01/01/2005 Entry: "LKH's INCUBUS DREAMS -- Scattered Yet Attention-Grabbing (Laurie)"
I've finally finished this tome and will recommend it those who have been following the series. I'm thinking newcomers would be find it terribly confusing.
This one begins at the wedding of Larry and Tammy (whom after this interlude are not mentioned again). Anita is one of Larry's groomsmen. Her dates are Micah and Nathaniel (hey, why bring one when you can have two?!). Anita's trying to duck out on dancing with them when she's called to visit a murder scene. Yeah, a murder investigation. I thought, the book is getting back to its roots! No need to get excited, though, as it's only for a moment then we get back to the sex.
As expected at this point in the series, the book features lots of sexual tension with Nathaniel (he of the beautiful violet eyes and desire to be bound and beaten) and Damien, and Asher, and Richard, and Jean-Claude, and Micah, and...well, you get the picture. When the book begins, Micah is Anita's #1 bedmate and partner, but as the book progresses Nathaniel finally moves up a little in the ranks. I was thrilled to see this as I have soft spot for Nathaniel.
This book was described to me by a friend who enjoyed the earlier books as "boring porn" and I can easily see why she felt this way. The sex with strangers which fills far too many pages is dull, unnecessary, and frustratingly vanilla. How many men does Anita need in her harem anyway? It has reached ridiculous proportions. She'd be waddling like a penguin if she were human.... If the book had been subjected to a little editing it could've been so much better, IMO.
However, I still thought it was much better than the last few Anita Blake books because LKH does delve a little deeper into some of the relationships. The Jean-Claude/Richard/Anita triangle is explored. Micah breaks down and becomes more than just another pretty face (though he's quickly forgotten for most of the book). Nathaniel comes into his own (take that however you will) and becomes a little less of a doormat for Anita to use for feeding her various hungers and for cooking and cleaning. Hey, where can I get a Nathaniel, anyway?
The plot is all over the place. At one point Anita is called in to raise a zombie. I'd almost forgotten she's a necromancer so it was nice to see her "working" again. But that plot, which I found very interesting, quickly went nowhere. She's also called in to investigate a suspected vampire serial killer targeting strippers. This plot fizzles and limps to a less than fulfilling end. In between the short moments of work, Anita seems to be angsting about the way her life has turned out and dealing with the ardeur and attempting to reconcile her feelings and complicated relationships with all of her boys.
INCUBUS DREAMS managed to hold my attention for most of its many pages which is something most books can't manage to do these days, so I'm sure I'll read the next one.--Laurie