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Beanbag Love

I read. I write. I talk about reading and writing. That is when I'm not driving kids somewhere or teaching them. Married, educated, domesticated. I really enjoy the friends I've met through a variety of different message boards and venues regarding reading and authors. I try to take a positive view when I write reviews but sometimes I can't. Those times are few and far between, but they do exist. I'm mostly an old softy, though. I think so anyway.

Currently reading

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Susanna Clarke
Ashes of Midnight (The Midnight Breed, Book 6) - Lara Adrian What a disappointment! I loved Andreas from the other books but this story left a lot to be desired.

I'm sorry for spoilers, but I have to do it. There were so many problems with this book, it's hard to even outline them all. I only give it two stars because it's part of a series that has some really good stuff. Otherwise it might even have been a DNF.

Okay, first of all -- the heroine supposedly blood-bonded with the villain months after the hero disappeared from her life (about 30 years ago). The villain is a true monster, although the heroine doesn't actually know that. She only knows he's a jerk who never sees her but about once every six months. But my question is, why in the world, when you know the man you love is still alive, do you blood bond with someone you don't love at all? Someone who may be a friend, but who definitely isn't the one you love? Blood bonding is forever. Not just a fifty-year or so sentence, it's forEVER. Or until one of you dies which, barring extreme circumstances, NEVER happens. So ... what was she thinking?

I had thought she had been forced into the blood-bonding with Roth. That's the only way I could accept what follows. But she wasn't. She went into it by choice. Made her bed, so to speak.

So, then we have the return of Andreas, the man she really loves and he's out for vengeance against Roth -- her mate. He attacks Roth's Darkhaven, killing everyone (yes, even family members, which is hypocritical because that's exactly why he hates Roth -- no matter that the villain doesn't care about them, it's still the same thing). Then he attacks Roth's country home, where Claire resides, killing all the agents who are there to protect her.

And somehow she's still not only attracted to him, but is totally shocked when Roth sends a death squad out to kill him after she calls her mate to "help Andreas". Lordy. What a dingbat. And Roth sending the death squad is proof positive to her that Andreas (the man she witnessed killing EVERYONE) is telling the truth that Roth is the actual monster. Yeah.

Okay. If you're still reading, I'm on to the next offense. They embark on a love affair! Yes! But Roth is a monster, you say. Yes, he is. But she has no real evidence that he is. Only Andreas's say-so and he's killed EVERYONE. As I said, if she'd been forced into the loveless blood-bond, or even if Roth had been abusive (not just neglectful), I might have been able to accept this. But I can't. He's a monster, but Claire made her bed with him and she's got to wait until he's dead...

...which is what Andreas is trying to bring about and she keeps trying to stop him! Because she's afraid Roth will hurt him. After she's seen him kill EVERYONE!

And after she's found out some info, that Roth is indeed involved in something really ugly that's going to get a lot of humans and Breed killed, she pretends she can't feel Roth in Boston and runs away. Because she's afraid he might hurt Andreas. So ... run away from Andreas. Leave him in Boston. Where Roth is. So he can be blind-sided by an attack instead. Which he'd probably survive anyway because she's already seen that he can kill EVERYONE!

She finally decides she's going to help after she finds out about the dead Breedmates. Everyone has a limit, right? Sheesh. But now Andreas wants her to stay away. Luckily we're spared that hollow conflict and she helps anyway.

Which brings about the best part of the book which is probably the last 15%. But it's a long way getting there. And still the HEA leaves a bad taste in my mouth. A couple of TSTL adulterers live happily-ever-after with some vague future of spying or something. Whoopee.

I'm concerned about what Adrian has in store for Chase. He was basically taken out early on in this book and we didn't see or hear from him again. They said he'd be out for a week. Weeks later, and he's still MIA. I'm hoping she doesn't pull a Phury on him and make him the background guy who gets the tepid romance that nobody cares about. Or kills him off. He's not the lead in the next two books so ...

Oh well, I hope the next one will be better. I haven't cared much about Kade or Brock -- probably because they were hamhandedly introduced in what strongly appears to be an injection of racial diversity -- but I didn't care about Niko before his book and it's so far been my favorite so I'm open to surprises.

So there you have it. If you've stuck with me through this rant thus far then I guess it's pretty clear how I feel about this one. Thumbs. Down.