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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Reminds me of why I liked this series
This is an eclectic collection of short stories that are supposed to take place in the Kitty Norville world. Some are better than others. A few... I'm not sure what they're doing in this book at all. Here's a breakdown of the more memorable selections.

"Il Est Ne" - Being a werewolf is new to David. He can't control his changes; he has no pack. He thinks...
Published on August 16, 2011 by Jen

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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kitty's Greatest Hits
This collection of short stories combines previously published and new stories in the Kitty world, some specific to Kitty, some just within the supernatural world. I've haven't read any of the short stories Carrie Vaughn's written, so this entire book was new to me. I picked out three stories to highlight with mini-reviews below. The main reason to pick this book up is...
Published on August 16, 2011 by Jess


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kitty's Greatest Hits, August 16, 2011
This collection of short stories combines previously published and new stories in the Kitty world, some specific to Kitty, some just within the supernatural world. I've haven't read any of the short stories Carrie Vaughn's written, so this entire book was new to me. I picked out three stories to highlight with mini-reviews below. The main reason to pick this book up is the new Cormac short story. I've always found his character to be interesting, mainly because we know only what he shows us about himself, which isn't a lot. And while I may have never been in the Kitty/Cormac fanclub, Cormac showed me a different side to himself in his short story and I came away really feeling for the guy and interested in his character more than ever. (Possible spoilers for the Kitty series in the reviews below)

LOOKING AFTER FAMILY
A short story told from both Cormac and Ben's point of view, describes the time when Cormac first moves in with the O'Farrell's after Cormac's dad is killed by a werewolf. Young Ben wants to be friends again with Cormac, like they were prior to his dad's death, but he's finding it hard to relate to Cormac. Cormac's just trying to figure things out in his head while still continuing what his dad taught him, hunt werewolves on the full moon. Ben convinces Cormac to let him go with during a nighttime hunt and it might be the first time Cormac's eyes are opened up about who he's really hunting, and not what. When a werewolf and his human brother find themselves staring at Cormac's gun, things that Ben says makes Cormac pause. He mentions that the werewolf, once shot, will turn into a human and that he needs to just let them both go. Everything Cormac was taught he started questioning that night and it ended up being a new start to his and Ben's friendship.

WILD RIDE
There's always that one character in a series that I wish we would have just had "more" of. T.J. is that guy in this series. We meet T.J. in the first book of the Kitty series, he's Kitty's best friend and plays a huge role in her progression as a werewolf. This story shows us how T.J. went from an HIV-positive human, into a pack mate. Once he's diagnosed, he feels completely hopeless. During a bike wreck in which one rider should have died, but didn't, he questions how something like that is possible. After witnessing a human shifting into a werewolf, he has a choice: be bitten and instantly cured of any illness or stay human and face the possibility of an early death. He chooses the bite - and we see a little of his life right after, his initial happiness of having a pack/family into his need for more, for something different. Reading his backstory made me wish we had gotten to see more of his friendship with Kitty and maybe she would have never had to deal with being a pack of 1.

LONG TIME WAITING
Long Time Waiting starts out with Amelia's story, how she was hung for a crime she didn't commit in the prison that Cormac is currently being held in. Present day, Cormac's surviving prison, barely. He keeps to himself, minds his own business and just counts down the days until his release. The biggest thing that came across in this story was Cormac's vulnerability. We find out that yes, he does care about Kitty, and that while he lives for the days that Kitty and Ben come to visit him, he's afraid (as afraid as Cormac can be) that they'll stop coming. That the letters, the phone calls, the visits will all just stop.
**********
"Is everything okay?"

He hoped she (Kitty) didn't tell him to get some sleep, that she didn't see the stress written on his face. He tried to smile, failed. "Hanging in there. Sometimes by my fingernails. But hanging in there."
**********
For as much of a loner as he presents himself to be, he really does need a pack, and as we know in the books that take place after his prison sentence is over, he finds a strong pack with Kitty and Ben.

