A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Narcissus in Chains’ chapter twenty three

ETA: The formatting gets bad because wordpress hates it when I copy in definitions. I don’t know why, and I can’t change it, so hopefully your eyeballs will recover.

The lupanar was a large clearing 100 yards by 150 yards.


What is the point of that? An exact measurement? What, did you go around with a tape measure on the weekend? Not to ignore the redundancy of opening another chapter by going on how big a space is. Can’t you just say it was the size of a football pitch or a tennis court?

The clearing is full of torches, because no one’s going to notice that and wonder what’s happening, and there’s a ‘spill’ of silk across the great stone throne that was stolen from the indigenous tribes of the area. The werewolves are stood in a big circle, with a single opening left for the swans, rats, and leopards. The circle closes behind Anita & the gang as they come inside.

There’s a curtain up in the trees which are… now inside the circle, and Sylvie and Jacob come out from behind it. Anita looks at Jacob and decides that yes, he is attractive to her.

Richard came next, and he moved in his own vibrating spill of power.


verb (used with object), spilled or spilt, spill·ing.

1. to cause or allow to run or fall from a container, especially accidentally or wastefully: to spill a bag of marbles; to spill milk.
2. to shed (blood), as in killing or wounding.
3. to scatter: to spill papers all over everything.
4. Nautical  :

a. to let the wind out of (a sail).
b. to lose (wind) from a sail.
5. to cause to fall from a horse, vehicle, or the like: His horse spilled him.
Hmm, I don’t think a single one of those definitions is appropriate for that sentence.
Richard is very angry. Anita sighs about how wonderful his hair looks in firelight. *clicks fingers in Anita’s face* Hello, you’re here to rescue Gregory from being murdered. Get on with it.
I had one of those moments of clarity that comes sometimes. There was nothing that any of us could do to Richard to make him truly harsh.
I don’t like that word being there. I don’t think harsh works. ‘Cruel’. ‘Vindictive’. Those would be better. Jamil and Shang-Da stand either side of the throne. They look good. Anita stares at Sylvie and thinks about Sylvie’s collection of bones harvested from her enemies. I like Sylvie. I wish she was the main protagonist.
“We gather here tonight to say goodbye to our lupa and to chose another.”
Something Richard has been doing since, what, book six or seven? Anita was already disavowed from being lupa!
“We are here to stand in final judgement for one who has wronged our pack by taking our lupa from us.”
Despite the fact she’s stood in front of you. Idiots.
“We are also here to give the leopards’ Nimir-Ra a last chance to win back her cat.”
This makes no sense!
oh my god
Richard asks Rafael why the rats are here and Rafael says that Anita saved his life so he’s backing her on this one. Jacob sneers about how Rafael has ‘destroyed [his] people’ because he’s not even trying to hide that he’s eeeeevvvvviiiiiillllll. Rafael announces that his loyalty to the werewolves will only stand if Richard is their leader. This shocks Jacob into realising everyone knows how he plans to become packmaster!!!!!
It was so obvious, dude. You were only kidding yourself.
Also: Cue, evil sexy woman.
A woman’s voice came from the right, clear and ringing like she’d had stage training. “Aren’t we getting distracted from the business at hand? I for one am very interested in choosing the new lupa.”
The woman was tall, but built all of curves –
– voluptuous the way that movie stars in the fifties had been. She seemed soft, feminine, yet she stalked over the ground in a swaying glide, half sex on the hoof and half predatory, like she’d lure you in by playing victim, fuck you till you cried for mercy, then eat your face off.
She was even wearing a dress, one that clung to her curves and had a neckline so low that you knew she had to be wearing a bra. Breasts that size didn’t do perky without some help. She talked barefoot, her deep red hair styled and perfect, falling just above her shoulders in a burnished shine.
Just admit you’re bisexual, Anita, you’ll be much happier.
The unnamed woman pants all over Richard so Anita starts stroking her knives and thinks about killing her. Anita, he’s been looking for a new lupa for several books now, you can’t be jealous. And why was he looking for another lupa in Tennessee, if he could pick one back at home? Richard orders ‘Paris’ to go away, and then lets Sylvie throw her back in place. Paris then makes a crack about Sylvie’s rape.
Ha, ha, it is to laugh.
Richard then asks why Donovan is here, and he explains Anita saved him. Jacob makes a joke about how Anita seems to save every shapeshifter she meets. Why would Jacob even try to be subtle about his motivations? That would make him a boring character! It’s much better to have every character announce their intentions as loudly as possible.
Sylvie then makes everyone who has ever been saved by Anita raise their hands oh god this is stupid. Stop fapping, LKH. No one behaves like this. It’s stupid. They all go on about how amazing she is and how she’s saved them all and they can’t possibly ever loose her.
Jacob points out that he hasn’t even seen her before and she hasn’t been around the pack in five months  a year and a half. Anita is grateful and acknowledges that she is a mere human. But no more, because she’s totally definitely going to become a wereleopard. For serious, guys.  She then points out how ridiculous it is to try Gregory for murder when she is not dead.
Anita says she’s only going as lupa because they don’t want her. No, you’re going as lupa because you’re not Richard’s girlfriend any more. ARGHHHH. She then goes on about how she’s doing such an amazing job with the leopards.
Jacob points out the pack has already voted so they’re punishing Gregory anyway unless she can win him back. She can’t win him back unless she stops being lupa and that takes a big ceremony. Sylvie says she can refuse to step down (SHE STEPPED DOWN SEVERAL BOOKS AGO). If she does, she must fight with any potential lupa or have sex with Richard on the throne. In front of the pack.
Anita says she’s not into public sex – hahaha you’ve already done that before – and then Richard says that their beasts must have a mystical connection, like Anita has with Micah. And like how Anita has with Richard, seeing as they have the triforce and all.
“I should have known you’d have that kind of bond with your mate. You’re more powerful as a human than most true lupas.”
of course Anita is the greatest lupa that ever lived ever.
Anita asks whether this means Richard wanted her to be an actual werewolf (what?)  and sends out her beast to Richard’s. They spark against each other. This means that the marks of the triforce are now married, even though I’m pretty sure that already happened.
i have no idea what's going on
Anita tries to touch Richard with POWER and with her hand.
“No, Anita,” he said, “no, if we can’t ever touch again, I don’t want to feel your beast. We may not be the same animal, but it will be more than anything we’ve ever had between us. I couldn’t bear it.”
I hate this book.
Anita wants to cry because now she’s perfect for Richard and they can never touch again. For vague reasons of vagueness.
Only twenty two chapters left. Will the real plot please stand up?

5 thoughts on “A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Narcissus in Chains’ chapter twenty three

  1. Yeahh, you can tell they weren’t editing her books by this point, because she clearly is incapable of realizing she keeps rehashing shit. And forgetting something has already happened, so she makes it happen again, in a different context. It’s kind of funny to read the “Shiver of Light” reviews on Amazon and see people say exactly the same thing about a new book as we can say about one that’s….shit, when did she publish this one? 2003?

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