A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Obsidian Butterfly’ chapter sixty one


There are a lot of bodies in this strange place that is both nowhere and everywhere. Which is far too literary a way to say ‘I DON’T KNOW WHAT IS FUCKING HAPPENING’.

“What are the bodies?”

WHO. WHO. WHO. ‘What’ implies that you are questioning their impersonal identity, as if you want to know whether they are human or made of starfish. ‘Who’ is the personal interrogative word, as if you want to know the identities of these people. This is basic grammar.

“Riker’s men.”

“What killed them?”

As the killer may be a human or a person made of starfish, this use of ‘what’ is acceptable.

“I think it is our murderous beast.”

how very fucking convenient

I know that a narrative has to have certain conveniences. It’s called the ‘anthropic principle’, whereby a certain level of convenience has to occur for the story and the plot to take place. I get the conveniences of story building. But LKH uses convenience far too much. She uses contrived conveniences so much it renders her novel entirely unbelievable. Yes, I know that vampires, werewolves, etc are by their nature unbelievable, but the job of an author is to make it all believable for the purposes of their story. If I don’t find a story believable, then I can’t find it enjoyable.

“The other entrance has been blocked by an explosion.”

Yeah, sorry, that was me. Exploding when I read that the characters – all super tip top people trained in the art of killing people – managed to miss an explosion so powerful it demolished part of the building that they are currently in.

The gang decide to go another way, and they all slip in the blood.

Um, shouldn’t the blood have started to congeal by this point? It’s implied that these random goons were dead before Anita & co tried to make their mistake. The blood should, in the very least, be more sticky and clumpy than slippery. But, hey, I’m not a biologist! What do I know?

There’s a random alive goon afloat in all the blood. He’s called Simon and there are other dead goons around him, including the woman who abused Peter.

Simon was lying in a pool of blood and darker liquids.

… what other ‘dark’ liquids come out of a human body? Coca Cola? Coffee? He’s not dead yet, so he hasn’t shat himself. Or is he bleeding Marmite?

Anita and Simon exchange insults, she suspecting that she invited the mutilating beastie. He calls her a bitch, so she shoots him in the head.

oh

no

it would seem that Amanda was not dead, so Peter unloads all the ammo from the gun he’s carrying into her body.

Anita praises him for killing her.

I mean, because killing people is the solution to each and every one of life’s problems and will never negatively impact on a person’s psyche. Because fucking guns.

I think everyone is outside now?

There was just the sound of wind in the tall line of sage bushes that bordered the back of the cave.

There’s a cave?

WHAT IS GOING ON?

Anita then feels magic POWER, Becca runs out, some monster with claws runs out, Anita shoots at it and is then knocked out. Again.

hey remember when this book was about a murder mystery.

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3 thoughts on “A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Obsidian Butterfly’ chapter sixty one

  1. “Simon was lying in a pool of blood and darker liquids.”

    LKH LOVES this. She often says “blood and thicker things” because she’s trying to be euphemistic about brain matter and so forth. This does not work imo, and makes little sense for a no nonsense heroine who raises the dead. I mean it’s not that Anita can’t be a little squeamish still, but there are better ways to convey that than by being coy.

    • It doesn’t make sense for her to be so squeamish after what she included in this book. It also makes no sense because Simon was gutted so… lumps of liquid intestine?

      • Simon was carrying a mug of hot chocolate and spilled it when he was shot. He is now lying in a pool of wasted hot chocolate. That is my story, and I am sticking to it. If LKH can’t give me details, I’ll make my own.

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