A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter seventeen


Damian bucked so hard that he threw Nathaniel to one side. Richard’s weight alone wasn’t enough. Damian sat up, and Richard rolled off him to keep the vampire from sinking fangs into him again.

christ who gives a shit

Anita starts shouting and waving her arms around saying ‘I’m here!’ even though I thought she was helping pin him down? Let me check. *flips back a few pages* Uh, yeah. She’s helping Richard hold him down, so I have no clue where the fuck she is in the room and in relation to everyone else.

He rushed toward me, so fast he was a blur of white and red, and his eyes like green streaks. […] To say he smashed into me didn’t come close to the impact of flesh on flesh.

Wha? What the fuck is going on? And then Damian just decides to rip open Anita’s throat and then a wereleopard appears.

So… when are we getting back to the murder plot? Because this stuff with Damian is fucking pointless and repetitive. Anyway, Gregory isn’t dead, huzzah, and he’s trying to just rip Damian straight off Anita’s neck which would be the perfect way to kill her. Through having her throat ripped out.

“When I need your help, I’ll ask for it.”

I could tell Gregory was puzzled even through the fur. I wasn’t always good at facial expressions once my friends went furry.

Possibly because Anita can’t tell human emotions anyway and the fact that Gregory literally does not have a human face right now. Look, I know that animals have facial expressions and are expressive, but animal facial expressions mean different things. I don’t even think leopards are capable of looking puzzled?

Anita breathes ‘Damiannnnnn… this is all for you Damian’ and, like magic, he’s all better now. I bet he doesn’t even feel bad for attacking her.

I was suddenly aware in a way that I hadn’t been before that we were both nude, and he was male, and he had fed. His body was thick and heavy against my thigh, where a moment ago it hadn’t been. Blood pressure is a wonderful thing.

Damian just lost all control, attacked several of your friends, and viciously assaulted you. Your ex-partner is in the room, as is a man who are so in wuv with but won’t commit to. There’s a strange woman staring at you. So, naturally, Anita is like, let’s have sex, I’m well horny.

i don’t get these people why don’t they act like normal people

Anita is like I CAN FEEL THE PULSE OF LIFE AND MAGIC and Damian starts stroking her and he’s soooooo lonely that it makes her cry. She whispers ‘Blood of my blood’, for some reason, and they start kissing and she’s like, yeah, sex. We must have it now. Nathaniel now reappears again and is ready for some sex that’s really going to make the GUESTS WHO ARE IN THE ROOM AND STARING really uncomfortable.

but yeah Anita has to ‘bind’ Damian to her even though… we’ve never seen this happen before? Like, it didn’t happen with JC, Richard, and Anita. They just dry humped all over the floor.

Richard then points out that he’s there, and Damian growls and grips Anita’s throat tighter. Anita does some stupid magic words that mean nothing, the ardeur flares up and Damian is like, well my penis is inside you now, and Anita starts instantly writhing around all over the floor and screaming. Like, as soon as his tiny, tiny penis touches her hoona.

For a book series that is lauded as being such great erotica and so sensual, why does Anita act like every female porn star (correction, how every female porn star is forced to act) in every single straight porn ever? People do not start thrashing around and screaming from the second penetrative sex starts. That’s… that’s not how sex works. Ever.

Plus that Clair woman is still in the room. Just watching this happen. And unable to get out of the house now.

Damian then grabs at Anita’s face, forces her to look at him because THERE CAN’T BE A SINGLE FUCKING SEX SCENE THAT DOESN’T SEEM RAPEY, and then thrust away so hard that Anita starts screaming again, and Nathaniel is just sort of… there, and Anita’s convulsing everywhere, as if she’s having a fit. Has Damian even let go of her neck? I can’t tell. Damian is just sort of arched above her and they’re all ‘caught in an endless loop of pleasure’.

Even though he just stuck his penis inside her and is doing nothing else. Pfft. That’s terrible sex. That is really bad sex. This is really boring sex. And this is supposedly daring, innovative erotica? HAH.

We ended in a sweating, bloody pile on the floor.

Is no one stopping Anita’s open neck wound? She must have a literal hole in her neck.

I turned my head and found that Richard was still there, but it wasn’t fear on his face now, but a sort of wonderment.

…. I really think that Anita can’t read human facial expressions, at all.

I was naked in the middle of sex with one man, maybe two, depending on how you counted things, yet, suddenly I had the moral high ground. Weird.

I wish to purify this earth with fire.

Poor Clair. She almost got eaten by a crazed vampire and now has to watch this… thing happen.

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A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter sixteen


I went to the stairs, expecting to see them struggling on the steps, but the stairs stretched empty. I ran down the stairs toward the sound of fighting. Richard has taken the fight out into the living room, so he had room to use his long arms and legs.

These books blow my mind sometimes with the sheer incompetence of imagery and word composition.

