Category werewolves

2012: #37 – Deadlocked (Charlaine Harris)

deadlocked

Title: Deadlocked
Author: Charlaine Harris
Series: Sookie Stackhouse #12
Format: Audio
Audiobook length: 9 hrs 29 min
Release Date: May 01, 2012
Publisher: Ace
Source: personal copy
★★☆☆☆ 

It’s vampire politics as usual around the town of Bon Temps, but never before have they hit so close to Sookie’s heart…

Growing up with telepathic abilities, Sookie Stackhouse realized early on there were things she’d rather not know. And now that she’s an adult, she also realizes that some things she knows about, she’d rather not see—like Eric Northman feeding off another woman. A younger one.

There’s a thing or two she’d like to say about that, but she has to keep quiet—Felipe de Castro, the Vampire King of Louisiana (and Arkansas and Nevada), is in town. It’s the worst possible time for a human body to show up in Eric’s front yard—especially the body of the woman whose blood he just drank.

Now, it’s up to Sookie and Bill, the official Area Five investigator, to solve the murder. Sookie thinks that, at least this time, the dead girl’s fate has nothing to do with her. But she is wrong. She has an enemy, one far more devious than she would ever suspect, who’s set out to make Sookie’s world come crashing down.

My thoughts:

This book was pretty much on par with the other recent Sookie novels. Okay, but not great, or even particularly good. On the plus side, at least one major plotline (about the fae) in the series has been wrapped up, and none too soon, in my opinion. In a series already full of vampire and were- politics, did we really need fae politics on top of it all?

Sookie’s love life is still a mess, and at this point I’m not sure where I want her to end up. She is feeling a little lost, and so is this book.

One big problem Harris continues to have is the constant need to either repeat things that the reader should already know (especially this far into a series) or to go on and on and on about the day-to-day drivel of Sookie’s life. I get that she wants to insert some normalcy into her life, but I really don’t need to read about everything Sookie does to get ready to go visit her lawyer.

Overall, I enjoyed it enough, but the series doesn’t excite me as much as it used to. I listened to it on audio, and I probably would have been more bored with it in print.

Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | WorldCat

Other reviews:

  • “I’m struggling with whether or not I truly liked this book, as a stand alone novel, or if I’m just biased because of my attachment to the Sookie series.” — From Left to Write Book Club
  • “After all of that, I wouldn’t say I did not enjoy the book. I’m just sad about the outcome.” — the literary life of the well-read wife
  • “For me, Deadlocked was a thrilling read. Some fans are exasperated with the series, but not me.”Mina Burrows

2012: #6 – Tempting Danger (Eileen Wilks)

Title: Tempting Danger
Author: Eileen Wilks
Series: The World of the Lupi #01
Format: Kindle
Pages: 320 (2012 total – 1,584)
Word Count: 99,200 (2012 total – 474,004)
Release Date: October 04, 2004
Publisher: Berkley (MM)
Categories: paranormal fantasy, werewolves
Source: personal copy
Rating: 3 out of 5

Back of the book:

Lily Yu is a San Diego police detective investigating a series of grisly murders that appear to be the work of a werewolf. To hunt down the killer, she must infiltrate the clans. Only one man can help her–a were named Rule Turner, a prince of the lupi, whose charismatic presence disturbs Lily. Rule has his own reasons for helping the investigation–reasons he doesn’t want to share with Lily. Logic and honor demand she keep her distance, but the attraction between them is immediate and devastating-and beyond human reason. Now, in a race to fend off evil, Lily finds herself in uncharted territory, tested as never before, and at her back a man who she’s not sure she can trust ….

My thoughts:

This is pretty much your run-of-the-mill paranormal romance. Lily is human, for the most part. She does have some psychic powers. Rule is not only a werewolf, he’s the prince of the local dominant pack. Of course, sparks fly, and angst ensues.

There is one major flaw. I felt that you’re thrown into the story a bit suddenly. The book opens with the murder scene, and there you are in the middle of everything with very little world-building. It took me several chapters to feel like I had a handle on the world and its various creatures and politics. I was so confused I actually checked to make sure this was indeed the first book in the series. This meant it took me that much longer to connect with the characters.

Overall, it wasn’t a bad read, it just could have been better. I’m sure I’ll read more in the series.

Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | WorldCat

Other reviews:

  • “In the hands of a less skilled writer, Tempting Danger probably would have been fairly mind numbing.”The Romance Reader
  • “I can’t wait to read the next book in the series”Badass Book Reviews
  • “This is definitely a series with great potential.”A Book Obsession

Past reviews:

2011: The Cypress House (Michael Koryta)
2010: Little Children (Tom Perrotta)
2009: Summer (Edith Wharton)
2008: Dead Witch Walking (Kim Harrison)
2007: Between Friends (Debbie Macomber)
2006: The Rule of Four (Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason)
2005: D is for Deadbeat (Sue Grafton)

2011: #42 – Moon Called (Patricia Briggs)

mooncalledBook #42 was Moon Called, the first book in the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs. The back of the book reads:

Mercy Thompson’s life is not exactly normal. Her next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she’s fixing a VW bus for a vampire. But then, Mercy isn’t exactly normal herself.

I didn’t know much about this series when I started this book, other than a few mentions here and there about it being good. It definitely lived up to the good things I’ve heard.

The world Briggs has built is a little bit different than the typical urban fantasy/paranormal universe. There’s vampires and werewolves, but there is also a whole class of fae that includes creatures other than faeries. There’s goblins and all sorts of "lesser" fae, and then there’s Mercy, who is a skinwalker. She’s sort of like a werewolf, but she turns into a coyote and she can do it whenever she wants; she isn’t slave to the moon.

Mercy was raised by werewolves, so she quickly spots the young man who comes to her shop looking for work for what he is — a were on the run. It’s her understanding of the weres and their politics that helps her survive the events of the novel.

Mercy is a strong lead, but she’s not reckless. She doesn’t take unnecessary risks, which puts her above some other strong leading ladies. Usually they’re assertive, but have a tendency to think with their emotions rather than their head.

The book was a little heavy on world-building and were politics, but that’s not unexpected in the first book of a series. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I will definitely be reading more in the series.

Other reviews:

Patricia Briggs: Moon Called – Book Review
strange and random happenstance: Book Review – Patricia Briggs Moon Called
Book Review: Moon Called « Obsessed With Books
Book Review – Moon Called (Mercy Thompson, book 1) by Patricia Briggs
REVIEW – Moon Called by Patricia Briggs — Babbling Book Reviews

Page count: 336 (’11 total: 10,665) | Word count: 97,103 (’11 total: 4,069,953)

2010: Strawberry Shortcake Murder (Joanne Fluke)
2009: Tribute (Nora Roberts)
2008: Curse of the Spellmans (Lisa Lutz)
2007: The Fiery Cross (Diana Gabaldon)
2006: The Footprints of God (Greg Iles)
2005: Into Thin Air (Jon Krakauer)

Used in these Challenges: Countdown Challenge 2011; 2011 E-book Challenge; New Author Challenge 2011; Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge 2011;

2011: #41 – Dead Reckoning (Charlaine Harris)

deadreckoning Book #41 was Dead Reckoning, the 11th book in the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. The back of the book reads:

With her knack for being in trouble’s way, Sookie witnesses the firebombing of Merlotte’s, the bar where she works. Since Sam Merlotte is now known to be two-natured, suspicion falls immediately on the anti-shifters in the area. Sookie suspects otherwise, but her attention is divided when she realizes that her lover Eric Northman and his "child" Pam are plotting to kill the vampire who is now their master. Gradually, Sookie is drawn into the plot-which is much more complicated than she knows…

I felt pretty good about this book. I’ve been lukewarm about a lot of the books in the latter half of this series, but here we had a little bit of an old fashioned whodunit, rather than a lot of vampire/fae politics. Of course, we can’t get away from the politics altogether. I’ve always preferred action over talk in this series, and there was plenty of action here. Sookie makes some interesting decisions in this book, and I quite enjoyed the return of Bubba. It was enough to keep me interested in the next novel.

Other reviews:

Dead Reckoning (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Review
Book Review: Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris
Candace’s Book Blog: Book Review: Dead Reckoning
Review of “Dead Reckoning” by Charlaine Harris « Rhapsody in Books
Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris « Book Monkey

Audiobook length: 10 hrs 23 min | Approximate word count: 84,000 (’11 total: 3,972,850)

2010: So Much For That (Lionel Shriver)
2009: Drop Shot (Harlan Coben)
2008: Creation in Death (J.D. Robb)
2007: Final Jeopardy (Linda Fairstein)
2006: All Through the Night (Mary Higgins Clark)
2005: The Count and the Confession (John Taylor)

