I got this book from the Chautauqua Library bag sale in July 2014. I hesitated to add it to my Chautauqua shelf as it is not typical of their recommenI got this book from the Chautauqua Library bag sale in July 2014. I hesitated to add it to my Chautauqua shelf as it is not typical of their recommendations. It is the first book in the Anita Blake series that I've read. In fact, it is the first Laurell K. Hamilton I've read. And it does not leave a strong first impression in terms of writing ability. If this were the first book pitched in the series, I don't think it would have been published. In fact, I think it is only because the series is so well established that this book slipped through the cracks. It feels like an inkling of an idea with underdeveloped characters and interactions. Why did I keep reading and give it three stars? The book was an easy read and felt compulsory. I finished it in a little over 24 hours. This probably has more to do with my current state of mind than with the actual merits of the book, but a book is never read in a vacuum. If you need a book that will require minimal thought and remove you from your own world, than this is it. And the plot does pick up in the second half.
If you start with this book, as I have done, you will feel plunked down in the middle of the series. However, Hamilton gives just enough information to connect the dots of this other-world she has created. While I was reading, I wondered if this would be annoying to faithful readers of the series. I know that I have read many series where I started to get annoyed by the recap - I wanted a new book, not a rehash of the ones I'd already read. Looking at other reviews, this does seem to be the case here, so patrons of the series, be warned.
Hamilton provides an Afterword in which she describes her writing method and the inspiration for this book. The glimpse into her creative process is interesting, as is the exploration into various view points that is included. However, the moment that sparked this book is just that, a moment. Within the book itself, it does not feel full enough to support a complete novel. It works much better as an anecdote or the comic included in the last pages.
Overall, would I recommend the book? It's a bit like a cheap wine cooler. The quality isn't there, but it's not necessarily trying for it. Instead it offers a brief escape with some fun flavors. ...more
This is the worst book that I have ever read. I actually finished it, but only because I kept waiting for the story to redeem itself; it was such a goThis is the worst book that I have ever read. I actually finished it, but only because I kept waiting for the story to redeem itself; it was such a good idea. Unfortunately, the father-and-son team who wrote it were more interested in outdoing each-other's debauchery than developing the story....more
This book was very enjoyable. The level of vocabulary elevates it beyond an easy-read. The concepts are very interesting and hold the feel of, "this cThis book was very enjoyable. The level of vocabulary elevates it beyond an easy-read. The concepts are very interesting and hold the feel of, "this could be true."
Howe takes a very different angle on the Salem witch trials and also infuses ideas about the philosopher's stone. I like the Biblical and historic possibilities.
As far as reading the classic Pride and Prejudice, this was a fun way to do it. The frivilousness of crafting mates while the area is being attacked bAs far as reading the classic Pride and Prejudice, this was a fun way to do it. The frivilousness of crafting mates while the area is being attacked by zombies is humorous. Grahame-Smith's writing is not on par with Austen's but it doesn't have to be as it's only meant to lend a laugh to the pre-existing novel. If the reader finds Austen dry to begin with, this won't completely alleviate that. But, the zombies do create a nice diversion. However, even these can get a little repetative as Grahame-Smith reuses his own material. The drawings make a nice touch and now I can finally understand all of the references to this novel that appear in other works of literature and movies....more
I ejoyed this continuation of the Sookie Stackhouse series but did not devour it as quickly as the last book. Part of this might have been because I rI ejoyed this continuation of the Sookie Stackhouse series but did not devour it as quickly as the last book. Part of this might have been because I read so many of the books right in a row. I also started missing the mystery element that was stronger in the first two books. However, the character-play was intriguing and the conclusion of the story lends itself to future story-lines of interest.
