Those Who Hunt The Night (James Asher #1) by Barbara Hambly

Vampires have been living in London since the time of Elizabeth I. For now they have lived in relative peace but now some are being ruthlessly murdered; their coffins opened to the daylight that bring instant death. No vampire known can stand the sunlight to try and catch the killer so they are forced to turn to a mortal individual for help.

Enter James Asher – one time spy and now professor of languages. He returns home to find his wife in a kind of stupor and a strange guest waiting for him. Don Simon Ysidro is one of the oldest vampires, and while he is polite he leaves no doubt as to how powerful he is. Were they to flee, Simon would have little problem finding her and so Asher must reluctantly agree to assist.

However, Asher has strong doubts. Should he find the killer, what then? Now that he knew the truth about vampire, they surely wouldn’t let him live. Would they?

Those Who Hunt The Night is a book that harkens back to the original vampire stories. These vampires are not romantic, they are not moody pseudo-teenagers brooding about. These vampire are monsters and Hambly writes them exceptionally well.

With a story that evokes the feel of the horror of darker days, Hambly takes us on a meandering yet exciting ride from start to finish. I was especially surprised with the ending and who the actual perpetrator was. Looking back, one can see how clues were sprinkled through the narrative that eventually leads to the final reveal.

While some readers might find the book slow, I found it almost reminiscent of some of the vampires in the story. Like many of them, there is something to be said about enjoying the journey regardless of the destination. Vampires have nothing but time.

Readers who enjoy old school type horror novels will likely enjoy Those Who Hunt The Night. Being a fan myself, I did and look forward to reading the next book.

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