We finally learn about Amelia, about what exactly happened to Cormac in prison and how Amelia and he came to be bonded. Before knowing the circumstances around Amelia, I wasn't too sure where the author was going with this, a ghost sharing Cormac's body. But I like Amelia. She's tough, but most important, she's a presence in Cormac's life. They may be the ultimate odd couple, but Cormac needs people in his life, and it seems like he's finally starting to let a few get close to him.

Overall, this is an enjoyable collection of short stories. The range is wide, and I found myself drawn to the stories that were a little more specific to Kitty's world. Most of the stories come in around the 20-30 page mark, though Cormac's LONG TIME WAITING is the longest at around 55 pages. If you're a fan of Kitty, you'll enjoy these stories - especially getting to experience Cormac's past few years through his POV.

Blog rating: 3/5 stars
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Reminds me of why I liked this series, August 16, 2011
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This is an eclectic collection of short stories that are supposed to take place in the Kitty Norville world. Some are better than others. A few... I'm not sure what they're doing in this book at all. Here's a breakdown of the more memorable selections.

"Il Est Ne" - Being a werewolf is new to David. He can't control his changes; he has no pack. He thinks he'll never lead a normal life again. Then, he meets Kitty at a Waffle House on Christmas. She recognizes what he is and tries to guide him. As they talk, news reports come in, of a series of deadly attacks in the area. David immediately wonders if he is to blame. So he and Kitty work together to solve the murders. (This story takes place after the events of Kitty and The Midnight Hour.)

"Conquistador de la Noche" - This is the story of how Ricardo de Avila became a vampire. Yes, we're talking about Rick. He was one of Coronado's men, exploring the new world. After 10 years, he was approached by an old friend and lured to a neighboring village. It turns out that Diego is a vampire. Ricardo found out when Diego and three of his vampire friends attacked him and changed him against his will. The other men thought that once he was turned, Ricardo would be content to kill and plunder at their sides. They were wrong. Ricardo is made of sterner stuff. And while he'll never be human again, he won't be the evil thing they expected him to be.

"Looking After Family" - THIS is the kind of story I had in mind for this book. It's a little peek into the history of Cormac and Ben. It takes place right after Cormac's father is killed and he goes to live with Ben's family. Cormac is cut off emotionally and Ben barely recognizes his cousin. On the first full moon after he moves in, Cormac sneaks out to hunt and Ben tags along. It's then that Ben learns about werewolves and what really killed his uncle. And it's the beginning of that connection between Cormac and Ben that continues into the current books.

"Wild Ride" - Oh, TJ, I hardly knew you. (**sniff**) This is the story of how TJ became a werewolf. From the moment he found out he was HIV positive, to his decision to be bitten... and his eventual choice to strike out as a lone wolf. It was good, but bittersweet, in light of the events of Kitty and the Midnight Hour.

"Life is the Teacher" - Remember Emma? She was Alette's living descendant who was turned into a vampire at the end of Kitty Goes to Washington. In this story, she is still coming to terms with what she has become and sets out to take blood from a human for the first time. She encounters a man from her old life and struggles with the rising monster inside her. It was a sensual story with a satisfying ending.

"Long Time Waiting" - This is the story most people will probably buy the book for. It details what happened to Cormac when he went to prison. Essentially, there is a demon killing inmates. And in the prison is the spirit of a demon hunter who knows how to defeat him. Amelia needs a human host to do the job and she thinks Cormac would be the perfect host. He fights the idea, but eventually gives in for the greater good.

Here's the thing: I hate the entire concept of Cormac sharing his body with this woman. Is she supposed to be an eventual love interest? The story reminds us of the unresolved feelings of Cormac for Kitty. Why does Carrie Vaughn torture me this way? Kitty and Cormac are like the dangling carrot I have been chasing for years. Kitty (and in a different way, Ben) is supposed to be the one who sees inside him... who has this bond with him... not some woman that's been dead 100 years. It was a good story, but it just stirs up my angst all over again.

Vaughn did provide some Author's Notes at the end, which I did find insightful, answered a few of my questions, and added to the stories.

The bottom line: I enjoyed the book as a whole. It reminded me why I liked the series... especially "Looking After Family," "Wild Ride," and "Il Est Ne." Unfortunately, it also reminded me how frustrated I've become with the direction it has ultimately taken. 4 stars.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4.5 stars - Play 'em one more time - some gems, some hard to find - plus a new Cormac debut, August 17, 2011
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Since Kitty's Greatest Hits is all Vaughn all the time, the anthology has a better flow to it even with a mix of different types of stories than typical multi-author collections do. A lot of these stories have been previously published, but even though Vaughn promised a few new ones - including a brand new Cormac story - and some hard to find ones originally appeared in magazines, I was still surprised to find there were actually a few more new-to-me-ones here than I'd expected. I was also surprised that I actually enjoyed most of the oldies more on the second read as well. As bonus - and I thought this was especially interesting - there's section at the back of the book which includes a discussion of the stories and their purpose. So for me that extra insight, plus the new novella length Cormac story, made Kitty's Greatest Hits worth the read.

Here's Kitty's Hit List:

Il Est Ne (in Wolfsbane and Mistletoe) - Facing a lonely Christmas in a diner, Kitty helps another werewolf recapture his humanity. I think I liked this one better the second time 'round, since I wasn't expecting a slice of the series and the shifter's plight is very sympathy stirring.

A Princess of Spain (in The Secret History of Vampires) - Not a Kitty story, instead a vampire plays a part in a historical story involving Catherine of Spain and King HenryVIII - this was okay but didn't really seem to belong here

Conquistador de la Noche (Subterranean Online, Spring 2009) Vampire Rick's background is explored a bit here, this was interesting and I would love more of Rick.

Book of Daniel (Talebones #39, Winter 2009) - A twist to the story of Daniel and the lions - I liked this one but again, it didn't really fit in a Kitty anthology.

Temptation of Robin Greene (in Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance) - A woman who is essentially a crypto-zookeeper falls for one of her charges - When I read this the first time, I didn't realize that the vampire was Kitty's friend Rick, I think that helped up my enjoyment of the story as well.

Looking After Family (Realms of Fantasy, February 2007) - A Cormac and Ben origins story, it was fun to see the start of cousins' relationship when they were teens.

God's Creatures (in Dark and Stormy Knights) - Cormac hunts a beast on the edge of becoming a man killer, it is interesting to see a slight shift in Cormac's black and white world view in this day in in his oddball life story

Wild Ride ( in Running with the Pack ) - This is TJ's back story - I've always like TJ, this is pretty short, I would have liked more.

Winnowing the Herd (Strange Horizons, Oct. 16, 2006)- a Kitty prequel, actually just a really short scene with a horror feel to it.

Kitty and the Mosh Pit of the Damned (Weird Tales #338) - Kitty goes to a club gig to get and interview with a band whose concerts are hell on fans - this was a nice little carve out vignette, Kitty manages to get into trouble wherever she goes.

Kitty's Zombie New Year (in Weird Tales #345) - Afraid of spending another boring New Year's Eve alone, and attends a party she'll never forget - I really liked this one and Vaughn's twist on the zombie mythos.

Life Is the Teacher (in Hotter than Hell) - connected to Kitty Goes to Washington, this stars vampire Emma working to become independent after her 'change of life' - I enjoyed this story so much more this time around, even though the ending is a bit bittersweet - but I was relieved that it didn't have the more horror-ish ending that I misremembered.

You're on the Air (new)- connected to Kitty and the Silver Bullet, One of Kitty's callers plays the hand he was dealt - very short but it's nice see a Joe-regular-guy vamp rail against the stereotype and to see him finally get a break.