"Sometimes life just hands you more than you can take. Then you just accept." -Sookie P.172...more
**spoiler alert** I was ready to plunge into this novel because of my need for another light read, but was worried Harris was going to incorporate mor**spoiler alert** I was ready to plunge into this novel because of my need for another light read, but was worried Harris was going to incorporate more supernatural elements like the Maenad and contine to muck-up what was potentially a good series. Although Harris continues to branch out further into the supenatural in this book, those aspects don't function as much like a dysfunctional appendage as the Maenad in the previous book. There were however, what I considered to be major holes in Harris's story-line spanning the books, which greatly distracted from the enjoyment of the novel at my time of reading. Most of these are explained in the next novel, but in order to by-pass them in this novel I had to keep reminding myself that this was a light read, heavy on the LIGHT. And, although they are addressed in the next novel, they made me more hesitant to read said novel because Harris did not seem dedicated to her series.
SPOILER: There is also a rape scene which was not only difficult to read but whose after-effects were handled so unrealistically that I was tempted to discard the book as a whole. I realize some people might harbor rape fantasies but I feel that the way they are addressed in this book is offensive to those who have been through such instances. Despite all this critcism, I did enjoy this novel and the over-all story-line. I also greatly appreciated the new characters, especially Alcide!
"It was not a night to count my blessings. It was a night when every loss I'd ever had presses hard on me." - Sookie P.30
"The sweetest part of being a couple was sharing your life with someone else." - Sookie P.30
"My grandmother had not raised me to be a murderess." - Sookie P.53
"...Real men always have duct tape in their trucks...." - Sookie P.131 ~ 132
"Don't worry about not feeling guilty. Something'll come along pretty soon that you'll feel guilty about. Save it up." - Alcide P.144
"Maybe wearing garters would change the course of my life...." - Sookie paraphrasing Arlene P.157 ...more
This was another enjoyable light-read. However, I didn't think the Maenad story-line was as alluring as the rest of the novel and it almost seemed likThis was another enjoyable light-read. However, I didn't think the Maenad story-line was as alluring as the rest of the novel and it almost seemed like Harris forgot she had included it and therefore had to write an afterwards to tie up the loose ends. The book probably would have felt more succint with that portion edited out.
"You, on the other hand, are a sweet little e'clair on the outside and a pit bull on the inside." Terry referring to Sookie...more
This book was a lot of fun. I enjoyed the blend of the supernatural genre with the mystery genre. I'm usually not big on romances but I found this toThis book was a lot of fun. I enjoyed the blend of the supernatural genre with the mystery genre. I'm usually not big on romances but I found this to be enjoyable-like an adult version of the Twilight series. This certainly isn't a book for deep contemplation, but for a thrilling-light read it does the trick.
"I am sure the Good Lord gave you this problem I've heard about for a reason. You have to learn how to use it for his glory." Sid Matt P.265 ...more
**spoiler alert** I would have liked to rate this book a 3.5. Initially I enjoyed this book more than "Twilight." The relationship between Bella and E**spoiler alert** I would have liked to rate this book a 3.5. Initially I enjoyed this book more than "Twilight." The relationship between Bella and Edward was easier for me to accept as one of substance. However, this book did drag for me in several places. In Meyer's writing she doesn't use chapter breaks to offer breaks in time. This has its advantages and disadvantages. It allows the reader to be privy to typically mundane tasks which are usually excluded from books, like numerous transportation scenes, but which are unique in this book. It also means that the reader is privy to repeated thoughts of Bella's, triggered by similar situations. There were also many things in the book that I understood hundreds of pages before Bella (like the situation with Jake and the werewolves), which I found frustrating. Bella, despite being portrayed as an atypical tennager, is very typical in her self-focus. Because she is so self-focused, she is unable to see any possibility beyond her own low self-worth as to why Edward would have left. Her self-depreciating comments become repetitive and tiresome as the book progresses. Bella's self-focus also precludes her from seeing the hurt that she will cause her family and friends with her decision to become a vampire. In contrast to the rest of the book, the end of the book feels quite rushed. Whereas the reader has been given a play-by-play of all thoughts and events prior to the end of the novel, many elements, including the situation with Victoria and Bella's relationships with her non-vampire friends, at the end of the novel feel under-developed. This book definintely had some flaws for me. I think it would have been an excellent book at about half its length. However, there were still some very fun and enjoyable elements that do merit a read....more