Farnsworth’s universe of vampires and otherworldly creatures comes alive for the third time in this latest installment of the Nathaniel Cade series.
Blood gushes against a political backdrop in this aptly named testament to gore. Cade, a vampire who was caught and bound to the service of the president by a voodoo practitioner in another century, has sworn to protect the nation and its leader. Accompanied by Zach Barrows, who in another life worked on President Samuel Curtis’ election campaign, Cade has spent the previous three years working to keep the underworld at bay. Although Americans don’t realize it, in Cade’s world the things that go bump in the night are as real as trees and grass, but the government has spent decades covering up, collecting and destroying proof they exist. Every once in a while, though, something breaks through to this side and Cade is called in to put it down. A creature that moves with lightening speed and astonishing strength, Cade has the power to mend his own wounds and is an unparalleled fighter. However, he has almost met his match in the Boogeyman, a legendary figure that draws its power and thirst for blood from the proliferation of killers and sadists that populate the planet. While the president is on the campaign trail, evidence surfaces that the Bogeyman is back in action and preparing to take out the nation’s leader, and Cade and Zach are dispatched to stop him and his cohorts. Chock full of violence and disembowelment, the book follows Cade as he tracks the killer through Middle America. Farnsworth manages to slow down the pace by inserting ham-fisted political rhetoric into the story; he would have been better off sticking to the action. Instead, he chose to turn Curtis into a certain not-very-thinly-described incumbent and muddy what is essentially an action story with politics.
More complicated and somewhat sillier than the previous Cade novels; fans of nonstop action can skim over the politicizing passages to get to the blood and guts, while ignoring the author’s tendency to preach politics.