Used in these Challenges: Countdown Challenge 2011; 2011 Audiobook Challenge; Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge 2011;

2010: #68 – Flirt (Laurell K. Hamilton)

flirt Book #68 was Flirt, the 18th book in Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.  The back of the book reads:

When Anita Blake meets with prospective client Tony Bennington, who is desperate to have her reanimate his recently deceased wife, she is full of sympathy for his loss. Anita knows something about love, and she knows everything there is to know about loss. But what she also knows, though Tony Bennington seems unwilling to be convinced, is that the thing she can do as a necromancer isn’t the miracle he thinks he needs. The creature that Anita could coerce to step out of the late Mrs. Bennington’s grave would not be the lovely Mrs. Bennington. Not really. And not for long.

This novella was just okay for what it was meant to be — a short exploration of flirtation, a return to Anita’s day job, and a way to give Anita one more animal to call.  Unfortunately, the flirtation stuff was a little overdone.  In a scant 156 pages of story, the word flirt is used 31 times, and the word flirting 21 times. Too. Much. I wanted to mail her a thesaurus. There’s also a lot of the usual Anita self-reflection, analysis, and denial, all of it telling us nothing new about her character or her situation. If you’re stubborn like me (yes, I finally admit it) and intend to follow this series to the end no matter what, then give this a read.  Or email me and I’ll share the salient points. If you’re ready to put the Anita Blake series to bed, this book isn’t going to change your mind.

Other reviews:

Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review: ‘Flirt‘ – Laurell K. Hamilton (Headline)
Flirt by Laurell K. Hamilton | Reading with Tequila
[REVIEW] Flirt – Laurell K. Hamilton « Tez Says
The Good, The Bad and The Unread » REVIEW: Flirt by Laurell K Hamilton

Page count: 192 | Approximate word count: 28,800

2009: Skin Trade (Laurell K. Hamilton)
2008: Dead Witness (Joylene Nowell Butler)
2007: Plum Island (Nelson DeMille)
2006: Letters From An Age of Reason (Nora Hague)
2005: Therapy (Jonathan Kellerman)

Used in these Challenges: 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #64 – Dead in the Family (Charlaine Harris)

deadfamily Book #64 was Dead in the Family, the 10th book in Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series.  The back of the book reads:

After enduring torture and the loss of loved ones during the brief but deadly Faery War, Sookie Stackhouse is hurt and she’s angry. Just about the only bright spot in her life is the love she thinks she feels for vampire Eric Northman. But he’s under scrutiny by the new Vampire King because of their relationship. And as the political implications of the Shifters coming out are beginning to be felt, Sookie’s connection to the Shreveport pack draws her into the debate. Worst of all, though the door to Faery has been closed, there are still some Fae on the human side-and one of them is angry at Sookie. Very, very angry…

And with this book, I am officially caught up with the series! Unfortunately, this one wasn’t that great.  There was no overall story or theme here, just a bunch of smaller problems that have to be solved all at once. Sookie is starting to lose some of her depth, and is almost becoming a parody of herself.  I’m hoping that the next book is a little more thoughtfully written.

Other reviews:

Dead in the Family by C. Harris | Literary Escapism
All About {n}: Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris
Writings Of A Wicked Book Addict – Dead In The Family
Charlaine Harris – Dead in the Family « Fyrefly’s Book Blog
Review: Dead in the Family « Stiletto Storytime

Page count: 320 | Approximate word count: 87,939

2009: High Noon (Nora Roberts)
2008: A Living Nightmare (Darren Shan)
2007: The End (Lemony Snicket)
2006: Narcissus in Chains (Laurell K. Hamilton)
2005: Nora, Nora (Anne Rivers Siddons)

Used in these Challenges: Countdown Challenge 2010; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; 2010 Pub Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Finish That Series Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #63 – Dead and Gone (Charlaine Harris)

deadandgone Book #63 was Dead and Gone, the ninth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris.  The back of the book reads:

For Sookie Stackhouse, the day to day activities of the vampire and were communities in and around Bon Temps, Louisiana, are of vital interest, She’s blood-bound to the leader of the vamps, a friend to the local were pack, works for a man who is shifter, and has a brother who is a were-panther…

But for most of the humans in Bon Temps, the vamps are mysterious seductive creatures-and they don’t even know about the weres.

Until now. The weres and shifters have finally decided to follow the lead of the undead and reveal their existence to the ordinary world.

