Apr 8, 2007

Blood Price by Tanya Huff

I have been a fan of the Vicki Nelson books since reading Blood Price, the first in this entertaining series by Tanya Huff. Now that Vicki has her own show - Blood Ties on Lifetime I've taken this as a welcome excuse to reread the novels in order, as published.

Blood Price. Daw, 1991. (with various reprintings)

Vicki Nelson, former Toronto police detective, has left the force because of the deteriorating eye disease retinitis pigmentosa. She sets up a private detective office where business has been scarce. Things quickly change when late one night Vicki witnesses a brutal murder on a subway platform. The victim is Ian a young man who only moments earlier had been thinking about his girlfriend Coreen and how upset she would be with him for being late. Seconds before his attacker strikes Ian smells a rotting stench. As he opens his mouth to scream the monster throws him to the ground, and tears out his throat. This is when Vicki happens upon the scene. She sees a figure in black bending over the victim. She races the long distance down the platform, but by the time she arrives the killer has escaped, leaving a blood trail into the dark tunnel. Her eye sight being what it is she does not get a good look at the killer. The victim, with his hideous wounds, and body drained of blood, is beyond any help. But the murderer's foul odor cannot be ignored.

Vicki summons the police. When they finally arrive it turns out the lead investigator is her former partner and lover Mike Celluci. She tells him as much as she knows, but she has questions of her own for him. They have had no contact since she resigned eight months earlier, and Mike makes a point of reminding her that she is no longer on the force, and not privy to police information. And he is still furious with her for quitting. He considers it like running away. His attitude angers Vicki but being the pigheaded, charge ahead type that she is, Mike's vitriol only fuels her determination to find out what's going on.

There have been other savage murders like this - victims with ravaged throats and drained of blood. When even more killings occur the press dubs them the vampire murders. This particular designation upsets Henry Fitzroy, romance writer, illegitimate son of Henry VIII, and vampire. The killer is giving vampires a bad name and Henry plans to do something about it.

Now the three main characters that appear in all the series books have been introduced. Vicki, of course, is central, but Mike and Henry, both very attracted to her, will be involved in solving each paranormal mystery.

In Blood Price someone is calling forth a very powerful, blood lusting demon who will literally destroy the world if he is not stopped.