The Flooze's Reviews > Flirt

Flirt by Laurell K. Hamilton
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Sep 12, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: urban-fantasy-paranormal, vanquished_2010, owned, glutton_for_punishment
Read on February 03, 2010 , read count: 1

Good morning, boys and girls! Gather round Miss Michelle now. That's right. (Amelia, stop poking Mel. It's not nice.)

Today, we're going to do a little lesson in writing style. I want you all to look at the following passage and tell me: What bothers you most about it?

The boy came in with a book. I couldn't see the cover of the book. He always had a book with him, so it didn't surprise me he had a book. I asked him, "Why do you always have a book?" He looked at the book and said "I like books."
"You like books?"
"I like books."
"You always have a book because you like books?"



The correct answer is the heavy repetition of a single word throughout the passage hinders flow, deprives the text of all consequence, and makes the dialogue read like the inane chatter of two dimwitted parrots.

End of lesson. On to the plot.

Flirt brings Anita back to her necromancy, but complicates matters by throwing the animator's lioness into the mix.

The majority of the story felt very familiar. I'd have to look through earlier installments to confirm, but even the defeat of the big bad came off as a rehash. This wasn't helped by lengthy recaps that created awkward interruptions and clunky transitions.

Too much focus on Anita's thought process hindered the action until late in the game. It's a pattern established in the last two books; if you were irked by those, you'll probably feel the same here.

By the end, the few developments made were not enough to justify the novella's existence. I paid 12 bucks for it. I did not get my money's worth.

The Afterword.

LKH decided to trace this story from its inception to give fans an insight into her process. To this end, Flirt includes an afterword addressing where she gets her ideas and how she transfers them from mind to paper.

It's casual in tone, forthright, and interesting. It's thoughtful. She describes a real-life incident that very closely mirrors a scene in the book. But the non-fiction version is so much better. It has a vibrancy and natural appeal that's utterly lacking in the Anita-verse rendition.

In other words, it shows that LKH possesses talent and has an easy way with language. It reminded me of why I once enjoyed her writing, and why I'm now so irritated by the sloppy, repetitive mess it's become.

I'd like to say I'm ready to wash my hands of Anita Blake. I'd like to put my foot down and say No. More. But the truth is, I'll probably still pick up Bullet when it comes out. I can only hope that some of the flair that shows in this afterword will manage to wend its way into Bullet and make me a believer again.
*Merely a made-up passage to illustrate my point. For concrete examples, please reference the words flirt, clothes, dude, dance, and smile (plus variations of the phrase "hard work") within the first 30 pages. Then poke out eyes accordingly.
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Reading Progress

02/03/2010 page 15
7.81% "Get. A. Fracking. Thesaurus." 25 comments
02/03/2010 page 122
63.54% "...bad witch, no cookie." 2 comments

Comments (showing 1-50 of 52) (52 new)

message 1: by new_user (last edited Feb 03, 2010 10:08PM) (new)

new_user Do you like books? I like books? We should all read books? Do you like books?

LOL! Those must be the worst words in the English language to repeat again and again. Why couldn't she choose something like "flabbergasted"? Now that's fun to hear again and again. Flabbergasted, flabbergasted... There's no place like home, there's no place like home.

The Flooze Hell, I'd even take bewildered, befuddled, or bamboozled.

She's a mess. I almost chucked the book. Then I remembered I was on the train and my fellow passengers might not like getting beamed in the noggin.

message 3: by new_user (new)

new_user Unless they like books! Do you like books? I like books...

The Flooze I don't know about books. How about...books! Everyone likes books.

message 5: by Vered (new)

Vered LOL!
Tried it in Hebrew, I thought maybe it’ll sound better. It didn’t. maybe I just don’t kike books, or like them but not like them like them, like really like them, the books.

message 6: by Adrienne (last edited Feb 03, 2010 11:10PM) (new)

Adrienne I like books, I read books, I have books in my handbag hey did I mention I like books? Great review! it always amazes my how rubbish like that gets past 'The Pen of Doom' ie red pen? By the way did I mention I like books!

