Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Left For Undead

Left for Undead

Written by: LA Banks
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Bantam
Language: English
January 2009, $7.99
Genre: Urban Fantasy/The Crimson Moon series

Secret government operative Sasha Trudeau earned a long vacation with her lover and fellow Shadow Wolf, Hunter, after the brutal wolf-like attacks that left New Orleans in uproar. But when her team calls with news of vampire slayings, Sasha knows its only a matter of time before another war breaks out among the supernatural denizens of the world…

The vampires are nobody’s allies, but the cold hearted deaths of their own make them even more bloodthirsty…!


I was sad to read of LA Banks passing recently. Many years ago I picked up her Huntress novels and absolutely loved them. They were fun and exciting and I loved the world she had created. I hadn’t picked up any of her Crimson Moon novels for some reason though. Maybe I was bored with the werewolf thing, or maybe too distracted by the rest of my ever increasing TBR piles (yes there are more than one, possibly more than 5 or 10 actually) created. When the local bookstore closed and I picked up far too many books, I jumped at the chance to pick up some books I might not have otherwise just due to my current lack of fundage. I know it is bad form to start a series in the middle, but when Borders shut down this was the only one on the shelf.

This is the sixth book in the Crimson Moon novels. I know it is bad form to start at the end, but like I said, but I couldn’t help it. Sasha Trudeau and her lover, Hunter, are trying to relax and recuperate from their last adventure. But of course there is no rest for the…heroic? Shogun, Hunter’s brother wants to talk about his mate and Sir Rodney of the Seelie Court needs to help prevent World War III among the supernaturals. Someone is opening up high profile vampires’ resting places and all fingers point to Queen Cerridwen of the Unseelie Court. Insert faeries, werewolves, vampires, gargoyles and ancient Greek monsters…oh my.

Things I loved: Admittedly I was a bit lost. The secondary characters are less fleshed out, presumably because you already know and love them from reading the previous five books. So it took me a wee bit to try and fill in all of the blanks especially when the main plot revolves around baddies and events that occurred in the previous outing.

I will say the mythos was interesting. Apparently there are shadow wolves and then there are werewolves. The Shadow wolves are able to travel through shadows and into the Demon Realms. An interesting concept. Let’s face it if I cannot have my transporter, I will take some shadow gateways for easy travel. Okay maybe not really easy travel with the nausea and the whole Demon thing.

I also did like aspects of the story. Of course I am a sucker for anything fey. Plus you add some Greek mythology in there and I was quite happy. The whole thing between Sasha and Hunter’s brother was interesting and I was a bit sad that I hadn’t read the previous books so I would have understood that a little more. I did like the whole main plot as well, and yet I didn’t feel like this was anything new. Which is a bit disappointing. The pacing was okay, and I loved falling into the vernacular and prose that is distinctly Banks. I don’t know I was just a bit meh about the whole thing when it was over though. I am going to chalk this up to starting at the end rather than the beginning. Bad Smirking.

Things I didn't love so much: I will say that this is fairly similar to the Huntress series as far as secondary characters. Not only do you have a seer, tactical support, leader, etc except this time it is werewolves instead of a vampire hunter. So in that way I was a bit disappointed. I would have loved to see Banks go out of her comfort zone and try to have some very distinctively new archetypes when it comes to her characters. As I said, read it before.

Buy or Borrow: Borrow. In the end it was too similar to the Huntress series and I was far too lost to really feel any real connection to any of the characters.

Part of: A series. The Crimson Moon novels.
Book One: Bad Blood
Book Two: Bite the Bullet
Book Three: Undead on Arrival
Book Four: Cursed to Death
Book Five: Never Cry Werewolf

Also Recommended:If you are looking for some nice werewolf action, I would go with the Kitty series by Carrie Vaughn, Bitten by Kelley Armstrong or for a coyote the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs. I would recommend LA Banks' Huntress series.

2.75 out of 4 happy bibliosnark bookmarks

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