As the result of their earlier adventures in "Love Bite," ex-police detective Jace Levy and his vampire lover Risha Cardigan went on an extended vacation. Now they have returned to Los Angeles so that Risha can pursue her photographic career. Jace, still undecided about becoming a vampire himself, is offered a job as a private investigator by Robert Brandon, a film producer. It seems that one of the actresses Brandon has been indulging his fantasies with has decided to blackmail him. Jace's assignment is to get the extortion stopped.
Almost from the beginning the case turns weird. Jace traces many of the `actresses' to a single agent, who died recently. As he pries beneath the surface he begins to suspect that there is some form of collusion among several of the women. Jace suspects that he is dealing with an organized gang, but the more he looks the murkier things get. When some of his suspects seem to evaporate, if they ever existed at all, he is completely baffled.
In the meantime, Jace's love life begins to get murky as well. Jace is secretly suffering from Huntingdon's Chorea, and the symptoms have been worsening. Out of love for Risha and fear of his own mortality, he decides to take the big step. He asks Risha to make him a vampire. Weeks later, after he has made the big switch, Jace discovers a serious flaw in the male vampire design. Before switching he and Risha had a rich and varied sex life. Now, Jace has become impotent.
This induces a crisis of epic proportions. When Risha mentions that her previous vampire lover had the same problem, Jace feels betrayed. When Jace's disease comes out, Risha feels used. In the subsequent argument Risha heads for New Orleans to think things over and Jace finally returns to his case, after some exceptionally rash behavior. Will Jace locate the real blackmailer? Will Risha forgive him? Will our poor hero regain his abilities? Only the reader can find out.
I'm afraid I found this tale a bit unsatisfactory. The conflict between the two plots causes a complete standstill in the action for the middle third of the book while Jace tried to deal with his issues. Since Jace's self image was extremely macho, he doesn't do very well. In the meantime, a plot which was already a bit thin and anemic nearly evaporates. When the action finally gets underway again Sherry Gottlieb rushes everything to a conclusion. The change in pace is almost jarring.
In the final analysis, this is neither the hard-boiled detective story nor the sexy vampire tale that the cover promises. Risha demonstrates an unappealing coldness in her choice of victims (she prefers the homeless and other innocent victims). Jace embraces better ethics, but his total character dissolution in the face of his impotence is not a pretty sight and reveals an uncomplimentary shallowness. It's up to the reader, but Laurell Hamilton does sexier vampire tales and Tanya Huff writes stronger vampire/human detective tales. If you haven't encountered these authors I suggest you look into them.