At first it seems to go well. Then the mutilated body of a were-panther is found in the parking lot of the bar where Sookie works. The victim is someone she knows, so she feels compelled to discover who-human or otherwise-did the deed.

But what she doesn’t realize is that there is a far greater danger than the killer threatening Bon Temps. A race of unhuman beings–older, more powerful and far more secretive than vampires or werewolves– is preparing for war. And Sookie will find herself an all-too human pawn in their battle…

A lot happens in this book.  A lot.  And it seems like every character that’s ever made an appearance in the series shows up. I think that in the end, too much happens, and the stuff that’s important isn’t fully developed.  I was a little surprised at what happens to some of the characters at the end of the book, but I’m glad that Harris has the guts to kill off major characters, not just the minor ones.  This isn’t the best book in the series, and it’s full of holes, but it’s still candy for my supe-loving brain.

Other reviews:

REVIEW: Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris | Dear Author
Whimpulsive: Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
Charlaine Harris – Dead and Gone « Fyrefly’s Book Blog
Musings of a Bookish Kitty: Review: Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
Dead and Gone (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Review

Page count: 320 | Approximate word count: 87,939

2009: Bad Things (Michael Marshall)
2008: Key of Light (Nora Roberts)
2007: Born in Death (J.D. Robb)
2006: Dark Angel (Karen Harper)
2005: Godplayer (Robin Cook)

Used in these Challenges: Sookie Reading Challenge; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #61 – From Dead to Worse (Charlaine Harris)

deadtoworse Book #61 was From Dead to Worse, the eighth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris.  The back of the book reads:

After the natural disaster of Hurricane Katrina and the manmade explosion at the vampire summit, everyone—human and otherwise—is stressed, including Louisiana cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse, who is trying to cope with the fact that her boyfriend Quinn has gone missing.

It’s clear that things are changing—whether the weres and vamps of her corner of Louisiana like it or not. And Sookie—Friend to the Pack and blood-bonded to Eric Northman, leader of the local vampire community—is caught up in the changes.

In the ensuing battles, Sookie faces danger, death, and once more, betrayal by someone she loves. And when the fur has finished flying and the cold blood finished flowing, her world will be forever altered.

Lots of moving and shaking in this book, both for Sookie and for the supernatural world in general.  I really like how Harris has used Hurricane Katrina to really drive the overall story arc of the series.  She could have easily just mentioned it and moved on, but instead she has shown us some far-reaching implications. There’s no overall plot to this book, but a lot of loose ends are tied up (or are at least an attempt is made). Sookie also discovers a branch of the family she didn’t know about. I read this in about a day, so I must have been pleased.

Other reviews:

REVIEW: From Dead To Worse by Charlaine Harris | Dear Author
From Dead To Worse (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Reveiw
Darque Reviews: From Dead to Worse by Charlaine Harris
Review of “From Dead to Worse” by Charlaine Harris « Rhapsody in Books
Charlaine Harris – From Dead to Worse « Fyrefly’s Book Blog

Page count: 336 | Approximate word count: 92,336

2009: City of Thieves (David Benioff)
2008: Full Tilt (Janet Evanovich)
2007: The Color of Magic (Terry Pratchett)
2006: City of Bones (Michael Connelly)
2005: J is for Judgment (Sue Grafton)

Used in these Challenges: Sookie Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #60 – All Together Dead (Charlaine Harris)

alltogetherdead Book #60 was All Together Dead, the seventh Sookie Stackhouse book by Charlaine Harris.  The back of the book reads:

Louisiana cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse has her hands full dealing with every sort of undead and paranormal creature imaginable. And after being betrayed by her longtime vampire love, Sookie must not only deal with a new man in her life-the shapeshifter Quinn-but also contend with the long-planned vampire summit.

The summit is a tense situation. The vampire queen of Louisiana is in a precarious position, her power base weakened by hurricane damage to New Orleans. And there are some vamps who would like to finish what nature started. Soon, Sookie must decide what side she’ll stand with. And her choice may mean the difference between survival and all-out catastrophe.

A lot of the time, later books in a series can feel watered down or old, but I’ve really enjoyed the path this series is on. Despite the heavy vampire politics in the recent books, things are not too difficult to follow here. In fact, some of the clues were neon-sign obvious to me, though Sookie doesn’t figure things out until way too late.  She also makes some logical jumps that I’m not sure I would make in her shoes. I’m finding myself warming to her relationship with Eric, and disappointed in Quinn.  I thought the most interesting part of this book was the action Sookie takes that can possibly expose her "gift" to the public at large. I’m already on to the next book, so we’ll see what happens!

