A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Burnt Offerings’ chapter nine


I suggest you check out LKH’s latest blog entry. I found it a hoot.

The parking area of the restaurant is full of cars, as delegates of the Vampire Council have descended en masse to an obscure St. Louis restaurant to dick with JC. Anita questions why she’s in full combat mode, but honestly, isn’t she always? JC says there will be an entourage, and as they are examining the cars, they find a guy. Anita points her gun at him.

The match flared, showing one of the most perfect profiles I’d ever seen. His hair shone golden in the light, shoulder-length, thick waves to frame his face. He tossed the match to the pavement with a practised flick of his hand. He took the cigarette from his mouth and raised his face skyward. The street light played along his face and golden hair. He blew three perfect smoke rings and laughed.

This is Asher. I have a feeling I’m going to hate him.

For a non-Semitic guy from the 17th century, he has an awfully Jewish name. And hair that is inaccurate, if vampire hair and style is incapable of change.

Asher turned and gave us his right profile. The street light that had caressed the perfection of his face seemed harsh now. The right side of his face looked like melted candle wax. Burn scars, acid scars, holy water. Vampires couldn’t heal damage done by holy objects. The priests had had a theory that they could burn the devil out of Asher, one drop of holy water at a time.

Yeah, right. LKH knows nothing about witch hunting and demonological theory from the time period. I studied the history of witchcraft. And this is bullshit.

Anita goes on and on about how it looks so bad, even worse than Sabin’s rotface, because Asher is so perfect. She forgets that he really wants to kill her in revenge for loosing a human servant centuries ago. Asher taunts JC about how unruly his servant is, and JC says that ‘the best human servants are those that come willingly to your hand’. Does the willingness include rape, JC? He talks about Julianna, and Asher gets very mad. JC is a chicken shit coward, and hides behind Anita. She demands a reason not to kill him, other than it’s illegal for her to do so without a warrant of execution. Asher says that the Grand High Vampire Council request the presence of Anita and JC this night. Oh, and that he is officially not allowed to kill her, which is a shame.

Anita huffs at having to put her gun back because she’s wearing a dress and she has to flash people. SAD FACE.

Why couldn’t you have a handbag? In fact, why don’t you have a handbag? Is JC paying for everything? So much for being a strong, independent woman, you’re making the man pick up the tab for you. That is not cool.

As not wishing to flash everyone is ‘modest’, Asher then taunts JC and Anita with the implication that she must have been a virgin. Being a virgin is a bad thing, you see, as… SHUT UP, STOP ASKING CHARACTERS TO EXPLAIN WHY THEY SAY OR DO THINGS.

Anita is understandably upset, but then immediately assumes that when Asher gets in the Jeep (what? this just comes up in the dialogue but was not mentioned in the text), he’ll pull a gun out and kill them. She makes him lean against the car and pats him down. He could just kill them both with his bare hands, but Anita has to satisfy her gun obsession. She whips hers out again, shoves it into the base of his spine, and searches him. Throughout, Asher makes innuendos and snide sexual comments, but JC does not once say ‘can you please stop humiliating my girlfriend?’

Yellow belly chicken shit. It’s something that seems to haunt all vampire romantic leads.

JC is eager to go, as the Vampire Council are not going to kill them. It would have been nice of you to say that before Anita went all Para-Rambo.

Asher and JC then have a moment about Julianna, how she died with JC’s name on her lips. JC cries, ‘crying for a woman who had been dead for over two hundred years’.

She died in the 17th century, Anita. You live in the twentieth, not the 19th.

Asher then twirls his moustache and reveals that the Vampire Council have promised him revenge. He’s going to hurt Anita, as ‘love is never free’. He then moves to attack JC, so Anita jumps between them. That’s sensible. Get in violence range of the man who wants to torture you.

“Love isn’t the most expensive emotion, Asher,” I said. I took another step forward, and he retreated another step. “Hate is. Because hate will eat you up inside and destroy you, long before it kills you.”

Anita, you are one of the most hate-filled characters I have ever had the displeasure to read about. Shut up.

Anita says that if Asher tries to kill her, she’ll kill him. Asher promises to take them to the vampire council. I can’t help but notice that there has been a lack of arson attacks so far.

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5 thoughts on “A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Burnt Offerings’ chapter nine

  1. Asher has potential as a character. However, his entire damn personality seems to be the scars. They discover several ways to remove the scars, but they never so. So annoying.

    Also, I tried reading Anita’s ‘hate is the most destructive emotion’ speech out loud, and I couldn’t make it all the way through without laughing. That is not how people work.

    Also, I want Asher to snap Anita’s neck on the way over, then drive the car into a tree and tell the council that Anita was a crap driver, killed herself driving into a tree (or building, or whatever), JC died because mystical vampire link, and they all go back to France. Because all sexy vamps come from France.

    Also, the holy water scars during the witch hunt says that the existence of vampires did change history, contrary to pretty much everything else in the series. And that witch hunters then were more competent than police now. Sad, huh?

  2. Later in the series, both JC and Asher can grow their hair out because they’re ~so powerful~ and also JC takes power from the vampires in his Kiss to do so because Anita likes long hair on her mens, but idk if Asher had that ability at this point

    • JC says as one point that Asher’s hair wasn’t always the colour it is now. So his appearance could have changed during or after being vamped?

      • But it has changed. If you recall, the painting of JC, Julianna, and Asher, Asher has a Vandyke beard. Now, he is clean shaven. Unless perhaps vampires can cut their hair yet are unable to grow it. However, IIRC, in Kiss the Dead, Anita makes a note that one of the vampires was stuck with an 80’s style haircut for enternity so it still doesn’t add up.

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