Here’s a rewritten version, by yours truly;

I flung myself down the stairs, following the sound of the fight. The scuffle had moved into the loving room, the hallway not giving them enough space to really do some damage to each other.

More movement, more meaning, and less repetition.

Anita comes in to see Richard deliver a perfect roundhouse kick to Damian’s face. Because obviously Richard can do that.

Back foot set, front foot, set but loose, body partially turned to give that pivoting strength, the way when you land a fist you turn the fist into the skin for that extra bit of harm.

LKH, I don’t think you’ve ever punched anyone, have you? That is the weirdest way to describe punching someone in the face. There’s also another woman watching Richard beat the shit out of Damian, but as it’s a woman, Anita couldn’t give a fuck.

Well, here’s her excuse.

I was standing too close to the fighting to sightsee.

And yet she gives a blow by blow account of a roundhouse kick? Hmmm. Hmmmmmm.

If Damian had just been a big bad vamp in my house, I’d have gotten my gun and finished him, but he wasn’t a villain.

No, he just enjoys murdering people and goes into manic rages because of his mind link with Anita.

Somehow it was all my fault.

It generally is.

Damian roars and runs forward while Anita whitters and refuses to use her NECROMANCY POWERS WHICH COULD STOP ALL THIS and Richard kicks him in the chest.

If he’d been human it would have dropped him, but he wasn’t human, and it didn’t.

Thanks for that Anita. For a moment, I forget that they were a vampire and a werewolf fighting, despite you reminding me in the last paragraph.

Damian then gets very, uh, ‘wily’ and launches himself at Anita. For reasons, I suppose.

A tome nage throw is the only throw in judo where you commit your whole body to it. Most throws have variations you can do at the last minute if they don’t work, but the tome nage either works or it doesn’t. You fail, and your opponent is on top of you in a perfect position to pin you. But I hadn’t chosen the throw, it had been the only move Damian’s attack left me. I had seconds to do it right or have him eat my face. So when I kicked up with my feet, I gave it all I had. I’d forgotten that all I had was more than it used to be.

Doesn’t all of this make you think ‘wow, what a desperate and frantic life-or-death struggle is taking place! Gosh, this is just so gripping and tense and I’m so worried that Anita might get hurt!’

If you’ve got a frantic, fast, and dangerous fight, then DON’T DESTROY THE SCENE BY GOING ON FOR HALF A FUCKING PAGE ABOUT A JUDO MOVE. It slows everything down. I don’t care how much research you’ve managed to actually do, because going into the dry specifics of a judo move slows everything down and I don’t care. I don’t care about the precision of doing a tome nage when this is supposedly a desperate fight where a woman is trying to stop a vampire from ripping off her face with his bared teeth.

Damian flew through the air again, but it wasn’t his supernatural powers this time.

Yeah, even though you didn’t actually show, depict, or write him as actually flying in the last chapter. You said it happened, and we saw zero evidence for it. Someone says ‘wow’, and then Anita realises that she kicked Damian into the random woman. So I guess she’s losing her face instead. ‘Clair’ starts to scream and run, and Damian is like ‘NOM NOM FACES’ and starts to chase her. Richard goes after him, and then something weird happens?

All Richard has time for was to rush Damian, to crash into him, and take them both to the floor.

He had the vampire down but not pinned. Richard screamed. His shoulders blocked my view, and I had to move around to their heads to see Damian’s mouth buried into Richard’s upper chest.

Ok, let’s try to make sense of this – with badly drawn pictures!

So, this is what’s happening:

rdc1

Richard, Damian, and Clair are all running towards this door, in this order.

Now, this is what should have happened:

rdc3

After all, both Richard and Damian have super speed, and they are explicitly stated to be using it to catch up with Clair. Clair is not mentioned as using super speed, even though given that Richard knows her she is probably part of the supernatural community. Damian, logically, should have caught up with her, and she should be part of this. But she isn’t.

Instead, Damian ends up buried face first in Richard’s chest, like this;

rdc4

(The letters show where their faces are).

However, it’s mentioned as being ‘a crash’, taking them ‘both to the floor’. So, how exactly did Damian flip round?

He should have landed like this;

rdc2

With both of them facing downwards, towards the floor. And Damian having a gigantic spoon head.

Richard makes a ‘preternatural rookie mistake’. ‘Vampire bites are like snake bites; if the snake has a good grip, you don’t just yank it off’. Anita then goes off on a ridiculous tangent about venomous snakes, as if that’s relevant, and then this single bite TO THE UPPER CHEST somehow rips off Richard’s entire shirt and a big lump of flesh.

Are we ignoring the fact that a snake’s teeth are completely different from mammalian teeth? And that snake fangs break off all the time and aren’t really that strong? So, I guess if a snake bites you, it’s awful, but you could just pull it off and the damage would be a lot less than, say, a huge dog biting you and refusing to let go. I mean, snakes don’t just their fangs to grip onto meat to chew, rip, or tear – that’s what mammals do.

