Book Review – Smolder: An Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Novel by Laurell K. Hamilton

Book Review

An Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Novel 

by Laurell K. Hamilton

Publisher: Berkley

372 Pages

Release Date: March 21, 2023





I have been waiting anxiously for this next adventure with Anita Blake-and it didn’t disappoint!

For those of you who are not familiar with the amazing world created by Laurell K., you have no idea what you are missing. This is the 28th book in the series, and it delivered mystery, romance, and of course Anita’s unique sense of humor. There are not too many authors that can continue with one character/series for over 20 years, and the fact that she has been able to do so and has no plans to call it quits (Thank the Goddess!), speaks to the true talent she holds.

Smolder starts off with Anita deep involved in her wedding planning, which had me laughing out loud, as she is trying to outfit her longtime friend Edward, otherwise known as “Death” to the supernatural bad guys, into very untraditional, very tight wedding formal. It’s amazing to me, as their friendship started off with wondering who was going to have to kill whom, to being in each other’s weddings and really becoming family. The heartfelt humor was interrupted by good old family drama, as her father called to inform her that he was coming to meet her “fiancée” and talk her out of damning her soul-because Anita is marrying Jean Claude-the King of all vampires. As with many of us, Anita suffered through some childhood trauma that she is in therapy for, so this piece definitely made your heart ache a little, and at the same time, makes even more “real” to the readers.

Almost immediately, our story changes and Anita is called to a crime scene, one where a vampire has been murdered, as part of a serial case. There have been enough to earn a title, “The Sunshine Murders”, and they are now the lead story on the news and sparking nation attention, and multiple units are working on the case. There have been 188 murders at this point, and no suspects. There is much speculation, leading to the fact that Anita’s wedding will most likely be a target for a large scale attack, especially by hate groups-which is what they are thinking is the most likely suspect. The police do their due diligence, and interview witnesses, and the “hero” of the day, and identify there is something off, but due to Anita’s connection with vampires and her magical abilities, she is forced off the scene-for now.

On the same night that Anita was called into The Sunshine Murders, she was supposed to have a very elaborate date night with Jean Claude, watching him perform at Guilty Pleasures, the hottest supernatural adult club in St. Louis-owned by none other than Jean Claude himself. When he takes the stage, they are attacked metaphysically by an unknown, very ancient, very powerful force, and almost lose the battle with this unknown assailant. In this scenario, Jean Claude must call his power in from all supernatural beings connected to him, and be careful to identify which energy he needs the most to break away from the attack.

“We must destroy it.” -Jean Claude, Smolder.
“How?” -Richard Zeeman, Smolder.
“The only way I know.” Jean Claude, Smolder.
With that the battle begins.

Smolder takes us on a whirlwind of an adventure, surprise visits, very real emotions, and a suspenseful rid, battling two villains at once, so to speak. An ancient power rivaling the Mother of All Darkness, a horrific murderer aiming all its hatred at vampires, Anita and Jean Claude’s powerbase being tested to the fullest, all while trying to plan a wedding and live happily every after.

This was a fantastic story; one you will not want to put down and can’t wait to turn the next page. I was a little disappointed, as I had been anticipating the long-awaited wedding, however that disappointment quickly vanished as we are promised a second book this year-Slay, that I am sure will prove to be just as amazing if not more than Smolder.

***For those of you who have never read an Anita Novel, I will give you a very brief history. Anita Blake, starts off as a legal vampire executioner, in a world where vampires are “out” and considered citizens. When they break the law, an executioner is brought in to complete to the death sentence. She also raises zombies from the dead for a local firm, for various reasons-but only when Anita agrees with the reason, will she take the job. Throughout the 27 books, we watch her develop into a powerful woman with so many magickal and metaphysical talents, but mostly into finally finding out who she is, and learning to be comfortable with that, and also learning to love-and what type of love works for her. The world of Anita Blake consists of vampires, wereanimals, murder, hunts for killers, witches, zombies, ritual, murder, magick, sex, true friendships, and love.

About the Author

Laurell Kaye Hamilton is a 58-year young American fantasy and romance writer. She is from Herber Springs, Arkansas and known worldwide for her two series: The Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Series, (28 books) and The Meredith Gentry Series (9). She has over 45 published works, starting as early as 1993. She has been nominated and won multiple awards for multiple Anita Blake stories, and is no stranger to the New York Times #1 Best Seller spot! Book #28 “Rafael” is set to release in February 2021.



Smolder on Amazon



About the Author:

Jade Perri is the owner and founder of Embrace Your Path. Jade is an eclectic Witch, who has been practicing for more than 10 years and offers guidance on an array of topics. She specializes in the art of divination. She is an enthusiastic teacher and offers classes and certification in many different areas. She also holds a special interest in animal communication and handmade custom poppets. She is an avid reader and her passion is the fantasy and British historical fiction genres. She is also the mother of two children, and likes to spend time with her husband.