By Laurell K. Hamilton
Read by Kimberly Alexis
Part of Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter
Category: Paranormal Fiction | Urban Fantasy
Penguin Random House/Berkley
Hardcover Oct 11, 2016 | 720 Pages
E-Book Oct 11, 2016 | 576 Pages
AUDIOBOOK DOWNLOAD Oct 11, 2016 | 1453 Minutes
CD Oct 11, 2016 | 1440 Minutes
Audiobook provided by publisher for review purposes but no review is promised in exchange. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.
In her twenty-fifth adventure, vampire hunter and necromancer Anita Blake learns that evil is in the eye of the beholder… Anita has never seen Damian, her vampire servant, in such a state. The rising sun doesn’t usher in the peaceful death that he desperately needs. Instead, he’s being bombarded with violent nightmares and blood sweats. And now, with Damian at his most vulnerable, Anita needs him the most. The vampire who created him, who subjected him to centuries of torture, might be losing control, allowing rogue vampires to run wild and break one of their kind’s few strict taboos. Some say love is a great motivator, but hatred gets the job done, too. And when Anita joins forces with her friend Edward to stop the carnage, Damian will be at their side, even if it means traveling back to the land where all his nightmares spring from…a place that couldn’t be less welcoming to a vampire, an assassin, and a necromancer. Ireland.
Laurel K. Hamilton herself called this the book that wouldn’t end (http://www.laurellkhamilton.com/crimson-death-the-book-that-would-not-end/). When I received the print copy of the bound galley I was a little shocked — it’s a doorstop of a book.
I was enjoying it but even so at 24 hours it was pretty long. I liked That Anita was going to Europe, where she hasn’t before (not that I can remember). It allows a distance and big time difference to come into play in her connections to some of the men in her life.
Book by Book, it seems like LKH is paring down the herd; sometimes, like Jason or Jade they get in a relationship. Other times they’re banished or die.
The world-building in this one is complicated and diffuse. There are a lot of elements and a lot of unrevealed history and back story on the Irish side of the pond; it feels incomplete. A lot of new characters are introduced and I wonder if they;ll be reappearing.
Is there an end in sight for Ms. Blake? According to LKH’s Website she will continue to write these books as long as the characters and readers demand it from her (http://www.laurellkhamilton.com/resources/faq/).
There is less of an element of “lessons from my therapist’s couch” than there has been in recent stories, but it is still there. In this story, it is Nathaniel who takes center stage and shows us how he has benefited and grown through therapy. He even helps others now. Also, he’s become less submissive, in and out of bed. Anita points out several times that he has actually picked up a gun and defended her. Here, you will find Nathaniel going even further.
Kimberly Alexis IS the voice of Anita Blake, and as in other books I’ve listened to in this series does an excellent job with maintaining the characters’ and with accents.
As far as advancing the story goes, this book moves us closer and closer to the wedding and commitment ceremonies Anita and, apparently, half of the supes in St. Louis will be making. She’s a vampire queen, a leopard shifter queen and goodness knows what else. Unless she becomes president, there’s not much more she could do after that, and as she kills of more and more powerful vampires she and her retinue of people she is “dating” gains more and more power.
You know what they say about power.
There was a LOT of repetition in the book of explanations of relationships, characters and built-world rules. Also I felt like I had missed some about the different laws of “supernature” in effect in Ireland.
So, if you like the series, and want to read something over 500 pages or 24 hours in audio, this is the story for you. If you have not read the series do not start here. This is one I really think best read in order for continuity and important back story. The story has a very edgy feel, is fairly graphic in its violence and, in later books, sexuality. For me, LKH feels like no other author. I think her writing feels like her own struggle — her own therapy — on some level, than any one else I have read. I don’t spend a lot of time delving into authors personal lives, so it is just how the work feels to me.
AUDIO PUBLISHING IMPRINT: http://www.penguinrandomhouseaudio.com/book/533248/crimson-death/
AUTHOR WEBSITE: http://www.laurellkhamilton.com/
AUTHOR FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/LaurellKHamiltonOfficial