Tag Archives: Cops

Seven Drops of Blood by Robert Weinberg

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of dark magic book cover

Title: Seven Drops of Blood
Author: Robert Weinberg
In: The Mammoth Book of Dark Magic (Mike Ashley)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: CopsCrime
Dates read: 12th January 2020
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 1992
5th sentence, 74th page: According to ancient Hebrew tradition, Ashmedai reigned as king of demons.

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Synopsis

He’s the resident psychic detective. His latest job? To track down the Holy Grail. What he discovers is nothing like what was expected.

Thoughts

This short story had a very noir detective feel to it. And, since it’s in a collection of Dark Magic short stories, I spent a very high proportion of it wondering where the dark magic actually was. That was kind of frustrating. Even once I found the “magical” aspect, it wasn’t anywhere near as intense as I was expecting and I kind of felt a little perplexed at its place in this anthology. But, it was still a thoroughly enjoyable story.

What I did love about this short story was that it featured the Holy Grail. It’s such an interesting topic, and one that I want more of in my reading. Actually, I think that I just want more of this noir detective feel in my reading in general.

This was a light, easy read. Not as dark and twisted as most of the other stories in this collection, and one that I seriously enjoyed reading. I was actually really disappointed when it was all over…

<- Master of ChaosTo Become a Sorcerer ->

Image source: Hachette Australia

VSI by Nancy Holder

Overview
Image result for an apple for the creature book cover

Title: VSI
Author: Nancy Holder
In: An Apple for the Creature (Charlaine Harris & Toni L. P. Kelner)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: CopsUrban fantasy, Vampires
Dates read: 11th July 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Ace Books
Year: 2012
5th sentence, 74th page: FBI.

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Synopsis

Claire is in an uncomfortable marriage, but a two week training trip away with her partner (who she has a bit of a crush on) might help her find a way out of it. Even if it’s not quite the way she had planned to escape a loveless life.

Thoughts

From fairly in this story it seemed to be a tale about vampires. After all, the first, very naked perp that Claire and Jackson bring down is a woman with filed down teeth. What I didn’t expect was Holder’s unique take on a modern vampire and who the actual serial killing crazy person was going to be. That took me nicely and pleasantly by surprise.

Most urban fantasy stories which involve a cop tend to either have a completely platonic relationship or one full of romance. This was somewhere in between, it was obvious from the beginning that there was an extra level of feeling between Claire and Jackson, but then there’s a mention of her husband. This little spanner isn’t one that I normally come across. Most of the paranormal and urban fantasy stories I read involve the act of falling in love, but not what happens when that falls apart. I liked this change in relationship status, I wouldn’t want to read a huge amount of stories which deviate this far, but every now and again they’re fun.

I enjoy the idea of a vampire serial killer. Don’t get me wrong, it would be ten times more terrifying than a human one, but it gives a good reason to hunt down the culprit. That whole us versus them doesn’t sit overly well with me, so having a reason to hunt down a vampire and study him… it just added that extra shine and enjoyment to this story. A story which I’m quite disappointed is over.

 <- An Introduction to Jewish Myth and Mysticism ReviewThe Bad Hour Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Academy Field Trip by Donald Harstad

Overview
Image result for an apple for the creature book cover

Title: Academy Field Trip
Author: Donald Harstad
In: An Apple for the Creature (Charlaine Harris & Toni L. P. Kelner)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Cops, Paranormal fantasy, Vampires
Dates read: 6th May 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Ace Books
Year: 2012
5th sentence, 74th page: “Anyhow, that’s as close as they can come,” he said.

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Synopsis

The Academy is teaching young police recruits about those odd cases. But one woman is about to be singled out… and it’s not for the reasons you’ll think.

Thoughts

It was surprising to read a cop story in this collection. Mostly because it’s a collection that is surrounded by ideas of school and teaching. And well, cops aren’t normally what I would associate with such a topic. Having said that, it was still a thoroughly fun and exciting journey to be taken on. And probably a little more enjoyable because it was such a surprise…

Since this was a cop story, I was kind of expecting a typical one – you know, the cops outline an issue, pull a newbie in to help them solve it. And after you turn the last page, you find that the bad guy has been caught, stopped whichever. This didn’t quite work out like that. Actually, it really wasn’t about the bad guy at all. It was more so about the battles that are fought. About the woman who is caught up in a vampire’s snare. And the ways in which the battle for good doesn’t stop, but sometimes does blur the lines a little.

 <- Spellcaster 2.0 ReviewSympathy for the Bones Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Paris After Dark by Jordan Summers

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of vampire romance 2 book cover

Title: Paris After Dark
Author: Jordan Summers
In: The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance 2 (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Cops, Easy reading, Vampires
Dates read: 22nd March 2019
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: She gagged as his coppery breath fanned out over her face.

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Synopsis

Rachel stops an attack on a woman late one night in Paris, only to become the victim herself. As things go from bad to worse, she finds more than a quest for justice, but a reason to stay alive.

Thoughts

I’ve been reading a lot of vampire stories lately, and I really wasn’t sure how over them I was feeling. So I’m not even sure why I picked up The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance 2. But I did, and I absolutely loved the opening story of this collection. It was everything I like in a short story, a bit of action, a bit of intrigue and a bit of romance. But, unlike a lot of vampire tales that I’ve been reading lately, this wasn’t as… well… annoyingly sappy as others. There was just too much of a cop / crime vibe to it.

