Monday, June 13, 2011

Hit List by Laurell K Hamilton

A serial killer is hunting the Pacific Northwest, murdering victims in a gruesome and spectacular way. The local police suspect "monsters" are involved, and have called in Anita Blake and Edward, US Marshals who really know their monsters, to catch the killer.

But some monsters are very real. The Harlequin have been the bogeymen of the vampire world for more than a thousand years; they are a secret so dark that even to speak their name can earn you a death sentence. Now they are here in America, hunting weretigers, and human police.

The Harlequin serve the Mother of All Darkness, the first vampire. She was supposed to be dead, but only her body was destroyed. Now she needs a new one, and she's decided that Anita Blake's is the body she wants. Edward thinks the serial killings are a trap to lure Anita closer to the most dangerous vampire they've ever hunted. The vampires call Edward "Death," and Anita the "Executioner," but Mommy Darkest is coming to kill one, and possess the other, and she doesn't care how many others have to die along the way.

So yeah. I can't say that I loved this book. I can say that I had high hopes. SUCH high hopes. I remember when Laurell first revealed that this was going to be an Edward heavy book and I did a mental happy dance. Edward? Such a great character! I loved Obsidian Butterfly (old I know - but I'm just saying!) and I figured that with him featured in this installment things couldn't be too bad.

But see, this is a great example of how I can in fact be wrong sometimes.

The whole thing was just 'eh'. I felt like nothing happened until the last chapter and then that was so anti-climatic I just sat there going "That's it? That's really it?" with a look of confusion on my face. Luckily only one person was recipient of my 'less than pleasant' texts about the whole thing. I'm not even sure what's happening here because I was never one of those LKH fans that sat there wringing my hands because Anita started going out and having explicit sex. I still liked Anita, I liked the small - small - harem she had going on at that time, and I didn't feel like it detracted from the overarching storyline.

And I wouldn't say that it was sex in this book that detracted from the overarching storyline. I just felt like the storyline was a little lackluster in the first place. Everything was too easy and got wrapped in neat little bows that just left me wondering why I'd read the book in the first place.

Which made me sad. Because at one point I really loved these books and sat almost frothing at the mouth in anticipation of the next one. Sigh.

Still, are you by chance looking for something to perk up your expereince while reading this book? If so I'd HIGHLY recommend you go check out the 'Hit List Drinking Game' on ALPHA reader. It has such gems as:

"Anita has sex with a gorgeous stranger because the ardeur needs to feed and said guy is somehow down-trodden/outcast/misunderstood etc, but he appreciates Anita's blatant arousal of him (she likes me, she really likes me!) - CHUG!"

I almost feel like I should reread Hit List just for a chance to play along!

Overall Feeling - Eh/Thumbs down

Series - .... 20) Hit List

In case you missed it, you still have almost a full day and a half to enter my Young Adult Giveaway!!


Danielle said...

Aw, thanks for the shout-out! lol - beware of alcohol poisoning :)

I agree, I wasn't totally disgusted with Anita's initial sexual freedom. I liked Nathaniel, Asher, Jean-Claude and Jason enough to be mildly happy when she bought them to her bed ... but now that Anita adds a new man (or three!) to her harem in every book, the core group of male characters that we've come to know and love are being diluted. I mean, Anita didn't even make a phone call home throughout all of 'Hit List'! She knows that Marmee Noir is prowling, and her 'sweeties' are in trouble, but she doesn't even check up on them!?!

Cheryl said...

Sad to hear this one didn't live up to the billing. I'm a long time LKH fan and I never minded the sex, but sometimes the sex and the angst doesn't leave time to tell a good story. Sounds like that happened here.

Dana said...

@Danielle - I think you hit the nail right on the head. I loved the original cast of guys we came to know and love. I can't say that many after damien still have the same pull, they're just too many. And now Anita might say there's so much trouble with emotional balance in a poly relationship, but she doesn't even seem to be trying to help at all!

@Cheryl - yeah I hate to say it, but this just didn't do it for me. The short novella Flirt was better than this :-/

Liz Svoboda said...

Completely agree with all of the above. I think LKH is just trotting out the same book recipe over and over again: 1/2 part gruesome crime, 1 part reaction to chauvinist lawman, 2 parts emotional turmoil that is too easily 'solved,' 2 parts description of hawt men, 3 parts (or really just however many you think will sell the book) sex scenes/orgies. Shake well and serve to naively hopeful readers, who don't mind sex, but would like a little more story to hold it all together.

And, seriously, that was all she had to do to get rid of Marmee Noir? There had better be some serious mystical backlash in the next book, or I will call foul because I cannot suspend my disbelief that far.

Dana said...

@Liz - I know right?! After all that Marmee Noir build-up I couldn't believe it - if I don't see some consequences that makes sense in the face of that action in the next book I'm going to be so annoyed. I'm already facing the possibility that I might have to let these go as 'automatic buys' :-/

Portugal said...

Let me start by saying that I loved this series. Jean-Claude is one of my all time favorite characters and I have read and re-read the first 8-9 books over and over again. Cerulean Sins seemed to be the last great one written by LKH. Her readers got some back story on Jean-Claude and his relationship with Anita was not only hot, but very sweet. There is nothing sweet or hot in Hit List. More of the same old Anita waxing poetic on how everyone is either jealous of her and how bad ass she is, in love with her, wants to have sex with her, or just plain not as good as her. Even Edward, the psychopath that he is, can't seem to fathom a world without her. If she dies, he will unleash a war on all who harm her until he, too, goes out in a blaze of glory. The psychopath has been neutered just as every one of Anita's former badass boyfriends were.. They need to start some sort of support group....
I am sick of reading the same phrases over and over.. I'm tired of reading dialogue that is written exclusively to show how desirable Anita is ... I'm tired of Anita's sexual exploits with new men and the "rainbow" of tigers she has at her beck and call...and most of all, I miss Jean-Claude and Richard. Up until the last few books, it was refreshing to see two strong, Alpha characters in love with a strong, Alpha woman. Anita is no longer a strong Alpha, she's become an arrogant bully.
This book is blatantly arrogant and self-serving. It is not a coincidence that Anita is described as a younger version of LKH herself and that she is the most desirable female to every man she comes across. It's getting old real fast.