Other reviews:

All Together Dead (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Review
Charlaine Harris – All Together Dead « Fyrefly’s Book Blog
All Together Dead « reading comes from writing
All Together Dead by Charlaine Harris « Scooper Speaks
Whimpulsive: All Together Dead by Charlaine Harris

Page count: 352 | Word count: 96,733

2009: Breathers (S.G. Browne)
2008: Twisted (Andrea Kane)
2007: Hollywood Station (Joseph Wambaugh)
2006: The Slippery Slope (Lemony Snicket)
2005: The Rebels (John Jakes)

Used in these Challenges: Sookie Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #32 – Definitely Dead (Charlaine Harris)

definitelydead Book #32 was Definitely Dead, the sixth book in Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series.  The back of the book reads:

Spiked with a "frothy fusion of romance, mystery, and fantasy" (Publishers Weekly), this "deliciously fiendish…increasingly riotous series" (Dallas Morning News) sends the supernaturally gifted cocktail waitress to New Orleans, where she has to deal with the legacy of one of her own family and a host of potentially dangerous characters.

Some parts (the relationship parts) of this series keep getting better.  Maybe because Sookie’s moving further away from Bill with each book?  I now feel totally justified in my dislike of him from the start, plus, I like Sookie with a shapeshifter. Unfortunately, the plot here wasn’t that great.  It seemed a little cobbled together, like the author just needed a reason to get Sookie out of town and to New Orleans for a while.  There’s a couple of small bombshells dropped that will impact later books, but overall, the plot didn’t do much to further Sookie’s story (and the reenactment stuff was just plain weird).  Though now that I’m thinking of it, what *is* Sookie’s story arc?  I’m really not sure. I’m not a fan of Bill, but I would like to see Sookie interact more with Eric and Pam again.

Other reviews:

Definately Dead (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Review
Review of “Definitely Dead” by Charlaine Harris « Rhapsody in Books
Review: Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris « I’m Booking It
Charlaine Harris – Definitely Dead « Fyrefly’s Book Blog
Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris « Scooper Speaks

Page count: 352 | Word count: 100,899

2009: For a Few Demons More (Kim Harrison)
2008: Exit Music (Ian Rankin)
2007: Dark Angels (Karleen Koen)
2006: Survivor in Death (J.D. Robb)
2005: We’ll Meet Again (Mary Higgins Clark)

Used in these Challenges: Sookie Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2010: #11 – Kitty Takes a Holiday (Carrie Vaughn)

kittyholiday Book #11 was Kitty Takes a Holiday, the third book in Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Norville series.  The back of the book reads:

After getting caught turning wolf on national television, Kitty retreats to a mountain cabin to recover and write her memoirs. But this is Kitty, so trouble is never far behind, and instead of Walden Pond, she gets Evil Dead. When werewolf hunter Cormac shows up with an injured Ben O’Farrell, Kitty’s lawyer, slung over his shoulder, and a wolf-like creature with glowing red eyes starts sniffing around the cabin, Kitty wonders if any of them will get out of these woods alive…

Another great entry in the Kitty Norville series! Kitty is trying to lay low in this book, dealing with her sudden outing and wondering if she should even continue her radio show.  Then Cormac shows up, and her personal life gets… messy. I liked the direction this book took us in, and I felt like we got a little more up close and personal with Kitty.  There is one big surprise here that could have a major effect on later story lines; it’s good to shake things up! I’m looking forward to reading further in the series.

Other reviews:

Carrie Vaughn: Kitty Takes A Holiday – Book Review
Kitty Takes a Holiday by Carrie Vaughn | Amber Stults
Booking Mama: Review: Kitty Takes a Holiday
48. Kitty Takes a Holiday by Carrie Vaughn
Darque Reviews: Kitty Takes A Holiday by Carrie Vaughn

Page count: 336 | Approximate word count: 84,000

2009: The Brass Verdict (Michael Connelly)
2008: The Bone Garden (Tess Gerritsen)
2007: Prince of Fire (Daniel Silva)
2006: L is for Lawless (Sue Grafton)
2005: The Wide Window (Lemony Snicket)

Used in these Challenges: Random Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; 2010 100+ Reading Challenge; E-book Reading Challenge; Pages Read Challenge Season 2;

2009: #115 – Kitty Goes to Washington (Carrie Vaughn)

kitty Book #115 was Kitty Goes to Washington, the second book in Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Norville series.  The back of the book reads:

Celebrity werewolf and late-night radio host Kitty Norville prefers to be heard and not seen. So when she’s invited to testify at a Senate hearing on behalf of supernaturals, and her face gets plastered on national TV, she inherits a new set of friends, and enemies, including the vampire mistress of the city; an über-hot Brazilian were-jaguar; and a Bible-thumping senator who wants to expose Kitty as a monster. Kitty quickly learns that in this city of dirty politicians and backstabbing pundits, everyone’s itching for a fight.