FlibBityFLooB I can already tell this is another one where I'm going to want to strangle Ms. Hamilton's editor. Fun review ;)

Sarah ~Sehrenity~ Must all these men be flawed and scarred? Seriously. A. One-eyed. Lion. Shifter. With issues.

Oooh, Anita likey.

Me--**sheayh** Please.

The Flooze And of course, his self-esteem problems will now be solved. All because Anita bonked him. Yippee!

The Flooze All this talk of books is making me think of books.

Does she actually have a copy editor in her employ?

My eyes glazed over. I even started making that "uh-huh-speed-it-up" rolling hand gesture at the book. Not that the book noticed. Because it's, like, a book. And being a book, the book was totally oblivious to my exasperated hand signals. My signals I was making at the book.

She's not guilty of the same repetition in the blog posts I've read, which only confuses me further.

She also used the dreaded "Let me test my understanding." She did not, I am pleased to say, follow any question marks with the excruciating "I made it a question." That was nice.

Bark's Book Nonsense Darn, another Hamilton book that I'm going to read even though it'll make me crazy. Why do we continue to do this to ourselves?

The Flooze Sigh. I don't know. I just don't know.

No, I do. It's because the WORLD is really nifty. Ex.: The whole legal aspect that came up in Skin Trade and Anita being an advocate for undead rights was fascinating.

But she buries it under so much crapola.

The Holy Terror I didn't read your whole review, I want at least SOME sort of mystery when I read it, lol. So I'll comment when I finish.

The Flooze Lol. I actually didn't give any spoilers, but it'll be fun to see your reaction to it.

Laura the Highland Hussy Great review! I heard LKH does not use an editor...anymore. Maybe that's why most of recent stuff has similar complaints across the board.

The Flooze Laurie wrote: "Great review! I heard LKH does not use an editor...anymore. Maybe that's why most of recent stuff has similar complaints across the board."


And that would explain an awful lot. Someone needs to advise her that was a mistake.

message 17: by new_user (new)

new_user Michelle M. wrote: "Sigh. I don't know. I just don't know. No, I do. It's because the WORLD is really nifty..."

I've read books like that.

Laurie wrote: "Great review! I heard LKH does not use an editor...anymore."

That's some kind of conceited. (For an author to ditch her editor.)

message 18: by Steph (new)

Steph Michelle, your review had me crackin' up! I have actually never read any of the Anita Blake series and at this point, it's solely b/c of the reviews I hear from long time readers of the series. I am one, like you, that has a hard time giving up on a series, even when it's torture to read any new books.

I have been listening to her "Meredith Gentry" book #1 and so far, other than some repeated phrased here and there, it's not bad so far.

The Flooze Steph wrote: "I have been listening to her "Meredith Gentry" book #1 and so far, other than some repeated phrased here and there, it's not bad so far...."

Thanks, Steph!

Merry Gentry is a very different personality than Anita. That clears up many of the issues right away. There's still a fair amount of eye-rolling, but again: the world is interesting, and with a more likable protag, it works.

But I still had BIG problems with the latest book (Divine Misdemeanors). Lots of wtf'ery going on! She should've capped it at 7!

 ♥ ♥Lynn ♥ ♥ I think this is one of the best reviews I have ever read! To funny!! I am going to wait and read this book. I was looking forward to it, but you are like the 5th person who wanted to burn it. My friend said it should be on the banned books list, simply because of the bad writing/thought process.

message 21: by Diane (last edited Feb 04, 2010 03:22PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Diane FlibBityFLooB wrote: "I can already tell this is another one where I'm going to want to strangle Ms. Hamilton's editor. Fun review ;)"

Ms. Hamilton is her own editor--she has a no-edit clause in her contract with the publisher. Please don't hate the innocent employees of the publisher ;-D

The Flooze Thanks, Lynn! If you're going to read it, methinks library is the way to go!

