A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty eight


I couldn’t figure out why Asher was screaming. There was no blood, no rending of flesh, but he screamed all the same.

He knows what book series he’s in. Anyway, he starts to get dessicated, and it’s because BM is draining him of… um, ‘everything’. Thanks, that’s specific. Musette/BM has her hands on Asher’s face and then Anita is running, despite Musette being directly in front of her, and then Micah steps in to stop the non-specific draining. Asher reaches out for Anita and now Musette/BM is riding Micah like a pony.

i have no idea what's going on

And then, conveniently, Anita’s cross remembers that it’s in a room full of vampires and flares into life. Huh. Guess religious symbols aren’t that effective if they just decide to come on and off randomly. Anita rips the duct tape off, probably removing at least three layers of skin, and the room is full of the light of her self-righteousness. The vampires all go HISSSSSBLEH but Angelito rips off the cross as he is not made of stupid.

Anita then stares into Musette/BM’s face and this is bad because it might become lesbianism.  Richard breathes so BM threatens to ardeur him to death. JC strikes a pose as this is all about getting him… on team and then Anita is struck metaphysically with something.

Anita starts throwing a fit and lands in a swoon in Richard’s arms.

har har i c wht u did thar

I turned my head to look towards Asher. I couldn’t help myself. Asher’s hair was like golden Christmas tree tinsel, lifeless, hanging around a face that was more skull than flesh.

Tinsel. Wow. So dark. So gothic. So horrifying. And, of course, despite the fact that Asher is near death, all he can do is beg forgiveness from Anita and be concerned about how she is. Then thousands of rats appear. And the vampires that Anita shot stand up and all the bodyguards start screaming.

Two dead people stand up and the bodyguards start screaming? They’re pretty pathetic bodyguards.

I finally could think enough to remember that Jean-Claude might be fighting for his life.

By posing?

Anyway, JC is having his face held by BM/Musette. It was BM who summoned the rats because, um, reasons. Richard is fussing over Anita and unleashes his beast. He starts howling and the werewolves start partially changing. Because reasons. JC has shut off his part of the triforce because he’s worried he’s going to die.

HANG ON. A big ongoing drama has been that if one of the triforce dies, they all die, and it’s unstoppable. But, no, they can just shut it off? BULLSHIT. You can’t just change it because it suits you now! You set up rules, you have to fucking live by them!

Angelito starts randomly shooting at the hyenas. Anita tries to shoot BM but then gets swarmed by rats. I hope they eat her eyelids. The mystic first vampires who are shifters start fighting and Anita shoots them again, even though that proved entirely ineffective. BM then sends away all the millions of rats because… reasons.

JC fights back by saying he’s got his own bloodline now, nyah nyah, and that he’ll kill Musette or something.

“To be able to kill Musette, legally, with no political repercussions. That has been the fondest wish of many a Master Vampire, and I will do it, Belle. You can taste the truth of my words.”

Cherry interrupts to give us the news that Asher may be dying. You know, that thing we already knew from the start of the chapter.

Nothing is happening and it’s all confusing. What the fuck is the point of this book?

 

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty seven


At this point, the werewolves show up. And of course, that means the flow and pace of the story has draw completely to a stop because we have to know what they’re wearing.

Jason walked in smiling in his black over-the-knee boots, but there was something in his eyes, some small warning that I couldn’t decipher. I’d expected to see him wearing makeup like Micah and Nathaniel, but he wasn’t. None of the male wolves were.

Makeup? THAT’S HOW THE GAY GETS IN.

Richard came into sight, easy to spot above the sea of black leather that was his pack. I knew that he had butchered his hair, but I hadn’t really grasped how much until I saw him. I’m sure the hairstylist had done his or her best, but there was only so much they could do. They’d had to buzz his hair back to less than an inch of medium brown. It seemed darker this short, missing the gold and red highlights.

He was wearing a black tux with a shirt of deep, rich blue and a matching blue tie. With the new haircut, and the more conservative clothes he looked – out of place.

No once cares.

His eyes met mine, and the shock of how handsome he was still sent a thrill through me from head to toes. Without the hair to distract, you couldn’t pretend that the cheekbones weren’t knife-edge perfect, the dimple in his chin didn’t soften the strong masculinity of his face. His shoulders were broad, his waits not slender, but small. Nothing about Richard was slender. He was built more like a football player than a dancer.

oh my god shut up

She doesn’t shut up. She goes on for another page or so about how Jamil, Shang-Da, and Jason look.

