Rating (out of 5): 4 stars
Cherie Priest has a knack for defying genre. For blurring lines. And for gritty and visceral novels. Bloodshot is no exception and — best of all — it takes badass to a whole new level mostly through main character Raylene.
You’ll often see Bloodshot pegged as a “vampire noir” — yeah, new genre. I may have it labeled under Urban Fantasy for Vampire Book Club purposes, but really the novel is part heist book part vampire drama with a touch of urban fantasy and hints at romance. (You get the picture a romantic angle may come into play down the road, but don’t be expecting a love story here. Raylene does not have time for love or attachments.)
Raylene is a vampire. She’s also a master thief and more than a little paranoid. Though, she’d say she’s careful. After one too many boring jobs, an intense piece of work fell in her lap. Raylene avoids her own kind — too many rules, too much drama — but once she’s heard Ian’s story she finds herself taking on a task that leads to federal agents raiding her house, break-ins at secret government sites, going on the run and spending time with one very impressive drag queen.
The big story will certainly be told in multiple books, but in Bloodshot I just really fell in love with Raylene. I love a strong heroine, and if nothing else Raylene is assertive and resourceful. Also, she sets a new bar for badass vampire chick. And I dig it.
Because of the genre-straddling Bloodshot does, it’s harder to peg who can appreciate it. But, of course, I’ll try. If you love Priest’s other works or if you love high-intensity urban fantasy but don’t mind hitting up several cities, then you will likely get wrapped up in Bloodshot.