A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘The Lunatic Cafe’ chapter twenty one


Right, well, Anita has had her totally awesome love confirmed and sworn upon so Louis has served his purpose in the plot. It is now, mysteriously, the depths of night for some reason.

It was my night off so I was dressed all in black. Bert wouldn’t let me wear black to work. Said it gave the wrong impression – too harsh – associated with evil magic. If he’d done any research, he’d have found that red, white, and a host of other colours are used in evil rituals. It depends on the religion. It was very Anglo-Saxon of him to outlaw only black.

Really. Really?

*slaps Bert with a copy of Wolf Hall* Black gives the wrong impression, but Halloween costumes don’t?

*slaps Anita with a copy of Wolf Hall* Anita, we’ve only seen you wear black at work so far, aside from your Christmas getup and your Halloween costume. Are you incapable of remembering what you do?

*slaps Hamilton with a copy of Wolf Hall* Ah ha ha, very clever.

Anita stands under a lamppost and ponders for a good long time. She ponders about the missing shapeshifters and whether they’re dead. She ponders about Richard. Remember how pissed I was that they were engaged at eight weeks? I remembered that Circus of the Damned was set at Halloween. They’ve been dating for five or six weeks. I want to know what kind of aversion these people have to not being married.

Out of nowhere, Gretchen leaps upon Anita and knocks her to the ground.

Anita’s gun is knocked away but luckily, she keeps knives strapped to her body at all times. She plunges a knife into Gretchen’s throat and then a random wererat leaps on Gretchen. Gretchen throws him off and runs after him. Anita considers shooting her but watches her run on past.

She stands up, all woozy and shit, and watches Gretchen tear out the throat of Louis. Now he’s served his purpose. Well, after he dies telling Anita to kill Gretchen. Anita finally picks up her gun but suddenly is not able to shoot someone she dislikes. She pauses, telling Gretchen that she’s going to marry Richard. Gretchen demands that Anita put down her gun so… she does.

Look, I have never accepted Anita’s BS attitude but this sudden interest in being reasonable is incredibly OOC for her. It makes no sense for Anita to behave like this, especially after what she’s done in this book.

The vampire and I stared at each other. My knife was sticking out of her throat like an exclamation mark.

Really. Really? Did you manage to get the knife perfectly straight in her throat? With a little floating dot above it?

There then follows a very dull and difficult to follow dialogue section. Hamilton apparently decided, as bad authors are wont to do, that we don’t need to know who is saying what for this conversation. I do not like it. Deciphering it, Anita has to tell JC that she’s engaged and TONIGHT because… apparently it’s JC’s fucking business all of a sudden.

Gretchen takes Anita’s gun.

“You can have these back after you tell him,” she said.

“You’re hoping he kills me,” I said.

“I would shed no tears.”

I love Gretchen.

So… JC returns next chapter. Well, in two or three knowing how Hamilton paces her bullshit. I am not happy. I hate that slimy arsehole.

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