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Review: A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton

Review: A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton
A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton
Series: Merry Gentry #1
Published by Ballantine Books
Published on: September 30 2000
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 467
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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My name is Meredith Gentry, but of course it's not my real name. I dare not even whisper my true name after dark for fear that one hushed word will travel over the night winds to the soft ear of my aunt, the Queen of Air and Darkness. She wants me dead. I don't even know why...

I fled the high court of Faerie three years ago and have been in hiding ever since. As Merry Gentry, I am a private investigator for the Grey Detective Agency: Supernatural Problems, Magical Solutions. My magical skills, scorned at the courts of Faerie, are valued in the human world. Even by human standards, my magic isn't flashy, which is fine by me. Flashy attracts attention and I can't afford that.

Rumour has it that I am dead. Not quite. I am Princess Meredith NicEssus. To speak that name after dark is to call down a knock upon your door from a hand that can kill you with a touch. I have been careful, but not careful enough. The shadows have found me, and they are going to take me back home, one way or another.

So the running is over. But the fighting has just begun...

Rich, sensual, brimming with dangerous magic, A Kiss of Shadows is a dazzling tour-de-force where folklore, fantasy and erotically charged adventure collide.

CantStopPantyRipperKinky

Laurell K. Hamilton is consistently a woman ahead of her time.

It started with her Anita Blake series back in 1993. Yes, that’s right—1993. I was . . . well, I’m not going to tell you how old I was in 1993, but suffice it to say, I was young enough that my mother wouldn’t want me reading an adult UF series, and that was BEFORE the Big Shift from straight-up UF to UF/erotica that took place in 2001 with book 10.

So first Hamilton was one of the pioneers in the Urban Fantasy genre (if you could even call it a genre at that time), then she began shifting her writing into the largely unexplored territory of erotica.

That shift displeased many of Hamilton’s fans, and she was criticized for lowering the standards of popular fiction in general. She was attacked, and called all manner of nasty things, her writing referred to as “smut” and the so-called decline of her series the result of laziness.

Pfft.

I’m not going to undermine the outcry of the readers who genuinely have zero interest in the sexuality-driven series that Anita Blake became. If I hadn’t adapted (like multitudes of others), I would have also been hugely disappointed that a previously beloved series transformed into something I found utterly distasteful.

But I did adapt, and Hamilton’s Merry Gentry series has never been anything other than what it started as—Fae (YAY!) focused UF chock full of sexy times.

If that’s not your thing, then it’s not your thing. To each their own, and all that.

But do not try to convince me that Hamilton traded well-written, plot-driven books for sex, sex, and MORE sex, THE END, b/c it simply isn’t true:

I leaned my back against the windows and the thick, hanging smog. The day was as grey as my boss, but his color was a cool, crisp grey, like clouds before a spring rain. What lay outside the window felt heavy and thick like something you would try to swallow, but you’d never get it down. It was a day to choke on, or maybe it was just my mood.

Say what you want about LKH, but girl can write.

So by now, most of you know that I love A-L-I-E-N-S. But there is one thing that I love even more than A-L-I-E-N-S and that is . . .

FAE.

And LKH’s Merry Gentry series embodies precisely what I love about Fae—DELICIOUS ambiguity.

Are they good, or are they bad?

It has never been, nor will ever be that simple. At best you’ll find mostly good or bad Fae, but even then, the basic nature of the Fae is so capricious that you can never know what they’re going to do.

I LOVE that.

Another common theme in Fae-based books is difficulty with procreation, and this is certainly the case in A Kiss of Shadows.

The Fae, though practically immortal, have been dwindling for centuries. The Unseelie Queen has but one heir, her son Cel, who is becoming more and more unignorably unstable. Enter Merry, the Queen’s part-human niece, who is brought back into the fold and offered a bargain:

She can pick as many of the Queen’s personal guard as she wants as lovers, and if she becomes pregnant within the next three years, the Queen will abdicate, making Merry the new Queen, and the father of the child the Consort and King.

Guess how much Cel likes that proposition—abouthismuch<——no spaces = notalot.

Yes, there’s sex, and LOTS of it. But there’s also a good plot and lots o’ action as well . . . the other kind of action, get your mind out of the gutter. *snorts*

Also, the Fae folklore is spot-on. The Seelie, though not much of a presence yet, are believably depicted as the “shining ones” that are not nearly the creatures of goodness and light that humans perceive them to be, and the Unseelie are a multitude of hideous creatures, as well as the Seelie-like (in appearance anyway) royal sidhe.

Basically, I loved it.