But what do I know? I’m not a biologist.

Anita and Richard are holding Damian down, and Richard’s got an injured arm, oh no, and Anita lifts Damian off and gets a choke hold around him, and oh teee heee heee she’s naked, did you realise that? She’s been naked this whole entire time!

FOR GOD’S SAKE WOMAN PUT ON SOME DAMN PANTS

She then worries about the fact she’s touching her breasts against Richard, instead of controlling the vampire who is trying to make a very serious effort to eat her face. She then waffles on about ‘the electric reaction’ of touching Damian and I still don’t understand why she can’t frigging use her NECROMANCY POWERS. You know, those powers that give her CONTROL OF THE UNDEAD.

JC then wakes up and immediately sends Anita a mind message that blames her for all of this.

I had no word for what Damian had become. In a different country it would have been demon, possessed, damned.

Those are all English language words, so why can’t you use them? And apparently England is some vast superstitious backwater. Thanks Anita! I’m always so glad to be treated with your geography lessons!

Anyway, Anita has to incapacitate Damian somehow. Hmmm, this is all sounding very familiar… this is like that other time Damian freaked out. And Anita used NECROMANCY POWERS TO CONTROL HIM. Why can’t you just order him, Anita? You’re his master, he’s your servant, that’s how the magic works.

I knew if you decapitated most vamps, they died. I’d never had the strength before to snap a neck this easily, so I’d never tried. If I snapped his spine would he die? Would he be crippled? Would spinal damage cripple a vampire?

Well, you’re not going to decapitate him by breaking his spinal cord. So, no, he won’t die. And he’ll heal magically. So, no, he won’t suffer any paralysis.

And then Anita looks through some door – god I have no idea what the floor plan for this place it it seems to be all made of doors – and Nathaniel is looking at Gregory’s (apparent) corpse at the bottom of the stairs. Nathaniel, who is covered in blood as if he was freakin’ Alice Morgan, and then comes over to hold Damian’s arm down.

Anita why aren’t you using those fucking magical powers of yours why is this so awful

Anyway, JC insults Anita for two pages until she figures out that she’s ‘shielded’ against Damian and this is making him into a murderous psychopath. No, it’s because he IS a murderous psychopath, love.

There’s a page or so of waffle about Anita’s awful metaphysical magic bollocks and I don’t care. This has been a big ole cul-de-sac into nowheresville. Anita has a revelation that Damian is a revenant – no he’s not, a revenant is an animated corpse, a totally different thing entirely – so JC has to talk Anita through HOW TO BIND THE DEAD USING MAGIC, A THING SHE DOES EVERYDAY FOR HER FUCKING JOB.

It’s her job, and she has to rely on a man to support her through an action she literally does every day.

Anita Blake is the exact opposite to female empowerment.

Now there’s a lot of blood everywhere and everyone’s covered in it.

when is this pointlessness going to stop just kill him already

oh no wait this is going to CONTINUE FOR ANOTHER CHAPTER. Arghhhhhh just stop this no one gives a fuck about Damian just kill him

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter fifteen


Anita opens up the chapter by running around the top corridor of her home, trying to chase Damian down.

How the fuck does she manage to write with absolutely no awareness of what she’s producing?

They are upset that Damian may have gone a little out of his mind.

The last time Damian had gone mad, he’d killed several people, butchered them, not just fed.

And the Grand High and Mighty Vampire Executioner Anita Blake didn’t kill him… why?

Give me a fucking reason why she can’t do her fucking job and kill Damian for being a fucking murderer and a menace to the public – other than he’s apparently attractive. Seriously, why the fuck is she keeping Damian around? What does he add to anything? Why is he even here? What is the point of Damian? WHY IS THERE SO MUCH BULLSHIT LITTERING THESE BOOKS?

If it had been my fault before, somehow it was my fault again.

Newsflash Anita: EVERYTHING THAT EVER GOES WRONG IN THESE BOOKS IS YOUR FUCKING FAULT ANITA.

I went for the room that Damian had gone into, but I never made it, because he came tearing out of it and nearly ran me down.

Why is it that LKH can’t even get a simple sentence sounding right? EVERY WORD IS NOTHING BUT PAIN.

Anita decides to hook her legs around Damian and he responds by slamming her into walls and trying to rip her throat out. She uses her… super speed to keep his head away from her.

He pushed the strength of his madness against the push of my hands –

what the fuck does that even mean

– and he began to press my arm inward.

Gosh it’s almost like speed doesn’t beat super strength.

I don’t know if he’d been sane whether my new metaphysics would have helped more, but he wasn’t sane, and crazy anything is stronger than sane.

….

…….

………. what the holy hell. what the holy hell

Can you please stop this fucking nonsense about mental illness, LKH. Honestly. It’s not cute or funny, it’s just fucking insulting.

If he’d been a bad guy, I’d have torn into him and done my best to take him out before he took me out, but Damian wasn’t a bad guy, and whatever was wrong was somehow my fault.

He literally went on a murderous rampage before and you’re still claiming he’s not a bad guy?

Damian was like a human on angel dust, stronger even than he’d been, because there was no one home to help him regulate his force.

Jesus fucking Christ do you actually know anything about drugs or did you just read a Chick Tract on them once

Ok, PCP does not make people stronger. It’s a dissociative drug. It makes your brain feel detached from your body – so, people will appear stronger, sure. Because their minds can’t perceive what their bodies are doing, and therefore can’t tell what’s too heavy or what’s too hot or whatever. But people aren’t actually stronger because that is not how drugs work.

Seriously LKH do some fucking research it won’t kill you

Nathaniel and Gregory are here to wrestle Damian into submission instead of Anita being forced to actually, you know, use her necromancy abilities for once. Damian, being that he’s on a rampage, attacks Gregory. Somehow, despite Nathaniel still hold him and Anita still clinging to his middle and being face to face with Damian, Damian pins Gregory to the floor and starts chewing his arm.

I was almost to them, when Damian remembered he could fly.

since fucking when could damian fly

you realise that you’re supposed to edit the first draft of the manuscript you farted out before you give it to your agent

Anyway, Damian was a viking warrior and Gregory and Nathaniel are sent flying – which, despite what the book says, he doesn’t appear to be doing. He then whirls around for Anita, who’s been standing and watching i don’t know how what is happening why is nothing making sense and she’s like, clearly I can take a trained viking warrior because i did a class of judo once

She throws Damian across the hall with her super powered strength that she’s never really used before.

But a figure rose above him, coming up the stairs. It was Richard Zeeman, local Ulfric, Wolf-King, ex-fiance, and in the wrong place at the worst time. I had a few seconds to see that his hair had grown out just enough to give some curl to his woefully short locks, that the white T-shirt made his fading tan summer-dark with contrast, that he was still one of the most handsome men I’d ever seen. Then the vampire turned, noticed him, and launched himself at Richard. He balanced them both for a second, then the other man’s weight took them both, and Richard fell backward down the stairs, with the vampire riding him. They vanished from sight, and over the sound of their bodies falling down the stairs, I heard a woman start to scream.

Hopefully, Richard and Damian fell onto a pair of upturning pitchforks and are now slowly bleeding to death on the tile floor.

Seriously Richard will not make this book any better. STOP HAVING SO MANY CHARACTERS THAT MEAN NOTHING AND DO NOTHING AND ARE POINTLESS.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter fourteen


I woke to early morning sunlight. It left me blinking and only after I could see through the warm dazzle of it, did I wonder, Where am I? and Why am I on the floor? Why was I naked on the floor? Without turning my head, I saw the chair legs and the little raised area that was my breakfast nook. Okay, I was on the floor of my own kitchen, naked. Why?

The lack of concern, panic, or fear is really telling, isn’t it? It’s because Anita is constantly falling unconscious and waking up in strange places. This is not a good thing. Anyway, Anita magically remembers what happened and then she looks around and, uh oh, Damian is laid out on the floor in the sunlight and this is bad because we might lose his richly nuanced character.

Damian is rolling around and screaming as if he was on fire, but he’s not. Oh, the melodrama. Nathaniel and Anita are trying to stop him screaming but to no avail. He just rolls around on the floor like a fish. He appears to have absolutely no survival instinct.

Then the front door bursts open which fills the kitchen with light because, somehow in this MAGIC HOUSE, the front door is connected to the kitchen.

Like, shouldn’t it be the back door? And you can’t say that the front door is off the kitchen, because I’m fairly sure that Anita’s come in through the front door before and not ended up in the kitchen. Is this a magic house? Is it some sort of home where if you walk in the front door you magically end up in the exact room you want to be in? Or is it that LKH is a lazy writer? YOU DECIDE.

Gregory, one of the wereleopards, comes in. Oh god I can’t remember which one this is, there are too many. Oh right the rapist with a conveniently tragic past to excuse his actions.

That sentence can be applied to literally 99.9% of the male characters in this book series. That is so fucking depressing.

This makes Damian run from the room, at last.

Nathaniel followed him in that faster-than-the-eye-can-see seed that shapeshifters have, and they’d both turned the corner before I got to it.

That has NEVER EVER COME UP IN THE BOOKS BEFORE NOW. How long have shapeshifters had magic running powers? Why has Anita, who has hunted down shapeshifters before now, not ever mentioned this? Why haven’t any shapeshifter killed in the series so far felt the need to use this little skill to get away? How come shapeshifters are subject to laws killing them on sight when they so obviously cannot be killed by human means – if they can just whizz away like Quicksilver?

You’re just making this up as you go along, aren’t you, LKH.

Why should people give a shit about your works when you so clearly couldn’t give a fuck?

