A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Guilty Pleasures’ chapter ten

Righto, on with today’s chapter. Oh, and the blog broke 10,000 hits. Wooo yay me! And I made a kiwi-lime pie today. I didn’t like it so much because it was quite tart, but I was rather proud of myself.

So what trouble has Anita found herself in today?

She’s been locked in what appears to be a basement. Well, she describes it as more like a dungeon and it’s full of rats. Big rats.

A rat the size of a German shepherd sat up on its sleek black haunches. It stared at me, huge paws tucked close to its furry chest. It cocked one large, black button eye at me. Lips drew back from yellowed teeth. The incisors were five inches long, blunt-edged daggers.

Wow that’s an impossibly large rodent. At least it’s probably more afraid of you than you are of it. Rats are not known for their violent tendencies; hell, I’ve seen chickens take down rats plenty of times. Anita calls out for JC who doesn’t answer but her shouts and noise bring on a tidal wave of rats. That’s not really how rats work, but I guess it’s building up to something… and then a rat-man appears.

An honest to god rat-man.

“Come down, human. Come down and play.”

Where is the explanation for this? Where did the rat-man come from? Anita talks about werewolves and surviving a were attack but I cannot buy that in the Hamilton universe wererats exist and turn men into giant rat-man.

He curled his tail through his hands, stroking it. One clawed hand ran through the fur of his belly, and stroked lower. I stared bery hard at his face, and he laughed at me.

Rat-men are disgusting and rapey. I do not like them. Mister Nikky asked them to entertain Anita while she waited, which just makes my brain go OH GOD NOT MORE RAPE. I am fed up with supernatural novels somehow all involving rape. I do not like to read about rape. It makes me uncomfortable. I am fed up of heroines being threatened with rape constantly. All it does is serve to remind us that this is a vulnerable woman. It lessens the crime and lessens the drama of the moment. It’s about saying ‘this is a woman in a dangerous situation because these books are for women and this is a crime that happens to women’. I’m sick of it. I’m sick of people using rape or sexual assault as a way of making things more serious. So stop it.

He rubbed claws through the fur of his thighs. It drew my attention to him, between his legs.

Giant rats pin her down, and then the narrative gets incredibly confusing because Hamilton has difficulty with the flow of action. I can’t tell exactly what happens, but I guess that the rat-man climbs on top of her and she kicks him in the chest, knocking him across the floor. She kicks out some more, kicks some more rats, and the rat-man is not happy that she resisted his advances. He gives a hand signal, and Anita is swamped by rats who bite out at her viciously. Anita, getting pretty desperate, lashes out at rat-man verbally, saying that he must be scared of her, a plain old human.

“You stink of fear, human. Blood and fear, smells like dinner to me.” The tongue flicked out and he laughed at me.

Anyway, she says she has silver and rat-man is rather nervous, which seems to confirm he is a were-rat. And instead of turning into just a rat, the type of were animal I like, he becomes a giant rat-man. Anita is worried that if she gets scratched or bitten she’ll become a very stupid were animal too. The hospital can apparently treat it, although the inoculations have about a 50-50 success rate, making me wonder how the hell they were ever approved.

“You ever been had by a were?”

I wasn’t sure if he was talking sex or as a meal. I chose sex and said, “You haven’t got it what it takes, ratman.”

He stiffened, hand sliding down his body, claws combing fur. “We’ll see who has what, human.”

“Is this the only way you get any sex, forcing yourself on someone? Are you as ugly in human form as you are right now?”

Yes, taunt the dangerous monster. Clever. Real clever. I do not want to read a passage of a giant rat-man raping someone. He leaps on top of her, but she kicks him full on in the chest and sends him flying. Exactly like before. Luckily, a second rat-man wearing jeans appears and asks just what the fuck is going on. So jeans = a nice person.

The new rat-man says that he is the king, what is this nasty rat-man doing? Nasty rat-man says that the master told him to do it but rat-king tells him he’s a little twat and he’ll kill him unless he follows his orders. Nasty rat-man skulks away thank the lord. Rat-king asks Anita if she’s okay and I’m so glad there was no rape. So glad. He runs off as the vampires return, presumably to see what the rat-men left behind from their fun little rape. Female stereotype vampire is surprised that Anita is unafraid. Unafraid. She was pretty scared to me, are you disappointed she didn’t have a monster commit a violent sexual attack on her?

Wow, I hate all the vampires in this book. They are all deeply unpleasant.

Anyway, Female Vampire laughs evilly and says Nikky is going to be everyone’s master by the time the night is over. Whatever. Not original. Not particularly interesting. I just hope Mister Nikky is interesting when he shows up, hopefully next chapter. Unless Hamilton pulls out a chapter a paragraph long or something.


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