Book: Laurell K Hamilton’s ‘Guilty Pleasures’ (Anita Blake 1) – “An atheist waving a cross at a vampire was a truly pitiful sight”

It’s been ages since I read any of the Anita Blake series, I am not even completely up to date as I’ve only read up to book 20, ‘Kiss the Dead’, I actually read it twice as I completely forgot that I had done so – the plot was *that* good.

I own books 1 to 9 and I am going to reread them back to back to see if a) my memory blocked out certain aspects of the books and b) the future books leak through and cause inadvertent amusement.

guilt pleasures

For those who wonder, the book titles some from a location used in the book, the following may also contain spoilers – although the main spoiler that I could possibly impart about this series is that Anita doesn’t start shagging everything that moves until book 10 onwards.

‘Guilty Pleasures’ is the first book in the series; I really hadn’t consciously known that it was published in 1993 and I haven’t remembered that we were in a vampire strip club by page 14. I’d forgotten about poor Phillip the blood whore and perpetual victim, that whole plot line is a little disturbing on rereading!

Plotwise there aren’t as many zombies as you’d expect from a book where the main character’s day job is a zombie animator; it more police procedure with some minor supernatural elements – mostly vampires as Anita gets uncomfortably close to Jean-Claude… uncomfortable for her that is. However at this stage Anita is very aware of being a good Christian and feels that vampires are monsters.

I don’t feel that “the sisterhood” binds all women automatically purely based on gender, but it isn’t a fab sign when someone female seems to have massive issues with other women with little reason – although Anita tries to justify it in this book under the banner of disliking anyone who sells out humans to the monsters.

On the plus side we get to meet Edward – aka Death. Edward is less fun that I remembered in this book, but still fantastically scary.

To sum up it is an OK book but fundamentally acts as light scene setting for the other books – it mostly acts to reinforce that these vampires don’t sparkle or want to be your friend. Overall the book featured more inappropriate sexual situations than I remembered so I don’t feel comfortable giving it to anyone I know.

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