Anita Blake is a feisty, independent, 21st century lady who's got attitude with a capital "A." Animator, necromancer, called by vampires everywhere "The Executioner," she is tops in her field and a woman of many talents. The St. Louis Police Department's Regional Preternatural Investigation Team has made her a full fledged member, a civilian expert, and she is on call 24/7 to help solve their more grizzly cases. Unfortunately Anita prefers to date the undead and the "lunarly disadvantaged." She is involved with Richard Zeeman, rugged, outdoor type, science teacher by day, and otherwise a werewolf. Jean Claude, Master Vampire, sophisticate, unbelievably handsome and sexiest vamp around town, also has a hold on her affections. What's a girl to do?
Bert, the unscrupulous owner of Animators, Inc., and Anita's boss, has accepted a large fee in exchange for Anita's services on a new case; services he doesn't know whether she is able to perform. Millions of dollars are at stake, and Anita may be the only animator powerful enough to do the job. Her mission is to raise an entire graveyard of zombies in order to settle some land dispute issues. The bones have been disturbed and separated, and the corpses are at least 300 years-old. The older the corpse, the bigger the sacrifice needed for a raising, and the more powerful an animator has to be. Another matter of great concern - someone, or something is killing local youths. An ancient, psychotic, sword-wielding vampire, and his renegade cohorts, are most likely involved in the grotesque serial murders. Against her better judgement, Anita calls on Jean Claude for help, since she isn't receiving any from the local police. The idea is to go through the area's Master Vampire - Serephina - and petition her to rein in her monsters. The story can only become scarier with Serephina in on the action.
A fey family, the Bouviers, is involved in the graveyard-land dispute. Brother and sister, Magnus and Dorcus Bouvier are faeries, Homo arcanus, and proprietors of The Bloody Bones, a bar and eatery in the Ozarks. Anita and Larry Kirkland, an animator trainee and Anita's new protégé, pay a visit to ask the owners some questions about their estate holdings and discover that faery magic, glamour, is being used, illegally, to bring in customers.
The tone of the series gets darker and richer with every book, as does Anita's character. Initially, she is only an animator and The Executioner, a vampire hunter, convinced that fighting monsters is the right thing to do. Now, as her necromancy powers become stronger, she's not so sure that all the monsters are all bad. What exactly is the price she is paying for each new victory? Action and adventure-wise, "Bloody Bones" is one of Ms. Hamilton's best books yet. And Anita Blake is a delight - witty, savvy, hard-boiled, and a major cynic with a tender heart. I highly recommend this series. A Warning, however - to really enjoy these novels, and the characters' development, the books should be read in order.