Spinoza for Hire: Two Vampire Mystery Novellas - J.R. Rain Ahh, what can I say. J.R. Rain knows how to tell a story and I found Spinoza's tales to be top notch and some of his best work, equal to his Vampire for Hire series. Spinoza is a tortured man with a painful past. Now he spends his time as a private investigator who specializes in finding missing people: mainly missing children.

In the first book we find out about Spinoza's past and his alcoholism which led him to where he is now. He's a truly tortured person, is extremely shy which isn't very helpful for social situations yet he pushes himself each day to do what he does best in order to make up for the wrongs he has committed. Spinoza is hired by the guardians of Veronica Fortune who also happens to have a tortured past. One day she showed up at the people who would become her guardians house covered in blood and scared. She never talks much about her past and she disappears for days at a time and they love her so never report her to the authorities for fear she'll leave. She disappeared almost a week ago but more importantly her guardians tell Spinoza that she is a vampire slayer and although he doesn't believe in vampires he doesn't think they're crazy either. The few friends of Veronica all give him the same story and while tracking her down and solving this mystery he runs into things that will forever change how he thinks about the world.

In book two a young teenager hires Spinoza (for two tacos) to help find the remains of his birth mom which disappeared from her casket. His birth mom left him a very sizable inheritence and he needs her corpse to prove he is her son through DNA. Mainly he just wants to find her body so it can be put back to rest where it belongs. The boy's father is no good and abusive, he lives with his aunt and Spinoza must dig deep to find out what happened to the woman's body. Once again he runs into things that go bump in the night and comes face to face with monsters along with his own personal demons.

These stories are great and J.R. Rain is just pure fun to read. Most of his short stories are close to 70 pages, sometimes longer or a bit shorter but this forumula works very well for him. Each story is self contained. Mr. Rain never leaves you at the edge of a cliff hanger. All of his stories wrap up nicely yet have an overall story arc through each book. If you haven't read The Vampire in the Iron Mask then I highly suggest doing so. It brings closure to the series and to Spinoza himself. J.R. Rain has quickly become one of my favorite authors and his books are one of my biggest "guilty pleasures" in life. I haven't read everything he's written but I'm working on it and so far I've enjoyed everything I have read, especially The Vampire for Hire series. I hope Veronica an Natassa will make a guest appearance there soon. I also cannot wait for their own series.