You cannot call yourself a horror fan if you haven't read the Anita Blake series. And you cannot call yourself a true horror fan if you still like the Anita Blake series after its 10th instalment.
The first book, Guilty Pleasures is one of those book that I could not put down. I couldn't even go to sleep. I remember reading it all through the night and I didn't feel tired at all. I didn't care that I have class the next morning and that I would most probably fell asleep in class. It was that exciting.
Before I discovered Anita Blake, I only get my dose of vampire stories from Bram Stoker and Anne Rice. They are all very good in their own right but Anita Blake is like being in another ballpark altogether. It's very action packed, there's no chapter where she didn't either pull a gun or draw a blade. And better yet when she started to use those guns and blades.
Anita Blake is a necromancer by nature. She has the power to raise the dead, for a fee. You see, in Anita Blake's world, magic and myth exist like religion exist. Preternatural is a science taught at universities. They even offer degrees for it. Werewolves and vampires have legal rights, within limits. Or maybe I should say wereanimal because apparently they can also have wererat, wereleopard and wereswan (though I think they call it something else in the book).
She's also the vampire hunter for St Louis area. If a vampire is found acting outside of its legal rights like changing a human to a vampire without consent, they get the execution order. No trial no juries, just Anita and her guns.
But then enter Jean-Claude, then Richard, then Nathaniel, then Micah, then Asher, then Jason, then Tom, then Dick, then Harry. The series slowly shifted from mystery-action full of blood and gore to........... porn that happens to have vampires and werewolves in it.
But yet I still keep a glimmer of hope that Laurell K. Hamilton would one day wake up and say, "What the hell was I thinking???" and went back to Anita in the good old days when she would shoot first ask questions later or when she can slay a roomfull of monsters without first having to witness or take part in some supernatural orgy.
So I waited for the latest and 12th book in the series with that glimmer of hope in my heart and I finally bought it last month. But after a few pages I thought, "Have I read the previous book?" So I checked my book journal and guess what, I didn't.
And I suddenly remembered something else, "Didn't I promise myself not to buy anymore Anita Blake books?" I hated the 10th book. It was so full of subplots that I couldn't keep track of what the whole book was about. But the damage is done. The book is bought and now I have to get the 11th book to get on the right track. I rented this one.
Halfway through the 11th book, I was reminded of why I hated the 10th book. If you bought the book based on the blurp on the back cover, you are going to be dissapointed big time.
When she is (sic) asked to reanimate the body of a long-dead corpse, it seems like just another case to Anita. What she will soon discover is that the corpse may hold the secret to an ancient crime that not everyone wants to be remembered...It may say 'soon' but that 'soon' only comes at the 440th page out of the 470-page book. The book started with a man doing just that, asking Anita to raise a long-dead corpse which needed a human sacrifice. She can actually do it without the sacrifice which is why the man asked her in the first place. But she turned it down because the man didn't want to say the reason why he wanted to raise that corpse. This scene ends at page 11. There was a brief moment where she visited some crime sites but that's it. From page 12 to 439 you'll get this absurd 'subplot' of Anita and Jean-Claude having to entertain a representative from the vampire council who happens to have the most sadistic personality that no one has ever seen. And in between she gets a couple of new sex partners. She seems to get a new sex partner in every book now.
Just talking about it annoyed me.
Another thing that I don't get. The vampires in this book are so powerful they can project themselves into another being, they can posses you, they can force you to do things, stir up some crazy desire in you from miles away and yet they cannot dodge a bullet. So it's just natural that when Anita finally draws her gun, they start to listen to her. Yeah right.
And Anita Blake is really starting to irritates the hell out of me....
"I love Jean-Claude, but I love Richard but Richard didn't love me, and now I love Asher but I'm dating Micah... boohoo... I'm taking care of Nathaniel and I just had sex with Jason... boohoo... The most powerful vampire wants to posses me. Every man and monster wants to be with me... boohoohoo... I am a whore with high morals. I made a lot of money raising corpses.... boohoo... I have more boyfriends that I could count... I am the most influential preternatural marshall in the country... I own a pack of wereleopards. I am the only human who has ever been a queen of the werewolves, everybody bow down to me now.... boohooo...."
Just shut up and shoot someone Anita. And put your clothes on for God's sakes.
Now I'm stuck with book 12. Nothing left to do but read this one too. I got a feeling that my skin would start crawling the moment the story strayed off course. I'm sure that she's going to gain another sex partner. I just hope that this one will at least have a higher body count then Cerulean Sins, which was one and it was over in a few paragraphs.
Bring back the gore!!!!!!!!!!!!
This post is solely for the purpose of reminding me not to buy any more Anita Blake books. I may rent, but I swear I will never ever buy any of it ever again.
On the other hand, I got an idea on how to reach the 50000 words mark for NaNoWriMo. In a conversation, just make them explain the same thing over and over again in different variations, punctuated with a lot of whys...