Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter
By Laurell K. Hamilton
Hi everyone. Last time we talked about these books we were just after book 11 Incubus Dreams and had reviewed some of the side stories. I left it off at the point where the meaning behind the books begins to change from her being a talented snarky bad-ass with a penchant for killing bad guys, to being a book about relationships and how one relationship is not the same as another and yes they can work together.
Don't worry there's still plenty of sex and snark and killing the bad guys but from book 12 onwards the story almost becomes a 'how-to' guide to having a healthy poly relationship. It goes a lot into domination and submission and the rights of a partner to ask for their needs to be met, if not by one sexual partner, then another.
For a little while it's like Anitas control of the ardeur is the be-all and end-all of her power, like she's got a magical vagina that fixes all the worlds woes up until book 20 and then it does a shift.
Anita uses a power learned from Obsidian Butterfly. She drinks the life force of the mother of Vampires. Seriously ancient and seriously powerful and the manifestation of the reason that everyone is a little afraid of the dark. The scene described it as trying to drink the ocean before she could be drowned in it, and we finally find the reason why Laurell K Hamilton spent so much time and effort to make Anita a polyamorous succubus. By the time she faces the mother of darkness, Anita is metaphysically bonded to over a dozen people directly and several hundred indirectly (by being bonded to Richard, she thus has a secondary bond to his entire pack of which he is the leader. Same goes with Micah and his Pard, Nicky and his Pride, Rafael and his Rodere as well as Jean Claude and all of his vampires.
It was only by merit of having the connection to so many to spread and share the energy with Anita was capable drink the ocean.
After this book the plot no longer circles around Anitas sex life quite so closely. She is now able to ignore the ardeur to an extent. After this book it becomes more about the balance of power because the universe abhors a vaccuum, and a vaccuum of power is exactly what Anita has left behind.
On lighter subjects Anita has become engaged to be wed to Jean Claude. Micah becomes engaged to be wed to Nathaniel. Anita becomes engaged but not to be wed to Micah and Nathaniel as there is no law to say how many people you may be engaged to. Just that you can marry only one. Edward/Ted/Theodore Magnus Forrester/Death/He-who-has-been-named-too-many-times finally gets married to Donna.
But yes essentiall this series becomes a darkfantasy themed how-to guide for polyamory. The writing style is nothing remarkable but it does make the books easy reading. I can get through a book a week easily. The only challenging parts is when the author inserts snippets of another language in but what is spoken is almost always explained. I give the series as a whole, 7/10.
N.B. Olaf/Otto has become my favourite character. He is a brilliantly written character in all of his sociopathic, misogonistic, creepy mass-murdering glory.
I want to let you choose what genre I read next.
Alternate History Semi-Fiction
Comment your preference.