'I was covered in blood, but it wasn't mine, so it was okay.'
Edward is a hit man. He specialises in monsters. Vampires, shape-shifters, anything and everything. There are people like me, Anita Blake, who do it legally, but Edward doesn't sweat the legalities or, hell, the ethics. He is an equal opportunity killer.
I may be one of the few friends that Edward has, but it's like being friends with a tame leopard. It may curl on the foot of your bed and let you pet its head, but it can still eat your throat out...
An inhabitant of an alternate Earth very much like our own--except that magic coexists there with natural law, and preternatural beings like vampires and werewolves coexist with humans--Anita Blake is full of contradictions that make her a potent lead character for this continuing series. Although Anita is a licensed vampire executioner, one of her lovers is a vampire (the other is a werewolf); she packs more firepower than a small army, but is a dedicated Christian; she's tough-as-nails yet ultrafeminine; she tangles with seriously dangerous supernatural forces, but she's as matter of fact about dealing with magic as she is about bashing bad guys, and she's as quick with a quip as she is with a well-placed kick to the groin. In her ninth adventure (after Blue Moon), Anita is summoned to New Mexico by Edward (aka "Death"), the cold-blooded killer from previous books to whom she owes a favor. In the course of investigating a series of grotesque murders (victims torn to bloody bits, survivors flayed of all flesh), Edward becomes more human and Anita less so. Celibate for six months, Anita's usual steamy sexual encounters with her inhuman but hunky boyfriends are missing from this novel, but there's still a lot of beefcake to appreciate and the considerable sexual tension is both humorous and supportive of the plot. The gory story line--which wraps around an Aztec vampire goddess, a dwarf necromancer, bull-headed bigoted cops, hearts ripped from chests and a witch who conveniently appears in the nick of time--needs that bit of sustenance, but the book is still a monstrously entertaining read.