Cat and Bones are back in the fifth installment of the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost, and they and all their friends are getting into trouble once more. I had been ages since I read a Night Huntress novel…so long I hadn’t realized TWO new books had been published without my noticing. (Shame on me!) I enjoyed this one so much I’m sad I waited so long to read it.
Cat and Bones are drawn into a conflict that effects (affects? I think I was right the first time…) the entire undead portion of the supernatural community (which, now that I think about it, might be the entire supernatural community. At this moment, I can’t recall any mention of weres or shifters or any kind of witch or fae characters in this series, but I could be mis-remembering). Tension is mounting between vampires and ghouls as a far-too-over-zealous ghoul Apollyon riles up the rest of his race and tries to spark a species war. Knowing a war between vampires and ghouls would not only decimate both of those populations, but cause plenty of trouble for mortals as well, Bones and Cat vow to figure out what’s going on and stop Apollyon before its too late.
Not only was this an interesting story (most supernatural novels don’t deal with ghouls very often) but leading lady Cat grew as a character. She learned things about herself through the past four novels, and even tried to teach those things to others. She was a heroine who actually came out and said something to the effect of “Going off on your own is never the answer, even when it seems like you have really good reasons to do it.” I almost applauded. Main characters making the same mistakes and stupid decisions over and over gets extremely tedious (Rachel Morgan, anyone?) The supporting cast in these novels is excellent as well. I believe there are some companion novels I have missed, in addition to not realizing books 5 and 6 came out, since two of Bones’s vampire friends acquired girlfriends since the last book. Mencheres, two-thousand year old Egyptian vampire is a favorite of mine. Just being very very old and Egyptian would endear him to me, and he gets badass powers on top of that, and Cat likes him. I like Vlad too, who we find out is the reason for the Dracula legends. Somehow Frost manages to write him as scary in a very sexy way, which I love.
Speaking of which, Frost writes some really excellent sex scenes. Yes, they are gratuitous, but honestly, isn’t that why we’re reading them? I mean, even if it’s not the only reason, it’s definitely a perk.
I’m looking forward to reading more about Cat and Bones (and hopefully Vlad) in One Grave at a Time, Night Huntress #6!