I would recommend A Kiss of Shadows to anyone who doesn’t mind a healthy dose of sex in their UF, but especially to those who have read and liked (loved?) Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series, or the independently published Fae Chronicles by Amelia Hutchins. I won’t absolutely guarantee that if you like either of those, you’ll like this, but it’s a near thing, and given that this series predates Fever by 5 or 6 years, I think it’s safe to say that Merry Gentry paved the way for other books like this, Fever and Fae Chronicles included.

Jessica Signature

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My name is Jessica and I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I’m trying my hand at writing, but mostly I read. My favorite genres are Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy, and the YA versions of those genres, but if there is a book of a different color getting lots of buzz, I’ll read it too, just to be informed. If I’m not reading or writing, I’m probably on Goodreads or Pinterest or baking blueberry pies because I love them.

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72 Comments

  1. I do enjoy this series. I’ve been found a relisten of the entire series this year to get ready for A Shiver of Light which comes out next month.

    Great review. I think that is the best way way I’ve seen LKH’s books explained in a long while.

    • Thank you, Melanie! Really, that means a lot. I get really sick of people criticizing LKH, and never giving her the credit she deserves. Is she going to be winning a Pulitzer for fiction any time soon? Probably not. But she was a pioneer of UF, and even if you aren’t a fan of her recent work, the early Anita Blake installments were fantastic.

      And yes, that’s why I rereading the series too. It’s been YEARS, and if I’m going to have any hope of knowing what’s going on in A Shiver of Light, a reread was necessary.

  2. I’m so reading this series!! I swear I am, I love many things about LKH, especially the “visionary gal” thing that she did obviously rock. I wanna read all her stuff, which I haven’t already obviously, cause my love for reading reawakened in like 2011, and there’s just SO much to catch up with from previous years, not to mention all the snazzy stuff that came out since then. Lol.
    Great review as always, Jessica! You always make my reading-needs muscles all tingly, lol!!

    (Also, that shmit about sex in stories lowering the level of fiction is total crap. I mean, violence made it in way sooner. Is the point that sex is more revolting than violence? Cause that’s just an atrocious point to contemplate. Adults have sex, happy adults have GREAT freaking sex, good writers can make that happen for their characters, lol!!)

    • Thank you, and I hope you do, Livia! I have to admit that I have trouble deciding whether I like this series or the Anita Blake series more, but this series is about Fae (Yay!), and there are far fewer books. A Shiver of Light, which comes out in June, is rumored to be the final installment of the series, and Anita Blake is at 22 and counting, so this one might be the best bet—you are right, SO many books to read 😉

      And I totally agree. If sex in books makes you uncomfortable, don’t read it. But don’t attack it and call it nasty names—when did we revert to schoolyard antics?

  3. I have heard those criticisms about Hamilton and admit they pushed me the other way. But 93? That is a long time to run with a series without any changes. Moving new directions vs writing stale volume after stale volume; eh, you can’t please everyone but at least you push yourself.

    And I like my fae seducing and evil as hell.

    • EXACTLY. Keeping a series alive for 20+ years kind of speaks for itself, doesn’t it? I’ll admit there were a few filler books in all that time (Micah being the most obvious example), but I’m pretty sure LKH was dealing with personal issues, and at least she wrote something rather than simply disappearing like some authors have.

      There are plenty of that kind of Fae in this series too 😉

  4. I absolutely love your reviews, Jessica! They are amazing. I might not have started reading LKH in 1993 but I discovered her around 2005, and I’ve read everything she wrote and have a kind of love-hate relationship with her books. Really did not mind sexy times but unfortunately when she started substituting the plot with a multitude of sexy times it became an issue. Especially with Anita. I haven’t read anything better than Obsidian Butterfly by her yet. :))) Blame Otto. However, what bothered me in Anita never did with Merry. Because I love Fever series, for me Fae are not Fae if they are not scary and ambiguous, and she writes then like that really well. 🙂 Anyway, you must read War for The Oaks by Emma Bull. I also found that R.Lee Smith’s The Care and Feeding of Griffins has similar feel to it as Merry Gentry series.

    • Thank you! I didn’t start reading LKH in 1993 either (I was 12—there, I said it, LOL). I probably discovered her even after you did. Her books didn’t really start going downhill for me until book 12, and Micah (book 13) was admittedly pretty awful. I’m actually really glad I discovered her after you did, b/c if Micah had been the most recent book in the series, I might have quit. I’m thinking my first run-through went all the way to Skin Trade though. But yes, Obsidian Butterfly was fantastic. I love Edward, and Otto . . . Otto is just horrifying. I reread/got caught up with the series in Sept. of last year, and book 22 was actually the best one I’d read since the series took a downturn for me at book 12 (could be b/c Edward and Otto showed up—VERY interesting development with Otto in that book btw 😉 ). And yes, LKH does scary, ambiguous Fae VERY well. I have the Emma Bull book on my wishlist, and if I don’t already have the R. Lee Smith book on it, I’ll add it too!