  • Jamil is dressed in leather straps. LKH notes how very very very black he is.
  • Shang-Da is also wearing leather. He apparently hates Anita. She goes on about how tall he is compared to all those other runty Chinese people.
  • Jason is swaying around like a stripper, because, obviously, strippers just go around being strippers 24/7 of the time.

Jason has come with a dire warning that, uh oh, Richard has a backbone! You see, he wants to take the wolves away from JC.

oh no what a calamity whatever shall we do

The action is further paused because Shang-Da has to growl and remind Jason that he doesn’t have two masters. I wonder what Musette/BM are thinking while they’re just standing there watching this happen in the middle of a supposed takedown. This continues with loud declarations of how this shouldn’t happen here, there are enemies, and how Richard has beaten Sylvie up really badly. Jason then starts making out with the back of Anita’s neck.

boring sleep

Why? Have you no control over your penis?

“What is it with you, Anita? Does everyone want to fuck you?” It was Richard. When he was really angry he could be more hateful than anyone I’d ever dated. The fact that he said the word fuck told me exactly how nasty he was going to be tonight.

A curse word? Let me clutch my pearls.

This starts everyone arguing over whether Jason will go to the wolves or be with Anita tonight. HELLO? PLOT? WHERE ARE YOU? I’m looking high and low and I can’t find you…

Richard says that Anita should help the new werewolves control their beasts through sex, hur, hur.

It was too ridiculous that he was fighting like this in front of Musette and her people. It was beyond ridiculous, it was foolish.

Use your words Anita. Tell him that you find this inappropriate and that you don’t appreciate Jason slobbering all over the back of your neck.

She does say that they should talk about this later, so Richard demands that Anita stand with her pack. She finds this incredibly offensive for reasons that are entirely beyond any comprehension. Gregory isn’t permitted to sit with them, for reasons, and this means Richard is being crrrrrroooooooooooeeeeeeeeellllllll. She calls him cruel, he calls her cruel back, and she starts weeping about how she’s ‘strong and pragmatic, not cruel’.

Yeah. Yeah. That guy you tortured will back you up on that ‘not-cruel’ front.

“Cruel is saying that I’m Bolverk because you don’t have the balls to be.”

Yeah, the fact that Richard is trying to get away from your toxic influence means that he’s a weak loser. She then is terrified that he’s going to hit her.

Well, that came out of nowhere. So, naturally, she steps forward. And she keeps walking forward to prove a point. He stares at her tits, and there’s a page of how angry they are at each other. Musette glides in, all non-BMy now, and is attracted to this raging sexual chemistry (snort). Richard refuses to talk to Musette until pack business has been dealt with. She laughs about how scared Richard is and how she’s going to torture Asher, ahahahaha.

Richard asks what’s happening and Anita says that it’s ‘trouble’. Nice, concise, and says nothing about the situation. Richard puffs up and declares I AM ULFRIC as if that was in any doubt or discussion.

“I’m either Ulfric, or I’m not, Anita. I’m either master or slave, I can’t be both.”

“Yeah, actually, you can.”

Well. That’s some… novel form of problem solving. YOU HAVE NO PROBLEM. Richard then doesn’t understand how metaphysical magic might be a problem.

… dude, you were having your life sucked out of you. In this book.

I realized in that moment that Richard was still living in that other world. The world where people played fair and horrible things never really happened. It must have been a peaceful place to live, the planet that people like Richard called home. I’d always admired the view, but I’d never lived there. The trouble was that Richard didn’t live there either.

Bite me, precious dark delicate flower.

Someone starts screaming now and it’s bad because Richard is um doing nothing. While no one is doing anything. So that clearly means he is pure evil.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty six


Belle Morte looked at me, out of Musette’s face, and I think I stopped breathing.

BUZZZZZZT!

Doesn’t work like that. This is first-person narration. Anita is aware of what she’s doing.

Belle Morte’s voice slid out of Musette’s mouth.

“I am vexed with you, Jean-Claude.”

oooo I’m quaking with fear. Stressed suburban mums are so terrifying. Also, very conveniently, BM’s animal to call is leopards so Anita’s bodyguards can’t do anything. How come a French vampire who has apparently never left mainland Europe can magically control animals that come from African and Asia? Anyway, BM starts monologuing about how amazing she is because she brought the MOAD’s (Mother of All Darkness) first children to life and isn’t that wonderful.

