Friday, June 4, 2010

Book Review: Bullet

Laurell K. Hamilton is one of those prolific authors who has a bazillion books under her belt, not including anthologies. Bullet is the nineteenth book in the Anita Vampire, Vampire Hunter novels.

The beginning was slow for me, but maybe that's because I've just come back for a conference where "action in the first chapter!" "plot catalyst in the first two pages!" was pounded into my head, and Bullet didn't start with action or a plot catalyst. But, it's LKH, this is her nineteenth book in the series, and I think it works well for her.

She works so well, with such a huge cast of characters. The cast keeps growing, though, and it's getting to the point where it's hard for me to remember names for supporting cast unless I go back and re-read a large chunk of the series. Which I don't mind doing, really. I love the first eight books (they're the best in the whole series, if you ask me), but eighteen is a bit much to chew through when a new book has been released, and I want to read it, and read it right now.

The other downside of Bullet, for me at least, was the time she took to describe all the character's wardrobe right before some big bit of metaphysics was about to happen, or there was going to be action, political kow-towing, or any other bit of action that drives any book forward. When you have one or two characters to dress, it's not a problem. When you have eight or so in the same room, being dressed in detail, it gets to be a bit much and really slows down the pacing. There were parts I was tempted to skim through, just because I wanted to get to the action. I'm of the mind that unless the characters are buck naked, I'm going to assumed their dressed in something, and I'd rather see that description come through as it's relevant, rather than have it dumped all on my head at once. Because frankly? I'm going to forget what they're wearing as soon as that first fist is thrown.

The thing that really worked for me was that LKH brought back her super evil villain. I'd been horribly disappointed by the previous book (Skin Trade) when this evil villain was taken care of quickly, with no battle of epic proportions, which what I think the villain deserves. But! Lo and behold, Anita's not out of the woods yet. That's a big "Woot!" from me.

Bullet. Really liked it, and I'm certainly going to pick up the next book when it's released. After nineteen books, there's a certain obligation to keep reading to find out how things will end. For me, for right now, it's not an obligation. I want to keep reading, because I love the characters, and care what happens to them.


  1. I saw this out at Barnes & Noble the other night, and nearly picked it up. I was wondering, when I read the front blurb, what was going on with the "super evil villain". I thought she'd been nuked in a previous book, so I was a bit confused. Looking forward to reading this one, though it gets spendy to keep up with Anita's adventures in hardback.

  2. I tend to check the hardback out from the library. Or buy it for the kindle. I'll get the paperback when it comes out, just because I'm OCD and can't stand the thought of not having all the matching paperbacks for the series lined up in a row.

  3. I usually try to do the same thing as you, Jen. Unfortunately, Hamilton's stuff tends to be about thirty deep on the reserve list at the library by the time I get to it, and I'm just too impatient. I can usually catch a half price sale on the hardback at Hastings, however, if I move quickly. My paperbacks by her are getting pretty worn out by now.