Lindel Cemetery was one of those new modern affairs, where all the headstones are low to the ground, and you aren’t allowed to plant flowers.
Are you allowed to plant in American cemeteries? Because you can’t in the UK. Because, well, it’s not your land to plant on. The land belongs to the local parish. Anyway, Anita likes big fancy ostentatious cemeteries which makes sense because she was raised Catholic. They tend to be into more ostentation than Protestant churches. Anita’s here to raise a Mr Gordon Bennington from the grave to prove whether his death was suicidal or an accident – there’s a multimillion dollar insurance claim at stake. She parks up her new Jeep; her old one was destroyed in the ‘climax’ of the last book.
The insurance company hadn’t wanted to pay up on my claim. They didn’t believe that werehyenas had eaten the Country Squire.
Because they didn’t. They tore it apart. You committed insurance fraud!
Anita meets up with Arthur Conroy, the head of the lawyers for the insurance company (that holds Bennington’s claim – the insurance company isn’t here to take away Anita’s Jeep) and he’s surrounded by bodyguards. Of course he is, because this is a bizarro universe where everything is solved by violence.*
The dark-haired bodyguard, with shoulders nearly as broad as I was tall, smiled, though. “So you’re Anita Blake.”
Bad comma use and I don’t believe the guy has five foot broad shoulders.
“And you are?”
“Rex, Rex Canducci.”
I raised eyebrows at him. “Is Rex really your first name?”
He laughed, that surprised burst of laughter that is so masculine – and usually at a woman’s expense. “No.”
… of course, only men may laugh in surprise! And the only reason why they would laugh is to mock women!
I didn’t bother to ask what his real first name was, probably something embarrassing, like Florence, or Rosie.
Why would his name be Florence or Rosie? Actually, his name could be Florence, as it’s a unisex name. But unlike Shirley, or Meredith, or Ashley, Rosie has never been a unisex name. So I’m not sure why Anita thinks ‘Hey, this guy is probably called Rosie’. The other bodyguard is called ‘Balfour’ and Anita makes an unfunny crack about how he’s got one name ‘like Madonna or Cher’. For a start, how many people with just one name do YOU know, Anita? Secondly, those are both stage names. Madonna Ciccone and Cherilyn Sarkisan have professional stage names that they perform under.
Mrs Bennington then arrives. This is a source of conflict as the head lawyer and Mrs Bennington have physically fought each other at previous meetings. There are plain clothes officers around, and generally the impression is that the court should have appointed an official to witness this raising rather than two parties who HAVE BEEN ACTUALLY FIGHTING EACH OTHER.
I called her Mrs. Bennington at her insistence. When I’d referred to her as Ms. Bennington, she’d nearly bitten my head off. She was not one of your liberated women. She liked being a wife and mother. I was glad for her, it meant more freedom for the rest of us.
This is what happens when people who don’t understand feminism try to write feminist characters.
- She has every right to insist on being called by her preferred title. After all, Anita, you bite people’s heads off when you don’t get called Ms.
- My mother is a Mrs and I dare you to not call her a ‘liberated woman’. Calling her Mrs Smith is about respect. That’s her fucking title and you’re going to call her it.
- You can be a ‘liberated woman’ and still be a wife. Unless you actually think all feminists believe that becoming a wife is like literally becoming someone else’s property.
- It’s okay to be married! There is nothing wrong with being married! I don’t think I’d ever get married, but I don’t look down on women who do get married. Why would I?
- It’s okay to be a wife and mother! Feminism is about making ALL women equal and respected. Making motherhood as respected in society as any other life choice or career path or anything a bloke might choose to do IS THE POINT OF FEMINISM. THE LITERAL POINT IS TO MAKE MEN AND WOMEN EQUAL, AND THINGS SEEN AS MASCULINE AND FEMININE EQUAL.
- Mrs Bennington being married doesn’t increase the average level of equality experienced by all the other women in America.
Anita goes to talk to the police officer with Mrs Bennington. She just can’t talk to another woman, that’d be too feminist or something. Mrs Bennington yells at Anita, but I don’t blame her for that. She then goes berserk trying to attack Anita, almost attacks the cop, and is threatened with being thrown in the back of the cop car. Because we can’t have the other female character in this book so far act in a rational manner!
“I’ll have your badge if you touch me.”
“Striking a police officer is considered a crime, Mrs Bennington,” he said in that deep voice.
Even my moonlight you could see the astonishment on her face, as if somehow she hadn’t quite realized any of the rules applied to her. The realization seemed to take a lot of the wind out of her. She settled back and let her cadre of dark-suited lawyers lead her a little away from the nice police officer.
I was the only one close enough to hear him say, “If she’d been my wife, I’d have shot myself too.”
I laughed, I couldn’t help it.
The two then laugh about how Mrs Bennington is ‘such a crazy bitch’. In fact, the ‘nice police officer’ is considering shooting her.
– OUT OF CHEESE ERROR –
Ah, a good butt is always the solution to fighting such BLATANT AND UTTER MORONITY.
They complain some more about how Mrs Bennington is such a pain in the ass because she’s got connections with top brass and money and I don’t care because your misogyny means I am fully on her side. They continue to laugh at Mrs B and he says how funny Anita is and she says most people don’t find her funny at all probably because she’s trying to kill them. He says that all the cops in the whole city would take Anita as their back up for some ungodly reason and Anita is all I AM TOTES BLUSHING. They laugh at how Zerbrowski is a piece of crap who somehow ended up with a sitcom style hot wife. Then the zombie raisins can begin and Anita goes to get her stuff.
Now, I’m going to go unwind on the Steve Rogers tag. For research.
I like vests.
*As I say that, I realise that the current solution to several world problems at the moment is violence. We need to exorcise the Anita Blake books.