Q: How does a vampire give a blowjob? A: very carefully. Except no he doesn't because this book has no continuity regarding anything, not even fangs. Or...moreQ: How does a vampire give a blowjob? A: very carefully. Except no he doesn't because this book has no continuity regarding anything, not even fangs. Or maybe they just have kevlar coated dicks, who even knows.
Ugh. It really saddens me that I've been slogging through this series, waiting for the resolution of the Blay/Qhuinn story line, and this pile of shit is all we get. It was not worth the wait. Honestly I've tried to hold my expectations back a little bit, because Ward is not the best romance writer, and her writing even seems to have deteriorated throughout the series. Many characters now sound identical and its very hard to get interested in them. They talk the same, they have exactly the same interests (booze, fighting, sex), they are all complete mysoginists, and they all have sex exactly the same way.
So why did I expect Blay/Qhuinn to be anything different? Its been building up for so long thats why, and it came down to 10 books of tension and buildup and a totaly anti-climatic resolution.
The majority of Qhuinn and Blay's storyline is just avoidance and misconceptions in a flailing attempt to create tension. For gawds sake this has been going on for the entire series, its not interesting!
And as it turns out, Ward can't actually write gay sex scenes. Oh she'll do the oral sex mostly okay, but she can't even bring herself to write the word anus, or anything related to it. So mostly we just get repetitive scenes of Qhuinn and Blay humping doggystyle, without lube (or is it magically self-lubricating butts, cos you never know with vampires, they defy the laws of physics and can ejaculated for 20 minutes straight), and the details are left to the readers imagination.
Apart from that, the majority of the book isn't even about Bhlay/Quinn, its just build-up for the other boring het couples that are coming up next. Just more miles of mysoginy, stalking, identical male characters, slut-shaming bullshit.
And then we don't even get a proper resolution. Time passes, they magically sort out their problems and live happily ever after.
Ugh same-old bollox. Not worth waiting for, not worth reading. I am honestly done with this series.(less)
Aeriel is a young slave-girl, who serves Eoduin, the pretty daughter of the town syndic. Being only 2 years younger than Eoduin makes them close frien...moreAeriel is a young slave-girl, who serves Eoduin, the pretty daughter of the town syndic. Being only 2 years younger than Eoduin makes them close friends as well as mistress and slave, and Aeriel very much looks up to the older girl.
One day Aeriel and Eoduin are on high on the mountains outside of town, picking flower nectar for a traditional drink for a wedding thats soon to be held in town. But while they are separately wandering on the mountain, a darkangel flies down - a luminous pale being with huge black wings - and captures Eoduin. The darkangel is a considered a mythical being, only talked about in scary stories told to young children, so when Aeriel returns to the village no one believes her tale, and some even believe that she has killed Eoduin.
With no one believing her, Aeriel decides to take it upon herself to return to the top of the mountain, wait for the darkangel, and kill him. But when the darkangel appears again, she is bewitched by his beauty and unable to carry out the deed. And so the darkangel carries her off to his huge abandoned castle, where she is to serve his 13 wives, who are all now emaciated soulless wraiths, (including the latest who is of course Aeriel's friend Eoduin). Aeriel's learns that when the darkangel takes his 14th wife, a year from now, he will finally have enough souls to become a full vampyre. And at that point he will join his 6 other vampyre brothers and they would conquer and divide the entire world between them. Aeriel knows she could be the only one who can kill the vampyre before he takes his 14th wife, if only she can bring herself to do it.
This is novel is an amazing blend of fantasy, fairy-tale and science fiction, in a very similar style and theme to the Narnia books. I thought it was absolutely beautiful, and I wish I had discovered it when I was still a kid, it's just the sort of thing I would have fallen in love with back then.
Aeriel is a lovely main character, she has a lot of complexity of emotion, which it great for a kids book. She is strong and courageous under pressure, and she perserveres in such daunting situations, but without ever becoming overly sure of herself. I also love how she stands up to the darkangel, even tho she is by turns enraptured and then afraid of him.
