Happy Sunday everyone! Sorry for no Smackdown yesterday, I was sucked in by a story that I couldn’t stop writing and when I finally did take a break from that, I got sucked in by a book that I couldn’t put down. On our post-holiday trip to the bookstore, what to my wondering eyes should appear but Carrie Vaughn’s latest Kitty Norville novel: Kitty’s House of Horrors. The book is scheduled for release January 4, 2010 according to Amazon so I snatched that little Christmas present right up for myself.
Carrie Vaughn is a wonderfully inventive and engaging author. It is hard to believe that this is the seventh Kitty Norville novel, but this fun, engaging series is a seven-layer dip of fictional charm. Revelations about her world come in drips and droplets that gather together to fill a bucket (this is so much better phrased in the most recent novel). Her first novel was released in 2005. The title caught my husband’s eye and he thought it was something I would enjoy, and he was not wrong. In the first novel, Kitty and the Midnight Hour (Kitty Norville, Book 1), we meet Kitty Norville who is a midnight-shift DJ for a Denver radio station.
In a twist on werewolf tales, she is neither out of the closet nor in charge of her pack. In fact, she’s pretty far down on the totem pole as packs go. She begins dispensing advice via her late night show and gradually, what goes bump in the night begins to bump up her ratings. It isn’t long before she’s in hot water with the supernatural community and with the supernatural hunters – including one guy who calls in to let her know he’s coming to kill her. The moment I finished the first book, I was dying for more. Here we are five years and six books later and you know what?
I want more.
Kitty’s House of Horrors
Confession time, when I first read the blurb about the next Kitty book, I spluttered and I stuttered. A reality show? Really? Kitty Norville agrees to appear on TV’s first all-supernatural reality show. She’s expecting cheesy competitions and manufactured drama starring shape shifters, vampires and psychics. However, her publicity stunt soon turns into a fight for life.
I have never been a fan of reality television, yet I found myself reading the ‘staged’ sequences of the book with an eagerness that bordered on voyeurism. Vaughn gathers together some of the more interesting characters that Kitty’s encountered in previous novels while adding a few more to the mix. Kitty’s nascent skepticism and snark keeps the commentary amusing even as the unease and worry grows.
What I found fascinating is even though Vaughn tells you via Kitty that this reality show is going to turn into a horror show, the horror of it is a cold, dark insidious thing that strips away the complex characters to their cores – revealing basic, raw emotion that is painful and engaging at the same time. Without revealing what happens, I will say that the author surprised me more than once and I love how she keeps adding new dimensions to the relationships between the readers and Kitty.
High marks for Kitty’s House of Horrors. If you haven’t jumped on the Carrie Vaughn train, pick up The Midnight Hour and get started, you have a wonderful journey in front of you.
Final thought: More please?