That might be more of a jaw-dropping moment if the MOAD had been introduced in any other book and wasn’t treated as one of a million subplots running around in this book.

Anita oh-so wittily points out that nyah nyah she killed two of them, so BM blandly announces her intent to punish Anita. Everyone starts jumping into the conversation to defend Anita’s honour because Musette broke the rules. BM says she will take Musette back along with Asher, as Asher clearly doesn’t belong to anyone, and she totally doesn’t believe that they did S-E-X.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

JC and BM then have a page arguing about ‘European standards’ when it comes to sex.

Stop this. Stop this. I don’t understand what ‘European standards’ are. Fuck off with your ideas about how Europe is. We don’t go bike riding down the street naked and have massive orgies in public parks, you know.

Anyway, BM claims Asher, claims Anita, and starts coming onto Anita. Oh, no, get away from the evil bisexual Anita! She’ll be all evil and sexy!

BM tries to touch her, JC panics about whether Anita consented, and then –

The emptiness filled with the smell of roses, sweet, so sweet, cloying, choking. I gasped, and all I could taste was roses. Jean-Claude caught me, or I would have fallen. The perfume of roses filled my nose, my mouth, my throat. I couldn’t swallow past it, couldn’t breathe anything but perfume. I would have screamed, but I had no air.

Gosh what a scary power.

Micah rushes forward to help her, Musette/BM doesn’t want to let go, they all fall in a big pile on the floor. Damian grabs Anita’s hand and she remembers that, oh yeah, she’s a FUCKING NECROMANCER WITH POWER OVER VAMPIRES.

Huh. There was me thinking that was just the major lynchpin of the series, but what do I know?

Anita fires up her necromancy powers because Micah is her toy to play with, nyeer nyeer. She accesses her beast, and the beasts of BM and Anita fight metaphysically. Then Anita and Micah kiss. JC starts humping air. I have no idea what’s going on. BM is getting off on this and Micah motorboats Anita.

Belle poured that misty power on us, but though she raised gooseflesh and bright sighs to our lips, there was no more. She could not call Micah as her beast because he was mine. She could not call my beast, because I was Micah’s. We truly were Nimir-Ra and Nimir-Raj, and together we were enough to keep her out of us.

Right. Micah and Anita are mystic soulmates just because.

[Jean-Claude] offered a hand to both Micah and me. Normally, I don’t let people help me up, but tonight I was wearing a long skirt, high heels, and had just had what amounted to metaphysical sex in public.

Anita can’t even let people help her because STRONG INDEPENDENT WOMAN. *gags* JC laughs about how this doesn’t count as sex in America, ahahahaa, and BM laughs. Then she reveals how the dead vampires are shifters and Anita is all AHAH I knew this already, and BM is confused.

Yeah, of course, no one knows how the necromancer with shifter characteristics might be able to tell how vampires are also shifters.

We then return to talking about how the MOAD is waking up. Excuse me.

WE HAVE BEEN OVER THIS ALREADY IN THIS CHAPTER.

BM says she never forgets an insult and that she’s totally going to punish Anita. She then touches people and flares power and is curious about Damian, but not enough to actually question about it. She tries to take control of the vampires, but can’t, and demands to take Asher back.

christ what’s so fucking amazing about asher why is everyone fighting over him

BM is about to mind control Asher and that’s really evil.

I’m going to go back to watching House on Netflix. At least things happen on House, as ridiculous as the later seasons get.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty five


OK, seventeen chapters left, at least five different subplots are running around, and I highly doubt any of them are going to get resolved.

Let’s do this thang. I feel like Rocky getting ready to run up those steps. We’re so close to the send of this snooze-fest!

There was a wall of our black leather-clad bodyguards – wererats, werehyenas, wereleopards – so that we couldn’t see who was making a piteous noise.

It’s me whenever I think about how this series continues to be published.

OK, so the last chapter ended with Anita being told that the evil Paolo is sexually assaulting Nathaniel, so this chapter opens with Stephen being tortured by Valentina.

Did I miss a chapter? Did LKH skip over a chapter? What the hell?