Although, like other reviewers, I wish there had been a greater depth to her relationship with him, as she never seems truly sure of her feelings towards him, and being that it's her feelings towards him that gives rise to the entire dilemma of whether to save or kill him - and save or doom the world.. well it perhaps requires a little more certainty in her emotions to make it a meaningful conflict and resolution.
I really think the book could have done with a glossary of terms, as there are several things that confused me right up until the end, such as the term 'day-month', which I now gather to mean that it takes a month for the day/night cycle (2 weeks night, two weeks daylight), but I'm still not entirely sure. But this is only a minor quibble compared to how much I really enjoyed the book, so hopefully it won't put off anyone else.
Would recommend this book for both children and adults aged 10 to 100+ and anyone with a love for fantasy and fairytales. (less)
Lady Alexia Maccon is reduced to moving back in with her family. And it's all Lord Maccon's fault. It...more**warning: contains spoilers for books 1 and 2**
Lady Alexia Maccon is reduced to moving back in with her family. And it's all Lord Maccon's fault. It being common knowledge that Supernaturals cannot sire children. Her being increasingly *ahem* delicate (view spoiler)[- pregnant - (hide spoiler)]. And him of course being an emotionally turbulent werewolf, prone to jumping to conclusions in anger.
Poor Alexia, alienated from her husband, being the scandalous talk of the town, ousted from the shadow council by Queen Victoria, and suffering from morning sickness. Has no one to turn to, and no one to explain how she possibly got into this impossible situation, seeing as her friend Lord Akeldama has upped and left town. So of course the only choice, is to take a trip to Italy and get answers from the Templars. Taking the lovely, genius, inventor Madame Lefoux and the faithful Floote the butler with her.
I hope you paid attention to the spoiler warnings if you haven't yet read the first two books, as its completely impossible to write a summary without mentioning the improbable possibility of Alexia's supernatural pregnancy. (I'd like you to try saying that 10 times really fast).
Firstly I have to admit, I didn't enjoy this one quite as much as the last two. Mostly owing to the fact that Alexia and Lord Maccon are separated for the entire novel, and its their interactions that put the tasty topping on the book in my opinion.
Even though, Lord Maccon on his own is still entertaining, it's a dilemma not knowing whether to cry for him or laugh when he drown his sorrows in Professor Lyall's formaldehyde, poor guy, but he is to blame of course. And if he happens to lose Alexia to Madame Lefoux, it will be entirely his fault and I wouldn't blame Alexia in the least.
But Lord Maccon is nothing without Alexia, and once he gets that into his big hairy head, he may have a chance at being forgiven. I might forgive him I mean. Not telling if Alexia will. After all, she's got Pesto to keep her happy now. Pesto AND Madame Lefoux. Sometimes I really wish I were in Alexia's shoes.
I still think Miss Carriger is being a bit skimpy with the answers in this series. Even when the plot of the book resolves itself, too many things are still left mysterious. Yes I'm sure thats part of the pulling power of the series, but how long can one writer hold off for? I look forward to book 4 as soon as I can get hold of a copy!
See my other reviews of the Parasol Protectorate series: ← #2 Changeless | #4 (To-Read!)["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Alexia Tarabotti, is awoken by her irate werewolf husband, who promptly dissappears, and leaves her with an encampment of soldiers and werewolves on t...moreAlexia Tarabotti, is awoken by her irate werewolf husband, who promptly dissappears, and leaves her with an encampment of soldiers and werewolves on the front lawn, and instructions to visit a certain hat-shop. At the hat shop she makes the aquantence of Madame LeFoux, a fascinating suit-wearing mechanical genius, and gains a new parasol. Then when Alexia finds out about the problem of whole areas where vampires and werewolves are entirely losing their supernatural abilities.. and that this area has moved north to scotland, precisely where her husband has gone.. Alexia takes matters into her own hands, and takes a dirigible north, accompanied by Ivy Hisselpenny, her sister, Tunstall, and Madame LeFoux.
