Those Who Hunt The Night: A Penny Dreadful Review
An ex-spy, a vampire, and the spy’s wife walk into a mystery. Barbara Hambly writes them out again. Those Who Hunt The Night is an old favorite of mine. I read it as a girl, before I’d heard of Steampunk or realized that this fell into that category due to the content of mad science. I was delighted to stumble upon a yellowed paperback copy to review.
The year is 1907. Someone or something is murdering London’s vampires. Don Simon Ysidro turns to a mortal man for help. Professor James Asher, who teaches Philology at Oxford, is not what he seems. He is a retired government spy. With the assistance of his wife Lydia, a medical researcher, he untangles the web of secrets that must perforce cocoon the undead. What they find is…
I cannot tell you why the plot is so gripping, or I would spoil it. I can tell you that these are proper vampires. They are seductive, yes, but bone-chilling and utterly inhuman. Don Simon Ysidro is what I feel vampires should be.
Lydia is the first, perhaps the only, nearsighted protagonist I’ve encountered in all my reading. I love her scientific mind, her bravery, and her blurry vision. As a myopic teenager and as a still-more-nearsighted woman, I could relate to her.
I give Those Who Hunt The Night four and a half gears out of five. If you want scary vampires and a well-formed mystery, Barbara Hambly is the one to read.
Your Correspondent From The Bookstore,
Penny J. Merriweather