Halfway to the Grave is the first novel in the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost. I purchased this novel at one point because it was featured and recommended by some form of media (which I now don't remember) as being one of the best paranormal romance novels. I'm glad I listened, because Halfway to the Grave lives up to its hype, and I've already added the next book in the Night Huntress series to my reading wish list.
Catherine "Cat" Crawfield is half-human, half-vampire - the result of an unwanted coupling between her mother and the vampire who raped her. These days, the 22-year-old red-haired vixen spends most of her nights hunting and killing vampires to fulfill her mother's wishes of killing off the entire vampire race.
One night, Cat is captured by a "good" vampire - a hitman known as Bones who needs Cat to assist him with obtaining the heads of some very nasty vampires in town. After a few months of intense combat training with Bones, Cat becomes even more dangerous and threatening to the vampire race, and embarks on a series of missions to bring down an evil local vampire coven. Meanwhile, Cat finds herself falling madly in love with Bones (much to her mother's consternation), and must decide if having a relationship with Bones is a wise and safe choice given her "hobby."
It took me a few chapters to really get into Halfway to the Grave, but once I did, it was difficult to stop reading. Cat's character isn't at all ditzy and faux-cutesy-poo like some paranormal romance protagonists (*cough* Queen Betsy in the Undead series), but instead, is smart, quick-witted, and resourceful. Cat is also very likable and real (well, as real as a half-vampire chick can get), and encounters hiccups in life just like the rest of us (such as getting her period on cue when she plans on having sex). I bet Cat's character becomes even better and more interesting as she matures with every forthcoming book in the Night Huntress series.
The love scenes in Halfway to the Grave will get your blood pumping - all of them are highly erotic, explicit, and intense. Also, when it comes to romance novels, an author's talent can be measured by the magnitude of heartbreak you feel at the point the lovebird couple is forced to separate. I can only imagine the intensity of the adventures Cat and Bones will experience together in future novels.
My least favorite character in Halfway to the Grave is Cat's mother, mainly because of her prejudiced behavior against all vampires, and, how at one point, she turns against her daughter. Although I understand the reason behind her hatred for vampires, I find her mannerisms immature and overplayed. I'm curious to see how her character will play a role in Cat's life going forward.
The main emotion I experienced while reading Halfway to the Grave was plain old vanilla EXCITEMENT! I'm excited to see where the story goes, and how the characters will grow from novel to novel. I'm also excited to see whether Frost develops Cat's half-vampire abilities any further. I hope she does!
The next several books in the Night Huntress series following Halfway to the Grave are One Foot in the Grave, At Grave's End, Destined for an Early Grave, and This Side of the Grave.
Click on any of the images of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
Have you read any books in the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost, and if so, what did you think? What are your favorite paranormal romance series? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!