April 26, 2013

Rabid Reads: "Blood Crimes: Book One" by Dave Zeltserman

Blood Crimes: Book One
by Dave Zeltserman
published in 2010
189 pages

This ain't your mamma's vampire fantasy, I can tell you that right now. Put some bloodsuckers in an urban fantasy these days and images of angsty girls and sparkly creeps brooding their hearts out spring to mind, I'll bet. Dave Zeltserman has a cure for that.

Jim's a vampire. Carol's the woman who loves him. And that's about as close to paranormal romance as you're gonna get. The two cut a path of death across America, picking off one low-life at a time to spare innocents from Jim's thirst for blood. But the two aren't just evading law enforcement, but also the real threat that is a cabal of vampires from Jim's past. His sadistic sire, Serena, let him out of her clutches once before and she wants him back, and another of her sires with plans of his own wouldn't mind getting Jim in his secret lab for some gruesome experiments.

My first time reading Zeltserman's work was with his novel, The Caretaker of Lorne Field, which was a literary marvel in horror. Blood Crimes is the much different facet of Dave's writing style. If Caretaker was a Cadillac, Blood Crimes is the muscle car with a no-nonsense, relentless journey of love, anger, betrayal, revenge--oh, and a metric ton of bullets, blades, and blood.

I'd gripe about the fact that the book leaves off with a little bit of a cliffhanger, but the title clearly reads Book One, so I was ready for plenty of unanswered questions with this book. At least the buildup leads to an exhilarating showdown. That said, when it comes to series books like this, the chapters that diverged from the main plot to set up pieces for future books tended to feel like gear shifts. It does great to set up characters, but when those characters aren't really in play at that time, it becomes aggravating to know Book Two has yet to be published.

It's a great jump-off into a series of books, but without the followup, the story as a whole is unfulfilled. Much like George R.R. Martin, Dave Zeltserman is not your bitch, so far be it for me to demand he get cracking on Book Two. But if he's taking requests ... Book Two, please!

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