In his panic, Damian had run up, not down, up into the part of the house where the vampires rarely went. Up into the part of the house where the drapes were open and the morning light streamed in. Shit.

Why are all your curtains open? Who’s been going around your house opening up the curtains? How do you know the curtains are open?

Also, I guess that Damian might die or something. Oh no. What a tragic thing. How will we ever recover from this great loss.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter thirteen


Anita decides to embrace the ardeur. Why? I’m not sure. It goes against everything she stands for, everything she holds dear, and everything she has faith in. But LKH wants to write lots and lots of orgies, so fuck characterisation and depth, it’s penis-in-every-orifice time.

Not that LKH would ever write anything so déclassé as that. She has to use artful euphemisms, which suggests a certain reluctance and embarrassment on the subject. If it’s a dick in the mouth, just say what it is.

It’s astounding how much I will have to talk about penises in regards to these books from now on. It’s weird.

Jean-Claude had told me that if I could only stop fighting it wouldn’t be so terrible.

Only that phrasing implies that it’s still bad. Tell me again why JC thought passing this on to Anita was a good idea? And why it shows that he’s a loving and caring boyfriend, not an abusive donkey-butt?

I was okay with Damian’s green coat sliding to the floor, even if it did leave his upper body pale and naked, with the fine muscles gliding under skin the colour of fresh, white sheets.

That’s… like, not sexy. I don’t find sheets sexy.

MMMMMMM HOW HAWT

Anita looks deep into Nathaniel’s eyes, and sees how much he loves her (i.e. how much he loves her money and her fine skin, perfect for tanning). This freaks her out – this sex will mean so much more to him than to her, and she can’t go through with it. She pulls away, clearly and obviously withdrawing her consent.

So, of course, Nathaniel grabs her face and forbids her from pulling away from him.

Anita CLEARLY IS NOT CONSENTING, NATHANIEL. WHAT THE FUCK?

Damian reminds Anita that it’s this, or blood. She still does not want to have sex, saying that it feels ‘wrong’ and for Nathaniel to ‘let go’. He grabs her and kisses her, meaning that now she’s all ardeur-ified and can’t fight back.

Rape.

This is rape.

This is yet another sex scene that is actually rape.

Sigh. Come one, come and defend how ‘progressive’ this series is. I’m dying to hear how it’s so liberating for women.

Anita’s lack of consent is glossed over as everyone starts ripping off everyone else’s clothes. Guess that tuxedo company aren’t getting their tux back.

There was one leg left of my pants, pooled around my ankle. My vest flapped open, and the shirt was in shreds. It was Damian’s hand from behind that grabbed a handful of my panties and pulled, ripping them off my body, leaving me nude from the waist down.

This could be hot but seeing as ANITA DOES NOT CONSENT TO SEX then this is just more violent imagery I could do without in this context. She then stares at the ‘ripeness’ of Nathaniel. I guess he’s ready for slicing up and using in a stew, like a nice ripe marrow or courgette.

Just use the word ‘erection’. There. It’s not a scary word to use.

He seemed thick and heavy with need, as if the lightest touch might make him spill that ripeness out and over me.

I’ve had tomatoes like that before, when they get so overripe that the skins start to burst.

The point I’m making is that when you use vague metaphors that they’re very prone to misinterpretation. Just say that he looks like he’s about to cum on you, for god’s sake.

I started to reach for him, but Damian chose that moment to brush the head of his own ripeness against the back of my body.

I see that Damian’s brought a butternut squash to this vegetable party!

I’d never even seen Damian nude, and now he was about to plunge that nudeness into my body.

… He’s going to climb inside you? STOP HIM!

He rode out from his body, so it was harder to judge length. He seemed carved of ivory and pearl, and where the blood ran close to the surface he blushed pink like the shine inside the seashell, delicate and shining.

… If Damian has a shiny light pink dick, there’s something seriously wrong with him. That’s a clear sign there’s some sort of serious medical problem here!

Nathaniel grabs her front and starts begging. Anita’s mind is full of the lovely image of him just thrusting away through her stomach or some sort of opening anywhere on her body, straight from his mind. He wants to hump open wounds on her body. Lovely. Damian is thinking of his generic angsting because um character or something.

Someone kissed me, hard and fast, forcing my mouth open, pushing his tongue so far in I almost choked, but it brought me back, brought us all back from that lonely room and the sound of the sea on the rocks below.

Could just one of Anita’s men be not rapey? Just once?

Nathaniel drew back enough to say in a harsh whisper, “Happy thoughts, Anita, happy thoughts.” Then his mouth was on mine, tongue, lips, even teeth light against my own lips, so that it was more eating than kissing, but it brought a whimper from my throat, a small helpless sound of pleasure.

Yeah, tack on that pleasure to the end of the paragraph. Hide the fact that it reads like it’s been lifted from some harrowing survivor’s account. My god, how do you fail at writing so much that you are incapable of writing a consensual sex scene?

