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on 13 July 2003
Alright, I'm an avid roleplayer and a great fan of Vampire the Masquerade. This book is set in a world very similar to the World of Darkness represented by White Wolf in their books, although the author has choosen to obscure this a bit. Not by much, though. Add a bit of the TV-series Angel and you've got Laws of the Blood.
The main characters are well-defined, but the setting and the supporting cast could be more detailed. The story never really gripped me.
If you like Vampire the Masquerade and Angel, then this story might be just what you are looking for. If not, then try Charlene Harris' Southern Vampire stories or Laurell K. Hamiltons Anita Blake series. Both of them are much better written and have a far greater potential to keep the reader enthralled.
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on 9 May 2004
The Hunt is the first novel in Susan Sizemore's notably unusual Laws of the Blood series, and she melds romance alongside horror to create what some might be called a work of sensuous dark fantasy. Sizemore has published novels in a wide range of genres, and I have to admit I had some doubts about this series going on; it's not often you encounter a romance writer treading the darker paths of literature. Sizemore obviously knows what she is doing, though, and the end result in this case is a refreshingly different take on the subject of vampires.
Vampires do have rules to live by, embodied in the Laws of the Blood. The laws are for the vampires' protection as much as the teeming millions of humans who unknowingly occupy the vampires' world. If word of the vampires' real-life existence got out, mankind would not rest until these "monsters" of the night were destroyed. Of course, vampires roiling in the overpowering desire of bloodlust can't really be depended upon to play it cool in all situations, and that is why there are Enforcers in each area. The word of the Enforcer vampire is law and must be obeyed. This is especially important during periods of the Hunt. Vampires are not permitted to kill humans according to their whims, but they must hunt and sate their bloodthirst periodically. It is up to the Enforcer to name the number of victims, identify them, and set everything up for the Hunt. In the Los Angeles area, the Enforcer is named Selim. His job is not an easy one. A couple of the local vampires resent his power over them and seek a means to overturn the ancient Laws and feed when and where they choose. He also has a five-year-old dhampir, the first dhampir born in many, many years, to worry about and protect - vampires do not like dhampirs as a rule, generally viewing them as huge threats to their kind. Then there is Siri, Selim's Companion. Virtually all vampires have one or more companions, human beings who love and serve their undead masters until such time as they become vampires themselves. Cut a Companion loose too early or keep them close for too long out of your own love and need, and you risk creating a strigoi, a loner vampire who usually turns out pretty messed up in the head.
Selim has all of these problems weighing on him, distracting him. His complex relationship with Siri is gravely threatened by Siri's disapproval of Selim's recent behavior and orders as an Enforcer - she finds the killing of innocents horrifying. In a larger sense, though, it is a lack of communication and sharing that threatens to irreparably harm this relationship Despite all of these concerns and worries, though, Selim is not even aware of his biggest problem of all. Somewhere out there, an ancient vampire is scripting a movie called If Truth Be Told, a film which will tell the true story of vampires - in fact, it will tell Selim's own story, for the unknown vampire is secretly riding Selim's dreams during the day and basing her script on his very life.
The Hunt is quite an impressive novel, one which turns several vampire myths on their heads and brings to life a new and fascinating type kind of vampire, one never really seen before in the literature. As always seems to happen, the struggles of the vampire, particularly an Enforcer such as Selim who must control as well as defend the nests living and operating under his jurisdiction, speaks to very human qualities that all readers can relate to: doing what is right; putting the interests of the many over the personal interests of the one; staying within the limits of the law at all times, when passion, justice, or a thirst for revenge impels you to act rashly and aggressively; figuring out how to love the person you are with and to overcome all manner of romantic obstacles in the process, etc. The vampire has always served as a mirror of the human soul, and it seems clear to me that Susan Sizemore understands that fact very well.
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VINE VOICEon 10 December 2003
Even vampires have laws. Humans have police to uphold their laws. Vampires have "Enforcers".
Enforcers are an elite group of vampires. Selim is the Enforcer in Los Angeles. Much time has passed since the vampires in the city last tasted fresh human blood. A hunt is needed ... and soon. As Enforcer, it is up to Selim to name the time, the place, and the prey.
Because ONLY Enforcers kill other vampires, Selim's job does not make him popular. He can never waver or show any weakness whenever he gives the Laws. To do so could easily cost him his life and the life of his mortal love/companion Siri.
**** A very solid beginning for this series! When an Enforcer must go hunt another of his kind, one of them WILL die. It looks as though this will happen at least once in each of the books in the series.
This series is NOT for readers who want a vampire like the one Stoker created, nor for the ladies wanting a vampire hero to dream about. You should ONLY consider this book if you like the idea of vampires living among us in the world today, in clans. Recommended reading. I hope the second book is as good as this first. ****
Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
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on 24 November 2010
I don't know what it was about this book, but I just couldn't connect with it. There were two different story view points that left me bewildered and detached; until about the last 6 chapters of the book when they finally meshed together. I couldn't seem to feel any empathy for the characters, and I had to grit my teeth and force myself to finish the book.
I hope the next book in the series of five is better. Unfortunately I bought the complete series thinking it was going to be as good as her "Primes" series. It's not unusual that sometimes a first book in a new series is lacking and the second has a much better footing and takes off, well we shall see.
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on 22 July 1999
In Los Angeles, Selim the Enforcer rules over the local vampire community. Selim makes decisions when the brood can hunt, decides disputes between the undead, and enforces the community's laws. The prime directive is to keep secret the existence of the species from humans except those mortals who are engaged as companions.
Selim faces several crisis and minor nuisances. The group is hungry and it is time for Selim to approve the hit list. However, his human Siri learns that an innocent is condemned as fodder for the undead. She pushes Selim to change the list so that only evil humans are consumed. However, Selim must contend with rebel vampires that scoff at his authority and plan to hunt outside the law, a violation of the second most sacred directive. He also learns that a script for a documentary about vampires is being written that appears so close to the truth that it has obviously been scribed by a renegade bloodsucker. As his troubles mount, evidence grows that Selim's time as the Enforcer appears to be near an end because his enemies have added him to their list.
LAWS OF THE BLOOD: THE HUNT is a magnificent debut of a new series starring vampires living in LA. The exciting story line will arouse the blood of readers with its non-stop action and genuine feel of the community. The characters seem real to the point that the audience will believe that Susan Sizemore has broken the prime directive by revealing another species lives amongst us. Fans of supernatural tales will want to sink their teeth into this novel and subsequent books in what is clearly going to be a thrilling series.

Harriet Klausner
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on 16 January 2003
I bought this book while looking for something to satisfy my thirst for Anne Rice style vampires.
I was let down though, for a number of reasons: The character relationships are confusing, the hero's inclinations are whimsical and inconsistent, the writing style is a little too American for my liking and the action is too sparse (with no counter-balancing character or plot development). Also, in my opinion the author tries to include too many threads which detract from the main theme.

I'm having to force myself to continue reading it...
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on 17 January 2003
A great novel, worthy of the series... I would probably give it 4 and a half stars, but I erred on the side of generosity. The only downside for me is that the heroin is a little tiny bit wimpy in places! The hero, however makes up for her, and carries her along nicely - as I expect he was intended to. Any vampire fan would enjoy this novel, and I expect, rush to purchase the rest of the series.
As to what actually happens... well, buy it and find out! I hate reviews that give away the plot!
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