Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Review - John Hartness - Hard Day's Knight

Here goes a review of another John Hartness book.  I did tell you that I bought two of his books back in November, right?  Last month, I reviewed The Chosen.  Today I review Hard Day's Knight.

This book is the first of a series.  It features a duo of vampire detectives.  Even though they are damned souls, they still have good hearts - or at least what's left of their hearts.  It turns out that some things about vampires are true, and other things are just myths.  I'll give you one clue.  As John Hartness says, they don't twinkle in the sunlight.

The story reminds me of the Dresden Files television show.  (I hear the Butcher books are better than the show.  I haven't read them, but they're on my list.  The TV show was still awesome.)

Knight refuses to stick to one thing (just like Dresden).  It's not just about vampires, but it's also about other supernatural creatures and even magical humans.  It has the right combination of humor and serious plot.  The action moves very quickly.  The only slow part is when the main characters give their back story.

I enjoyed this book much more than I did Hartness' The Chosen.  My main complaint with the other book was the lack of character distinction.  In Knight, however, each character is clearly different.  The ones you're supposed to like are likable, and the other ones are convincingly annoying.  The result is a fun and satisfying read.  I've just ordered the sequel Back in Black, and I can't wait to see what happens next to the vampiric duo.

However, just like with The Chosen, beware of annoying typos.  There aren't so many in the first few chapters, but then they show up: missing quotes, missing words, wrong words, etc.  This is one drawback of self-publishing.  Another round of editing could tighten up the book.  (Note that I have an earlier copy and it's possible that the author may have already fixed some typos.)

Parent's guide: this is definitely PG-13.  There are sexual innuendos, at least one quick nude scene, but nothing explicit, and no F-bombs.  It should be suitable for older teenagers and up.

I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys vampire stories, supernatural stuff, and humor.

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