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Code Blood Paperback – November 15, 2011
The author has very obviously done his homework on the background of this techno-thriller, but unlike many novels in this genre, his characters come alive. They live, breathe, make mistakes, and stumble toward their individual dreams, even though one of those dreams is a blood-soaked nightmare.
And Markus, whose life as an albino has lead him into the bizarre desire for status as one of the city's vampire types. And, a young Asian scientist whose unusual blood type makes her a target these same wanna be-vampire types.
I was impressed with how the author managed to connect these wildly divergent characters into one intersection. There are no heroes here... eveyone is flawed.. This was a VERY satisfying read
This incredibly researched novel smacks of the kind of detail one finds in the character development and page-turning excitement of John Grisham. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of this book and found myself going back several times to some of the more esoteric "nuggets" about nano-science, stem-cell research and paramedic studies. But wait...there's more! Wyoming cowboys. Vampire cults. Tattooed pole dancers. Russian mobsters dealing in illegal body parts. A love story. Tidbits of Chinese, Tibetan and Indian culture.
Kamm weaves together a story intersecting a young and idealistic paramedic, a wanna be sociopathic vampire, a Chinese exchange student and Russian mobsters. As strange as that might sound it works, and captures your attention and imagination. From the Pacific Coast Highway to UCLA to Hollywood I smiled with recognition at the collision of the vastly different worlds ably described by Kamm. Code Blood is fun
From the Author
Code Blood was awarded FIRST PLACE in the 2012 International Book Awards Fiction-Cross Genre category
Writer's Type - First Chapter Competition. January 2011- First Place
2012 International Book Awards - Fiction: Cross Genre category - First Place
NATIONAL INDIE EXCELLENCE BOOK AWARDS® - Faction (fiction based on fact) - WINNER OF THE 2012 AWARD
The 2012 USA Best Book Awards - Fiction: Horror - WINNER
The 2012 USA Best Book Awards - Fiction: Mystery/Suspense - Finalist
Knoxville Writer's Guild - 2011 Novella or Novel Excerpt - 2nd Place
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Colt intersects with Markus before he enters his own lab and when approaching him directly the interaction is quite disturbing. Realizing that he is the one that has the foot makes rude and obscene gestures at Colt, he stands helpless outside as he gives him the finger before getting down to the tasks at hand. Hearing Ali’s voice the reader is aware that although she is unsure of what lies ahead she feels that someone is haunting or following her. Coming from China near Tibet and dealing with political issues and having to leave her family and live in America, hoping to study and go back home, little does she know that a sick man with a body part fetish and blood fetish is after her.
The author shares Colt’s back-story about his father, living on the ranch, his grandfather and why they never understood his passion for helping others and leaving Wyoming to become a paramedic. Working at the station where he is presently assigned, he loved the camaraderie of the firefighters. Going to see a psychic only irritated him more as she did not seem to understand what he needed and suggested he get professional help. Bibi and her missing foot bothered him as we learn more about Markus and Audra and his goals. Waiting for her to return from a night at the club dancing, he insists on cutting her finger to drink her blood but he is becoming bored with her and lusts for Ali who is hard at work dissecting a little mouse for her research. The author describes her work in detail for anyone interested in going into the field of genetics and wants to learn how the dissection process works.
Markus went to meet Alexei who he owes money for a hand that is in his freezer. The foot seemed to be soft as if the person could have it reattached but when he could not pay him the full amount he sent his henchman to take it out in pain for Markus. At the same time Colt is dealing with another failed rescue of a young teen named Tyler. The rescue team did not get there in enough time to get him out of the car and although Colt has four days off now, his mind wanders to Tyler and then Bibi. Imagining her life, or what her life might have been and is determined to restore her foot and dignity. Hearing her voice in his head saying she can’t move on without her foot. At the same time A Li enters the lab and is about to continue her research. Hidden demons, secrets, pasts that Markus, Colt and even Audra cannot come to grips with, lies, betrayals and even Colt imagining his ex-girlfriend present in his dreams. Each one fighting to survive in they’re own created worlds but which will persevere?
