Published: 15 February 2022
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Pages: GoodReads says 268 for the physical
Series: Vampire Hunter D #1
Format Read: Net Galley Shelf App Audio
12,090 A.D. It is a dark time for the world. Humanity is just crawling out from under three hundred years of domination by the race of vampires known as the Nobility. The war against the vampires has taken its toll; cities lie in ruin, the countryside is fragmented into small villages and fiefdoms that still struggle against nightly raids by the fallen vampires-and the remnants of their genetically manufactured demons and werewolves.
Every village wants a Hunter-one of the warriors who have pledged their laser guns and their swords to the eradication of the Nobility. But some Hunters are better than others, and some bring their own kind of danger with them…
Dear friends, olde Salty here. I am guessing the fact that you see my face over here you probably look forward to an ass scathing review that would make your grandmothers blush. But today I am here on very solid ground to give praise to a novel of a franchise neither Dave nor I has known about, that shares its inception year with the same year in which Dave was born. There is a lot of things out there older than Dave, but for some reason the fact that this came out in that year made this read for Dave special, but I also quite liked the story in general. This was some retro, far thinking into the future, speculative sci fi fantasy that I did not expect to see blow my mind open the way it did. I mean Dave is from that year and he is as boring as tap water, he might even be more unhealthy than tap water to boot! Ha! who doesn’t love a good roasting? Gotta dish out some of it before I start this very rare, even though it has happened more often this year, review…
Vampire Hunter D is a Vampire Hunter like the name states. He is among a very few individuals who are still around to help out the general populace with the bloodsucker problems that plague them, travelling from town to town, very much in the same way Dave’s Witcher character does, but in this case “D” as I will be calling the Vampire hunter for the duration of this review, who specialises in one form of monster; VAMPIRES, although there might also be an occasional demon or werewolf here and there…
I can honestly say that the opening of this novel was a bit akward, yet in a way seemed fitting in setting up the world we found ourselves in. People who are bitten or visited by a Vampire are cast out of the towns and communities where they live. In some cases people would also resort to burning the individuals suspected of being bitten before they can turn vampire themselves. There was already a sort of science or general understanding that people had, had over how vampires worked that was a great way to be introduced. D’s way is blocked by one such woman, challenging him to defeat her or kill her or let her hire him as her saviour and kill the vampire that if not killed will mean the woman will be either enthralled to the vampire feasting on her and also turn vampire herself. The awkward bit is that the woman is not yet 18 and the fact that she is still a virgin carried a lot of weight throughout the story line. I guess that it ties into the trope that any Vampire male is a pervert for preying women of any age, as a Vapmire will probably be older than your grandma’s grandma’s grandmamma in most cases… It was not only the vampire that was infatuated with the girl tho, there was also the son of the mayor who was making advances on her as he seemed to always get what he wanted, but her being a stubborn hard headed woman, which he could not deal the rejection of, soon made for some strong third wheel story plotting that fit with the times it was written in. While I say that I am aware that women were also slowly starting to get to play lead roles in films and books and just to be in a book as general use fuck toys. I see what the author of this book was going for and I am glad that it did not go the way I expected it to go.
Anyhow, girl asks D to sort out her problem, D says yes but refuses the offer of her giving herself to “him to do whatever he wanted with her” and not long after that the action starts. There was a good mythology thought out for the Nobility Vampires in this book. They were, as stated in an above sentence, centuries old and could’ve wiped out the human race ages ago, but humans being humans and horney as hell, served as the staple diet for the vampires. In this world we find out that the vampires kinda mind wiped the humans into forgetting how to defend against their kind. Here and there secrets were rediscovered at a snails pace, but the majority of the humans were all blanks in that department. D showed that he knew some stuff and it is only right up until one of the final acts that it is revealed how he knows what he knows. D is short for something or, maybe it isn’t, after all, who knows? The vampire in this book also seemed to be owner of a few where wolves that did his bidding in the daytime while he had to wait the sun out in his castle. The castle also held a few other sorts of monsters, but there was not a lot expanded upon as far as I can remember. There was a weird take on a hydra of sorts, or was it the Three Sisters of Fate?
The vampire hunters, who are in most cases mercenaries in this world, all either have some skill at their job because they have done it for so long or here and there there are a few mutants. D falls some where in the middle as in this particular novel there was not really an explanation to what powers he possessed. He has supernatural reaction times to certain attacks, he stays super calm in hairy situations and never really lets on that he is going through a stressful situation while little Dave on the other hand would genuinely have pissed his pants, ha! No, D is a total chilled bad ass dude, with secrets of his own. He has some strange sword of some kind and a hand that can talk, his hand, attached to him, that also seems to be it’s own individual, can, or possesses some magical attributes and the way I read it seems to also be sort of responsible for some of D’s powers. Way at the front of the book I thought it was the sword talking to D, but later found out I was wrong.
Have I mentioned that THE VAMPIRE LORE AND HISTORY OF THIS WOLRD IS GREAT FOR THE YEAR THIS CAME OUT IN? The whole history of how they manipulated the masses into forgetting how to fight back Vampires was AWSOME!
I am kinda intrigued at this series now and might look up the other novels in the future. I already saw the two animated movies from 1985 that were free to watch on youtube, where the first movie of about an hour and a half felt like it was exactly the novelisation of the book Dave got for free on Net Galley. Dave and I are both happy that another Net Galley book could be taken of his never ending list and it is also a pleasure to report that I could give this a 4 out of 5 on GR. What more can I say about this? It actually had friggin VAMPIRES in the book and was not a false advancement like so many newer books these days are false hyping me up… Vampire D is most definitely a Salty Recommends to whomever likes their Vampire Hunter novels. It has a bit of everything in it, it might be cheesy and outdated to some, but to us it did feel fresh as well as have I said that this book might have been written way ahead of it’s time? Well now you know.
Till next time!