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I finished "Circus of the Damned" by Laurel K. Hamilton today, and it wasn't a bad book. It's not Dickens or Dostoevsky, but it certainly rattles along and I don't think Hamilton ever laid claim to being either of those authors anyway.

It is a sort of an R-rated "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" mixed with a murder mystery, however. In this book, Anita Blake (who for some reason I keep wanting to call Anita Baker, after the singer, for some dumb reason) is on the trail of a pack of vampires who are killing people in her native St. Louis.

At the same time she is being approached by a variety of people to reveal the identity of the St. Louis "master vampire" (who, for reasons that will become apparent in the book, she knows rather well), so she has to decide which to uncover a "sensible vampire," a vampire who can keep his subordinate in check, too.

The book is the third in the series but is sufficiently "stand-aloneish" to be read without having read the previous books in the series (though she has "in-jokes/references" for those that have read the prior books that some might get a kick out of).

When I first started reading the series, I was wisely informed that the series takes a sudden right turn into erotica by an employee at the bookshop. With that in mind, I can see that the author is starting to butt up against this in this book. Nothing overtly sexual happens in the book, but Anita Blake is acting "like she's started to notice boys" shall we say, so it wouldn't be surprising if the series became more erotic sooner, rather than later, now.

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