Damian and Nathaniel grope all over Anita – Anita, who in keeping with the totally rapetastic atmosphere, is just sat there. She is sat there, refusing to interact or be active in the scene, letting them do what they want until it’s all over and she can leave.

DO YOU SEE WHAT YOU’VE WRITTEN, LKH?

eugh

Anita then starts to scream.

argh

If anyone was ever to produce a rape scene bingo sheet (for example, as to point out how badly written they often are, and how overused they are in terms of being part of a female character’s development), this scene would win LKH a cuddly toy of her choice.

I feel awful that I’m trying to keep this amusing. I would like to point out that none of this is amusing to me. I don’t find LKH’s obsession with having Anita raped over and over especially amusing.

Damian flashes back to his non-history and starts to freak out.

Nathaniel screamed, “Noooo!”

*swats with newspaper* You stop doing that.

Anyway, Damian starts to angst about how he has absolutely no good memories, so now Anita has to order him, as his master, to have sex with her. Entirely removing Damian’s consent as well.

Anita, for once, has a moral thought and thinks that this is wrong. Damian starts to guilt trip her because ‘she doesn’t want to do this’. Yeah, she doesn’t. And you’re trying to force her, you rapist shitbag. I hope your dick gets chewed off by a rabid dog. Nathaniel starts to beg her to force Damian because he’s just soooooo sad. Anita gives him a gentle kiss, to try and make him at least feel a little better (just kill him Anita just kill him) so he grabs her and force kisses her to the point that her mouth starts bleeding.

Then Damian’s angst hits them all again.

We screamed, and writhed, and I could not control it.

If you write lines like this with no self-awareness, then you need stop and having an outside source read your work.

Everyone then passes out.

Stop using unconsciousness as a way to end scenes, LKH. It just means that you had literally no other way to stop this. You’re a lazy, lazy hack.

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter twelve


Yos I am back after spending time poking tortoises and hamsters and watching lots of Xena

Xena, who I think LKH was aiming for with Anita. I know that Xena was started after Anita was first published, but think about it – strong independent woman kicking ass, all that? Only that Xena is a well-written character, made by people who knew what the fuck they were doing.

TBH I think one of the biggest influences, no matter what LKH says, was the 1970s Wonder Woman TV show.

Sorry, I’m rambling. I’ve been travelling a lot.

I didn’t remember crossing the room, but I must have, because I was standing in front of him.

THIS IS FIRST PERSON NARRATION. ANITA SHOULD KNOW THAT SHE’S CROSSING THE ROOM BECAUSE WE’RE IN HER FUCKING HEAD.

Anita’s in front of Nathaniel and is ‘close enough to taste his pulse on my tongue like candy’. She’s thinking about cock gobbling again, right? They’re making out and she’s like ‘oh yeah I can feed the ardeur’.

This has only been going on for like three books now. Why is Anita still confused about this? Anita and Nathaniel are snogging away and then Anita’s mind is full of hunting deer.

I came back to the kitchen, on my knees, screaming.

Why can’t Anita have sex without there being some ongoing drama or trauma forcing her into it? For a series lauded for being so erotic and so good for women for openly talking about sex, sex is treated as something incredibly negative. Richard’s hunting and he’s ‘feeding’ so Anita’s head is full of that, and then she reaches out to JC, and he’s feeding on Jason. I have no idea why she’s suddenly reacting to this, considering that the triforce has been in place since, what, book six?

Why do I never have a fucking clue what’s going on in these books when the metaphorical magic starts?

Anita then falls unconscious. Again. Everybody drink!

Anita’s head’s been in Nathaniel’s lap so she starts giving him a blow job. Well, no, nothing that would make you think Anita’s a ‘bad girl’. She just licks the pulse in his thigh. You know, that common erotic thing to do. Oh, no, I think she’s know sucking him off? Maybe??

I pressed my mouth over that quivering heat, kissed the blood just under his skin. Licked the jumping thud of his pulse, just a quick flick of my tongue. It tasted like his skin, sweet and clean, but it also tasted of blood, sweet copper pennies on my tongue.

See, I think that must be talking about Nathaniel’s dick but it seems that Nathaniel’s dick is magic. Just like that his skin has a magical natural smell of vanilla, his dick manages to not be anything at all like any other penis on the planet.

Anita then struggles to not cock gobble. Again. Seriously, why the fuck is she always ready to bite off Nathaniel’s dick?

You’re not Ma-Ma, Anita.

JC then appears in Anita’s head like Obi-Wan, telling her to ‘feed the force ardeur’ before she eats Nathaniel’s penis.

I fought not to bite down, because some part of me knew that if I once tasted blood I would feed. I would feed, and Nathaniel might not survive it.

Why is this a recurring plot point???

Damian then appears to stop the penis feeding frenzy. Nathaniel just thought it was all so amazing and Damian offers himself as food. If JC has told her to feed, then she must, otherwise she’ll devolve into some sort of bloodlust frenzy.

