On the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series

Girls Gone Wild

Britney, Bertha, and Anita Blake
(How a Southern Virgin, a Fallen Angel, and an Abstinent Vampire Slayer Became Depraved Women)

By Heather Swain

A good story demands transformation and for Protestant America’s buck, not much beats virtuous Christian girls tumbling into depravation. The mother/whore, the fallen angel, the good girl gone bad rivets readers to the page. When the preacher’s daughter winds up the pregnant homecoming queen (or for that matter, the vice-presidential nominee’s knocked-up teen stands hand in hand with her hunky beau at the Republican National Convention), only the most enlightened don’t snicker behind curled fingers. Even though most modern women think of themselves as liberated and in control of their bodies and libidos, society still has a penchant for demonizing those of the fairer sex who slide down the slope from virgin to sexualized woman. The sweeter the girl and the farther her fall, the better. It’s enough to make a girl ask, Can’t I just like sex?

The fall of a good woman is a tale that’s kept the printing presses churning for centuries, yet there’s always a deeper story. If you look past all those flaky flashers on the Girls Gone Wild infomercials, you just might find a narrative about the precarious balance of power, sex, and gender politics that has followed women from the Old Testament to US Weekly and everything in between–including the Anita Blake series by Laurell K. Hamilton.

At the beginning of Hamilton’s series, Anita Blake is a twenty-seven-year-old celibate Christian with a strict moral code about how to use her abilities as a necromancer. Despite her prickly attitude, Anita is a  …

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