A 100-year-old vampire thief runs afoul of secret biological experimenters—first of an urban fantasy series from the versatile author of Boneshaker (2009).
Sassy vampire Raylene Pendle makes a good living by stealing things to order; luckily, the numerous law-enforcement agencies in pursuit think she's a man. Very much a loner, she lives in Seattle in a vast abandoned warehouse stuffed with valuable objects acquired as insurance—premises she shares with a pair of street-urchin intruders who, over the months, have gradually morphed into lodgers. When charming blind vampire Ian Stott asks for her help, money no object, Raylene pays close attention. Ian needs her to retrieve top secret government files—documents detailing the horrid black-op Army experiments, performed on vampires and other unorthodox persons, that left Ian blind. After an interloper invades her warehouse—Raylene kills him without compunction—she doesn’t immediately make the connection. Then, in Atlanta, she gets a lead on another victim of the experiments via the victim's brother Adrian, a huge, ex–Navy SEAL drag queen. Unfortunately, there are immediate complications: ruthless Men in Black masquerading as CIA; and evidence that Project Bloodshot, supposedly shut down years ago, is once more roaring ahead thanks to a mysterious, mega-rich private financier. Brutally unsentimental narrator Raylene—she suffers from early-morning panic attacks and can't help wondering where Adrian tucks his male equipment while he's queening—makes a quirky and charming if bloodthirsty host.
A refreshing and addictive lure for readers uninterested in fangs, bats, capes and hissing.