Have you ever considered that everything you've read in a Penny Dreadful about vampires, ghouls, and all manner of supernatural beings, is actually true? All those tropes about garlic and sunlight may have some actual basis in fact?
Dr. Greta Helsing is a doctor of the damned. A human doctor of the damned. With an ill funded inherited practice passed down from her late father in modern day London, Greta does her best to treat any manner of supernatural person or animal that finds themselves in need of discreet medical care. So you can imagine the kind of tight spots she manages to get into without any manner of supernatural powers herself. Luckily, a group of friends she's made in the supernatural community are always there to help her out.
In this particular book, Greta treats a mysterious stranger with a bad reputation. Varney has been stabbed with an unknown weapon by a group of monks, and is unable to self-heal his stab wound. He manages to make his way to one of his few acquaintances, Lord Ruthven, and promptly passes out.
After patching him up, Greta, Ruthven, and a couple of other key players go in search of this strange sect of monks who have taken it upon themselves to rid the world of the "unclean." There is also a rash of unsolved human murders going on which Greta believes they may be responsible for.
After listening to this book, I find myself drinking lots of tea and using British colloquialisms far too much for my American friends to overlook. This was an excellent fun listen in the car during the daily commute, and I'm currently listening to the sequel. I hope for many more to come from Vivian Shaw because it is so well written, I enjoyed it thoroughly. The narration was a bit unfinished, there were no pauses between chapters that let you know that you were moving to another scene, and sometimes the narrator did not portray the right written attitude for the situation the character was in, but the problem wasn't bad enough to dampen my enjoyment, and the narrator has just the right voice for Greta.
4/5, I would read this again just for the sheer fun of it!