"very reminiscent of the early Anita books"
Anita Blake, U.S. Marshall, succubus, and vampire hunter
known as The Executioner, has had her fair share of grisly
discoveries over the years. However, when she gets a human
head mailed to her, she knows this is going to be an
exceptionally bad day.
After Anita failed to kill Vittorio, a vampire serial
killer who previously terrorized St. Louis, it seems she
now has an express invitation to come hunting him in Las
Vegas. Joining Anita on the hunt in Sin City are her long-
time friend, U.S. Marshall, and fellow monster hunter,
Edward -- aka Death, Bernardo, the sexy Native
American Marshall who can't understand why Anita doesn't
want to sleep with him, and Olaf, the socio-path serial
killer-come-U. S. Marshall who just so happens to have
a "thing" for women matching Anita's profile. A long-time
fan favorite of the series, many readers will rejoice in
having Edward play a major role in the plot of the story.
Upon arriving in Vegas, Anita has to deal with the usual
aspects of proving herself to a primarily male workforce
who 1) either thinks she's weaker in general because she's
a female, or 2) questions her morality and trustworthiness
because she's linked to so many preternatural men. And as
if that isn't enough on her plate, Anita has to deal with a
Tiger Clan Queen who is determined to get Anita to mate
with her son, her own metaphysical breakdown, an extremely
powerful and psychotic vampire killer, and, last, but
certainly not least, The Mother of All Darkness, who is
still in pursuit of Anita via dreams and other metaphysical
The story apparently takes place a few months after the end
of Blood Noir, with Anita now living below the
Circus of the Damned with Jean-Claude -- Master of the City
and Anita's main squeeze (well, one of her main squeezes,
anyway). Early fans of the series who have become quite
disenchanted with Anita and the ardeur, will
certainly enjoy this book more than the previous ones
released over the last couple of years. And while the
plot focuses mainly on the murder investigation, Anita
still has to contend with feeding and controlling her new-
found metaphysical powers. This is limited to only one
main sex scene, but Anita does discover she can also "feed"
other ways besides using her succubus abilities.
I've always loved the murder investigation aspect of these
books (grisly and graphic as they may be), and was ecstatic
to find Ms. Hamilton focused mostly on that this time
around, but I have to say that I really did miss Anita's
interaction with her men. Jean Claude is limited to a few
minor dialogue scenes and we don't get to see or hear from
any of the others, including some of my favorites -- Jason,
Asher, Micah, & Nathaniel. I like the fact that Anita
continues to mature and deal with her new metaphysical
powers and her life in general, but listening to her
internal debates and dialogue regarding all of the
aforementioned does get a bit tedious for me. On the
upside, at least Anita appears to be processing it a bit
faster and not dragging it out.
Overall, I really enjoyed Skin Trade and I think not
only current fans, but also ex-fans of the series will
enjoy Skin Trade since it is very reminiscent of the
early Anita books. It was action packed, fast paced and
hey, it had Edward in it. What's not to like?
Reviewed by Mippy Carlson
Posted June 29, 2009
A proven series with a hot new look. The #1 bestselling author returns with her most anticipated novel yet.
When a vampire serial killer sends Anita Blake a grisly souvenir from Las Vegas, she has to warn Sin City’s local authorities what they’re dealing with. Only it’s worse than she thought. Ten officers and one executioner have been slain—paranormal style. Anita heads to Vegas, where’s she’s joined by three other federal marshals, including the ruthless Edward. It’s a good thing he always has her back, because when she gets close to the bodies, Anita senses “tiger” too strongly to ignore it. The weretigers are very powerful in Las Vegas, which means the odds of her rubbing someone important the wrong way just got a lot higher.
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Dark Fantasy