Long Time Waiting (new) - The story of how prison 'changed' Cormac - this story is a bit heftier lengthwise and we really get a good look inside his head and find out what happened while he was off screen in the last few books. This one was long enough to be a satisfying Cormac fix.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars super short story collection, August 16, 2011
This review is from: Kitty's Greatest Hits (Kitty Norville) (Hardcover)
This super fourteen short story collection consist of twelve that are clearly in Kitty's sphere though the most popular werewolf talk show personality only appears in five of them. Cormac stars in two (with Ben in "Looking After Family" and in the excellent tale of his haunting "Long Time Waiting"). Additionally T.J. stars in "Wild Ride" and Emma from "Kitty Takes Washington" heats the sheets in "Life Is The Teacher". Rick stars twice as Ricardo in Conquistador de la Noche" and with Kitty in "The Temptation of Robin Green". Finally there is also Jake the vampire who called the night radio host complaining about how his life literally sucks in "Kitty and the Silver Bullet"; this is what happened to him after his "You're on the Air" fifteen minutes of fame. Obviously for fans of the Kitty universe who will howl with delight even with two cleverly well written historical paranormal entries (A Princess of Spain and The Book of Daniel) that do not belong within Kitty's Greatest Hits.

Harriet Klausner
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended Read!, January 2, 2012
This book is a must for Kitty fans. A simple statement, but it really does apply because Ms. Vaughn presents a bunch of short stories that showed the development of what we now know and love about Radio D.J, and my favorite werewolf, Kitty Norville.

I included in the page count the explanations that the author included at the end of all the short stories because they read well, are entertaining by themselves and provided greater insight as to what was going on at the time she wrote them. It was a fascinating process.

There are too many to write a review for individually and even though I rated the heat level as hot, most are spicy or sensual but since one made it to the hot level, the whole book has to be labeled as such.

I really enjoyed Ms. Vaughn's personal interpretation of the Bible story, Daniel and the Lion's Den. In fact, it was perfect because it made so much sense and it worked with the `facts' as we know them. It was fun.

Actually, I'm really sick of books about zombies but I found myself completely engrossed in Ms. Vaughn's twist on the subject. It was a breath of fresh air and she even touches base at the end of the book as to the research she's done and why she took the stand she did. I like her version a whole lot better because I agree with the author -- it's waaay scarier.

What I found intriguing and had me bouncing in my seat were the stories that had Rick in them. Surprisingly, there is quite the undercurrent about his character. I'd read the one about the military lab and the unicorn and the selkie in another anthology but never could I have imagined that the vampire in that had any connection to Kitty's world. Call me floored.

Ms. Vaughn saved the best for last and that is the story about Cormac. Oh, Wow! To be able to get inside his head? To get his point of view from inside prison? What an amazing ride. And to finally find out about how he and Amelia came together was awesome. The tale gripped me and had me reading wide-eyed through the whole thing. Also, I found those little comments that Cormac made relating to Amelia absolutely delicious. I sense a sub-plot and I have high hopes that the author isn't just teasing her fans but will someday figure out how to bring that to light in a way to satisfy romantics at heart. As it is, this story alone was worth waiting for.

Between Rick and Cormac, they made the purchase of this book a winner and I'm a very satisfied reader. Some publishers have books out on popular series that don't contribute much to the forward movement but re-hash what's already been written. Kitty's Greatest Hits doesn't do that. I found value in understanding more of the background while at the same time it presented me with new questions and interest in the series.

A cute addition to this anthology is the behind scenes look at one of Kitty's callers on the radio show. It tickled me because I DID remember the caller- though I can't remember which book it was in - and I had an `awww' moment at how it ended. I enjoyed it and thought it clever of the author. Why? Because it created a more solid world-building atmosphere where a reader could feel like a part of it; like they could travel to another city somewhere and actually find some of Kitty's world. Or see it someday on the silver screen. When an author can successfully incorporate other mundane aspects of the world her characters live in and still entertain, garner interest and make them feel like they're still visiting Kitty and pals, it's well done and worth taking the time to read.

Another great lure is the background tale of the relationship between Ben and Cormac. They're cousins but it's more than that. Based upon the series, I understood that they'd been through a lot and they always had each other's backs but there is one tale that brings understanding as to just how far back it goes, and the trials and tribulations they survived to get to the point of being where they are now in the series. Fascinating stuff.

