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Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand (Kitty Norville) Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 2009

90 customer reviews
Book 5 of 14 in the Kitty Norville Series

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Editorial Reviews


"Vaughn's universe is convincing and imaginative, providing enough series mythology to satisfy without slowing down the narrative."―Publishers Weekly on Kitty Takes a Holiday

"Funny, heart-wrenching, and thought-provoking."― on Kitty Goes to Washington

"Vaughn's clever new take on the supernatural is edgy and irreverent . . . will have readers clamoring for the next installment."―Romantic Time BOOKreviews Magazine on Kitty and the Midnight Hour

About the Author

Carrie Vaughn had the nomadic childhood of the typical Air Force brat, with stops in California, Florida, North Dakota, Maryland, and Colorado. She holds a Masters in English Literature and collects hobbies---fencing and sewing are currently high on the list. She lives in Boulder, Colorado. Her website is

Product Details

  • Series: Kitty Norville (Book 5)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Original edition (February 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446199532
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446199537
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #864,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Carrie Vaughn is the author of the New York Times bestselling series of novels about a werewolf named Kitty. She also writes for young adults (her novel STEEL was named to the ALA's 2012 Amelia Bloomer list of the best books for young readers with strong feminist content), the Golden Age superhero series, and other contemporary fantasy stories. She's a contributor to the Wild Cards series of shared world superhero books edited by George R. R. Martin, and her short stories have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies. She's a graduate of the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop, and in 2011, she was nominated for a Hugo Award for best short story.

An Air Force brat, she survived her nomadic childhood and managed to put down roots in Boulder, Colorado, where she lives with her fluffy attack dog, a miniature American Eskimo named Lily.

Visit her at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By R. Howell on February 12, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Kitty and Ben decide to head off to Las Vegas to get married. The supernatural in Vegas is only rivaled by the gun show (not to mention the slew of bounty hunters) at the same hotel that our alpha werewolves get booked in. Ben learns a new skill based on his hypersenses only to go missing. Kitty must now seek out Vegas' Master vampire Dom for help, all to no avail. Balthasar's cat show is more than it seems and just how far do Odysseus Grant's powers reach into the realm of magic?

For this fifth book in the series, there is really nothing here this time around. Slow going, no tension, little action, and a dead story. However, this does seem to be heading into something big for the next book, Kitty Raises Hell, where hopefully we'll see more of Odysseus, Evan and Brenda. Overall, this book is flat and just seems to be filler and set-up for the next book. Even though I enjoyed this book, it falls far below the standards set by the previous four books.
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35 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 9, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm bewildered! I thoroughly enjoyed the first four books in Vaughn's Kitty Norville series, and I completely trusted her to turn in another competent installment. What happened to this book?

Dead Man's Hand is too hastily paced. The character's observations are superficial when they're not cliched, and her interactions with other characters feel flat and obligatory, the dialogue empty of anything but basic generalities. The protagonist meets the master vampire of the city, and an illusionist who might be a real magician, and an animal act that might be employing lycanthropes. As intriguing as the ideas are, they don't go anywhere for the first half of the book. She meets the characters, they tell her they won't give her an interview, and after shaking hands, she leaves! There's no sense of menace or foreshadowing or even wonder; these are basic introductions. This novel reads like inept fan fiction.

More irritatingly, the book takes place in Las Vegas as Kitty performs her first live show the same weekend she intends to marry. The author unnecessarily reinvents Caesar's Palace and the Luxor with brand-x replacements (the Greek-themed "Mount Olympus" and a ziggurat pyramid-shapped "Hanging Gardens"); as though the readers or maybe the real casinos would be offended if she didn't use coy symbolism to reference them. It gives the book's Las Vegas setting a weirdly foggy, distancing effect, unlike, say, the more precise and recognizable rendering of Rachel Caine's Las Vegas in the Weather Warden Series. For all that Vaughn says she researched Las Vegas in her dedication, the setting doesn't feel authentically Vegas.

Moreover, the heroine is staying in the same hotel and casino she's performing in, and - gasp! - there's a gun show convention in the same building!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Enchanting Reviews on May 14, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Contemporary Urban Fantasy Paranormal Romance
Grand Central Publishing
Sensuality Rating: Sexy

Rating: 5 Enchantments

Kitty Norville isn't your average radio personality. She hosts the talk radio show "The Midnight Hour" and she's currently the most well-known werewolf in the States, if not the world. Having someone film and televise her `change' will do that--but that's an earlier story. KITTY AND THE DEAD MAN'S HAND is author Carrie Vaughn's fifth book about Kitty's world and the special characters that populate it.

Kitty's life has become very complicated over the last few years. She's been bitten by and turned into a werewolf. She's been an escapee lone wolf from a crazy Alpha. She's been captured and filmed through her `change' to prove the existence of werewolves. She's been chased, cornered, and then saved by a bounty hunter who's now her friend. Her lawyer has been bitten and changed and is now her boyfriend. Her best friend died trying to save her. And her mother is dying of cancer. But life's not all bad news--her radio show is one of the most popular late night shows around and Kitty likes to think that she's helped both humans and `others' open a strange type of communication via her show. Now for the biggest news of all...Kitty's getting married!

Of course, Kitty's not exactly your normal blushing bride. So when the opportunity arises to escape the insanity and marry in Vegas? Well, Kitty's sure a vacation by the pool with Ben will be just the thing. But it doesn't take long for the vacation to become an opportunity for a little free advertising. It seems her boss has gotten wind of the Vegas trip and tosses Kitty the chance to do her show live in Vegas!
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Seabreeze on February 2, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Kitty and Ben, the werewolf alpha pair, have gone to Las Vegas to get married. Kitty is also going to do a televised version of her radio program while in Sin City. She meets the vampire Master of the City, encounters a magician and an animal act that both seem to be more than meets the eye and her hotel has a gun convention populated by werewolf and vampire hunters. If that is not enough, Ben wins a place to play in a poker tourney and potentially win a million dollars. All creative ideas and seems like more than enough to keep the reader interested and on the edge of their seat, but it doesn't turn out that way.

It took me a while to get interested because even with all the things mentioned above, nothing was really happening that could keep me reading for any length of time. It is not until more than half way into the book that the story starts to get interesting. Things picked up, but even then there was something missing, that something that gets a reader anxious about what happens to characters. Cormac is mentioned several times and I kept wishing he was there. CV needs to parole him or break him out of prison, soon.

This story continues to the next book, which is out in March. I can't help but feel this was unnecessary. Dead Man's Hand needed to be tighter and then combine the next book with this one for one book. Hopefully this would have resulted in a better paced, exciting story.

I also thought the title didn't quite fit the story. Yes, there is poker but it is really just a vessel to put one of the characters in danger.
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