Markus takes matters into his own hands after Grisha beats him to a pulp but his solution makes it even worse and the end result is he owes Alexei more money, another drug dealer a huge amount and his quest for cash is stifled by his greed, lust and wrong choices. Added in China Doll or A Li is still his obsession and while she creates a special ceremony in the lab to commemorate her late sister’s birthday, forgetting her own, she falls prey to the darkness of the lab, her tiredness and winds up with a huge bump on her head. Dealing with the research, Colt dealing with trying to find out whom Bibi really is, Markus searching for solutions each one fighting off demons of his/her own. Colt enters to morgue and is told Bibi’s body is there but does not want to see it he just wants to have her identified so he can tell her family. This story takes on many different directions but will Markus and Colt come face to face? Will the body parts ring be stopped? What happens when Alexei demands more money and daily interest?
Things changed as A Li is summoned to come home because her father has taken ill and now she has a huge decision to make. Sitting in the lab she hears a noise and when she sees the albino or Markus coming at her will she be able to save her life or will he finally get his prize: HER BLOOD? The path to freedom is not always what you can expect and she seems to see her sister and talks to her every step of the way when she has to decide how to fight for her life, whether to take the research she has done back with her to China and how to deal with the end result of her actions. Colt is still trying to learn more about Bibi/Darci and when the harsh reality of her life comes shining through and he hears her parents recount their thoughts what he does will surprise readers. Will he find the foot? If he does what will he do with it? Will he understand that compassion is great but getting too close to victims can be destructive? What happens to Markus you will have to learn for yourself as author Kurt Kamm gives a surprise ending that even Markus will not expect or see coming. What about the ring selling drugs? Will they be caught and will Colt ever come to grips with the sadness in his heart about the end result for both Tyler, his mother and the truth he learned about her death and Darci. The next time he is called let’s hope that he does not have to declare the call and say: CODE BLOOD!
Great character that can handle this as a stand-alone novel or in a series because he is smart, astute and has a lot to learn about being a paramedic and his team is great and supportive. What about A Li? Will she return and be with Tanay? Code Blood: A must read with a powerful story dealing with greed, money, power, blood fetishes, and vampire attributes and dealing with demons and secrets that can destroy.
Colt Lewis is a brand new paramedic in the Los Angeles area who is struggling with the emotional toll this sort of job can cause. He is an open young man who became a paramedic because he truly cares about people and wants to help them. But, he is struggling with the reality that some of the victims he helps just cannot be saved. He keeps on going back to his first run and the beautiful young woman who was found on the side of the road after having been hit by a hit and run driver. She died while Colt was reassuring her because her foot had been amputated in the accident. Strangely, the foot was never found and Colt starts to obsess about this woman, the tragic loss of such a young life and the total creepiness of the kind of person that would steal someone's foot.
Markus is that creep. He is an albino who lives a goth vampire lifestyle in which he not only dresses like a vampire, he also drinks blood and has developed a sexual fetish about blood. He is also in serious need of cash and he is running out of options. That is, until he meets a Chinese blood researcher named A Li. A Li has a rare blood type that Markus craves. He also knows that he can sell it for a lot of money to his vampire friends.
A Li is struggling in America. She is a minority in China (from near Tibet) and political repression has forced her to give up everything and dedicate herself to science so that her family can prosper back home.
One thing I enjoy about reading is that, if you are lucky, a book will take you someplace you have never been and teach you something new.These three characters are all part of a larger story that delves into all kinds of interesting new places. I learned about paramedic training and how many cars actually fall off of those twisting mountain roads around Los Angeles. I also learned about rare blood types, the city morgue, the underground market for body parts, real-life vampires and more.
The story gets off to a pretty slow start but once it gets going and all of the pieces are in place it is quite good. Plus, it did not have the ending that I figured it would so it's always good to be surprised!
This book was sent to me at no charge in exchange for an honest review.