“Why is it different tonight?” It was a child asking someone to explain why the monster under the bed has grown a new and scarier head.

  • Anita, you’ve been dealing with this for three books. You were TOLD and you KNOW that if you don’t feed the ardeur, it goes all fucking violent and shit. Hence the epithet ‘Anita Blake: Cock Gobbler’.
  • It really fucking creeps me out that Anita is consistently described as being like a child and that LKH repeatedly links and evokes images of children when sex is involved.
  • Because the plot says so, Anita.

Damian then just starts licking her because FUCK CONSENT he’s so lonely and empty inside that only plunging his cock inside Anita will cure him of being unhappy.

Yes, because sex is clearly the most important thing in the universe ever.

Sex is fine and all, it’s just not the best thing evurrrrrrrrr. Cake is much more satisfactory. Anyway, it doesn’t matter what Anita wants because Damian’s decided that he’s going to fuck her. She tries to pull away and say she doesn’t want to, but eh, fuck that, a man has decided that he needs sex and it’s Anita’s duty to just submit to what he wants.

His eyes filled with emerald fire, and just like that there was a line of desire carved from my mouth down his fingers, his hand, his arm, his chest, his hips, to the center of his body. I could feel him thick and rich and full of blood.

Is Damian’s dick around his stomach? Because… your pelvis isn’t the centre of your body. WORDS MEAN THINGS. Damian is enjoying this… light petting, and then Nathaniel squishes up against her back, and now all of the ardeur is just pain. Unbearable pain flowing through Anita. Anita starts screaming and Nathaniel and Damian do not stop.

This is a scary idea of what consensual sex is like.

Anita’s head is full of a boring and confusing mess of metaphysical magic. Then she flashes back to the death of her mother. Then her head is full of Nathaniel’s brother being beaten? And that totes evil bitch that changed Damian.

This is all so sexy you guise i can’t believe how hawt it is i might have to take my vest off

Damian and Nathaniel start weeping and bawling about Anita making them remember things, which makes me go WELL YOU SHOULDN’T BE DISGUSTING SEX CRIMINALS THEN, HUH? MAYBE HER MIND PULLED OUT THOSE IMAGES BECAUSE YOU WOULDN’T FUCKING STOP TOUCHING HER WHEN SHE HADN’T CONSENTED TO IT, HUH?

I am not fond of the men in these books. I don’t know whether you’d picked that up or not, my disdain has been rather subtle.

Anywho, this all means that somehow Nathaniel, Damian, and Anita are now a triforce. It happened because… I have no idea. I’m not sure how this happened without conscious effort and how Anita didn’t realise it, considering that it’s happened to her before?

Anita has to think about happy memories for reasons but as her life is an UNENDING PARADE OF UNCOMPARABLE ANGST she just can’t do it. But she starts to think about Nathaniel, how he’s her ‘living comfort object’ and that makes it all okay.

god i hate anita/nathaniel it’s so fucked up on both sides

Anita starts to snog Damian and then she’s like YAY ARDEUR for some reason. Why couldn’t she just feed it from JC’s sexual satisfaction? Why is the ardeur even here? Why did the editors and publishers think this was a good idea?

A review of Laurell K. Hamilton’s ‘Incubus Dreams’ chapter eleven


The living room was dark as I entered the house.

Well, you’ve been out. So it would be. Anita goes instantly into raptures about how the leopards can see in the dark and therefore they don’t need to turn the lights on. This would be more impressive if, you know, I didn’t need lights to walk around my home at night. Because I know where things are and I can see enough in the dark to get around without  walking into things. Like most people.

She doesn’t want to go into the bedroom, because Nathaniel and Micah are awful fucking people and won’t leave her house. She decides to call JC then decides that would be ‘cowardice’. The phone rings and it’s ‘Teddy’, a cultured werewolf who is also a bodybuilder that we’ve never met before and are likely to never meet again. He’s calling to let Anita know that Gil the werefox is in the hospital. Because she’s obviously the fucking person to call about shapeshifter news? Gil was in a car accident when some dude ran a red light. Gil was seriously injured, and is now handcuffed to the bed and the police are preparing to put him in a ‘safe house’.

Safe houses were really prisons for lycanthropes. They’d been designed originally for new lycanthropes, so you had someplace safe to go during your first few full moons. It was a good idea, since the first few moons could turn into a killing spree, unless you had other shapeshifters to watch over you. The newly furry spent a first full moons with no memory of what they’d done, and very little human int hem while they were in animal form. The safe houses were a good idea in theory, but in practice, once oyu went in, they never let you out. You never had enough control to pass their tests and get out. You were dangerous and would always be dangerous. The ACLU had begun the legal battles on grounds of illegal imprisonment without due process, but so far they were still bad places to be sent.

Oh gods, not this again.

