“Blood Price” by Tanya Huff

I think it’s safe to say 95% of TV is based on books/comics. Not too many things are original any more. Working at the book store made it easier to point out what was original and what was based on a book, but every once in a while one does go under the radar.

I used to watch Blood Ties with my mom, it was kind of campy but it was awesome. A vampire working with a private Investigator to solve unexplained supernatural crimes. No, not that show, the other one (haaa, 1980’s reference …I’m old). But, I was a month ago years old when I learned this show was based on a book. I’ve never ready Tanya Huff, though I know the name, so I wasn’t sure what I was getting into when I picked up the book. Sometimes the television/cinematic version expands on the books, sometimes they fail, and other times they disguise how horrible the books actually were (“Inkheart”, I’m looking at you).

To start from the beginning, the first book is how the PI gets introduced to the supernatural/paranormal and to our vampire Henry. My memory is a little blurry on the show (I remember books better) so while this book is completely new to me, the subject isn’t entirely. The PI, Victoria “Vicki” Nelson, is a Police officer turned Private Investigator because she has a disorder that is causing her to lose her eye sight. She is currently losing her peripheral vision and has no night vision. Can’t really work as a cop if you have only 50% of your eyesight. So, she quit but couldn’t kick the need to help people. Which is how she ended up mixed up with a messy serial murderer. Heading home, she heads down to the subway and stumbles across a body with its throat completely ripped out.

The murders don’t stop at one, and it’s enough to drag in Henry – who is doing his best to remain unknown and under the radar (Vampires in this book are solitary). He fears the murderer may be a child vampire, and may lead to the public becoming aware of their existence.

In some ways the book is campy and cliched, but at this point most vampire books are. It’s not badly written, but it IS a product of the 90’s (’91 to be exact). Leather trench coats and all. Thanks Neo. There are a few tropes that made me cringe, such as Henry saying he approves of the fact Vicki doesn’t wear make-up. I basically grumbled “get the f*ck over it, it’s her choice to wear it or not” …but that’s just my feminist side creeping out. Times were different then and most women only had value if they “weren’t like other girls”. Here, let me get off my soapbox before I continue.

Another thing I find interesting is Huff clearly did her research. Twilight did the same but then promptly shit on it. There are several references of removing the head of a supposed vampire and stuffing the mouth full of garlic. That was an actual method people did, especially during the black plague which they believed was caused by vampires and/or witches. I did a LOT of research on vampires in high school …So, seeing someone referencing history is pretty cool.

All in all, fans of the genre will probably get a kick out of this book. Supernatural, sex, vampires, and it takes place in Toronto so it’s eerie knowing the places they are talking about, but still a decent book. They are short books so they are a nice quick read!

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