BETTER OFF UNDEAD
Choice and control are major themes of the newest Bloodhound Files outing. Despite humans being an extreme minority, FBI profiler Jace Valchek’s pugnacious personality won’t let her back down, even in the face of long odds. Barant continues to explore themes of persecution and discrimination with outsider Jace struggling to find her place. For Jace, events come to a life-changing crossroads, giving readers a true emotional punch. A stellar addition to an already outstanding series.
To help restore Dr. Pete’s personality from that of his new criminal identity, Tair, Jace becomes embroiled in a werewolf mafia power struggle. The local don may have gone nuts, and Jace is supposed to diagnose him to keep the delicate balance in the underworld. Instead, Jace becomes infected with the thrope virus. Angered and horrified by her unwilling conversion, Jace is open to her vampire boss Cassius’ last-ditch effort to stop the change — which, ironically, involves vampirism as an antidote. Despite her personal problems, Jace and her Lem partner Charlie are also hot on the trail of a particularly nasty underground enterprise. (ST. MARTIN’S, Oct., 336 pp., $7.99)