Kitty Goes To Washington
Published 2006 321 pages
This is the second book in the Kitty Norville series by Carrie Vaughn. This time Kitty has to travel to Washington because she has been invited to testify at a Senate hearing. Ostensibly the hearing is to investigate the work of The Centre for the Study of Paranatural Biology, a government funded organisation. Although with Senator Duke (the ultra conservative, bible thumping and supernatural hating Senator who featured in “Kitty and the Midnight Hour”) cross examining the witnesses it soon looks like it could turn into a witch hunt (quite literally!)
Kitty has more to worry about than testifying to the Senate. Upon her arrival in Washington she is made an offer of hospitality that she can’t refuse by the cities vampire mistress Alette. Alette is worried about how the Senate hearing will progress and what it will mean for the vampires and wants to keep an eye on Kitty and the proceedings.
Elijah Smith, the mysterious preacher who first featured in Kitty and the Midnight Hour, is also in Washington to testify at the hearings. Smith still has his travelling caravan of vampires and lycanthropes who appear to be brain washed into staying with him in return for a cure. Kitty has been curious about Smith for some time, wanting him to go on her radio show as well as wanting to find out what he’s up to, because she doesn’t believe he is curing his followers.
She has made some new friends whilst in Washington, Jeffery a professional psychic and Roger a tabloid reporter, and with these unlikely allies she sets out to get to the bottom what Elijah Smith is doing and liberate his brainwashed followers with unexpected results.
Kitty even manages to find the time to go out on a date with a Brazilian were-jaguar that she meets at an art gallery but in a city of dirty politicians and backstabbing media pundits, where everyone seems to be looking to further themselves or their own cause, there is little time for romance and Kitty is soon fighting for her life.
This is another solid instalment of Kitty from Carrie Vaughn proving that her first novel Kitty and the Midnight Hour was no fluke. The story could be read as a stand alone but I think you would get more from it if you read Kitty and the Midnight Hour first because Kitty Goes to Washington ties up the loose ends and plot lines from Midnight Hour.
There seems to be less focus in this novel on Kitty’s talk radio banter which is a shame because the talk radio sections are funny, original and extremely well written. However you do get a bonus short story called “Kitty Meets The Band” included in the back of the Kitty Goes to Washington book which just about makes up for there being less a radio show orientation to the story.
Even without such an emphasis on Kitty’s radio show there is plenty of action, mystery and romance in the story to keep any reader satisfied. The book actually touches on some serious issues (namely prejudice and fascism) with the work of the Center for the Study of Paranatural Biology seeming like something out of Nazi Germany and the Senate hearing stirring up a lot of hatred and fear of the supernatural communities.
The supernatural characters are well written being vividly drawn and yet managing to seem strangely human too. I think this is because for all their supernatural strengths the characters seem to possess a lot of human weaknesses. Such as Alette the vampire mistress who has devoted herself to bettering the lives of her human descendents and Kitty lone wolf how is extremely timid and unsure of herself and her place in the world.
The book works on many levels and any way you look at it the novel is a cracking good read, definitely recommended reading.
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