I enjoyed this book quite a bit more than the first one. Most entirely due to the introduction of the new character - Madame LeFoux. With her top-hats and suits, her mechanical prowess, and her subtle interests in Alexia; it wasn't so much openly noted that she was a lesbian, (but then it's never entirely openly said that Lord Akeldama is gay), but it doesn't need to be. Maybe I should be suprised about how much I can enjoy a book because of a single possibly lesbian character. But you just don't expect this in a popular paranormal book! And she was a well-written character, and certainly not one written for straight males, I applaud miss Carriger for this!
The plot was actually fairly good, and I was fairly suprised by the nice twist of the ending. I still wish the cause and the mechanics of this 'soulless' thing would be gone into in more detail, rather than just being a term for something she is, without any other repurcussions. I mean, the way things stand there is no evidence to say that she doesn't have a soul, and her powers could be explained just by any other meaningless arbitrary term. But I'm sure I said that in the first book review.. maybe book 3 will have more answers?
I'm still not entirely convinced on the style of writing, but thats just me. And I still have niggles about little things, (like calling a meal breakfast because they ate it in the morning, when really it can't be breakfast unless it's the first meal after fasting during sleeping - hence break fast). But, I am picky sometimes, thats just me.
Overall, I really thought it was a decent book, and you shouldn't let my niggles put you off, it's worth ignoring any possible failings and getting into!
This is a prequel to the Guild Hunters series. But in fact I think it won't make much sense unless read after book 1, as it's too short to go into muc...moreThis is a prequel to the Guild Hunters series. But in fact I think it won't make much sense unless read after book 1, as it's too short to go into much detail about the world, and would be confusing if you jumped straight into it.
In the Guild Hunter world, Angels are real and in charge. They're powerful and immortal, and have been around a long time, hence they're prettty much running every city in every country. And they're not all harps and clouds, due to their longevity and inbred feelings of superiority, they're mostly very jaded and sometimes malevolent characters. Angels create vampires to serve them, they choose only among the very elite of the favoured families, and the vampires must serve them for 100 years in exchange for their gift of immortality. And then we have the Guild Hunters, who are a company of humans hired to deal with vampires that disobey their Angels, break their contract or turn rogue.
Ashwini is a Guild hunter, and Janvier is a cajun vampire whom Ashwini has had to hunt many times, but each time he has gotten himself let off. This time she needs his help on a mission. An Angel wants one of his missing vampires found, but its more than just a simple case, it's part of a larger scheme of powerplay within the vampire and Angel circles. And for Ashwini and Janvier it's more than just a simple job, long used to working against eachother, Ashwini is having trouble resisting her long-time attraction for Janvier now that they're working together.
I thought for a short prequel it was very good, despite the lack of follow through to all the sexual tension, but I expect there'll be more of them in one of the later novels. I did like hearing more of the intricacies of vampire/angel interaction and contracts etc. And I love Nalini Singh's characterisation of her Angels, they're so far removed from humanity that they're almost unable to interact normally with humans, and there just so creepy..
One of the best opening scenes for a Dresden novel yet, Dresden is fleeing for his life, carrying a box of puppies, and being chased by purple monkey...moreOne of the best opening scenes for a Dresden novel yet, Dresden is fleeing for his life, carrying a box of puppies, and being chased by purple monkey demons that fling flaming poo. Awesome. Just awesome.
Then Thomas, Harry's white court vampire friend, persuades Harry to take on a job as a favour to him. Arturo Genosa is a producer of x-rated movies, and women around him are being killed off by an entropy curse. So Harry has to protect the women, whilst trying to find the actual perpetrator, and he gets to work undercover on a porn movie set while he's doing it! He also gets much more involved in vampire politics, and white court politics in particular thanks to Thomas, and uncovers a very HUGE secret.
Perhaps I'm easily amused but the book opening was probably the most memorable part for me. And funny really cos I actually hate monkeys, and this just proved that monkeys are Bad of course.
I've recently watched the entirety of the Dresden Files tv series (it really didn't last long did it), and I did actually love it, although it was different to the books. But now it's confusing my mental picture of Harry, I really liked the tv characterisation, so I'm trying to see Harry that way, but it's not working because his 'voice' in the books seems a little too young to me now. But then I can't really blame the book for that, because the series came after.
