Posts tagged ‘Chicago’

Just finished reading . . . Swallowing Darkness & Natural Born Charmer

Yesterday, I had so much fun over at DIK Island. There were some wonderful suggestions in the comments for some additions to my fantasy casting post!

I finished a couple of audiobooks over the last couple of days. I already posted about Natural Born Charmer about a week or 2 ago, while I was listening to it, so that review will be a quickie:

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Swallowing Darkness (Merry Gentry series, book 7) by Laurell K Hamilton

This complexly plotted series is definitely one to be read in order. If you are interested in starting this series, it’s worth starting with book 1, A Kiss of Shadows.

Here’s the book description:

I am Meredith, princess of faerie, wielder of the hands of Flesh and Blood, and at long last, I am with child – twins, fathered by my royal guard. Though my uncle, Taranis, King of Light and Illusion, claims that he is the true father since he abducted me from my home, betrayed, and defiled me. And now he has branded my guards as a threat to my unborn children.

Bearing an heir has placed me halfway to my aunt’s throne, that much closer to my reign over the Unseelie Court – and well ahead of her son, my cousin Cel, in this race. Now I must stay alive to see my children born and claim my place as queen.

But not all in faerie are pleased with the news, and conspirators from every court in the realm plot against me and mine. They seek to strip my guards, my lovers, from me by poisoned word or cold steel. But I still have supporters, and even friends, among the goblins and the sluagh, who will stand by me.

I am Meredith Nic Essus, and those who would defy and destroy me are destined to pay a terrible price – for I am truly my father’s daughter. To protect what is mine, I will sacrifice anything–even if it means waging a great battle against my darkest enemies and making the most momentous decision ever made as princess of faerie.

Swallowing Darkness by Laurell K. Hamilton

There is definitely a feeling that this series is coming to an ultimate conclusion. Merry and her men are pretty much a fixed group, now. The men are (mostly) accepting of each other, and tied together by their love and devotion to Merry and their unborn children. The struggle between the Seelie, Unseelie, and Merry’s group has never been more desperate.
There’s something that happens to me when I read this series, where while I’m listening to (or reading) it, I am utterly compelled and find it exciting and interesting.  Yet, later, when I intellectually think about the story, it doesn’t fare as well. It’s like LKH creates this world that is very emotionally satisfying for me on some level, and I’m happy as long as the bubble doesn’t burst. IDK, I’m still struggling to figure this out.

At least as far as the spiritual element of this book, Swallowing Darkness was the best in the series with how she explained the metaphysical connection Merry has with the Goddess, with the world around her, and with her men. It was, for me, the most interesting part of the book.

One thing that had me scratching my head about Swallowing Darkness, was that the 2nd love scene— there were only 2 in the book, which is unusal for this series — felt sort of random, and tacked on as an afterthought.

There was, however, plenty of battle action, which kept the book moving along. So much happens in each book, yet with LKH’s writing style, it always happens in an extremely short period of time. Most books, if they were to take place over the course of 1 night would be excruciating to read. But, time flows so differently in these books, and LKH really makes it work.

Swallowing Darkness was an excellent audiobook production, narrated by Claudia Black. (Stargate, Farscape) Book 8, Divine Misdemeanors, will be released October 2009.

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Natural Born Charmer (Chicago Stars series, book 7) by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

I had featured this book in a Current Reads post a week or two ago, and it was as much fun as I thought it was going to be!

Here’s the book description:

Chicago Stars quarterback Dean Robillard is the luckiest man in the world: a bona-fide sports superstar and the pride of the NFL with a profitable side career as a buff billboard model for End Zone underwear. But life in the glory lane has started to pale, and Dean has set off on a cross-country trip to figure out what’s gone wrong. When he hits a lonely stretch of Colorado highway, he spies something that will shake up his gilded life in ways he can’t imagine. A young woman . . . dressed in a beaver suit.

Blue Bailey is on a mission to murder her ex. Or at least inflict serious damage. As for the beaver suit she’s wearing . . . Is it her fault that life keeps throwing her curveballs? Witness the expensive black sports car pulling up next to her on the highway and the Greek god stepping out of it.

Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Not to be redundant, but this was such a charming book! Tuesday, I finally got to the point where I hated only being able to listen to it from the car, and brought it in the house so I could finish it. I lugged my laptop around with me, like the world’s biggest iPod, and finally stayed up far too late that night, so I could finish it.

As funny and light a book that this was, the characters also had enough depth and complexity to make it really satisfying. An unexpected bonus was, it turned out that few of the characters that I had just read about in What I Did for Love (my post here) were introduced in Natural Born Charmer.

I will definitely be tracking down more of SEP’s books!

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April 23, 2009 at 6:00 am 10 comments


Vintage pin-up girl reading
Urban Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult, Mystery, M/M, Fantasy, Speculative Fiction, audiobooks, it just goes on and on...
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