Favorite Lines: “I hardened and pressed my hips against hm while reaching down to cup his penis. He shifted off to the side, and I couldn’t reach him. Then his fingers were probing deep inside, but it felt more like an examination, testing the level of moisture between my legs.
And then he entered me with one hard lunge. I gasped, but it wasn’t from pleasure. I opened my eyes. He hung over me, taking his weight on his forearms. His brow was furrowed with concentration, but his expression was blank. With hard thrusts of his hips, he drove deeper and deeper into me. I tried to match his rhythm, but he made no accommodation for me.
He shuddered and I felt him go limp inside of me. There was no warm flow of ejaculation–of course there wouldn’t be with a vampire, just a loss of tumidity. I realized he had been concentrating to send the blood flow to his penis so he would stay hard. Once he’d banged me, he stopped trying. he pulled out, rolled off me, and swung his legs off the bed.” (p. 122)
What happens when The Firm meets Anita Blake? You get the Halls of Power—our modern world, but twisted. Law, finance, the military, and politics are under the sway of long-lived vampires, werewolves, and the elven Alfar. Humans make the best of rule by “the Spooks,” and contend among themselves to affiliate with the powers-that-be, in order to avoid becoming their prey. Very loyal humans are rewarded with power over other women and men. Very lucky humans are selected to join the vampires, werewolves, and elves—or, on occasion, to live at the Seelie Court.
Linnet Ellery is the offspring of an affluent Connecticut family dating back to Colonial times. Fresh out of law school, she’s beginning her career in a powerful New York “white fang” law firm. She has high hopes of eventually making partner.
But strange things keep happening to her. In a workplace where some humans will eventually achieve immense power and centuries of extra lifespan, office politics can be vicious beyond belief. After some initial missteps, she finds herself sidelined and assigned to unpromising cases. Then, for no reason she can see, she becomes the target of repeated, apparently random violent attacks, escaping injury each time through increasingly improbable circumstances. However, there’s apparently more to Linnet Ellery than a little old-money human privilege. More than even she knows. And as she comes to understand this, she’s going to shake up the system like you wouldn’t believe…
I’d never heard of Phillipa Bornikova when I stumbled across her recently released book This Case is Gonna Kill Me on Netgalley. After reading the blurb which stated it was The Firm meets Anita Blake I knew it wasn’t a book I wanted to more or less promise to review. It sounded interesting, but I waited for Bornikova’s book to appear at the public library and checked it out.
I can tell you right now that blurb is misleading. Yes, the heroine works as a lawyer at a firm and yes someone is trying to kill her. But it’s not the law firm. She is no Anita Blake. She doesn’t hunt paranormal creatures or have sex with every man she meets. Linnet is a healthy twenty something year old lawyer who was fostered within a vampire household. The reader meets her and her boss at the same time when Linnet begins her career as a lawyer at the vampire law firm (White Fang).
This Case is Gonna Kill Me is told in first person and set in the normal world with paranormal creatures like vampires, Alfar (fae) and werewolves. The heroine is human, but quickly realizes she is a small pawn being played with by paranormal beings. It’s not clear who her friends are, nor is it clear who her true enemies are. The only thing Linnet knows is that she needs to prove herself by closing a case which has been open for 17 years.
I had a blast with Bornikova’s book. It had a steady pace, was filled with action and made me wonder what else was going to come. There are so many directions the author can take the next book. Someone will want to get even, rescue will need to be pulled off and secrets hopefully will be brought to light. I will buy and read the next book in this series which promises me a mystery, legal thriller and hint of romance set in an urban setting with fantastical creatures.
Most of the ratings on Goodreads are positive; only two people rated the story one or two stars. What others are saying about This Case is Gonna Kill Me: