Book Review: Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Rocks the House

Posted May 7, 2013 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Rocks the House

Kitty Rocks the House


Carrie Vaughn

It is part of the Kitty Norville #11 series and is a urban fantasy in Paperback edition that was published by Tor Books on March 26, 2013 and has 324 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Dark and Stormy Knights, Kitty Goes to Washington, Kitty and the Midnight Hour, "Kitty Meets the Band", Hex Appeal, Kitty and the Silver Bullet, Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand, Kitty Raises Hell, Kitty's House of Horrors, Kitty Goes to War, Kitty's Big Trouble, Kitty's Greatest Hits, Kitty Steals the Show, Kitty in the Underworld

Eleventh in the Kitty Norville urban fantasy series about a brash young werewolf taking it to the airwaves. Based in Denver, Colorado.

My Take

The underlying theme in this story is death and temptation, and Vaughn sets the mood from the start with Grandma’s death. But there’s more than one kind of death, and “Bob”‘s call-in to the radio show points this out to Kitty. There are also temptations: religion and the desire for its protection and that of power.

One of those temptations provides Kitty the opportunity to put her philosophy to the test, a set of beliefs completely opposite to that of the original Denver alphas (Kitty and the Midnight Hour, 1).

Whoa, Kitty’s getting quite a reputation as we discover when she and Ben encounter Andy and Michelle, the alphas for the Phoenix pack. And I think the pressure is starting to get to her as she tries to balance everything in her life.

Hey, it appears that Edward Alleyn from Kitty Steals the Show, 10, has taken Kitty’s advice and written his memoir. There’s a debate on Kitty’s show between two academics that will stroke your inner cynic.

Cormac has a much larger role at last, although he seems too brash in this. With all the evidence that’s drifting up, I can’t believe that Hardin and Cormac are still intent on pushing in, ripping into the church and its protections. It just doesn’t make sense. But what we do learn…oh, lord. It’s just gonna get worse.

No, I’m not buying Father Columban’s argument, that any city Rick goes to is “just one city”. If that’s true, then Denver is also “just one city”…

The Story

Kitty’s been in trouble ever since Kitty Steals the Show, when she was talking about the vampire conspiracy on the radio, and now Ozzie is riding herd on her. Seems a few others are taking note as well…

The Characters

Kitty Norville is a radio show host and the alpha werewolf for her Denver pack. She has explored the supernatural world with her audience and become notorious throughout the world for it. Ben O’Farrell is her werewolf lawyer husband. Her backup, her second, her lover. Cheryl is her suddenly pushy sister who is totally clueless about the restrictions of a werewolf’s life

Cormac Bennett is Ben’s cousin, who shares his body with a 100+-year-old ghost, Lady Amelia Peabody with magical powers. Together they’re supernatural private investigators.

The Denver Pack includes:
Shaun is still managing the New Moon Café. Trey has romantic problems with Sam and needs Kitty’s help. Becky is having lots of thoughts: first ones, second ones, and third ones. Tom and Wes are more pack members. The abrasive Darren is the new boy, er, wolf, in town, and he wants to become a member of the pack.

Detective Hardin is the head of the Denver PD’s Paranatural Unit and becoming famous for her expertise — thanks to Kitty!

Rick is the sympathetic Master of Denver whose headquarters are at Obsidian, an art gallery. Angelo is his lieutenant and doesn’t like Kitty.

Nasser is the skeptical Master of Tripoli who was also intrigued by Kitty’s speech and meets with Rick and Kitty in Denver. Marid is a 2,800-year-old Babylonian vampire who calls Kitty Regina Luporum, the Queen of the Werewolves. Edward Alleyn is the Master of London and a former actor in Shakespeare’s troupe.

Father Columban is a magic-wielding vampire priest with the Order of Saint Lazarus of the Shadows with an invitation for Rick.

Professor Sean Eret is an historian from the University of Michigan who debates In the Blood with Professor Amanda McAdams, a literature teacher at the University of California-Santa Barbara. It’s an interesting tidbit of what historians look for in a primary text. And the lengths to which professors will go for tenure, LOL.

Gaius Albinus, Dux Bellorum, a.k.a., Roman, is the major bad guy. A vampire since his Roman general days, he’s been working the Long Game for centuries and intends to dominate humanity. Mercedes Cook is the first celebrity vampire—and one of Roman’s.

Ozzie is the producer of Kitty’s show at KNOB, and he’s not a happy camper. Matt is her sound engineer and thinks Kitty has a point.

The Cover and Title

The cover is quietly intense with its bright orange sunset and the former church in an increasing darkness. It’s a leather vest- and jean-clad Kitty caught in mid-stride with Ben as his wolf, cocky, self-assured. They’ll need to be.

I must confess that when I initially “translated” the title, my inclination was to go with “shakes things up” as per the pack, and I don’t see that in this story. Instead, I’m going to assume that Vaughn intended Kitty Rocks the House to reflect Kitty’s resolve both in terms of rogue wolves and the historic expectations of vampires.