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Saturday, November 20, 2010


Author: L. A. Banks
Ratings: V4, S4, H2
Publisher and Titles: St. Martin's: Bad Blood (2008); Bite the Bullet (2008); Undead on Arrival (2009); Cursed to Death (2009); Never Cry Werewolf (2010); Left for Undead (2011)

     I've just finished reading the sixth book, Left for Undead, which is set in New Orleans, where Sasha and Hunter team up with the Seelie and Unseelie Courts to battle vamps and demons.

     If you haven't yet tried this series, here is a summary: As the series opens, Sasha Trudeau, a highly trained special ops soldier, is also a werewolf, heavily medicated by the U.S. military to keep her wolf side from showing. On one of her operations, she meets Max Hunter, leader of a mystical Ute werewolf pack of shadow wolves. Since they are UF protagonists, both, of course, have mysterious pasts that haunt them as adults.

     The early plots center around the couple's attempts to control the demon werewolf population and to battle vampire gangsters, werewolf drug runners, and government spies. Native American mysticism and 21st-century experimental medical science are combined in incidents that are made even more complex by the many alliances, councils, and military levels that are intertwined throughout the story lines.

     The action always moves toward the possibility of the ultimate apocalyptic battle. In later books, Sasha (who eventually leaves the military) and Hunter become involved in both alliances and battles with many more types of supernaturals, including Seelie and Unseelie fae, dragons, gargoyles, and various types of demons.

     Throughout the series, Sasha and Hunter must constantly defeat both human and supernatural enemies, all the while trying to make sense of their own complicated romantic situation (which they eventually do in Left for Undead). Romances develop among their friends, as well. Just to keep things straight for the reader, there are three types of supernatural wolves in this series:
     regular werewolves (are sensitive to silver, shift uncontrollably at full moon, eat animal flesh, live in a pack, are not limited to a single soul-mate bond);
     shadow wolves (are immune to silver, shift at will, eat animal flesh; live in a pack, take one soul mate for life); and
     demon-infected werewolves (have been infected by a virulent virus; have glowing red eyes and a sulfuric scent; can walk upright; eat human flesh with distended fangs; are extremely strong, brutal killers with a violent and chaotic pack structure).

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