leedock’s CBR-III Review #33-“Bloodshot” – Cherie Priest

Cherie Priest, what is it about you? Boneshaker was a great book and I keep thinking you’ll live up to it. Thinking don’t make it so.

Raylene is a vampire and a cat burglar that is hired by a fellow vamp to obtain his file from a secret government program that left him blind. Instead of a smash and grab, she gets involved in all kinds of crazy shit with the military, a drag queen, and of all things, parkour. It’s the kitchen sink of books. I’m not sure what else to say about. Much like my review of  Dreadnought, I found the characters interesting. Having a vampire that isn’t all whiny about being a vampire or mesmerized by everyone’s jugular was a nice change of pace. An ex-military drag queen hiding from secret ops and a blind vampire with a seeing eye human offered some promise. In the end, though, I just didn’t care that much about them. Again, something was missing for me and I can’t put my finger on it. Interesting doesn’t necessarily mean likable and maybe that’s it. I wasn’t rooting for anyone or particularly invested in their survival with the exception of two homeless kids that squatted in Raylene’s warehouse.

I don’t read  detective stories, so I tend to think of them in a stereotypically pulpy “She walked into my office” kind of way. Priest’s book reads a lot like that, or rather infuses a lot of that into an otherwise paranormal plot line. Bloodshot is Vampire cat burglar meets hardboiled detective. There are so many instances of dialogue that lean toward a, “it was a dark night, see, and I was all out of matches…” convention that parts of the book seemed more farce and less slick vampire urban fantasy. I should have seen it coming when all of the author quotes on the back cover were for Boneshaker and not the book in question.

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