Book Review: The Laughing Corpse

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Yesterday I finished reading ‘The Laughing Corpse’, book two in the ‘Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter’ series by Laurell K. Hamilton.

The Book Jacket:

Harold Gaynor offers Anita Blake a million dollars to raise a 300-year-old zombie. Knowing it means a human sacrifice will be necessary, Anita turns him down. But when dead bodies start turning up, she realizes that someone else has raised Harold’s zombie–and that the zombie is a killer. Anita pits her power against the zombie and the voodoo priestess who controls it.

In The Laughing Corpse Anita will learn that there are some secrets better left buried-and some people better off dead…

My Review:

I am a huge fan paranormal (fantasy/romance/horror/mystery) and when I read book one in the series (‘Guilty Pleasures’) I was hooked on the characters and where the story was going. If a book has vampires, zombies, witches and the like, I’m anxious to get it in my hands.

This book however…my feelings are as mixed as the other reviews I’ve read. And to be honest, it was a bit of a let down.

Just for kicks I looked online, to see how others felt about the book. The book has gotten everything from one star ratings (“TERRIBLE!” is one observation), while others have given is a five star review. (“Best book I have read,” was another thought on it.) Me? I am going to have to split the difference and give this a 3 out of 5.

There were parts of the plot that were fast paced and kept me interested. There were some great characters that came into play, like Jean-Claude, the vampire who wants Anita as his human slave. Then there is Anita herself, a strong female character who I love even though I sometimes want to slap her (her sass can come off as bitchiness, in my opinion.) Then there were the villains, my favorite being Dominga Salvador, a strong voodoo priestess. I would have liked to see more of her and what she could do, but I guess when you can have zombies do your dirty work, you can hide a bit.

There were parts, especially in the middle where it ran a bit long, that the plot lost some steam here and there. I’d skim along because I just didn’t care and wanted the story to “hurry up and get better.”

Also, when you are reading a book about a vampire hunter, it would be nice if she, oh I don’t know, at least had more interaction with a vamp aside from getting hit on. But zombies ruled this novel so there wasn’t much time or a chance for her to deal with bad vampires.

I am totally cool with gore. Both on the big screen and in books. My main issue with the gore in this novel dealt with the death of a child. That gore I really didn’t want to read. So that’s my least fave part of the novel.

My favorite part though, was pretty effing cool. Anita is an animator, which means she can raise the dead. And she raised an entire graveyard. The earth shook as hundreds of zombies began to climb out of their grave. She put them all back of coarse, when she was ready.

This book took me months to read, so that tells you right there my interest level. When I picked it back up again a week ago I was determined to finish it. But when I love a book, I devour it pretty quickly. (Unless life gets in the way. It has a way of doing that from time to time.)

Even though this was not even close to being my favorite book and I gave it a three star rating, I will still continue to read the series. It did have an interesting plot over all with a few twists added in. I also enjoyed the first book and want to keep going.

Have you read this? If so, what are your thoughts on it? I’d also love to hear if you read other books in the series and what you thought of them.

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