Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Kensei

The Kensei: A Lawson Vampire Novel

The Kensei
Jon Merz
304 pgs
St. Martins Griffin

Amazon Blurb -

After several years, Merz offers a new novel (following Syndicate, 2003) starring vampire secret agent Lawson. This time, Lawson is in Japan on vacation. But trouble arrives almost immediately—on the train from the airport—when an assassin tries to take down a young Japanese man and his girlfriend. Lawson’s interference is more than just annoying, as the assassin he kills was a member of the local Yakuza, the Kensei, and now the Mob wants vengeance. When Lawson’s former KGB agent girlfriend arrives with troubles of her own, his vacation is no longer the least bit relaxing. All this sounds like the setup for a typical action adventure or espionage novel, but, of course, Lawson is a vampire who works for the vampire governing council, specializing in keeping vampires secret and fixing their problems. Other than being crazy strong and very quick to heal (excellent attributes for a secret agent), Lawson is more like Jason Bourne than Dracula, making this a vampire mystery with broad appeal. 

Lawson is a Fixer.  He tries to keep the balance between humans and vampires.  When bad vamps go nuts he takes them out.

In Japan for some r-n-r and to get some more training in his Martial Arts, life just won’t cut him any slack.  While riding the train he notices a couple and a lone man who isn’t there just for fun.  Thinking the thug is there to take him out, Lawson jumps into it feet first only to find out the baddie was there for the poor couple or the man anyway.

Off we go on a ride to rid the world of a physco vamp who wants to make hybrid human/vamps to rule.  Kensei is just crazy and Lawson is a bump in his road to success.  We meet Lawson’s girlfriend, human, Talya who is a former KGB and major kick ass!  They are breaking the rules by being together and the two don’t care.  They have to sneak, but they love each other.  Moko is the cop who is investigating the matter.  Smart and no push over, Lawson will have to work with him.

This book was not my usual genre of vamp subject and I wasn’t disappointed.  If you like Jason Bourne type intrigue  you’ll love this.  Merz is an exceptional author.  Able to make you “see” where Lawson was, his detail is fantastic without being tedious.  The characters are rich and vibrant, fleshed out to where you can really feel them.  For me that is the mark of a great writer.

4 cannolis


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