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


I want to say a huge thanks to all of those who have been commenting over the last six or so chapters. I’ve been a bit lousy with replies but I’m finding it hard to read and spork these chapters. This long run of JC and Anita skipping around and meeting various council members is repetitive and dull. Each chapter they meet someone evil and carry on with their trip. A trip that circles right around and goes absolutely nowhere. Reading it, this book feels like it did not get edited by a professional editor. The discordant nature of these never-ending chapters feels like the editing work of an amateur.

And on we go.

Yvette has stalked off between chapters. Warrick is healing. JC gets Jason out of the bondage get-up, and Jason goes and curls up in a ball by the wall. And whines like a dog. The Traveler goes on about how much JC has ‘impressed’ him. I’d like to know what JC has actually done, at any point. He offers a handkerchief for Anita’s hand wound, but doesn’t actually give any real help. She can’t even tie it herself, and freaks out when the Traveler tries to help.

Oh, and the Traveler does not understand friendship.

“It has been a very long time since someone has invoked friendship in my presence. They will beg for mercy, but never on the grounds of friendship.”

Anita, you special, special snowflake.

JC says it’s her naivete, but this is wonderful, because it takes true courage to be naive in the face of the council. This makes sense because no one asks for friendship from the council; they ask for power or safety, but they don’t ask for friendship from the organisation that vets the laws and conditions of the world’s vampires. Let us all learn from JC’s wisdom. Let us all walk into situations blindly, and try to befriend entire governments.

The Traveler interprets this all as one big attempt by Anita to make friends with him. JC says you can’t offer ‘true’ friendship without asking for it in return. The Traveler says how he has no friends, so Anita says that he must be so lonely. I’m wondering when this became a MLP episode.

“She is like a wind through a window long closed, Jean-Claude. A mixture of cynicism, naivete, and power.”

How can she be both cynical and naive? Super snowflake powers activate!

The Traveler says he’ll be waiting in the torture room, and wanders off. Relationship tip: if your boyfriend has an area of his home called ‘the torture room’, and does not actually appear to be into BDSM, you probably need to reconsider the relationship.

I’ve missed out the long talk about friendship and Anita pissing on everything to mark it as hers. It’s very boring, and the only interesting thing is this:

He threw back his head and laughed. “Oh, what a man you would have made.”

I’d spent enough time around macho guys to know it was a compliment, a sincerely meant one. They never understood the implied insult.

Yeah, those stupid men who live within gender boundaries of things they understand and don’t understand! And what a compliment to receive, as being a man is simply the very best thing to be in society!

Anita gives blood to the Traveler – WHO HAS NOT GONE DESPITE WALKING AWAY – and this means she gets safe passage for her, her people, and her friends. Anita – what friends? You never spend any time with people. You don’t socialise. Who are your friends?

The Traveler roars with laughter (please stop doing that) and asks what will he get out of this.

It was a trap.

Congratulations. Anita offers him a free feed. He’s actually taken so much blood that she’s blacking out and he tries to learn who really killed Mr Oliver. Anita tells him to fuck himself and uses her necromancy powers to pull the Traveler out of Willie. Willie immediately proclaims Anita as his master as she faints, yet again, from blood loss.

The words died in my throat, swallowed by a velvet darkness that ate my vision and then the world.

Unconsciousness does not work like that. It is not poetic. It’s abrupt. Do some research.

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