Valentina slid her tiny hand down his waist, to the hips of his white leather pants, and that tore another scream from Stephen’s throat. I suddenly had a clue why the twins were terrified of the children.

Oh, right, that half-assed plot that Stephen and Gregory were abused, because LKH thinks that have dark tragic thinks is a great way to build character development. It’s not. It’s very amateurish, as the abuse adds absolutely nothing to the story. It’s just there, to add depth to paper-thin characters and, in turn, make Anita look better. Anyway, this ‘touching’ is an act that breaks the truce so Anita now swears vengeance. A strange vampire bars the way and he has vague mystic powers.

A strange vampire appears! Anita uses POWER OF RACISM! It’s super effective as making Dottie mad!

He was also one of the few Black vampires I’d ever seen. Some people theorized that the same genetics that made people of African descent immune to malaria also made them less likely to become vampires. He stood there looking at me, with his dark skin still somehow strangely pale, like chocolate ivory. His eyes were golden yellow, and the moment I looked into them, the words not human came to mind.

  • I don’t know whether it’s common to capitalise black when it comes to black people. I don’t think it is in the UK, but is it standard practice in the US?
  • Um, that immunity is caused by sickle cell anaemia. For a start, not all people of African descent have the disease, so whoa, don’t generalise that. And why would a type of anaemia mean that black people can’t become vampires?
  • Oh, oh, that’s such a convenient excuse why LKH doesn’t have many POC in her books. ‘Ah, well, you see, black people can’t become vampires because only mighty whitey is GENETICALLY suited to be a glorious all-powerful creature of the night’.
  • Why the fuck are all of LKH’s POC characters white in some way? Look, having people of mixed-race or ethnicity is great! They don’t often get much representation. But every single POC character is made to be white, as if LKH just can’t stomach having an actual person who is not white.
  • ‘Chocolate ivory’. STOP USING FOOD DESCRIPTORS FOR BLACK PEOPLE.
  • And, right, it’s soooo not racist to have this black vampire be the one who’s strangely ‘non human’.

Stephen and Gregory are screaming, so Anita walks around the vampire. Musette says all this torture is entertainment so Anita shouts out ‘You are a coward, an ugly, child-abusing coward’.

Stephen and Gregory aren’t children. Where did you get the child-abusing thing from? Oh, and the black vampire doesn’t speak any English either, he just stares at Anita. Unfortunate implications – what are those? Anita rushes over to Stephen with Merle and Noah – who the fuck is Noah? – and cuddles him.

“Stephen had been abused as a child. He was used for sex by his own father, and sold to other men,” I said as I moved forward.

Isn’t that Nathaniel’s utterly tragic backstory? I don’t blame you, LKH, all of these characters are forgettable and completely interchangeable.

Valentina starts to freak out in a ‘oh my god what have i done’ kind of way. Despite Musette and her cronies being super way evil, they immediately stop sexually assaulting Stephen and Gregory because how could anyone abuse their children that is so evil and awful they will stop being rapey immediately.

Right. The way evil evil evilly evil vampires just hate child abuse makes total sense with their evil evil evilly evil ways.

If you want to write dark and intense shit, LKH, WRITE DARK AND INTENSE SHIT. You can’t wimp out at the last minute because you can’t stomach it! Christ, you’re such a coward! You go on and on about how dark and messed up your writing is, but it’s pathetic.

Anyway, Musette is pouty as that is her one character action, and Anita notes that ‘physical beauty isn’t enough to make up for sadism’. Funny how you forgive it in the men around you, though. She demands that Musette be arrested because Musette and co broke the rules, which is a perfect time to talk about how brutish and like animals the entire shifter community is because vampires are ‘so civilized’.

Oh, but the wererats can’t do anything because Musette’s animal to call is rats. UH OH. Anyway, there are other shifter bodyguards, and Musette can’t even order the rats to hurt people so… the last three pages were entirely pointless. And now there are vampires with ‘ivory gray skin’ and they are… servants of the sweet dark. Or something. They’re related to Mother of all Darkness, but they’re controlled by BM. They’re also shapeshifters, which is impossible for… reasons.

JC and Asher then launch into a rambly explanation of Mother of All Darkness.

“There is no one that can claim direct descent from her line, but she founded the council of vampires. She began our civilization, gave us rules, so that we were no longer solitary beasts, killing each other on sight.”

