Monday, January 28, 2008

Even Vampires Get the Blues; K. MacAlister

Written by Katie MacAlister and published by Signet Eclipse in 2006, this is a title I looked forward to reading for a long time. The previous book in the series is Sex Lies and Vampires which I read and posted my thoughts about HERE. Anime Queen loves Katie Maxwell (MacAlister's young adult alter ego) and her sense of humor and fun, but I confess I struggle with love and laughter paranormals. I mostly go for the dark and intense paranormals, so take my thoughts here with a grain of salt if you really enjoy the love and laughter romance subgenre.

Samantha Cosse is a human elf 'halfbreed' who lives in Scotland. One of her talents is finding lost objects. Moravian Dark One (has no soul) vampire Pean Scott (tribute to Sir Walter, maybe??) needs to find a lost staute in the next five days or else his mother forfeits her soul. Paen hires Samantha's new sleuthing firm to help him. From there EVGTB turns into a race against time. Can Samantha help him in time? Will Pean be able to keep her safe from those who threaten her and her cousin?

Trouble is there isn't much relationship development going on. Everything revolves around finding the statue and associated issues. Paen is supposed to be a scholar and yet he doesn't question what he was told about the statue or the truth behind the claims he must find it at all costs. To my mind scholars are inquisitive and curious- but we don't see him dig very deeply into the validity of why he must find this object.

Second issue for me was the lack of relationship development between Samantha and Paen. Many things happen to them, but I don't see much between them. Superficially most of their interaction comes between the sheets, but I really missed the emotional asapect of relationship building that, for me, is central to romances regardless of subgenre.

Thirdly, and this is tied in with number two, after a while so much happened to Samamntha that I gave up reading and skimmed. There were just one too many plot twists and I couldn't take it anymore. I'd had enough. I skimmed through the rest. Up to a certain point plot twists are good, but it's necessary for me to feel that each is important for character or relationship development- anything beyond that and I get bored or impatient or both.

Fourth- Paen's name is annoyingly similar to the word peaen which is a song or hyymn of joy and praise. It's like a pebble in your shoe or a run at the toe of your hosiery- irritating enough that you're constantly picking at your foot and not paying attention to the task at hand, ie: reading this romance.

So there you have it- a love and laughter vampire romance that didn't quite work for me. I've enjoyed Ms. MacAlister's writing before and I plan to look over her upcoming works. This might have worked better if it had been categorized in another genre.

No comments: