Before everyone runs off thinking this is some sort of erotica you can think again. Get all your minds out of the gutter! This is the first book in a series and theres something like 22 so far, so don't say you weren't warned if your thinking about picking it up only to realise theres a billion more - I just hate when that happens to me! A friend (Hello poodle!) gave this to me to read so she could talk about the story with someone. I wasn't really interested in it to be honest as murders and scary things are not my thing at all, but when I read the first page and the first line 'Willie McCoy had been a jerk before he died. His being dead didn't change that.' I was kind of intrigued by the dark humour and only a few pages after I was totally hooked.
We meet Anita Blake who is a kick ass girl in America. She is both an animator (raises the dead) and working for the FBI on supernatural investigations as she is considered a vampire expert. Vampires are legally citizens so killing them is murder, but not everyone is so easy to catch. Anita is not too fond of vampires, thinking of them as the walking dead - something thats not politically correct.
We follow Anita through her daily life, which leads her to being the designated driver for her friends bachelortte party that is, oh man, been held in a strip club called guilty pleasures. But this isn't any ordinary strip club, the line up exclusively features vampires and is owned my a very old and strong 'master' vampire, Jean Claude. After things go all wrong that night Anita now has no choice but to save her friends life by helping solve all the sudden murders of vampires that have been going on. She is kidnapped, terrorized and beaten until she is thrown to the feet of the master vampire, Nikolaos. This is one scary master and despite her promising to keep both Anita and her friend alive until the murders are solved, she has to battle for her life on a regular bases. Can she solve these murders before she and friends are killed?
This was just such a great book, I really loved the character of Anita and how she was portrayed as strong and capable even when faced with the super human strengths and dangers of vampires. I also liked how she was a female with no real continuous male support, as its so hard to find a story that doesn't involve the female character falling at some guys feet one way or another. ( - this could be slightly debated and I'm open to it! but for me she was a one woman show) I also liked that this was a book with vampires that had no sex in it, wow! Don't get me wrong, there was plenty of sexual tension but no one actually ever got it on. Go team for not doing the stereotypical assumed dirty, especially with a title like guilty pleasures.
I did the bold thing and googled the series and found out some spoilers but of course I wont give anything away, only that in later books some say that it starts to go downhill and the sex scenes take over (it was too good to believe that a strong independent female could just be that without loads of sex thrown in the mix) and if your not into that sort of thing book 10 is the last one you should read up to. If you fancy checking the first book out you might be able to read it for free by finding a PDF. But shh, I haven't told you that.