This? Does not work. At all. LKH has been trying to tie the werewolves into some sort of civil rights thing, because too many people use werewolves and vampires as metaphors for those who suffer ongoing prejudice in the modern world.

The problem is that it doesn’t fucking work in the AB universe. People can fight against the prejudices of racism, homophobia, transphobia, sexism, etc, etc, (and the fact that I have to put an etc is fucking miserable) because there’s no basis to hate people for anything.

But AB werewolves? There’s a huge fucking reason to detain them permanently. They go into a murderous frenzy in the presence of blood. Their pack structure involves murder and rape. They eat their romantic partners alive if they don’t concentrate hard enough during sex.

There is no reason to be prejudiced towards people of different ethnicities, sexual identities, or genders. There is every fucking reason for the government to consider werewolves in this world to be a danger to other people. Because they are. They are uncontrollable murderous rapists, and there’s no reason given in the text why  the US government shouldn’t take an interest in keeping them contained.

Anita also gets cross that the hospital team are wearing ‘full hazardous material gear’ while treating Gil, as LKH is still treating ‘werewolfism’ as a metaphor for the AIDS crisis.

I’d wear a biohazard suit if I had to treat a shapeshifter in the AB universe. You think I’d want to be a unrepentant murder and part of the bullshit pack system?

Teddy then wants Anita to deal with some pack member who’s loosing control in a bar.

OH, AND WEREWOLVES ARE PERFECTLY SAFE, EH? AND WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU CALLING ANITA? WHAT THE FUCK CAN SHE DO? SHOOT HIM?

And then Teddy tuts at Anita for swearing. What the hell? Ugh. She’s got to go because… um, PLOT DEMANDS IT. She suggests that Micah would be better suited, which is fair. He comes into the room and Anita stares blankly at his abs. strong independent woman…. She hands the phone to Micah and he doesn’t want to deal with it.

Even though he’s head of the stupidly named coalition and is therefore responsible for maintaining the ‘respectability’ and safety of the shapeshifters in the city.

“Nathaniel has many fine skills, but this isn’t one of them.”

“You’re not really good at either,” he said, with a smile to soften the harsh truth.

I smiled back, because he was sooo right.

Unless you are writing about teenagers or doing a section with text or IM speech, do not use ‘sooo’ in the body of your narrative. It is childish.

Anyway, this means that Anita now has to deal with the ardeur with Nathaniel. Look at how that worked out. All neat and that.

batman glare

That doesn’t count as smart plotting. If you couldn’t make this happen naturally, then you’re a shit writer.

And then Damian the vampire walks in. Remember him? It’s okay if you don’t, LKH gives a whole page of backstory for him, otherwise you’d never fucking remember who he was. He’s Anita’s vampire servant and is a total non-character. Anita then blathers on about how vampires in the States are ‘more civilised’. Yeah, the stalky, murdery, rapey vampires are just so civilised and follow the law.

Damian must have come straight from work, because though he, like most of the vamps from Europe, almost never wore jeans and tennis shoes, he also didn’t like dressing up as much as Jean-Claude insisted on.

WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS SHIT

WHY THE FUCK DOES LKH THINK EVERYONE IN EUROPE GOES AROUND IN FURS AND DIAMONDS ALL THE TIME

I wear jeans and trainers all the shitting time. Whether or not I ‘dress up’ has nothing to fucking to do with the fact that I’m European.

Damian is dressed as a pirate for some reason. He works in a nightclub. Why the shit is he dressed as a pirate? Damian and Anita start talking about flirting and his gemstone eyes and how he can’t have sex with people while he’s working. He then starts whining that he needs his own room in the house because he wants to bring home people to fuck. This is purely to make Anita uncomfortable, as she is not happy with the thought of having strangers in the house. He goes on about how she is his master, and that he wants her to ‘touch me’.

Anita’s hugely uncomfortable with all this and isn’t happy with how he’s acting. He gets in her face about ‘warm, wet, soft bodies’ and how he can’t trust strangers because they might kill him. Anita says how she’s got a crick in her neck from him being so close, so he grabs her and puts her on a kitchen counter, face to face now.

“You have but to tell me stop, and I will stop.”

Hmmmm. Damian freaks out because Anita gives him ‘peaceful eyes’. Well, I’d be pretty upset if someone just handed me a pair of eyeballs. He’s upset because of all this punishment and grabs her so hard he injures Anita. She finally says that he oughta fucking stop and get out her face. He’s angry because, like every other fucking guy in this world, he has some implicit right to stick his undead peener in her vagina.

Nathaniel comes in while Anita’s practically on the verge of crying because of how she treated Damian – not that he physically hurt her, and didn’t give a shit, no, that’s A-FUCKING-OK. Then it’s peanut butter ardeur time.

Something about how being meeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaannnnnnn to Damian means there’s some sort of vague price to be paid.

I have no fucking idea why.

WHY THINGS HAPPEN