I actually liked this second Kitty book a little more than the first.  There wasn’t all of the pack politics, and Kitty is starting to show her backbone. Of course, there are politics of a different sort at work here, as Kitty has been subpoenaed to testify in front of a congressional committee about the existence of preternatural beings.  She finds herself bombarded from all sides, by not only a fire-and-brimstone conservative senator and a tabloid reporter, but also the mistress of DC’s vampires. I did find the confrontation with cult leader Elijah Smith to be a little too quick, almost an afterthought.  I think there should have been some more buildup for that storyline.  But overall, I really liked this and will definitely be continuing with the series.  And hopefully, there will be more of were-jaguar Luis!

Other reviews:

Carrie Vaughn: Kitty Goes To Washington – Book Review
Booking Mama: Review: Kitty Goes to Washington
Gripping Books: Kitty Goes to Washington
Sam’s Book Blog: Kitty Goes To Washington by Carrie Vaughn
Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist: Kitty Goes to Washington

Page count: 360 | Word count: 86,675

2007: A Lick of Frost (Laurell K. Hamilton)

Used in these Challenges: Countdown Challenge 2010;

2009: #111 – Dead as a Doornail (Charlaine Harris)

doornail Book #111 was Dead as a Doornail, the fifth book in Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series.  The back of the book reads:

When Sookie’s brother Jason’s eyes start to change, she knows he’s about to turn into a were-panther for the first time. But her concern becomes cold fear when a sniper sets his deadly sights on the local changeling population-and Jason’s new panther brethren suspect he may be the shooter. Now, Sookie has until the next full moon to find out who’s behind the attacks, unless the killer decides to find her first.

I liked this one a little more than the last two.  Sookie is getting more independent and sure of herself, and is less willing to let the men in her life walk all over her.  I’m still glad that Bill is on the outs — so shoot me. I did notice that it seems like Sookie has developed a bit of a temper… I don’t know if her anger has been ramped up, or if I’m just now noticing it more, but she does an awful lot of yelling and storming out of rooms. I think my enjoyment of the series has been heightened by the HBO show, because now I have great mental pictures of the characters (especially Eric and Sam!). Also, well-read Harris fans will recognize the cameo appearance by Lily Bard.

Other reviews:
Dead As A Doornail (True Blood) by Charlaine Harris : Book Review
Review: Dead As A Doornail, by Charlaine Harris «
eclectic / eccentric: Book Review: Dead as a Doornail
Ulat Buku in the City: Dead as a Doornail
The Eclectic Reader: Dead As A Doornail by Charlaine Harris

Page count: 320 | Word count: 88,296

2007: A Walk in the Woods (Bill Bryson)
2006: Storm Front (Jim Butcher)

Used in these Challenges: Sookie Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010;

2009: #67 – The Accidental Human (Dakota Cassidy)

accidentalhuman Book #67 was The Accidental Human, the third book in Dakota Cassidy’s Accidental Friends series.  The back of the book reads:

Wanda Schwartz is raking in the dough selling Bobbie-Sue Cosmetics—and she’s a pro at recruiting new saleswomen. So, she’s shocked when a man comes to one of her in-home parties—a very hot man. Heath Jefferson is sure to put some extra spin into a lot of women’s color wheels.

When Wanda is diagnosed with a terminal illness, it doesn’t have to be a death sentence. With a werewolf and a vampire for best friends, she has options that most ordinary people wouldn’t. As Wanda ponders what to do about her mortality, Heath reveals he has secrets, and one of them is that his former bloodlust has turned into an old-fashioned lust—for Wanda. And he’s already given up too much to lose the love of his lifetimes.