  5. I don’t mind that Hamilton changed her writing style (although I did quit her Anita Blake series, but I’m okay with that too). I don’t read a lot of UF/erotica, but I think it’s awesome that women have the option to read things other than watered down romance novels. I’ve only read one book in this series, A Lick of Frost, because when I checked it out from the library I didn’t realize it was part of a series. It wasn’t for me, at least not then, but it was unlike anything I’d ever read before! 😉

    • See, that’s an attitude I can appreciate. It’s not your thing, so you don’t read it, but your open-minded enough to be happy it’s available to people who DO like. Even I will admit that the I think the early Anita Blake were better than the latter ones. I don’t read a lot of UF/erotica either, but I was invested in the series enough to keep reading it, b/c I didn’t have a huge problem with it—I just didn’t seek it out. I started reading this one b/c FAE, but even with the Fae, Merry Gentry isn’t my favorite LKH series 😉 But it is different, and again, I really feel like LKH opened the door for other authors.

  6. I’ve heard of LKH and Anita Blake back when I was predominantly reading Historical Romace so at that time, I was not really interested with it. I do remember checking the series and the author out on Wikipedia and I’ve read about the criticism and outcry regarding the shift to erotica. Although I’ve never read her books, I do agree. She’s an author ahead of her time because fast forward to now and it’s almost impossible to read books without a good dose of sex. And that’s not exactly a bad thing at times. I still need to read the Fever series, I’m waiting for the eBook version to be returned to the library but I’ll check this one if it’s available! Maybe I can read this first. Great review, as always, Jessica 🙂

    • Thanks, Amir! And yes, that kind of criticism just boggles my mind. I mean, even if you personally don’t like to read that kind of thing, how prudish of a attitude is it to just completely shoot it down? You’re right—sex in books is EVERYWHERE these days, and while I don’t go out of my way to find UF/erotica, I wasn’t going to abandon a great series over it. This one I picked up b/c Fae, but I still think the Anita Blake series is the better of the two. I hope you can get it from your library 😉

  7. I don’t like Fae (sorry) but I love how she writes it in this series and I think the sex fits in better here than Anita Blake. I quit around book #4 I think but I always enjoyed Merry and her boys.

    Karen @ For What It’s Worth

    • Yeah, lots of people don’t like Fae, LOL. I’ll be the first to admit that they can be seriously creepy, but I can’t help it, I love them. And I don’t blame you for quitting at book 4. I just finished rereading it yesterday, and it was the 3rd afte book 1 without much of a plot. I can tell you that it finally does pick up again in book 5. I’m rereading them so I can review A Shiver of Light that comes out in June, but it was definitely a struggle to through the next few books after this one 😉

  8. Can I just openly admit that I haven’t heard of this author. *hangs head in shame* BUT I will correct that immediately by adding this book to my TBR! 😉 You recommend and I listen, frankly, so should everyone!! ♥♥♥

    • OMG! You’ve never even heard of LKH?! If you can get past the ’90s (lack of) fashion sense, her Anita Blake series is fantastic. This one is pretty good too, but Anita Blake friggin’ rocked my socks off. She’s going to be at Dragon Con too!! And you’re a doll, Cristina! <3<3<3

      • Can you believe that?? I will correct that immediately! LOL!!! I’m reading that once I get through TOG, K Daniels, Red Rising and then this one…I might have to squeeze in a few contemporaries in there but that’s my plan. I’m on a good reading streak and that’s thanks to you my friend! Dragon Con! GAH…you are going to have so much fun! Next year will be the year I go to a lot of Con’s! 🙂 ♥

      • LOL, that is quite the reading list! And yes, Dragon Con is going to be friggin’ amazing. I can’t believe it. When I first looked into it, barely anyone that I was interested in had signed on, but now—coming out the the woodwork. And I counting on it!

  9. I read Anita before Merry. I only made through book 3 in the Merry series. It was just too much like Anita after the orgies hit. It was like LKH took Anita and her men then changed their names and made them fae.

    • I can kind of see that. I definitely saw strong similarities between Frost and Richard, but Frost was a MUCH more likable character (IMO), but they (the characters and the story) were different enough to hold my interest. Then again, we are talking about Fae, and when Fae are involved, I make allowances 😉

  10. Honesty I am just not sure :/

    • Then pass 😉 This series isn’t for everyone and there are too many sure things to waste time on the questionable ones.

