Those Who Hunt the Night

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Those Who Hunt the Night
File:Immortal Blood.jpg
Cover of first edition
under original title
Author Barbara Hambly
CountryUnited Kingdom
SeriesJames Asher Chronicles
Genre Horror/mystery
PublisherUnwin Paperbacks
Publication date
Media typePrint (paperback)
ISBN 0-04-440244-9
Followed by Traveling with the Dead  

Those Who Hunt the Night is a 1988 horror/mystery novel by American writer Barbara Hambly. It was first published in paperback by the British publisher Unwin Paperbacks in November 1988 under the title Immortal Blood. The first American edition was published in hardcover by Del Rey/Ballantine in December 1988 under the title Those Who Hunt the Night, which has been used for all subsequent English language editions; a paperback edition followed from the same publisher in July 1989, and was reprinted in May 1991 and October 1995. A book club edition was issued by Del Rey in conjunction with the Science Fiction Book Club in June 1989. An ebook edition was issued by Open Road Integrated Media in March 2011. The novel has also been translated into French. The novel won the 1989 Locus Poll Award for Best Horror Novel. [1]

Horror fiction genre of fiction

Horror is a genre of speculative fiction which is intended to frighten, scare, disgust, or startle its readers by inducing feelings of horror and terror. Literary historian J. A. Cuddon defined the horror story as "a piece of fiction in prose of variable length... which shocks, or even frightens the reader, or perhaps induces a feeling of repulsion or loathing". It creates an eerie and frightening atmosphere. Horror is frequently supernatural, though it might be also non-supernatural. Often the central menace of a work of horror fiction can be interpreted as a metaphor for the larger fears of a society.

Mystery fiction genre of fiction usually involving a mysterious death or a crime to be solved

Mystery fiction is a genre of fiction usually involving a mysterious death or a crime to be solved. Often with a closed circle of suspects, each suspect is usually provided with a credible motive and a reasonable opportunity for committing the crime. The central character will often be a detective who eventually solves the mystery by logical deduction from facts presented to the reader. Sometimes mystery books are nonfictional. "Mystery fiction" can be detective stories in which the emphasis is on the puzzle or suspense element and its logical solution such as a whodunit. Mystery fiction can be contrasted with hardboiled detective stories, which focus on action and gritty realism.

Barbara Hambly is an American novelist and screenwriter within the genres of fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and historical fiction. She has a bestselling mystery series featuring a free man of color, a musician and physician, in New Orleans in the antebellum years. She also wrote a novel about Mary Todd Lincoln.

Plot summary

The 20th century is just under way, and somebody is killing the vampires of London. Against the wishes of his fellow undead, Simon Ysidro, oldest of the London vampires, seeks the assistance of Oxford professor James Asher, former spy for the British government. Ysidro gains Asher's cooperation by threatening the life of his beautiful young wife, Lydia.

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital and largest city of England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

Undead deceased being which behaves as if alive (for undead from works of fiction see Q30061600)

The undead are beings in mythology, legend, or fiction that are deceased but behave as if they were alive. A common example of an undead being is a corpse reanimated by supernatural forces, by the application of either the deceased's own life force or that of another being.

Oxford City and non-metropolitan district in England

Oxford is a university city in Oxfordshire, England, with a population of 155,000. It is 51 miles (82 km) northwest of London, 57 miles (92 km) from Birmingham and 30 miles (48 km) from Reading.

Unbeknownst to Ysidro, Asher enlists the help of his wife, a physician with a keenly analytical mind. Asher prowls the streets and crypts of London with Ysidro, entering the dark underworld of the undead, as Lydia combs property records and medical journals for clues as to who might have the means and the motive to carry out the slaughter.

Physician professional who practices medicine

A physician, medical practitioner, medical doctor, or simply doctor, is a professional who practises medicine, which is concerned with promoting, maintaining, or restoring health through the study, diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of disease, injury, and other physical and mental impairments. Physicians may focus their practice on certain disease categories, types of patients, and methods of treatment—known as specialities—or they may assume responsibility for the provision of continuing and comprehensive medical care to individuals, families, and communities—known as general practice. Medical practice properly requires both a detailed knowledge of the academic disciplines, such as anatomy and physiology, underlying diseases and their treatment—the science of medicine—and also a decent competence in its applied practice—the art or craft of medicine.

Asher's theory is that the killer must be a vampire himself, one able to remain awake and active in the daytime. Lydia develops a theory as to how such a vampire might come to be. Together Asher and Ysidro travel to Paris to seek out the mythical eldest of all vampires, who might be either the killer himself, or the key to the killer's undoing.

What they discover is a threat to the living as well as the undead.


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