on 11 March 1999
I have only just come across this book, but I was pleasantly surprised by it. Barbara Hambly has obviously read Anne Rice but has chosen to make her vampire tale an intriguing murder mystery with the horror merely as a backdrop.
It is the action that carries the reader along, the descriptions of Edwardian London being brief but unobtrusive, a pleasant change to a lot of pastiche Victoriana which floods the reader with research details to the detriment of the story. Hambly's historical touch is light but good and the relationships that slowly unfold between the vampires and thier human companions drive the narrative leaving the reader wanting more.
I shall certainly buy the new book TRAVELLING WITH THE DEAD.
I'm a big fan of Barbara Hambly, and if you liked this then checkout her 3 Darwath books which are amazing. I loved this book because the characters are so well drawn, who would have thought that you could feel sympathy for a vampire:-) And Don Simon is a most attractive character:-) If you liked this, you'll also almost certainly like The Lymond books by Dorothy Dunnett.
on 15 October 2015
As in all her historically set novels, Ms Hambly has researched her settings and applied humour, logic and intelligence to the powers and problems of Vampires in early 20th Century London. The setting and "realistic" problems of the vampires and their hunters is really interesting, however the ending doesn't quite sit right with me. The others in the Asher series are also well researched and interesting.
on 10 November 2011
This book was a pleasure to read, in a culture where vampires are more frequently portrayed as domesticated teenagers than as dangerous and complicated villains it is beyond refreshing to come across a character like Simon Ysidro. More interesting to me than the detective aspect was the relationship between the protagonist Asher and the vampire and the tentative friendship that builds between them, one which the author handles skilfully. It also features one of the most intriguing female characters I have come across in any fantasy book. Anyone who loved Dracula and is disappointed by the lack of similar quality in other stories featuring the undead need look no further. Hambly is a writer I wish I had come across a long time ago.