So…. MOAD did absolutely nothing then.

Anyway, this means that Anita can put Musette under house arrest because. And the ‘ivory’ vampires (where did the black one go?) are invincible because. ‘No weapon born of man can harm them’. Oh, so a shapeshifter or someone with magic then? So, like, anyone these people will have ever met ever.

Anita shoots one of them in the head and it explodes. Anita aims a gun at Musette’s head and then she’s possessed by BM.

Right. OK. Whatever.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty four PART TWO


Right, back to the banqueting bullshit.

JC’s puzzler is sore from puzzling. He just can’t understand why Anita might be scared of a force of ultimate evil.

JC, go read the Vampire Chronicles that Mother of All Darkness was stolen from inspired by. You’ll see how much of a threat she can be.

Jean-Claude turned me in his arms as he moved to face the voice, making it a dance-like movement, ending with my left hand in his right. Our outfits were designed to move and flow like some Goth version of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

Wearing black does not make you goffity goff goff. JC, Anita, and Asher hold ‘hands like children’ (stop it stop it stop it) and then… walk to another room, I think. It’s so very vague.

Valentina’s outfit was a miniature seventeenth-century dress with the skirt flared out to either side so that she was shaped like an oval. The skirt was very full and gave glimpses as she walked of tiny gold slippers and numerous petticoats. She even had a white wig that hid her brunette curls from view. The wig looked too heavy for that slender white throat, but she walked as if the jewels and feathers and powdered hair weighed nothing.

Are feathers noted for being made of lead?

She had absolutely perfect posture, but I knew that was from the corset that was under the dress. Those dresses don’t fit right without the proper undergarments.

There had been no need for powder to make her skin white, rouge and red lipstick had been enough. Oh, and a black beauty mark in the shape of a tiny heart near that rosebud mouth. She should have looked ridiculous, but she didn’t. She was like a sinister doll. When she flipped open her gold and lace fan with a sharp snap, I jumped.

And you’re saying that this is a dress most definitely from the seventeenth century.

laugh

LKH is describing Valentina as looking like this –

Yeah, that’s the eighteenth century. You are a full one hundred years out, dweebus. The seventeenth century is the 1600s, when women were looking like this….

Although, of course, this is a massive sweeping aside of many changes and nuances of fashion within the seventeenth century – which I have covered before – but this is just a silly mistake that any editor with a braincell should have caught.

Valentina and Anita then start swapping stuff about the Mother of All Darkness. It is truly thrilling. It is so thrilling that I am cooking chilli chicken wings so that I can escape from all these thrills. Apparently, BM has touched the Mother as well. Valentina says that the surprise guests are sure to be surprising, and then starts talking about the ‘darkness’ and how her nurses saved her from the darkness and then died.

This all has the same emotional weight and impact as a grapefruit.

Asher starts fretting about Muesette, so Anita complains about him trying to get everything back on track.

I closed my eyes and counted slowly to ten. When I opened them, they were both giving me their best blank faces. It was like looking at two superb paintings, suddenly made three-dimensional, very lifelike, but not alive.

ARGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Damian then comes into the room. When was the last time he was mentioned? Who gives a shit about him?

He had not volunteered to be one of Jean-Claude’s pretty men. Damian was a touch homophobic. Boy, had he fallen in with the wrong bunch of vampires.

…. what.

  • Damian is your servant, so no, he wouldn’t volunteer. Because his mind is enslaved to you, Anita.
  • We have never seen Damian be homophobic.
  • In fact, the character we have actively seen be incredibly homophobic is YOU, Anita. You, who finds the idea of two men or two women being together disgusting.
  • So, Damian doesn’t enjoy sex with men. That does not make you homophobic. That just means – gasp – that he isn’t interested in having sex with men.
  • I’m not particularly interested in having sex with other women. Does that make me homophobic? Hmm?
  • I dunno, you all seem pretty homophobic and hateful. Actually, yeah, that does mean he’s with the wrong vampires.

Damian has arrived to announce that Richard and the wolves are here. They are late because someone had to fix Richard’s hair. The story has now been amended to say that he hacked it off himself and everyone starts whining and weeping and wailing about Richard not having long hair any more.

It wasn’t any of my business what length his hair was. My concern was that sane happy people don’t hack their hair off at home with scissors. Cutting your hair like that is usually a substitute for hurting yourself in other more permanent ways. Any counselor will tell you that.

