Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress) is the first in the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost. There’s six in the series so far, which make me a happy girl. I’ve already lined up the rest in my TBR virtual pile.
The main character, Cat, is a little different. She’s, well, halfway to the grave, since she’s half human and half vampire – the product of an unwed mother who was raped. She has so many stigmas on her that she’ll never be able to crawl out from under them. That’s okay though, because it makes her who she is: a kick-ass young lady with an ax to grind and a lot of growing up to do. She has plenty of spunk and enough grit to carry a series.
I’m not a big vampire fan, but I did enjoy this story and plan to read the entire series. It reminded me a lot of Buffy, though Cat doesn’t seem to have near the fashion sense. This first story sets up a large world, in which we find out that vampires have both good and bad citizens, just like humans. Somebody has to keep the bad ones in line, and Cat is volunteering for the job. Never mind that she has no training, and only half the usual vampire abilities. She holds her own anyway, and once she meets a good vampire she learns a whole lot more.
I stiffened at the red and blue lights flashing behind me, because there was no way I could explain what was in the back of my truck. I pulled over, holding my breath as the sheriff came to my window.
“Hi. Something wrong?” My tone was all innocence while I prayed there was nothing unusual about my eyes. Control yourself. You know what happens when you get upset.
“Yeah, you’ve got a busted taillight. License and registration, please.”
Crap. That must have happened when I was loading up the truck bed. Speed had been of the essence then, not daintiness.
I loved this opening, as it seemed routine enough but had so many hints of things to come that I was immediately hooked. She’s carrying something bad in her truck. What is it? That’s enough to keep me reading for a few pages, and it just got better after that.
This is a vampire urban fantasy with romantic elements and one steamy love scene. There’s ghouls, ghosts, and vampires, but so far no werewolves or other shape-shifters. I suspect they’ll turn up eventually. While she does kill a lot of vampires, I didn’t feel it was especially gory. Did I mention the steamy scenes with her vampire lover? I read them all twice. Ahem.