I picked this up on a whim at the library, being in somewhat of a paranormal mood lately.  Unfortunately, I found it kinda of “meh”.  I admittedly haven’t read the first two books in the series, but I don’t think they were necessary for this storyline.  I liked Wanda, and the story of Wanda and Heath, but Wanda’s friends Nina and Marty just rubbed me wrong. They’re kinda bullies… though that would apply more to Nina than Marty. And Wanda took *forever* to tell anyone about her illness, and I think it would have been more interesting to have more time spent with *everyone* dealing with what was going to happen, rather than Wanda just dealing with it herself.  So it was an okay read overall, but not good enough for me to seek out more of her work.

Page count: 352 | Approximate word count: 88,000

2008: Neon Rain (James Lee Burke)
2007: Portrait of a Killer (Patricia Cornwell)
2006: The Grim Grotto (Lemony Snicket)
2005: Hell at the Breech (Tom Franklin)

Used in these Challenges: 100+ Reading Challenge 2009; The 999 Challenge; Support Your Local Library Challenge 2009;

2009: #65 – Kitty and the Midnight Hour (Carrie Vaughn)

kitty1 Book #65 was Kitty and the Midnight Hour, the first book in Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Norville series.  The back of the book reads:

Kitty Norville is a midnight-shift DJ for a Denver radio station—and a werewolf in the closet. Sick of lame song requests, she accidentally starts "The Midnight Hour," a late-night advice show for the supernaturally disadvantaged. After desperate vampires, werewolves, and witches across the country begin calling in to share their woes, her new show is a raging success. But it’s Kitty who can use some help. With one sexy werewolf-hunter and a few homicidal undead on her tail, Kitty may have bitten off more than she can chew…

I’ve been meaning to start this series for quite a while, and finally got around to it!  It definitely was worth the wait.  I thought the story was wonderfully written, much better than the books you usually find in this genre.  The story was tight, without a lot of extra analysis or gratuitous sex hanging around.  I liked Kitty quite a bit, especially how she grew and got more confident as the story progressed, and I really liked the way the werewolf and vampire cultures were explained.  I was trying to think of another book I’ve read that had a werewolf as the main character, and I think this was the first! I’ll definitely be continuing this series, and I highly recommend it for anyone who is interesting in the paranormal genre but wants to ease their way into it.

Page count: 288 | Approximate word count: 72,000

2008: The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (Lauren Willig)
2007: Blood Sport (Dick Francis)
2006: Danse Macabre (Laurell K. Hamilton)
2005: Silent Partner (Jonathan Kellerman)

Used in these Challenges: Countdown Challenge; 1st in a Series Challenge; 100+ Reading Challenge 2009; The 999 Challenge; A-Z Challenge 2009; Read Your Own Books Challenge;

2006: #24 – Micah (Laurell K. Hamilton)

micah

Title: Micah
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Anita Blake #13
Pages:  288
★★★☆☆ 

There are lots of reasons to raise the dead-some private, some public. In this case, the feds have a witness who died before he could speak on the record. They want him raised so his testimony can be taken. So here I am, on a plane to Philadelphia, flying off to do my job.

But I’m not alone. Micah is with me. Micah, head of the St. Louis were-leopard pard. King to my Queen. The only one of my lovers who can stir my blood with just a glance from his chartreuse cat’s eyes. I was happy to have him at my side.

Until he mentioned that this will be our first time alone together. No Master Vampire. No Alpha Werewolf. Just me and Micah. And all my fears and doubts…

My thoughts:

Book #24 was Micah, a stand-alone book in Laurel K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.

I have mixed feelings about this. Not really because of the content, but because of the delivery. A novel this was not. It was a short story printed with 14pt type and double-spaced, with full page chapter headings to add some bulk to the book. Not really worth the $8 I spent on it (man, I remember when paperbacks were $3.50). I read it in about an hour and a half Saturday night. I’m expecting big things from her next real book in the series, which is due out in June.

Book count: 24
Pages in book: 288
Page count: 9,946
Words in book: 43,804
Word count:2,816,025

1,000,000 words surpassed — 2/2/06
2,000,000 words surpassed –
2/14/06

2006: #18 – Incubus Dreams (Laurell K. Hamilton)

incubusdreams

Title: Incubus Dreams
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Anita Blake #12
Pages:  752
★★☆☆☆ 

No one is as good at stripping bare the dark desires of the inhuman soul as Laurell K. Hamilton, something she has proven time after time in her New York Times bestselling Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter novels. Now, in Incubus Dreams, Anita’s life is more complicated than ever, as she is caught between her obligations to the living and the undead.