I dunno, maybe he’s acting out of trauma from when you decided to rape him. Either way, Damian is on his knees, wailing about Richard’s hair, and everyone else is up in arms about this ‘mutilation’.

It’s hair. It’s just hair.

Anita immediately forgets this great pain and worries about how Musette doesn’t think she really wants to fuck Asher. Nathaniel then walks in dressed like a mummy.

Nathaniel’s outfit was mostly cream colored strips of leather that covered almost nothing. A white thong covered his front, but left his buttocks bare.

Well, yeah, that’s what a thong does. You don’t have to explain it to me.

He had cream colored boots that were over the knee but open in back, so you got glimpses of his legs to mid-calf when he walked away from you. There was a three-inch heel on the boots, and Nathaniel knew how to make the heel work for him.

That’s just fucking tacky. Ew. That’s not sexy. Merle is also with him and he’s angry. Paolo has been groping people, and this is bad because only Anita’s friends are allowed to sexually assault people at this party.

Are the murders and corpse raising ever going to be addressed?

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty four PART ONE


The banquet was in one of the inner rooms of the Circus. One I’d never seen before. I knew that the place was huge, and I’d seen only a fraction of it, but I hadn’t realized I’d missed a room this size.

OK, so the Circus was originally just this cave system that the vampires just happened to find (even though the vampires would have been in the US for a while, so I have no idea why vampires couldn’t have made it), but it has this convenient giant room for no reason? I guess that people could have used the local limestone base (hell yes I researched this) like they do in Nottingham – the city is built on sandstone, and for thousands of years, people have used it to create houses and businesses. Like, there are whole Victorian streets and medieval market places underneath the city, it’s pretty cool. But… I dunno, it just seems convenient that there is just the right room for a big fancy meal.

…. actually, nope, this is all natural. The room is all natural. Even though the caves of the Circus, with all those stairs, corridors, and random sex rooms have always been described as being man-made. There’s no water, and there’s no river, so I am confused as to how a river managed to make a giant empty room and then completely vanish with no trace.

I expected torches for the night –

Oh, yeah, smoke and carbon dioxide in a confined area with no ventilation, wouldn’t that be a great idea?

Hang on, doesn’t Anita have TOTLY SRS claustrophobia? As in, has difficulties going into cellars? How come she’s fine with these caves?

– but was surprised to find that there was gas. Gas lamps placed around the room, chasing back the dark. I asked Jean-Claude when he’d installed the gas, and he said that some bootleggers had done it during prohibition, that the cavern had been a speakeasy.

Gas lighting. In the 1920s.

Yeah, they had electricity in the 1920s, LKH. Gas lighting started to drop in popularity after about 1900 because electric lighting doesn’t tend to explode and set things on fire. Oh, and gas lighting releases carbon monoxide, so installing it in a CAVE is a really great way to kill off your customer base.

I’d never been in a room that was lit entirely by gas lamps. It had that soft edge of firelight –

IT IS FIRE. The light comes from a FLAME.

– but it was steadier and burned cleaner.

Fire burns cleaner than fire. Uh huh.

I’d half expected there to be an odor of gas, but there wasn’t. Jean-Claude informed me that if I smelled gas it would mean there was a leak, and we should probably run like hell. Okay, what he actually said was we should leave as quickly as possible, but I knew what he meant.

Get your fucking hands off me, I understand what you mean without you grabbing me. JC, why have you still got gas lighting? If your gas lighting is powered by the gas company, it should smell as it’s burnt. If it’s from the main pipeline, they add scents to it so people can tell if there’s a leak. So there should be a slight smell as it’s burning. And this doesn’t cover the carbon monoxide that is being used in those lamps, which is odourless and incredibly deadly. Why doesn’t JC just get electric lighting installed? There’s no reason to keep the gas lighting!

Anita stares at the table. It is odd. It’s got a lot of gold in the decoration, but Anita doesn’t understand why there’s lots of cutlery. She is especially confused by a two-tined fork. Well, those could be deli forks (for picking up sliced meats), snail forks (for snails, olives, canapes, and other small appetisers), or a roast fork (for use in carving and cooking of roast meats). Anita assumes that these are used for stabbing people in the neck to feed on them, despite the fact that, you know, vampires have fangs.