The one point where the book did actually let me down, was near the ending, things got very convoluted in the magical explanations that Harry was coming out with, and my brain just couldn't keep up with it all. I ended up not sure what the problem was, or who was in danger. I thought about going back and re-reading, but in the end I just carried on, which made the resolution a bit anti-climatic, because I didn't know what was going on in the first place.. Ohwell we can still say it's my fault and not the books fault, because I was probably just not paying enough attention.
I still love the Dresden books, and I can't wait to see what next with the black court, the white court, Thomas, and most of all the lovely new addition to the Harry team.
The 5th installment starts with Harry on a talk show, (trying to hold back his powers so he doesn't blow up the tv equipment). And then it turns out h...moreThe 5th installment starts with Harry on a talk show, (trying to hold back his powers so he doesn't blow up the tv equipment). And then it turns out his fellow guests on the show are all here just to see him for one reason or another, and it's not to get his autograph or anything.
A red court vampire wants to challenge Harry to a duel. A catholic priest wants Harry to hunt down some theives that stole the turin shroud. His girlfiend susan reappears, with a new guy, and it's not clear how well she's coping with the blood lust, but their feelings for eachother aren't helping on that front. And then someone sets Demon assassins on Harry.
But Harry does have help on some fronts, Michael the knight is still there, and we get introduced to some other holy knights which prove to be very interesting characters. They'd rather Harry get out of town, but Harry won't leave anyone else to fight his battles, he's just that kind of guy.
This was another really really exciting novel. Yet again Harry is in definate near-death peril several times. And I was thinking to myself 'but how the f is he getting out of this one??'. I never do manage to guess it before it happens, always a great twist and turn, and Harry pulls some new trick. And I'm so glad that Harry actually has people standing by him in this one, I get fed up of seeing him beaten down by everyone, but there was some real good friendship building, and yes some of it might have made me shed a tear or two.
Once again I can't wait to get into the next book!
Harry has had a rough time of it lately, he hasn't seen his gf-turned-almost-vampire in a while, and he blames himself of course. He hasn't been worki...moreHarry has had a rough time of it lately, he hasn't seen his gf-turned-almost-vampire in a while, and he blames himself of course. He hasn't been working, he barely eats, he's broke, and he certainly hasn't washed. So when werewolf friend Billy books him an appointment with a client he really needs to take it. Even when it turns out it's the Winter Queen of fairy, and she wants a murder and theft investigated. It seems good and simple but you know theres going to be a catch.. poor Harry.
I actually quite like fairy fantasy when its done well, and I thought this one was. The fairy aren't all fun and games, they're mostly cruel and selfish, and don't really have a care for mortals apart from how they can use them. And they also happen to be very attractive! My favourite fae probably had to be the Winter Lady, I loved her multicoloured hair, and I liked that she was a little bit crazy. I also like that Harry notices womens breasts, if I'm going to be looking through the protagonists eyes, I always want it to be someone like Harry. Go Harry!
The city has been plagued by an unusual amount of violent ghost activity, and Harry along with his friend Michael (a new character to the series) have...moreThe city has been plagued by an unusual amount of violent ghost activity, and Harry along with his friend Michael (a new character to the series) have been doing their best to exorcise the spirits. It soon becomes clear that the ghosts have been incited by someone with evil intentions, and then theres even worse than that in store, A girl with visions of the future (not good visions), Possessions, and an invite to a vampire ball that Harry would be very wise not to attend.
At first I was somewhat confused, as the book begins by introducing a new character, Michael, but as Harry already had a long aquantence with him, I was left wondering if I had missed a book out as I had no clue who this new guy was! It was a bewildering way to introduce a new character, but once I got past that I really loved Michael's character. I always love it when faith plays a tangible role in magic and fighting evil. So a holy knight was just a brilliant addition. The mechanics of the magical/holy interaction were done really well, it completely made up for every episode of buffy or supernatural where a demon/vampire walks on consecrated ground without blinking, haha.
I also loved the portrayal of vampires in this one, we got a little glimpse into the true form of vampires with Bianca in the first one, but here they take a much bigger role. I like my fantasy to have a little bit of horror with its glamour!