Posts tagged ‘L.A. Banks’

March 18, 2013

Musing on Minion by L.A. Banks

Cover photo from Minion: A Vampire Huntress Series

Cover photo from Minion: A Vampire Huntress Series

In my continuing quest to discover African American’s in Science Fiction I have been reading and learning about L.A. Banks. L.A. Banks is the penname for Leslie Esdaile Banks an accomplished writer in several genres, with several penname, and publishers. Not only is she a best-seller and award winning writer. For this musing I want to share my thought with you on Minion.

Minion is the first in the Vampire Huntress Series that stars Damali Richards and her Guardian Team of vampire hunters. The novel opens up with a gripping story of a Preacher’s wife at the point of breaking when she believes that her Preacher husband is having an affair. When she realizes that her husband is having an affair with a man, she snaps and takes matters in her own hands. With the help of an old witch she goes to the mansion of Nuit and casts a spell that releases a demon. The demon and Nuit reach an agreement and Nuit is able to escape his prison the mansion. It’s not until later in the story that we learn the back story to who is Nuit and the danger to his release. While this is really important to the larger story, it doesn’t come back in to play until later in the story. This is actually one of the few things I disliked about this story.

The majority of the story is about Damali Richards, the Neteru, and Carlos a close friend of hers from before she was called to the team. From Chapter One on, I was very pleased with the pacing of the story, plotting, and writing. To me the story didn’t feel like a normal novel with a build-up to a climax and then a resolution. There is a climax, but it is overshadowed by the larger plot; I prefer subtle larger plots. But none of that really matters because the story is so well plotted that it is easy to fall into.

We learn a lot about the relationship between Damali and the Guardian’s and Damali and Carlos. We also learn about Damali and the Neteru. Even though several years pass in this book, the characters still have a long way to go particularly Damali who is young and naïve. There was some foreshadowing that I expect will lead to some interesting twists and turns in the story.

Carlo’s character has by far the biggest change. Initially his character is a local king-pin who doesn’t believe in monsters. But by the end of the story he is a vampire, tricked into this world when his family and boys are killed by Nuit. In the final chapters, Carlos is a completely different entity a vampire with a mission of vengeance and protection.

Overall, I found this book to very entertaining. I don’t read a lot of vampire books, but I do watch a lot of vampire TV and Movies. I like this concept of a larger battle between good and evil, where a young hunter/huntress, born every thousand years with the ability to kill a Master Vampire. Must read.