Tuesday, 16 March 2010

The Laughing Corpse by Laurell K. Hamilton

This is the second book in Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter series. This book begins very soon after Guilty Pleasures ended, and like it's predecessor, this book begins with Anita talking to a perspective client. This time the client is a wheel chair bound billionaire named Harold Gaynor. Harold would like to hire Anita (who is a professional animator) to raise a 300 year old corpse, a task that Mr. Gaynor will pay a million dollars for, and that requires a human sacrifice. Anita refuses the offer, she doesn't do human sacrifice, no matter how good the money is.

Shortly after her meeting Anita receives a call from the police, there has been a murder, they need her supernatural expertise. She visits the murder scene, and it appears as if the murders were perpetrated by a zombie, and a zombie must have a master. Anita believes there are only two local people powerful enough to raise and command a flesh-eating zombie - herself and vaundun priestess Dominga Salvador...

This book like so many others is across several genres, it's part detective fiction, part fantasy (um, there are zombies, crazy zombies), and part horror. But really this book is mostly horror. It's graphically violent. From the descriptions of violent death to the decomposing zombie flesh, it's not for those with a weak stomach. That being said, I did enjoy the story and the action and there was plenty of both. With lots of suspense and twists and turns I found this book easy to read and tough to put down. Hamilton continues to make Anita a character we want to root for and fight along side.

Bottom line: If you like horror and detective fiction, you'd like this book. Just don't read it while eating.