Secondly, there were a number of complete place settings on the floor. Each setting had a while linen napkin spread under it, like miniature picnics. The place settings on the floor were spaced between the chair settings, so there was room to pull the chairs in and out. It was… odd.

It’s almost like werewolves exist, or vampires like to feed on people. How strange! Anita just can’t understand this, and hates the idea of small talk at the party because like, people are going to say things but mean other things. That’s just too hard :(.

Anita is in the banquetting room (although a banquet is NOT a big meal, grumblegrumble) but… the guests are somewhere else, as Asher comes in to say that she is needed. Musette is grumbling, and JC and Asher want to know what the hell is going on. As do I.

“Oh, I don’t know, an international terrorist following me around, the vampire council back in town, an evening of some of the most politely vicious small talk I’ve ever heard, Asher being his usual temperamental self, one of my friends and favourite policemen having a nervous breakdown, a serial killer werewolf on the loose in my town, oh, and the fact that Richard and his wolves haven’t arrived yet, and no one’s answering their phones. Pick one.”

  • International terrorism is all focused on Anita. Just because.
  • Musette isn’t on the vampire council. She’s just here because of BM’s personal agenda.
  • Oh god a dinner party I don’t know how you’ll cope.
  • You are SAYING THIS TO ASHER. Can’t you say that any nicer?
  • The breakdown that you don’t care about and have helped cause.
  • Since when as it been decided that the serial killer is a werewolf? I thought Dolph just decided that Jason was the murderer to prove that he’s a big old nasty bigot.
  • Richard is meant to be arriving? Since when?
  • And since when has no one been answering their phones? YOU HAVEN’T CALLED ANYONE.
  • I pick none of them. I don’t care about your problems. They have no emotional weight.

Apparently Richard not being here makes Anita look ‘weak’. I don’t know why and I don’t care. Asher dislikes Anita being rude and Anita is worried that Musette doesn’t think she’s really interested in Asher.

“No, no, damn it, it’s that we haven’t had intercourse.”

Asher looked at me, then raised his gaze to Jean-Claude. “In this, she is very American. If you have not had intercourse, you have not had sex with ma petite. It is a very American mind-set.”

“I covered her back in my seed, does that not count?”

Yes, yes it does. Asher and Anita have had sex. True, they have not had penetrative sex, but they have had a threesome. And repeating ‘very American’ is poor writing. I already know that it’s apparently an ‘American’ mind set. You literally just said it. Anita asks about the plates on the floor, so JC decides to mind rape her.

JC. PLEASE DON’T MIND RAPE YOUR GIRLFRIEND. IT’S NOT ROMANTIC. IT’S HORRIBLE.

Anita calls him out, and then starts holding herself. She thinks about her cross. She’s wearing it, but it’s stuck down to her chest with electrical tape.

Uh, sure. There wasn’t any safer way to hide her cross than with electrical tape. Say goodbye to your skin, Anita!

Jean-Claude touched my hand gently. I jumped, but didn’t move away. He took that as an invitation. He’d always taken anything that wasn’t an outright rebuke as an invitation.

oh god he’s such a rapist. he’s such a rapist. there’s so much more to consent than just ‘no’. if anita is not interested, uncomfortable, or just won’t say no because it’s easier than facing JC’s anger, then JC will just rape her. Often. Often enough for Anita to know that he does this and to be so resigned she doesn’t even complain about it.

This isn’t romantic. This is abuse. I’m going to high-five JC in the face with a shovel.

JC shoves his hands all over the obviously uncomfortable Anita and asks again what’s wrong. She repeats her question – what’s with the plates. She is shocked, SHOCKED I TELL YOU, that the vampires are going to be feeding on people at the vampire dinner party.

Anita, what did you think the vampires were going to be eating? It takes her a fucking page to realise that, yes, people are going to be fed on, and yes, they are probably going to be killed. And she doesn’t fucking care unless she knows them. She is slightly concerned that people may die, and then continues worrying about her own issues. You see, it’s just too goshdarn dark in this cave now she’s met the Mother of All Darkness.

I guess it’s scary to be confronted by powerful African women!

And, on that note, I will be cutting this chapter in two. I’m too bored and frustrated to deal with the remaining pages, not when I have rapists to attack with shovels.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Cerulean Sins’ chapter forty three


Heya gang! I have been in the Algarve in Portugal for the last week and I have had a wonderful relaxing break that I really needed. It was so nice to have a week where I didn’t have to worry about an actual single thing for six days. I wish I was back there – back there in the warm!