  11. This sounds great, but I’m just not getting the “it’s for me” feeling, you know? :/ I’m really glad to hear you enjoyed it so much though! Like you said, it’s definitely not for everyone. 😀

  12. Can you believe I have never tried anything by her? it looks like I need to remedy that. 😉

    • I can believe it, LOL. LOTS of people have heard terrible things and never given LKH a shot, but if it sounds like this would interest you, I say go for it 😉

  13. Ah Anita Blake, you know I keep reading them because like you they were my first UF books and I still have hopes that it will get better. It’s in fact a little better now but not up to the first novel because it’s too much. But well I read them lol. This series though is way better maybe because we don’t have that many books, but I love it and I’m glad it’s the same for you with this one. I hope it will continue like that. I can’t wait for the new one I confess.

    • I thought the latest Anita Blake installment was the first pretty good one in a LONG while too, but yeah, I agree that it still wasn’t up to the first 8 or so. But hey—with the Otto weirdness, maybe it will get better better! And I really excited about the new book too . . . hence the reread 😉

  14. Oh my, I too remember reading Hamilton when I was technically still “much too young” for it! Thankfully, my mom didn’t really care what I was into as long as I was actually reading, and I was a big girl, I could handle it. To this day I have mixed feelings about her LKH’s books — I still remember loving her Anita Blake books up to the big UF to shameless erotic change which I wasn’t too thrilled about. I’ve always been curious about Merry Gentry though, I heard that in some ways they are similar to Anita Blake, in others they are completely different 😉

    • There are similarities, but unfortunately the similarities are mostly on the erotica front, so if you never got past that with Anita Blake, you probably won’t much like these. I make exceptions for anything Fae, but even though it’s been years, so I don’t remember half of what I’ve already read, it was still a struggle to get through books 2-4. I vaguely recall book 5 being more plot-based, so I have my fingers crossed, but it’s been a chore . . .

  15. Well…I learned all kinds of stuff about Laurell K. Hamilton that I didn’t know and I also realized that I have never read one of her books. Which hasn’t been intentional. I guess I just have always thought her books as were erotica and I’m not a big fan. Although, I do like the Fever series and I love Fae stories so now I’m on the fence on whether I should try Laurell K. Hamilton or not. Ugh…you’ve got me all confused now. 😉

    • I would read the early Anita Blake books just b/c they are wonderful. While every book has a definitive plot, and each book builds the relationships and develops the characters, there’s not really a set, overall goal to achieve, so if you wanted to stop reading at any point, you wouldn’t constantly be wondering, “But how did it end?” This series is heavy on the erotica, so it would depend on how comfortable you were with Mac’s run-in with the Unseelie princes and the recovery process. If you liked it, this series would probably work for you. If you just kind of dealt with it b/c you liked the series otherwise . . . maybe not 😉

  16. I really like this series and, despite a couple of books being just one big orgy (seriously. Have you read the last couple? Not the upcoming one but the two before it? all sex, all the time.), have stuck with it and enjoyed Merry and her band of Merry Men. (heh) Hamilton is definitely one of the trailblazers and, yeah, she’s gotten a lot of shit for it but good for her for slogging forward through all the crap to still produce books.

    • I never actually read the last book before the new one, but man . . . LOL. I just finished rereading book 4, and I was really hoping that I’d be getting a break from the constant orgy. Maybe I will, and then it turns into one again. Oh well. Anyway, she’s definitely a trailblazer and I respect her for that BIG time.

  17. I’m a girl that always wants a little more sex in her UF Jessica, so I think that aspect of this story would work just perfectly for me! The only reason it bothered me in Anita was that the series didn’t start out that way and I don’t deal well with drastic core changes in characters/plot/feel midway through. But, like you said, maybe if I had just accepted it and adapted it would have worked better for me. Anyway, glad this first book so well for you, I’m excited to give it a try!

    • Yeah, there wasn’t much of a transition in the Anita books, but that’s one of the things that’s great about this series—you know what you’re getting into from the very beginning. My only problem has been how slowly the plot progresses. Plan–get Merry preggers. I just finished book 4, and between books 2-4 maybe and entire week is covered. So that’s frustrating. But other than that . . . 😉

  18. Jessicaaa! Where is your Red Rising review? :O I’ve been trying to find it here but I haven’t had much luck 😛 Did you hide it somewhere so I can’t see it?? ;P

    In any case, commenting on this… I actually hated Moning’s Fever series (lol *stabs Jericho Barrons) okay maybe not the series but the first book pissed me off. This doesn’t sound like it has the annoying factors of Mac and the sorry excuse of Barrons (sorry if you love him hahahaha) so I may check it out!! 😀 Faes are awesome if done right (so are vampires, but that’s a story for another day). Great review wheee <3

    Faye at The Social Potato Reviews

    • No, LOL! Here it is: Red Rising

      Thanks, Faye! Yeah, Barrons is (SADLY) absent here, but this series is pretty intense even without him. Also–as I’m rereading this series, I’m being reminded that after book 1, there is a clump of installments that don’t forward the plot much, and I’m struggling through them. I’m not sure I’d recommend this series to you . . . I have a feeling that rants of epic proportion would be in your future 😉

      • Aha, in that case, it is advisable for me not to proceed with this book. Rants of epic proportions are not healthy for my sanity!