Diane, that's about the third time now I've heard about this no-edit clause. I'm certainly inclined to believe it.

So while she alone can be blamed for the sloppy text, I can blame the publishers for something: Allowing her that no-edit clause. Bad business. Even the most lyrical writing needs a tweak or two!

message 23: by Kyle (new) - rated it 1 star

Kyle Borland omg! Michelle again we agree! The word flirt is used AT LEAST 30x in numerous 3 page spans...I thought I was going to have an ulcer

The Flooze Lol. Kyle, maybe we'll buy some stock in Tums before her next book comes out!

message 25: by new_user (last edited Feb 04, 2010 08:20PM) (new)

new_user Clearly it wasn't bad business. People continue to buy them, LOL. Suckers. *point and snicker*

message 26: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Great review! I toldya I didn't like LKH. No editor??? You have got to be kidding me.

The Flooze ::blushing red as a beet::

You, you...grrr! Stop pointing at me!


Laura the Highland Hussy this is hysterical! I now know why we all get along; not only do we all read the same books, but we all have the same sense of humor! You guys made me laugh so hard I woke up the kids!

The Flooze We do!

Of course, I'm usually the brunt of it.


Me and my delicate sensibilities.

message 30: by Vered (new)

Vered Michelle M. wrote: "Me and my delicate sensibilities."

And your infatuation with bits and pieces...

message 31: by new_user (new)

new_user Itty bitty bits. Huhuhuhu.

The Flooze Dangly bits are all the rage. Itty bitty bits, not so much. We throw those back.

We each have our obsessions! And hobbies. Bits make a fine hobby.

message 33: by new_user (last edited Feb 06, 2010 10:09PM) (new)

new_user Michelle M. wrote: "We each have our obsessions! And hobbies. Bits make a fine hobby."

Hear, hear, James! Forward with the motion.

message 34: by Mel (last edited Feb 06, 2010 01:54PM) (new)

Mel Miss Micheeeeeelle! Amelia's still poking me! :snif snif:

I was thinking about reading something LKH because I sort of feel I have to (like I still need to read the Harry Potter books) eventhough I hear so much negative things about it. Your review has made me change my mind: why invest in something that's going to end up annoying me? And where I'll probably still won't be able to stop myself from picking up the latest addition to the series, eventhough I strongly suspect I'm going to be equally as annoyed by it? Nope, better save myself the trouble and the money. Thanks Michelle.

Nichole (Dirrty H) Good choice, Mel. I have steadfastly avoided Anita Blake and will continue to do so. There's so much good stuff out there I just don't have time. Merry Gentry annoyed me enough, if Anita's worse, well... I only have the two eyes, I'd rather not have to poke any out.

message 36: by Mel (new)

Mel LOL. I'm fond of my eyeballs too :)

message 37: by Sandra (new)

Sandra I listened to a small part of a Merry Gentry book and decided it was trash and haven't cracked another one, thank you very much. :\

The Flooze Mel, I'll fix that Amelia-girl. Princess or not.

No, I wouldn't encourage you to read them unless the series took a huge upswing, making the current irritation a memory.

Harry Potter, however, completely lives up to the hype. I'd wench that.

I'm not into audiobooks, so I really should be more careful with my peepers.

message 39: by Amelia (new)

Amelia ...... this is worse than Kenyon! D:

::pokes Mel::

::pinches Michelle::

message 40: by Mel (new)

Mel Ameliaaaaaaa!

message 41: by Amelia (new)

Amelia ::sniggers and sticks out tongue::

The Flooze You can't pinch the TEACHER!!

message 43: by Amelia (new)

Amelia ::pinches Michelle again::



message 45: by Amelia (new)

Amelia ::pinches::


The Flooze Oh, that corporal punishment were still allowed in the classroom...

message 47: by Amelia (new)

Amelia I'll hit you back sucka! lol

The Flooze You are a mess.

message 49: by Amelia (new)

Amelia This is why you love me so!

The Flooze Debatable.


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