Rant, Review

Review: Hunting the Hunter by Shiloh Walker (2006)

The Hunters, Book 8

Heat Factor: She’s a fucking Surprise Virgin

Character Chemistry: Fate keeps bringing them together. Or something. 

Plot: She is a vampire who hunts vampires. He is a human who hunts vampires. 

Overall: DNF at 30% after the first sex scene


I nabbed this book at a Little Free Library in my neighborhood (have I mentioned how much I love the LFL?) based solely on the tagline. 

(In case you can’t read the tagline on the cover image, it’s: “He is hungry for her body. She is thirsty for his blood…” AMAZING.)

We have a female vampire / male mortal dynamic, so I was intrigued by the possibility of some fun gender role reversal stuff, but I guess that was too much to expect from a book published in 2006. 

Here’s the basic synopsis: Kendall is a vampire who hunts bad vampires (and also other bad dudes who prey on the weak – mainly drug dealers and rapists, from what I can tell). In the opening scene, Kane and his partner (bounty hunters extraordinaire) witness some drug dealers get eaten by some bad vampires. They are injured in the dust-up, so Kendall wipes Kane’s memory. Except he’s Not Like Other Mortals, so he has some memories left – just enough to make him think that Kendall is responsible for his partner’s death (his partner didn’t die). So he becomes a vampire hunter to exact revenge. However, the subplot of Kane hunting Kendall had already been resolved by the time I called it quits, so I’m not really sure where the plot was headed. 

Just so we’re clear on the setup, before I start yelling: Kendall is an old vampire. She is a bad-ass. She spends all her time killing bad people (and paranormal creatures) as part of an elite organization. She can place compulsions on people that last for years. Her special vampire power is making the people around her very afraid. 

Despite all this, Kane is the dominant one in the relationship. Kendall is flustered by him. She’s even a little scared of him, because he’s soooooo goooooood at killing vampires, apparently. He can sense them or something? I don’t know. Kendall *giggles* around Kane. (Sidenote: Kane also gets to be the angsty one, because I guess a vampire lady who has spent decades murdering people wouldn’t have classic Vampire Guilt.) Woman! You can shoot fear out of your eyeballs! You can throw mortal men – including this mortal man – across the room with your superhuman strength! You have superspeed and supervision! Why are you letting this asshole call the shots? Why is he driving the car while you stare vacantly out the window? 


Deep breaths. 


Before I get to their sexual dynamic, I want to pause and talk about the kind of crime work that Kendall is doing. Ok, so remember how she can put compulsions on people? When she finds rapists and serial killers and the like (she can smell the history of blood on them), she lures them in with her sexy sex appeal and then puts a compulsion on them to confess everything to the police. I can dig it. 

Except one time, she’s dealing with some drug dealers. And an addict who is trying to trade his daughter for drugs. And these guys die, no questions asked. (She felt bad about the serial rapist she accidentally killed by throwing him too hard, but not these guys!) Now, no one should be pimping out other people, much less their children, but this emphasis on drug dealers as the ultimate evil felt a little…off to me. Drug addiction is a disease; the guy who was trying to score probably would have benefited from some serious time in rehab. And most drug dealers on the street (especially in post-industrial midwestern towns, which is where this takes place) are some low-level guys who don’t think they have other options. 

AND THEN. After she kills the drug dealer and the would-be pimp, she contemplates the fate of the daughter, who has, by the way, been mind-wiped to feel happy, and thinks:

Now they had to investigate what was going on in her home, and if her mother was the scum her father was, they’d have to find her a new one. 

They’d done it before—a lot. It came with its own set of problems, creating a new identity for a child who could likely be seen all over the news. Her appearance would likely have to be changed some and a story fabricated to convince her of the necessity of what they were doing. 

I’m sorry. What? No, seriously. What? There is an entire agency whose job it is to help kids in unstable homes. It’s called Child Protective Services, and maybe they are understaffed and overworked and have systemic problems, but at least they are trained professionals in dealing with children and trauma and aren’t a group of fucking rogue vampires who place children in some paranormal witness protection program without any consent or oversight. 


Deep breaths. 


Ok. But this is a romance, so let’s get back to the relationship between Kane and Kendall. Remember how Kane is kinda the dominant one? Well, that really comes into play sexually. He initiates their kisses. In fact, he initiates all manner of sexy activities—despite the fact that she is a FUCKING VAMPIRE who LURES EVIL MEN with her SEXY SEX APPEAL. If she is actually interested in this dude, wouldn’t she be doing her sexy vampire luring with him, too, instead of kissing him back and then stopping things because she *shouldn’t*? 

I guess Kane is confused by her not wanting to bone him too, because there’s a ridiculous and short-lived side plot/conflict where he thinks that she’s in a relationship with her partner. He kisses her anyways and then tells her to apologize to the dude for him. 

I’m not even going to parse that one. 

Anyways, after they get that little miscommunication cleared up, they get on the train to bonetown, where, once again Kane is active and Kendall is passively creaming her jeans because vampires don’t wear underwear I guess. And then this happens:

Kendall cried out as he buried his cock balls-deep inside her, a sharp little pain tearing through her middle, tears burning her eyes for a moment. “Kane,” she sobbed, her hands curling into fists. Unconsciously, she tried to pull away, closing herself off from him. It hurt…the sensation of his cock burning and stretching the tight tissues of her pussy.

His hand stroked up her side as he pressed his forehead to hers. Kendall felt her heart clench at the sheer tenderness of the moment. Like warm silk stroking down her cheek, he kissed away the tears and her body calmed just a little, her hands skimming up his chest, curling over his shoulders. “Just relax,” he whispered as his mouth took hers again. 

WTF WTF WTF WTF WTF WTF

Technically, Kendall is not a virgin. It’s just been a while since she had sex. Like maybe decades? She’s been too busy killing people. 

But the way that passage is written is straight out of a magical virgin vagina romance. 

And I just couldn’t take it any more.

Back to the book box with you!


Buy Now: Amazon


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Vampire heroines

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