In Review: The Laughing Corpse by Laurell K. Hamilton

Released: 1994                
Publisher: Ace Books
Format: Paperback
ASIN: B000NR69Z0

The Laughing Corpse is the second in the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series by Laurell K. Hamilton. This time there is a greater focus on her job as an Animator when a wealthy man wants her to raise a very old corpse. She refuses because the only death big enough to raise a corpse of that age is a human death, and there are some things that even Anita won’t do. Again the name of the book refers to an establishment in the book, this time a comedy club.

In the midst of more serious problems, Anita is being fitted for a bridesmaid dress, where her scar are an issue. Which is the least of her worries, she also comes face to face with a voodun priestess whose learned how to put a person’s soul back into their decaying body. When Anita raises the dead they have a shelf life, and they aren’t really back, but Dominga’s are a whole new breed and she’s selling them. And Jean-Claude, the new Master of the City, whose given her the first two vampire marks wants her to start acting like the human servant he wishes she’d be.  

This book builds upon the world of the first and is as interesting as it is inventive. It is much darker than the first, and the body count just may be higher, definitely the zombie body count is. It is a bit gruesome and not for the faint of heart, but is beyond excellent. Anita is more likeable even as her morals are stretched to the extreme, and even at his pushy insistent moments Jean-Claude is charming.
The action is nonstop, and the ending is surprising and satisfying. A very enjoyable read.


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