Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter: The First Death
by Laurell K. Hamilton & Jonathon Green
Edited by Mike Raicht & Mark Paniccia
Cover Artist: Wellinton Alves
Review by Gayle Surrette
Marvel Comics Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780785129417
Date: 12 March 2008 List Price $19.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
This graphic novel takes place before the events of Guilty Pleasures, the first of the Anita Blake series. Hamilton and Marvel take you back to before it all began. We get to see how Anita Blake got involved with hit-man Edward, bar owner Dead Dave, her old partner and mentor, and the case that pulled Anita into the influence of Jean-Claude.
A serial killer is murdering young children. Anita believes it is a vampire and since there are strict laws about biting minors, they need to find this rogue and stop the killing. It doesn't take long to find that there may be more than one mystery to unravel.
The art work is quite lifelike but with a comic book flatness to it that doesn't in anyway detract from the action or story. Each character has some characteristic that stands out to make them unique and identifiable in the panels.
Beyond having a good story, which is told in the first half of the book, the book is also a sourcebook and reference with write-ups on all the major characters from the books, the various clubs, bars, and organizations, and the major political players. This is a great book for those who want to be able to go to one place for a refresher on who is who in the Blake universe.
Warning: There are some spoilers for the first couple of books in the series so, read them first before reading this. But, if you've already read all the books, have at it and enjoy this prequel.