Iron and Velvet

Iron and Velvet

18144453 “Iron and Velvet” by Alexis Hall

Publisher’s Synoisis: First rule in this line of business: don’t sleep with the client.
My name’s Kate Kane, and when an eight-hundred-year-old vampire prince came to me with a case, I should have told her no. But I’ve always been a sucker for a femme fatale.
It always goes the same way. You move too fast, you get in too deep, and before you know it, someone winds up dead. Last time it was my partner. This time it could be me. Yesterday a werewolf was murdered outside the Velvet, the night-time playground of one of the most powerful vampires in England. Now half the monsters in London are at each other’s throats, and the other half are trying to get in my pants. The Witch Queen will protect her own, the wolves are out for vengeance, and the vampires are out for, y’know, blood.
I’ve got a killer on the loose, a war on the horizon, and a scotch on the rocks. It’s going to be an interesting day.


2 out of 5 stars

This was an interesting book. I think it’s meant to be a parody of a hard-boiled noir detective story. The opening scene is written exactly as you would expect a 1950’s private eye story to unfold … the PI sitting behind a desk when a gorgeous dame walks in and sparkling repartee follows.

The majority of the book is a paranormal mystery/romance blend that doesn’t quite work for me. It’s full of metaphors and similes that are a little too over the top, which is why I am hoping it’s a parody. I can’t find any solid proof that it is for sure, so I’ll go with my gut and say it is. It reads much better that way.

It was terribly confusing to read. Kate Kane, our main character (and I’m assuming who the gorgeous cover art is supposed to represent) is a faery princess, but this is mentioned as a sort of aside. Her father was stolen by the Queen of the Wild Hunt (which I would have loved to know more about) and she took his eyes in return for giving him baby Kate. This is pretty much the extent of the back story.

The book opens with a murder of a werewolf on vampire territory. The werewolf and vampire hierarchies were mind-boggling and there was no way I followed anything given about them. Something about the vampires being split into four houses (Harry Potter anyone?) and headed up by the Prince of Love, the Prince of Cups, the Prince of Wands, and the Prince of somethingelsethatdidn’tmatteratall.

The first half of the book was just a word-dump in the effort to build the world here. Too, too much. And Kate. Dear Kate. Kate who skips showers, drinks too much, wears a fedora and EVERYONE wants to sleep with her. I mean everyone. And I can’t figure out why!

We are introduced to Julian, the vampire Prince of Cups whose territory the werewolf was murdered in. Julian is a sexpot and wants Kate as well.

Unfortunately the lesbian sex scenes were a disappointment. Too much left to the imagination in metaphors, not enough real action for me. It was just dull.

“Her face was fascinating, as though she was a puzzle I couldn’t quite solve. Time’s cryptic crossword, ageless and ancient, fragile and eternal.”
“She sparkled in my mouth like champagne. My kisses landed on her skin as vivid as butterflies.”
“She lay underneath me like an unexploded grenade.”
“I took my time, savoring her. Like a pudding.”

PUDDING!!! Who thinks about pudding during sex???

I do love a good paranormal story and am a fan of Ilona Andrews, Yasmine Galenorn, and others. This won’t be going on my fan-based paranormal shelf.


4 thoughts on “Iron and Velvet

  1. I might have given it a chance – well, maybe – but the bit about skipping showers and then the Pudding, cured me from any such interest. Pudding????? 😦

    Liked by 1 person

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