Rachel was one of those characters that you can immediately relate to. She is vulnerable and kind of innocent, but at the same time completely kick ass and independent. Something that I think most women aspire to be. Or at least, it’s something that I always aim to be like in my own personal life. The fact that she’s suffering a loss and grieving whilst on the streets of Paris somehow just managed to make her all the more beautiful. I’m not entirely sure why… but it worked perfectly.

I really liked that although there is an instantaneous attraction between the two leads, it isn’t really about that. This story is about justice and finding a link to Rachel’s past. It is also a really fast-paced tale that makes it impossible to pull your nose out of the book, because, damn it, you want Rachel to get her revenge!

 <- The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance 2 ReviewCoven of Mercy Review ->
Image source: Bookdepository

Naughty & Nice by Kevin J. Anderson

Overview
Image result for naughty and nice kevin j. anderson book cover

Title: Naughty & Nice
Author: Kevin J. Anderson
Series: Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. #3.5
In: A Fantastic Holiday Season (Kevin J. Anderson & Keith J. Olexa)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: ChristmasComedy, CopsParanormal fantasy
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: World Fire Press
Year: 2013
5th sentence, 74th page: In order to brainstorm, I invited Sheyenne to lunch.

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Synopsis

Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. finds himself tackling a bizarre Christmas case when Santa Claus himself becomes a client, hiring Dan to recover some very precious stolen North Pole property. If you like werewolves, vampires, evil elves, zombies, as well as a lot of belly laughs, curl up with this story and some eggnog.

Thoughts

I’m struggling to get into the Christmas spirit this year. So I thought that I would try and read some Christmas themed stories to get the festive feelings going… and it’s kind of working, but mostly it’s giving me that nice,happy, buzzy feeling that a good story gives me. And this was an amazing story to start the collection off with. It was funny, sassy and reminded me of the joy that Christmas time used to bring as a child (and I’m not talking about the presents).

For me, Christmas has always been about the joys of family,friends and community. Although, as with any other kid, I’ve always thoroughly enjoyed present receiving (and giving), it’s been about the people that I’m around. So it’s always been a little annoying to be thrust into a world full of the commercialisation of Christmas. And how many people have bitched about that? Luckily, Anderson feels the same – this story is all about how bad the commercialisation really is. The comedic and entertaining way in which this was done worked nicely.

This story by itself would have made me quite happy and entertained.But the fact that a zombie was the P.I. and his poltergeist girlfriend helped him out… that just made everything ten times better. It introduced a level of dark and urban fantasy to a Christmas tale that worked incredibly well for my happily crazy and convoluted brain.

 <- A Fantastic Holiday Season ReviewClose Knit Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

To Ease the Rage by C.T. Adams & Cathy Clamp

Overview

The Mammoth Book of Vampire RomanceTitle: To Ease the Rage
Author: C.T. Adams & Cathy Clamp
In: The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: CopsCrimeRomance, Vampires
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2008
5th sentence, 74th page: Could you change your number?

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Synopsis

Her partner died two years ago. And now she has a mysterious stalker. When her ex-partner comes back from the dead, she finds out that her life is about to completely change.

Thoughts

When I started reading this story, I didn’t really understand how it tied into the idea of vampire romance (since I found it in The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance). It starts out with a cop who is being stalked. And I kind of assumed that this stalker was probably going to be a vampire… but still, it was probably the least romantic of the tales in this collection so far. At least at the beginning, the end had that za za zing that I’ve come to expect.

The premise that there are a bunch of rogue vampires running free, and that Tim is desperate to stop them with the help of his old partner was kind of fun. That it involves sex, romance and true and deep love just made it all the more intriguing. It did, however, annoy me a little that his condition was caused by a creepy little girl with a crush… but I digress, the story wouldn’t have happened without this catalyst.

All in all this was a fun and engaging short story that featured a vampire, sex and crime. There’s not really much more I could ask for from a vampirific short story.

 <- Coming Home Review Dancing with the Star Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Animal Magnetism by Maggie Shayne

Overview

Wild ThingTitle: Animal Magnetism
Author: Maggie Shayne
In: Wild Thing (Marjorie M. Liu, Maggie Shayne, Alyssa Day & Meljean Brook)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: CopsParanormal romanceRomance
Pace: Medium
Format: Novella
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: Plump, ripe, sweet.

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Synopsis

Listen to the secrets of the beautiful animal whisperer who’s drawn intimately closer to danger, and to the most suspect of all male animals – man…

Thoughts

This was such a great and fun novella. Okay. Maybe not really fun. And not really the kind of novella you want to read just before bed if you are a woman living alone. Since it features a rapist. It’s pretty intense actually, and although I really enjoyed this, I kind of wish that I hadn’t read it just before bed.

Although, once I focused on the beauty of the romance, and the fact that the lead female can actually talk to animals… which is the one superpower I’ve always wished I could have. The ability to communicate with my four-legged friends. Using this ability to not only solve a crime, but somehow entrance a man into her bed was fun. What I loved the most was when she asked Jay’s dog what his fantasies were so that she could re-enact them. On second thought, it’s probably best not to read this novella if you’re in a bit of a dry spell… it makes you feel quite lonely.

My biggest disappointment from this story is the fact that it’s not part of a greater series. It works brilliantly as a stand-alone but I want more of Macy and Jay!

 <- Wild Thing Review Paradise Review ->
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