Tainted Night, Tainted Blood by E.S. Moore
ORDER A COPY: Tainted Night, Tainted Blood (Kat Redding)
Publisher: Kensington Books
Publishing Date: July 3, 2012
Paperback: 352 pages
Rating: 4 stars
Kat Redding is a vampire with a job to do—wiping out the vamps and werewolves who prey on Pureblood humans. Someone has to do it…as long as that someone is her. But suddenly Kat, also known as Lady Death, has competition, and it’s causing problems. Vampire houses and werewolf clans alike are blaming her for a spate of gruesome murders, and Kat needs to figure out who’s really responsible before she becomes the next target…
On the hunt, she forms an uneasy alliance with both the Luna Cult and a powerful rogue werewolf. But the truths Kat’s uncovering—about her enemies and her few remaining confidantes—are far from comforting. And when the chance comes to leave her life of vengeance behind, Kat must decide whether her real motive lies in protecting the innocent, or sating her own fierce hungers.
***NOTE: THERE ARE SOME SPOILERS HERE!!***
In this continuing series, Kat Redding, also known in the supernatural world as Lady Death, finds out that someone is running around the city killing vampires and werewolves with a sword, and although it is not Kat’s style to kill random individuals, rumors are circulating that Lady Death is responsible for these new slayings.
Kat is again approached by Jonathan Alucard, the werewolf alpha of the Luna Cult, to help catch the killer before more weres are killed and to keep the werewolves from going after Kat. Kat is not overly excited to again be involved with the Luna Cult since they were all almost killed the last time they worked together. More importantly, Kat is more than a little unhappy to find Jonathan standing on her doorstep. Normally Kat would kill anyone who knows where she lives, but she can’t seem to work up the desire to hurt Jonathan. Jonathan also wants her to work with werewolf, Adrian Davis, the Alpha who took over the former vampire house. Adrian is still very interested in mating with Kat and he has been having her followed to keep an eye on her, both for his own interests and to make sure she is not the killer. Kat’s feelings still haven’t changed about Adrian and she’d much rather kill him and done with him than play nice and work together to find the killer.
In hunting for the killer, Kat stumbles first onto a human religious cult known as The Left Hand, who hunt the werewolves and vampires, and although they are only human, they are quite dangerous. She also comes upon a bizarre Town known as Delai, where the residents didn’t seem to be cowering in the night in fear of the predators that lurk in the dark. There she meets Levi, the Mayor of the Town, and although he knows that Kat is a vampire, he seems to want her to settle in with them.
When Kat accidently comes upon the killers, she is shocked to learn that it is a group of Tainted, humans who have been tainted with both werewolf and vampire blood, a mix of blood which usually just leads to madness. These tainted are working together as a team and she is nearly killed trying to take them down. The worst shock of all is that the leader of this Tainted Army is Kat’s brother, Thomas, who was Tainted with both werewolf and vampire blood at the same time Kat was turned vampire, and who Kat thought was long dead.
Kat doesn’t know if his leadership is due to his extensive training with Kat prior to their capture, or is Thomas beginning to remember who he was. Now Kat is willing to risk anything and everyone she cares about to save her brother from what he has become. She is even willing to enlist the help of Ethan’s demon in order to bring him back.
I was again quickly drawn in to the world created by E.S. Moore and sped through this story. Kat is still very unwilling or unable to fully trust anyone, not even human Ethan who is her helper in her fight against the evil that prowls the night. Although this is in the realm of Urban Fantasy and not paranormal romance, I was quite happy to see a little more growing between Kat and Jonathan. (I have my own little crush on Jonathan ).
BUT I have to say that the ending has me pretty crazed and more than a little pissed off, and I am trying to reserve judgment until I read the next story since I am certain there must be some very important plot set up happening here.
The Town of Delai gives off a very Twilight Zone feel or something out of a Stephen King novel, the kind of Town you drive in to, but you can never return from. You just know that something is wrong. I see from the preview pages from the next novel at the end of the book that we will be returning to Delia, so I will again reserve any judgment on this part of the story until we get a chance to see where we will be going.
Although I want to jump into the story and kick some Lady Death butt myself, I will definitely be picking up a copy of Blessed by a Demon’s Mark due out in January 2013 to see where the story leads.
See our interview with author E.S. Moore for more about the Kat Redding series.
“I know you don’t like visitors,” Jonathan said. He looked uncomfortable sitting at the table. He kept lacing and unlacing his fingers as if he wasn’t quite sure what to do with his hands.
“No shit.” I placed the gun on the table, the barrel aimed right at him. I kept my hand on it to let him know how much I didn’t like having people show up unannounced at my doorstep.
“I wouldn’t have come if it wasn’t important.”
“Okay,” I said. “Then speak.”
He sighed and ran his fingers trough the hair on the left side of his head. He looked much better than he did the last time I had seen him. It had been at The Bloody Stake, and he’d still been suffering the result of our semi-successful joint run against House Tremaine. The limp was gone and all his wounds appeared to be healed, though that could be deceiving.
Jonathan was a sorcerer, which allowed him to hide what he wanted to hide. He claimed he could only cast glamours, but I refused to believe it. Any sorcerer who wanted to live would claim they could do very little. Anyone stronger was sought out and killed.
Jonathan used his glamours to keep the Luna Cult Den hidden. He was able to hide the Den, making the old library on the Ohio State campus look run-down and abandoned from the outside. On the inside, it was anything but.
He’d used his glamour on me once as well, making me appear as a Luna Cult member so we could infiltrate House Tremaine together. It had worked, to a point. I hadn’t been able to keep myself from killing a few wolves along the way, which, in turn, gave us away when Adrian Davis sniffed me out.
Before I met him, Jonathan had kept his face hidden with a dark hood aided by a glamour that made his face all shadows and darkness. Only recently had he started using his magic to hide the damage done to his face, reconstructing it so that anyone looking at him wouldn’t cringe.
The slightest hint of guilt crept into me. I’d been the one who’d ruined his face. He was once a member of House Valentino, a House I had taken down after they had turned me into a vampire. My blade had cut a large chunk of his skull off, leaving him mutilated and near death. He survived and had a change of heart, choosing to turn against his vampire masters and fight for the liberation of the werewolf.
Yeah, I wasn’t so sure why I was siding with him either.
Jonathan looked up at me and a sadness came into his eyes. “I was wondering if I would ever see you again,” He said. “I thought we had gotten past our differences and could at least be friends.”
I frowned. “Is that what this is about?”
“No,” he admitted. “But I needed to get it out. I dislike the thought of you risking your life alone when you could have my help.”
He rubbed at his forehead like a headache was coming on. “Things would be much easier if we could learn to work together. This animosity between us need not exist. Maybe things wouldn’t have gotten so far gone if you had come to me.”
I frowned even harder. “What’s happened?”
He licked his lips and brushed off his jacket, though there was nothing on it. He looked downright nervous, and it was making my trigger finger itch.
I moved my head away from the gun just in case. I would probably feel bad if I killed him because he sneezed at the wrong moment.