Sunday, April 05, 2015

From the Archives: A Couple of Laurel K. Hamilton Anita Blake Series Books

I began keeping a reading journal several years before I began blogging. I find it interesting to sift through my thoughts of books that I read back then. My reviews were often brief and contained little substance, but I thought it'd be fun to document them here on my blog as well as share them with you. The first half of 2006 seemed to be my time for series reading. Here are some of my reviews from 2006: 


Micah (Anita Blake, The Vampire Slayer,  # 13) by Laurell K. Hamilton
Jove, 2006
Fantasy; 245 pgs

I  resisted for nearly a week before rushing out the store to buy a copy of Micah, Laurell K. Hamilton’s latest Anita Blake book. Initially, Micah had been written as a short story, and, compared to her last few Anita Blake books, that would definitely be true, page number wise. In Micah, readers get a little closer look into Micah’s past, learning how he became a were leopard. We also are teased about Anita’s growing powers as an animator. It’s a good thing Ms. Hamilton has another book coming out in the series in a few months. In Micah, Anita steps in for her friend and fellow animator, Larry, when his wife goes into labor 5 months into her pregnancy. Anita flies to Philadelphia to help the Feds raise a dead man for a trial. Micah accompanies Anita to avoid any problems with the ardeur along the way. The book did have a short story feel to it and definitely whet the appetite for the upcoming Anita Blake book. It was fun to revisit with old friends as well as get to know Micah a little better.


Danse Macabre (Anita Blake, The Vampire Slayer,  # 14) by Laurell K. Hamilton
Jove, 2006
Fantasy;483 pgs

While Incubus Dreams was mostly about Anita learning to control the ardeur, this most recent installment of the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, series was very similar, only this time, Anita’s powers have grown and she’s learned new truths about her abilities that she must come to terms with. I would by lying if I said I didn’t miss the more crime fighting focus that the earlier books had. They read more like mysteries or suspense novels; and if you know me, you know how much I enjoy those types of books. I think that Danse Macabre had a lot of potential, but it fell flat. Although I understand the argument that the personal stories and Anita’s struggle with the ardeur and her other growing powers is the major story line in the most recent books, I felt that in this particular book other major themes and subplots, some that played or could have played into that, were not explored as fully as I would have liked them to have been. For me, it took away from the story, making it feel like less than it could have been. Hopefully future books will explore more of what was missing from this book. I also couldn’t help but feel that something was missing in regards to the characters as I read the book. Despite the author’s focus on many of the well-liked characters from the series, a few of those characters didn’t seem quite as well drawn as they have been in previous books, including Anita. And at times, the conversations seemed contrived.

My favorite scene was probably the beginning scene at the ballet. It held the most interest for me—more like the earlier books in the series. Another part of the book that intrigued me was the one where Anita’s own inner animals come to the surface. I hope that will be explored further in later books. Of the characters, Claudia’s character interested me most. Although not my favorite character overall, she certainly was my favorite in Danse Macabre.

Although there were some good moments, overall I found Danse Macabre disappointing. The book did not enrapture me like many of the previous books in the series. I found it lacking and anticlimactic.


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12 comments:

  1. I think I'd only read the first two books of this series. Though I did buy a few more of this series, I've yet to read them. As the time goes, I find the tempt to read them isn't as great anymore. I don't know, maybe I'll read them in the near future. Time will tell.

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    1. Melody - There are books I feel that way about too. My interest in them wans over time. I don't have an interest in reading more in this series.

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  2. Having just recently read and reviewed a Laurell K Hamilton book myself I was especially eager to read your thoughts on these books. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Tracy - I liked this series early on--I made it to book 14, after all. I haven't missed it though since I gave it up. Too many other books I was more interested in.

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  3. I'm trying to think how many books I read in this series. Maybe 6 or 7. And then somehow I just got busy with other books. I've thought about going back and starting again - and think I'd have to as it has been a long, long time. Still undecided about it. Maybe I'll just think of those first ones fondly. ;-)

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    1. Kay - It's easy to get busy with other books. This is one series I am not sure I will ever pick up again. This was one of the first series that got me into urban fantasy and I will always be grateful to Laurell K. Hamilton for that.

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  4. Anita Blake's books used to be on my to-read list a long time ago but I haven't looked into them since. Not sure they are for me but I love their premise.

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    1. Athira - Same here. It's been nine years since I last read one of Hamilton's books.

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  5. I've never read this series but had a few friends that were addicted to it. It does sound fun even though I'm not the biggest vampire fan.

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    1. Katherine - I was hooked on these books years ago. My interests and that of the author went in different directions though and it's not a series I continued after finished Danse Macabre.

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  6. I remember reading a couple of books in this series but it's been a long time. I think maybe even before I had my blog! Fun to think back on these.

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    1. Iliana - It has been fun looking back at my reading all those years ago. Not much has changed in some ways, but in others it has.

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