A vampire serial killer who preys on strippers is on the loose. Called in to consult on the case, Anita fears her judgment may be clouded by a conflict of interest. For she is, after all, the consort of Jean-Claude, the ever-intoxicating Master Vampire of the City. Surrounded by suspicion, overwhelmed by her attempts to control the primal lusts that continue to wrack her as a result of her passionate contacts with vampires, werewolves, and the shapeshifter Micah, Anita does something unprecedented: She calls for help.

My thoughts:

Book #18 was Incubus Dreams, the 12th book in Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.

I thought I was done with Ms. Hamilton for a while, then I realized that I got this for Christmas. I had to track it down, it wasn’t where it was supposed to be! Same complaint still applies. Somewhere along the way she started to sacrifice plot for a lot of sex. I miss the plot! Please, tone down the sex and give us some story!

Book count: 18
Pages in book: 752
Page count: 7,835
Words in book: 230,217
Word count:2,248,794

1,000,000 words surpassed – 2/2/06
2,000,000 words surpassed -
2/14/06

2006: #17 – Cerulean Sins (Laurell K. Hamilton)

ceruleansins

Title: Cerulean Sins
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Anita Blake #11
Pages:  416
★★★☆☆ 

Once a sworn enemy of all monsters, Anita is now the human consort of both Master Vampire Jean Claude and leopard shapeshifter Micah. When a centuries-old vampire hits St. Louis, Anita finds herself needing all the dark forces her passion can muster to save the ones she loves.

My thoughts:

Book #17 was Cerulean Sins, the 11th book in Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.

I still like these books, but like I said when I blogged about the last ones, they’re starting to contain a bit too much sex. With this book, it seemed like the first 100 pages or so was Anita moving from one sexual scene to another. I think the series lost something when Hamilton saddled Anita with this supernatural sexual appetite that has to be satisfied (or what, I don’t really know).

Maybe I’ll understand more when I read the one I’ve skipped, Narcissus in Chains. Don’t have that one yet. You may noticed that I also skipped over book #9, but that was actually the first one in the series that I read, which happened to take place during a time when she’s not really having *any* sex at all.

I’ll continue to read the series, I just hope that Hamilton recaptures some of the formula that made the first 6 books or so of the series so great.

Book count: 17
Pages in book: 416
Page count: 7,083
Words in book: 171,442
Word count:2,018,577

1,000,000 words surpassed – 2/2/06
2,000,000 words surpassed
- 2/14/06

2006: #16 – Blue Moon (Laurell K. Hamilton)

bluemoon

Title: Blue Moon
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Anita Blake #08
Pages:  418
★★★★☆ 

“Richard was an alpha werewolf. It was his only serious flaw. We’d broken up after I’d seen him eat somebody.”

Still, you never forget your ex-fiance. And when Richard calls Anita Blake at three in the morning, she knows it won’t be good news. It seems Richard had gotten himself thrown in jail on a rape charge. But Anita knows that though he is a monster, Richard’s no rapist. And it’s up to her to prove his innocence — before the blue moon creates even bigger problems for Richard…

My thoughts:

Book #16 was Blue Moon, the 8th book in Laurel K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.

First of all, yes, I have been reading a lot.

Second of all, I do enjoy these books. However, some of the focus on sex is getting a little out of hand. Especially in the one I’m reading now (though I guess I shouldn’t talk about that one until I’m finished).

Book count: 16
Pages in book: 418
Page count: 6,667
Words in book: 155,027

Word count:1,847,135

1,000,000 words surpassed — 2/2/06

2006: #15 – Burnt Offerings (Laurell K. Hamilton)

burntofferings

Title: Burnt Offerings
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Anita Blake #07
Pages:  400
★★★★☆ 

While a pyrokinetic arsonist targets the havens of St. Louis’s legal vampire population, Anita Blake–the local expert on supernatural creatures–finds herself embroiled in a dangerous and deadly game of undead politics in defense of her lover, the city’s Master Vampire. The sixth installment of Hamilton’s popular “Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter” series exposes the more vulnerable side of its tough-talking, hard-as-nails heroine.

My thoughts:

Book #15 was Burnt Offerings, the 7th book in Laurel K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series.

First of all, yes, I have been reading a lot.

Second of all, I do enjoy these books. However, some of the focus on sex is getting a little out of hand. Especially in the one I’m reading now (though I guess I shouldn’t talk about that one until I’m finished).

Book count: 15
Pages in book: 400
Page count: 6,249
Words in book: 133,614

Word count:1,692,108

1,000,000 words surpassed — 2/2/06

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