And onto today’s chapter. We’re so close to finishing this book – I know this has taken far, far too long to get done, especially considering how much more of the series we have to get done!

I had, of course, complained about my clothes.

headbutt

THEN PICK OUT YOUR OWN FUCKING CLOTHES.

The black velvet and blue silk seemed to be offering my breasts up like pale ripe fruits. The colours emphasized the near translucence of my skin with the undertone of blue highlights. But I knew what the blue highlights really were – blood. Blue blood inside my veins that would burst red when oxygen hit it.

laugh

LKH, your blood does not turn blue. It has never turned blue. It will never turn blue. That is a myth used in PRIMARY SCHOOLS to help demonstrate how the circulatory system works. Human blood is always red. AND THIS WAS WRITTEN BY SOMEONE WITH A DEGREE IN BIOLOGICAL SCIENCE. WHAT THE FUCK WAS THE EDITOR SMOKING WHEN THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO BE LOOKING AT THIS MANUSCRIPT?

This is ridiculous.

Anyway, Anita is sat there like a mannequin while men fuss and primp her and she is not allowed to make choices about her hair, her make up, and her clothes. Strong independent woman…. Micah then comes in and Anita forgets everything to cream all over herself.

Sorry, that was a little crude. But she literally zones out to stare at Micah. Again.

The colour was turquoise blue, with enough green to make his eyes blaze green. The shirt had holes at the top of his shoulder, in the middle of his upper arm, and two in the middle of his forearm. Black cord was threaded through the cloth and tied around his elbow, above and below to keep the cloth from sliding around. The cuffs were wide and stiff, with shiny black buttons, with cutouts on the underside so the skin of his wrists was bare, just at the holes at his elbows left those spots bare. His skin looked very tanned, very smooth, very warm against the turquoise.

The pants matched the shirt – and not just in color. There were holes on the sides that flashed the perfect smoothness of his hip, down to glimpses of thigh. The holes probably went farther down, but black boots cut off the view just above his knee.

The pants were so tight that he really didn’t need a belt, but there was a black cord threaded through the unnecessary belt loops that swung as Micah walked. He was actually almost to me when I realised there were holes on the inside of the pants legs, too.

That is FUGLY. Micah is ‘food’ for JC and Asher, so his clothes need to be full of clothes for easy access. Holes are easier than, I don’t know, wearing an unbuttoned shirt. Anita complains that Micah is wearing make-up (THE DEVIL’S PAINT) and has straight hair (THE DEVIL’S FLATTERY) and JC is catty because Micah doesn’t complain about being treated like an object. Although Anita never verbally complains… I guess JC gets the knowledge that the author has, because bad writing.

Anita starts actually complaining that everyone is dressed up for this super-duper-inportant banquet. Musette is attending, so it’s important and to do with BM, and there are three special mystery guests so they’re making themselves pretty to rub it in their faces about how they can’t touch them. So, JC is being a dick again. No changes there.

Some guy with Paolo is coming too and he’s bad because…. um, he just is. Then Asher dramatically reveals that Musette being here is to get revenge for Asher and JC – get ready for it…. – LEFT BELLE MORTE.

Didn’t BM kick Asher out? No, wait he was working for her again, but his issues are because she kicked him out, and JC seemed to have just drifted…. either way, this is just awful. Who cares?

“Men have killed themselves when she exiled them from her bed. Wars have been fought between rulers who were driven mad at the thought of any other man sharing Belle Morte’s favors.”

What wars. Tell me. What FRENCH wars have been fought over BM’s magical vagina? Here’s a link to all the wars involving France. Which ones were about vagina, exactly?

JC then contradicts this by saying this is about ‘politics’. Ah, vague, undefined politics. How fascinating. BM also considers herself the most beautiful woman in the world so is naturally insta-jealous of Anita.

God forbid that a female villain have a motivation that has nothing to do with her looks!

This means the guys have to be pretty because BM doesn’t see men as competition. Or something. I don’t care. This is what passes for complex political machinations in LKH’s writing.

I didn’t say it out loud, but Belle Morte wasn’t the only one who rarely did anything without having more than one motive.

Wow, that’s a buttfuck worded sentence.