The music came back up and the next group of little girls, slightly older, came out. And there was a lot of that in the next hour and change. I liked dance, and it was no reflection on the kids, but my will to live began to seep away by about the fifth group of sequined children...
Anita Blake is back in St. Louis and trying to live a normal life--as normal as possible for someone who is a legal vampire executioner and a U.S. Marshal. There are lovers, friends and their children, school programs to attend. In the midst of all the ordinary happiness, a vampire from Anita's past reaches out. She was supposed to be dead, killed in an explosion, but the Mother of All Darkness is the first vampire, their dark creator. It's hard to kill a God. This dark Goddess has reached out to her here--in St. Louis, home of everyone Anita loves most. The Mother of All Darkness has decided she has to act now or never, to control Anita and all the vampires in America.
The Mother of All Darkness believes that the triumvirate created by master vampire Jean-Claude with Anita and the werewolf Richard Zeeman has enough power for her to regain a body and to immigrate to the New World. But the body she wants to possess is already taken. Anita is about to learn a whole new meaning to sharing her body, one that has nothing to do with the bedroom. And if the Mother of All Darkness can't succeed in taking over Anita's body for herself, she means to see that no one else has the use of it, ever again. Even Belle Morte, not always a friend to Anita, has sent word: "Run if you can..."
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Genre: Adult Fiction, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Berkley Books
Publication Date: June 1, 2010
My Rating: 3/5
This book starts with Anita, and everyone she loves, watching a children's recital. We are re-introduced to many of the characters from the previous novels at this time, as they are either in the audience, or are participating in the show. From there, things get a little more intense.
If you, like me, are a fan of the first Anita Blake novels, this one might be a bit too much for you. It has a lot of sex, BDSM, m/m, m/m/f, f/f/m, and any other situation you can think of. A lot of the sex was for political means but it was still too much.
I found that this book was more of a transitional book, and I think everything was being laid out for the next book to be a plot and action driven book. This book takes place largely in the Circus of the Damned. Anita does receive a work-related call, but unfortunately she doesn't go to the area, she only is asked for her thoughts on a video feed. I really would have liked to see her out working some cases rather than watching her on her back or in other various positions throughout the book. With that said, I did like that we got to see more of the inner workings of the triumvirate, both Jean-Claude's and hers. I did find that the mens' personalities took a back seat to Anita. They seemed to be going to her for advice, rather than sticking to their opinions, or being themselves. Meanwhile, they were reassuring her about her emotional baggage. There was a lot of talk of feelings as well.
The book was not big on plot, or action, so it didn't seem that things were really going anywhere. Near the end of the book things were getting interesting, and the old Anita was starting to emerge, but she went back into hiding, and the crisis of the book was summed up in only a few short pages. Fleshed out, they would have pulled the old Anita out of hiding, and I think the book would have been more enjoyable if that had happened. However, we'll have to wait and see what will happen in the next installment.
All in all, the book was okay barring the fact that it bordered on erotica. If you are a die-hard Anita Blake fan and loved the first books, you probably won't enjoy this one as much, but if you are fine with erotica you should like it. It was a transitional book, so there was not a lot of action and that might deter readers as well. Some old characters have re-emerged, though some (say Edward) are still notoriously missing. I'll definitely be waiting for the next book in the hopes that it has a lot of fast-paced action like the early Anita books.
Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks goes to Bronwyn from Penguin Canada for sending me this book to review.