Tuesday, August 4, 2020

ARC Review: How to Lure a Hunter (VRC: Vampire Related Crimes #3) by Alice Winters

How to Lure a Hunter (VRC: Vampire Related Crimes #3)
When Marcus Church brings his brother Claude in to help solve an unusual murder, I’m positive he did it just to disrupt my monotonous life. None of my coworkers in the Vampire Related Crimes unit seem to understand that I want to keep a wall between me and everyone else—especially Claude, who does everything he can to break through it with an annoying smile. 
After more vampires begin to die, Claude pinpoints the actions of the killers to a group of vampire hunters, leaving us in a race to stop them. When I discover that I have a target on my back, I’m surprised that Claude insists on staying by my side, even when things go from bad to worse. I’m determined to keep him out—I’ve lost enough people in my life—but I can’t stop feeling something every time he breaks through. 

When I reunited with my brother, I never imagined it’d throw me right into Alexei Karsynov’s path. He’s short-tempered, stubborn, and dangerously adorable whenever he smiles—he just doesn’t realize it yet. When Marcus asks me to help with a case, it gives me the excuse I need to get closer to Alexei, but what I discover threatens to change everything. Suddenly, I find myself wanting to do anything to protect Alexei and to see him smile, despite his efforts to keep his distance from others. I’m determined to show him that he can’t live in the past when his future is so much brighter. 

How to Lure a Hunter is a 106k word book that contains: Clothes so bright they could cause retina damage, a ridiculous amount of gifts showered on a reluctant recipient, a cranky Russian with a soft spot he tries to hide, a library full of books that need to be treated with the proper respect, some possibly unhealthy sibling teasing, and a sunshiny 300-year-old vampire with an unexpected protective streak.

Todd's rating:

This latest book in the "Vampire Related Crimes" series has all of the same earmarks of snark and banter as the first two books, so I found it to be funny, compelling, and definitely worth a read. : )

At the end of the last book, Marcus' colorful, slightly-campy brother, Claude, had set his very persistent eyes on Alexei Karsyn, a gruff, no-nonsense detective at the VRC, much to the horror of Alexei.

But luckily for Claude, his best friend, Finn, had already begun breaking down the walls that Alexei had spent a century and a half building up to protect his heart from experiencing any further loss and betrayal.

The reported 377 page book's pacing felt a bit slow at times toward the middle; however, that never really translated into disinterest or boredom on my part. Things simply took a bit longer to happen than I'd hoped.

I did really enjoy the flashback scenes, where details slowly trickled out about how Alexei went from being a human  in Russia, was turned into a vampire, then moved to America for a fresh start with the VRC.

From the first mention of the person who turned out to be the protagonist in this book, I just *knew* deep in my bones that he would turn out to be The Big Bad here, so I wasn't overly surprised when that was the case, but I still enjoyed that (predictable) story line, nonetheless.

My favorite parts of the book, though, were those where Claude's always-sunny, trusting personality was on-page in full force. Those scenes were both comedic and ridiculous in equal measure, but I was a huge fan and was never bored.

The angst was pretty manageable, and the steam was more than decent, without becoming annoyingly-frequent, so two thumbs up there.

My overall impression upon finishing the book was that books 1 and 2 were still my favorites, but Claude and Alexei's story fit nicely in with the series, so I'd rate this one at around 3.75 stars and for sure recommend it to fans of the series. : )

This book is *FREE* with Kindle Unlimited membership.


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