A witty, charming fantasy adventure in the world of Strange Practice, starring Dr. Greta Helsing, whose family has been keeping the supernatural community not-alive and well for generations.
When Greta Helsing, doctor to the undead, is unexpectedly called to Paris to present at a medical conference, she expects nothing more exciting than professional discourse on zombie reconstructive surgery and skin disease in bogeymen -- and hopefully at least one uneventful night at the Opera.
Unfortunately for Greta, Paris happens to be infested with a coven of vampires -- and not the civilized kind. If she hopes to survive, Greta must navigate the darkest corners of the City of Lights, the maze of ancient catacombs and mine-tunnels underneath the streets, where there is more to find than simply dead men's bones.
Dreadful Company is the second Dr. Greta Helsing Novel - perfect for fans of Neverwhere and V. E. Schwab.
Dr. Greta Helsing novels
About the Author
Vivian Shaw was born in Kenya and spent her early childhood at home in England before relocating to the US at the age of seven. She has a BA in art history and an MFA in creative writing, and has worked in academic publishing and development while researching everything from the history of spaceflight to supernatural physiology. In her spare time, she writes fan fiction under the name of Coldhope.
"A playfully witty confection spun from the setting of The Phantom of the Opera, sardonic yet a touch sweet, in which the elegant vampires of Helsing's social set come up against an undisciplined coven of sparkly, eyeliner-loving youngsters.... Moves smoothly between the ongoing stories of her returning characters and the immediate plot, and between pop culture references and innovation, framing London's supernatural residents as delightfully normative while still capably evoking the frisson of the uncanny."—Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Dreadful Company
"Shaw's elegant writing make this series a standout in the genre."—Booklist on Dreadful Company
"I absolutely loved it.... Dreadful Company is a triumph."—SFFWorld
"There are as few heroines as well written and compelling as Greta Helsing."—BookPage on Dreadful Company
"Fast-moving, funny, and irresistibly fun."—B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog on Dreadful Company
"A grand romp, mixing plenty of humor (even Oscar Wilde chimes in) and some heartwarming moments amid the chills."—Locus on Dreadful Company
"In Vivian Shaw's Strange Practice, a charmingly unusual doctor and her charges keep the city of London from grave danger. In the process, they peel back the covers of familiar (and according to them, somewhat "libelous") stories to find that reality - especially with the undead - is more poignant and complex than it seems at first glance. An excellent adventure."— Fran Wilde, award-winning author of Updraft, Cloudbound, and Horizon, on Strange Practice
"Strange Practice is written with elegance, wit, and compassion. The prose is gorgeous, the wit is mordant, and the ideas are provocative. Also, there are ghouls."— Laura Amy Schlitz, Newbery Medal winner, on Strange Practice
"A satisfying and surprising read, with rich imagery, nuance, and real compassion for its characters--give Strange Practice a shot!"—Elliott James, author of Charming, on Strange Practice
"A darkly delicious adventure featuring a quirky new heroine. Strange Practice breathes new life into the undead."—James Bennett, author of Chasing Embers, on Strange Practice
"An exceptional and delightful debut, in the tradition of Good Omens and A Night in the Lonesome October."—Elizabeth Bear, Hugo-award winning author, on Strange Practice
"Shaw balances an agile mystery with a pitch-perfect, droll narrative and cast of lovable misfit characters. These are not your mother's Dracula or demons ... Strange Practice is a super(natural) read."—Shelf Awareness on Strange Practice
"An appropriately dark breath of fresh air."—Booklist on Strange Practice
"Readers will look forward to more of Greta's adventures. An imaginative, delightfully droll debut."—Kirkus on Strange Practice
"A book to settle into. A warm quilt of a thing that's made for curling up with ... I miss this newest Helsing already."—NPR on Strange Practice
"This book is a joy to read, unlocking every bit of delicious promise in the premise."—B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog on Strange Practice
"What a splendid adventure this is - Dr. Greta Helming is a brilliant character, world-weary doctor on-call at all hours, sorting out the ills of the undead and trying to run her Harley Street practice without drawing too much (or any) attention to her patients from the living world ... a splendid new urban fantasy series."—Espressococo on Strange Practice
"Strange Practice surprises and delights. It's completely different from anything I've read before. It ticks so many boxes: action, mystery, suspense, an exciting and different world adjacent to our own to name but a few. But the greatest elements of the book are the characters. They shine."—The Bookbag on Strange Practice
"Enchanted me from the very first page ... I just couldn't put it down. When I say that there is nothing like this book out there, I mean it, and that's a damn good thing."—Book Worm Blues on Strange Practice
"Occasionally I can pick up a book, start to read and know within a couple of pages that I am going to be absolutely hooked. Strange Practice is a splendid case in point. Vampires, demons, ghouls, supernatural cults and all manner of inexplicable jiggery-pokery. What's not to love? I can only hope Vivian Shaw writes many more Greta Helming novels ... I can tell you now that if she does write more I'll be first in line to read them."—The Eloquent Page on Strange Practice
"An absolute delight to read ... this is a remarkably well-realized world and cast of characters; it really isn't very long before you find yourself not only enjoying the story but the world demi-monde Greta moves in, a world where you can take the regular London Bus or Underground but which also has ghouls in the sewers, or Lord Ruthven in his Embankment House grand home."—Forbidden Planet on Strange Practice
"For a book filled with creatures who ironically want to suck your blood, by the end it is a radiantly positive, life-affirming tale that won me over surprisingly quickly and with effortless prose that simply engages the reader from the start ... But most of all, and perhaps surprisingly for a book filled with monsters, Strange Practice has a lot of heart. The characters clearly care for each other and their mutual investment in each other's well-being leads to a book where you want to see that all is well. Vivian is to be commended for writing an entertaining book with characters that the reader will love -- even the undead!"—SFFWorld on Strange Practice