Kitty's Greatest Hits is the best book to get for fans of the series, especially if they have a special place in their hearts for Cormac, Ben and Rick. Those three guys are a trifecta for Kitty. Each one has a role that showcases the heroine's growth as a character and this book explores for readers just how special they are. Add in those other intriguing tales from the author's imagination and this is a real winner that entertains as well as informs. I can't wait until the next Kitty adventure!

originally posted at the Long and Short Romance Reviews
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rekindled my interest in this series., September 2, 2011
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy:
[...]

Under normal circumstances I'm not a huge short story fan, I miss the deeper character development arc that a long story offers. I turn to short stories as a last resort on vacations, or seek them out to tide me over until a favorite author's next full length book is available. KITTY'S GREATEST HITS turned this paradigm on it's head. Rather than tiding me over until the next book, these stories deepened my appreciation for the rest of the series and made it more likely that I'll bump the next Kitty Norville novel to the top of my TBR pile.
In the full length Kitty books, I tend to get overwhelmed by action and lose track of character development. KITTY'S GREATEST HITS offers the opportunity slow down and focus on Kitty, her humor and curiosity and unique perspective on life. I particularly enjoyed Winnowing the Herd and Kitty and the Mosh Pit of the Damned, where Kitty's hilarious outlook adds so much fun to the most mundane proceedings, everything from an office party to a dive bar concert.

While it was nice to get a glimpse of Kitty in relative repose, seeing things through her eyes is not a new experience. My favorite aspect of KITTY'S GREATEST HITS was the opportunity to see the Kitty Norville universe from a historical perspective, or from the point of view of other characters that Kitty encounters. Vaughn's enthusiasm and imagination makes it obvious that she takes great joy in exploring all angles of how this world fits together, from the other side of a call-in to Kitty's show to familiar historical events reimagined with a paranormal twist. The stories included for Rick, T.J., Emma, and Cormac are seminal, showing them at crisis points in their lives. We see T.J.'s path to lycanthropy, Rick becoming a vampire, and most important of all, the story of Cormac's possession. I have always been a Cormac fan, to the point where I've felt alienated from a story line that has closed so many doors between him and Kitty. Long Time Waiting offers not only a sense of Cormac's feelings about Kitty, but also some much needed insight into his dealings with Amelia. For someone as strong and fundamentally lonely as Cormac, it was incredibly winning to read about his slow-building trust in this most unlikely of partners.

As much as I enjoyed this anthology, it does leave me frustrated for more. More stories from the perspective of these fascinating supporting characters, more time to focus on the relationships that are so important in Kitty's life, and more time with Kitty herself. While only two of these short stories are newly published content (though I had not read most of them before), the ability to wholly immerse yourself in this world is well worth the price of admission. Given how much I enjoyed KITTY'S GREATEST HITS, I'll keep reading the action-packed full length novels, keep hoping for a spin off from another character's point of view, and look forward to more short stories that give a well crafted little glimpse into another part of Kitty's universe.

Sexual Content: Kissing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kitty's Greatest Hits, August 26, 2011
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Carrie Vaughn does it again. I have read everyone of her books and they just keep getting better & better. I could not put this book down until I finished reading it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Carrie Vaughn, June 21, 2014
I would recommend Carrie Vaughn to anyone who likes paranormal readings. Her characters are well done and the plots are good.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good stories, June 13, 2014
By 
Loy "Born to read" (Benbrook, TX, United States) - See all my reviews
Good stort stories about kitty and several of the people around her.
Good one about TJ. Rick the vampire and several others.
If you like Kitty's world this is a must read
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5.0 out of 5 stars kitty at it again, January 27, 2014
By 
P. Peters (Sacramento, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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I really enjoy reading about kitty's life and the trouble that she has . it is great to pick up the next book and to find out what she has been up to an what is going to appen to her and her friends & enemies now.
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Kitty's Greatest Hits (Kitty Norville)
Kitty's Greatest Hits (Kitty Norville) by Carrie Vaughn (Hardcover - August 16, 2011)
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