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Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand by Carrie…
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Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand

by Carrie Vaughn

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Kitty Norville (5)

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Now that Kitty and Ben's lives aren't in immediate danger, they look to the future. Pressure from Kitty's mom catalyzes them to start planning their wedding, figuring that (what with living together, working together, and being mated wolves) they're practially married already anyway. But neither of them has much interest in a big fancy wedding, so instead they elope to Las Vegas, bringing Kitty's parents along for the ride.

It turns out, even getting married in Vegas is a lot more complicated than they'd hoped. Ben's newfound supernatural abilities give him an edge at the poker table that gets him into trouble, while Kitty's curiousity embroils her in the understated battle between a stage magician (who may be doing real magic) and a group of performing were-cats. And, to top it all off, Kitty attracts the attention of several bounty hunters.

The plot is fun and twisty once it gets started (which takes a little while), but the real attraction in this book are the characters. I've seen Ben called boring elsewhere, but I like him a lot. I like that he comes from a working class family and went to law school to be able to defend his cousins and friends. I like that he's a scruffy dude without pretentions but with skills he's put serious effort into. And I like that generally he's just in the background, being quietly sardonic and supportive, until abruptly he's tough-as-nails, won't-back-down as any alpha male love interest could be. Kitty, meanwhile, is now my favorite urban fantasy gal, thanks to her moral center, courage, and quirky tastes.

My favorite scene: Kitty is in the midst of negotiating with bounty hunters (who are about three seconds from shooting her with silver bullets) when her parents show up. The hunters realize that this fearsome werewolf has chipper, country-club parents who wear pastels, and are completely discombobulated. Love it!

Despite my enjoyment of it, this felt like a placeholder novel, getting the characters into position for the next, hopefully more exciting, installment of the larger plot arc. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
Kitty's back - and getting married to her pack mate and lawyer in Vegas... if they can avoid being kidnapped by the mob, being shot at by supernatural bounty-hunters, and being sacrificed to an ancient god by feline lycanthropes. What a honeymoon!

After the very clear story arc in the first four books, I always struggle a little bit with Dead Man's Hand (I think this is my third read). Not that the story isn't good; it is. It's just that I'm not sure where it's supposed to be going. I also wonder if the first thing a new werewolf alpha would really do after a takeover is leave pack and territory.

However, this book does introduce one of my very favorite characters; Odysseus Grant. Grant is an old-style stage magician in Vegas, complete with top hat and tails and all the classic illusionist tricks like scarves and rings and rabbits in hats. But his real purpose in Vegas is a bit more interesting. Grant is a guardian, tracking old-style dark magic, like the cult of Tiamat and an old portal to a Lovecraftian realm. I would SO love some stories about Grant; he's mysterious and enigmatic and oh-so interesting. There have to be some good stories there. Vaughn writes a lot of short stories; I'll have to go scour her website to see if any of them have been about Grant.

I also like the observations Kitty makes about her relationship with Ben. She describes that love "snuck up" on them; it didn't hit them like a massive explosion. Their wolves mated first, and then their human sides came later. I really like how Vaughn writes a realistic relationship for Kitty and Ben; they fight, they aren't attached at the hip, Ben's not an "alpha" male as we see in some books--he lets Kitty be herself and do her thing. They worry about each other, but they don't limit each other. It's a really refreshing take on relationships in popular culture.

Overall, I like this book, but not quite as much as the first four. But that's okay, 'cause there are a lot more books to come. :)

Purchased. Review courtesy of onebooktwo.com | one book, two reviews. ( )
  InvestedIvana | Feb 23, 2016 |
Kitty and Ben manage to get married while eloping to Las Vegas, but its not the wedding they originally planned. A fun ride getting there and looking forward to the next one! ( )
  pnwbookgirl | Feb 7, 2016 |
Solid installment of Kitty the Werewolf. I probably would have given it 4 stars, but I have a serious dislike for books set in Vegas. I'm just soooooo not interested in it as a setting that it automatically deducts points. Sue me.

Also, although I really did enjoy the story for what it was, it felt like a less of a continuation of the series than a little jaunt away on vacation (despite all the shenanigans). I know that things that happened in Vegas aren't going to stay in Vegas (hello, Tiamat!) and that will affect the coming book(s), but it almost felt like a really long short story of Kitty that you'd find in a paranormal Vegas anthology then part of the main series. ( )
  chessakat | Feb 5, 2016 |
Audio- Ben and Kitty head to Vegas to get married. They tried to do it the old fashioned way but it drove them crazy, Vegas sounded so easy. Right ? Nothing is easy for Kitty and Ben. First off they are booked into a hotel that has a gun conventions going on. Killers, hunters and other nasties fill the hotel. Then there is the weird magic act, that may not be a simple magic act. there is the Lion/Tiger and Jaguar show that has all of the supes suspicious. Wait there is more, The creepy decor of the cats lair. The laid back master vampire and the lack of any other werewolves, the missing man, the flying bullets. Phew-There is a lot going on in Vegas.
Poor Kitty, she really gets a hard puzzle to solve in this mystery. I enjoyed the strength given to her character to work the details out. She did what she had to to get the resolution she had to have. She has to deal with some crazy old stuff that is not gone and not forgotten. I can't wait to read the next one. ( )
  TheYodamom | Jan 29, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Carrie Vaughnprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gavin, MargueriteNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Puckey, DonCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
White, CraigCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
To all the teachers who told me it was okay to write, draw, and tell stories. Thanks especially to:
Mrs. Garnett, second grade, Helen Keller Elementary
Mrs. Hawkinson, fourth grade, Ben Franklin Elementary
Mrs. Adams, sixth grade, Ben Franklin Elementary
Mrs. Stufft, eighth grade, Severna Park Middle School
Mrs. Gaggi, tenth grade, Lewis-Palmer High School

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This was embarrassing.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Already the alpha pair of Denver's werewolf pack, Kitty and Ben now plan to tie the knot human-style by eloping to Vegas. Sin City has never been so wild, and this werewolf has never had to fight harder to save not only her wedding, but her very life.… (more)

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