  I don't know if Anita Blake, the main character of Guilty Pleasures, and currently ten other books, is me before therapy, or after therapy, if therapy included a lot of gun play, and a high body count. It doesn't really matter because from the moment she stepped on stage, I've loved her. I love Anita. I love how tough she talks, and how tough she truly is. I love that writing her has pushed me to research things I knew nothing about before she came along, like guns, police work, the military, forensics, murder, crime in general, and certain areas of sex that were so very new to me. I have asked questions that Barbara Walters wouldn't have touched with a ten-foot pole, but not having a misspent youth myself I had to find people who were willing to talk about theirs.

  I love the ongoing cast of characters that surrounds Anita. I love Willie McCoy with his loud suits, and uglier ties. He proves the rule that being a vampire doesn't automatically make you sexy, suave, or debonair. I love Sergeant Rudolph (Dolph) Storr, the ultimate good cop, and Zerbrowski with his ribald sense of humor and his messy fashion sense. In this book I love Phillip and his pain. I did not love Jean-Claude in this book. There were tons of sexy romantic vampires out there. I had no intention of contributing to what I saw as a problem. I mean, they are walking corpses, what the hell is so sexy about that? I just didn't get it. It would take me two more books before I began to understand that I couldn't kill Jean-Claude off, that losing him would hurt both Anita and me.

  In Guilty Pleasures I was still betting good money, loudly, to anyone who asked, that Jean-Claude was not a romantic lead. Damnit.

  I saw the series as a mystery series that had vampires, werewolves, and zombies in it. That is how the series is arranged, each book self-contained, the mystery solved, character development from one book to the other, but each book complete in and of itself. I hate coming to the end of someone else's book, and finding that it doesn't really end and I'm going to have to wait a year or so to read the rest. I hate that. So I promise, as much as possible, not to do it to anyone else.

  Guilty Pleasures is a hard-boiled detective mystery. It is also a dark fantasy, or a horror novel, because it has vampires, zombies, ghouls, werewolves, and a few other shapeshifters, I think. I had a great deal of fun with this first book. I did everything I wanted to do, played with monsters, guns, and had a female protagonist that was as tough as the men, maybe tougher. But I was also careful that she does nothing that she's not physically capable of. The further out on the edge you ask the reader to follow you, the stronger your reality better be.

  Welcome to Anita's slice of reality. Watch your step, check that the guns are loaded with silver ammo, pick your holy item of choice, and never look a vampire directly in the eyes, even if those eyes are the drowning blue of midnight skies.



  Laurell K. Hamilton, Guilty Pleasures

  (Series: Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter # 1)




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