Narcissus in Chains

by Laurell K. Hamilton

Berkley, October, 2001.
Paperback, 482 pages.
ISBN: 0425181685

Narcissus in Chains by Laurell K. Hamilton In this tenth entry in the Anita Blake vampire hunter series, the gloves are off -- there is enough graphic violence, steamy sex and dark atmosphere here for three books. Anita returns to St. Louis, after spending a celibate six months out of town. But her sabbatical has left her no closer to making a choice between her two lovers: the handsome vampire Jean Claude and Richard, a werewolf. When two of her wereleopards are kidnapped and being held at a dive known as Narcissus in Chains, Anita must rescue them. Anita is injured during the rescue, and may have been infected with lycanthropy. Not sure if she's going to turn into a wereleopard at the next full moon, Anita has also been infected by the ardeur -- the vampire's eternal hunger. Fighting both the ardeur and her love for two men, Anita must now find a mysterious person who seems to be murdering lycanthropes.

For lovers of the vampire mythos, the Anita Blake series is an absolute must-read. The books are set in our modern-day society, but with a twist: vampires, lycanthopes and the like really exist. They are second-class citizens in a way (the cops are certainly less worried about the murder of a werewolf than a human), but they also are a source of intense interest and attraction to some humans. Blake's world is so creepy precisely because it is so believable; perhaps it's her matter of fact style in describing the most arcane rituals and practices. But whatever it is, this is one compelling and erotic series that lovers of vampire stories will devour at one sitting.

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This review was published in the Oct. - Nov., 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.

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