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Incubus Dreams (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, Book 12) Mass Market Paperback – September 27, 2005
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Cut to 658 pages and 200 typos later, and here I sit horrified and dumbfounded. What the holy (insert Anita's favorite expletive here) was this?? It was as if Cerulean Sins never existed! All those threads I mentioned? Still dangling. No room to address them when you've got 500 pages of talky porn to write!
Yes, before Anita and her lovers (some of them strangers introduced a mere half a page before Anita goes all ardeur on them) have sex, they TALK ABOUT IT for at least TWO CHAPTERS beforehand. Perhaps Anita must feed the "talkeur" before the "ardeur". Though the sex is pretty hot, you'll be amazed that the lovers haven't talked themselves into a coma first. Like all die-hard Anita fans, I was expecting another great read. Instead, here's what I got.
100 pages of unresolved mystery story,
200 pages of psychoanalytical musings (of the "Richard loves to hate himself more than he loves to love me!" variety).
150 pages of sex with people you could care less about.
150 pages of sex with people you DID care about but now can't stand anymore.
The character work is repetitive, with only one spark of interest--Nathaniel. His character arc is nice, and is the only reason I'm giving this book two stars instead of one.
Jean Claude? morphs into an emasculated Machiavelli.
Richard? a spineless repressed prude, no matter how many three-ways he's in.
Asher? Missing in action.
Jason? Harmless brother-figure.
Micah? still a well-endowed yes man.
Nathaniel? Surprisingly still interesting.
Damian? Quickly-forgotten sextoy.
Requiem and Byron? ("Who?" you ask?) Two unknowns who get more action than poor Asher.
Save your time, your expectations and your twenty bucks. Donate it instead to Proofreaders of America, or any organization that could help LKH find a decent editor. Sorry to vent, but man am I pissed at spending hard-cover money on this! >:(
First and foremost, I am a diehard fan, and will read anything and everything Laurell K. Hamilton reads, now and forever. Period. I very much like the world her stories are set in, and I generally adore her characters.
First, the not-so-fabulous.
Let me first make a heartfelt plea to Mrs. Hamilton. Please, honey, for the love of God, PLEASE smack your editor. The sheer multitude of grammatical errors (hello run-on sentences!) is enough to make someone crazy! Stories as great as yours should not have anything like this to detract from it! (Edit: Just read "Mistral's Kiss", and it was beautifully edited.)
Second, the less-than-perfect.
1.Why is AB in the midst of another triumvirate when the primary one has yet to "work" correctly? (Edit: This will begin to make sense later on in the series, or at least it did to me. Anita is an entity unto herself, and this was inevitable. It works out, really.)
2.The ardeur. I get it. Enough. No, really. Anything that has Anita knocking boots with a character we (the readers) meet 5 minutes beforehand is a BIT much. (Edit: Aw, now.. I was a bit rash. Anita's slowly beginning to control it, and let's just say there's a learning curve)
3.Ronnie. What does she add to this book? She's cheez whiz, for pete's sake! Mildly interesting, but just not filling. (Edit: Mine is not to question why - though I don't like Ronnie, she plays an important role in a later book, and I see why she needs to continue to be in Anita's life. Touche!)
4.Richard, wake up and smell the fresh deer meat. Enough with the angst, already. Move to Milwaukee and make a home with a roaming pack of wild chihuahuas, or deal with it. (Edit: This was directed at Richard, not LKH, hehe. I still want him to lose the angst, but he has a place in the story that wouldn't be easily filled by anyone else.)
5.Anita went from NO Nathaniel to FURRY Nathaniel? Huh? (Edit: OK, I have to admit, this really freaked me out - but - y'know it had to happen eventually, with all the adeur and fur flyin' around.)
6.Where was Asher? She fooled around with Byron, Damien, Jean Claude, Micah, Richard, Nathaniel, Jason and Requiem, but no Asher? After the lengths the last novel went to to see Asher included in her "list", why is he conspicuously absent? (Edit: He's not gone! He was just, er.. relaxing..during this book.)
7.Where is the Mother of All Darkness? (Edit: WTH was I thinking? She's around, just not in this book! Keep reading the series!)
8.Where was Cherry? Zane? Stephen? Caleb? Not integral to the plot, but it seemed like they were very close to her at one time. (Edit: I still haven't seen much of these four, but I now realize that not every.single.character has to be in every.single.book for them to be relevant to the story as a whole, and important to the main character.)
9.Why does Micah seem like a secondary character? (Edit: He got his own book later on. WTH was I thinking?)
10.Hey! Richard tore up another bed! And, once again, he beat his fists on the floor til they bled. Deja Vu, much? (Edit: OK, again with the Richard angst. Mea Culpa.)
11.Edward. He doesn't call..he doesn't write. *sniffle* (Edit: LKH says he'll be back "in a big way" in THE HARLEQUIN! Yay! Be patient!)
12. Rare were the descriptions of guns, knives, or other sundry toys of destruction. Is AB getting soft? (Edit: Anita. Soft. I must have been drinking when I wrote that.)
13.The cervix conversation. Can we just not say that anymore? (Edit: So sorry, but this still holds true. It's honestly the one part in these books that makes me squint and squirm, hehe.)
1.Anita and Nathaniel. Not the furry-frisky bit, but rather her showing genuine affection for him without having to over-freaking-analyze every nuance, touch or glance. I like this!
2.The bit where she assassinated the guy was great, not because she shot "til she saw sunlight", but rather because it affected her so strongly afterward.
3.The deeper explanations of Damien's relationship with Anita. It was rather twisted in this novel, but actually seeing it addressed and explained was refreshing and wonderful.
There was so much about the book that I did truly enjoy, but I have to say there was some that was frustrating. Worth the read?