      • No, not even a little bit, LOL.

  19. *squee* Awesome review, Jessica! This series was actually the first of LKH’s books I read. (I still haven’t caught up in Anita Blake) And it was actually one of my first reads in UF. I LOVED it. I love the Fae and I, too, love the mythology that LKH uses here. I fell for the plotline, and love the action – both kinds! 😉 I’m excited for the release of the next Merry book. 🙂

    • Me too! That’s actually the reason for the reread—A Shiver of Light will be here in just a couple more weeks! 😉

  20. I remember when I first read LKH and Anita Blake seemed to be the first real, kick-ass heroine of that time. I mean seriously, scary and magical wielding creatures, vampires ect I also remember the big cry out over the Mary Gentry books. You completely nailed it, LKH can definitely write, and the Fae are so capricious, and some are almost alien like. I loved the way she made the light/dark sidhe courts. Hmmm, I also seem to remember a sidhe character that resemble an octopus with all those suctions 😉 LOL. Great review, Jessica!

    • SHOLTO!! Sholto with the octopus suckers! I’m about to start book 5, and if he doesn’t show back up soon . . . well, I don’t know what, but it won’t be good, LOL. Glad you liked this too. And thank you 😉

  21. I actually read the first two books of this series about 4 years ago and I own a few more of them. LKH was one of my first UF authors when I began reading anything at all (I never read a thing before my son was born!). Anyhoo, the only problem I had was by the third book, I started to feel bad for some of the guys. I will have to pick this series back up. Right after I finish Cereulean Dreams (however you spell that book! grrrrr).

    BTW – I love the fae, too!!!!

    • Yay! Fae are awesome! And Cerulean Sins was the last boook in the Anita Blake series that I REALLY liked. Until the very latest one, anyway<——I hope that's a sign of good things to come. Anyway, I feel bad for the guys in this series too, but I will tell you that the whole situation ends better than you would have thought. At least as it stood at the end of book 7. Is that motivating? Hmmm?? 😉

  22. See I’m one of those readers that loved the Anita Blake books in the beginning and then started to shy away from them as they turned into Erotica. Bot because erotica bothers me because it most obviously doesn’t but that the major focus of the books did. I also noticed that there was in my opinion a significant repetitiveness to her writing style that I just didn’t want to read anymore on that storyline.

    Now this series was different it was exactly what it was marketed as and I really did enjoy it alot. Lots of fey sexy times indeed!~

    I’ll have to try the Fevre books.

    • See, that’s why I’m really glad I can into the Anita Blake series as late as I did—there were 17(ish) books out by then, so I was deep in the binge-read. Some of her post-shift books were clearly weaker than others, but there were still a few with a decent enough plot mixed in with the erotica that the series held my interest. I’m never going to suggest they’re as plot-strong as my favorite UF series, but I was so invested I kept (keep) reading to find out what happens next. Just call me stubborn, LOL.

      And the Fever books are pretty great 😉

  23. I’m very behind on the Anita Blake series… so far no major sex scenes… 🙂 I’ve wanted to try her Gentry series as well. The only time it bothers me when it takes over the book and nothing else happens. With what I have read, I don’t think I have to worry about it. And yea… the other series you suggest also have a lot of sex in the books.

    • Wow, that is VERY far behind, LOL. And Merry is a different monster. The first book is fantastic, and the next few books aren’t bad, but they all take place over the course of a few days in her world, so it’s like a running plot-line . . . can be a bit frustrating, but not as bad as it could be if the next books in the series weren’t out. And yes, lots of sex in those other series, so if you liked those . . .

  24. Fae more than aliens? :Learn something new everyday!

  25. I generally try to avoid books where the focus is on the sex and I’m not crazy about anything kinky, though I will say I’ve been reading more and more books that sort of skirt that line that divides “erotica” from “other stuff.” I totally don’t mind sex if it doesn’t overshadow the plot and isn’t the main focus of the book – and let’s face it, this sort of thing sells. You can’t fault an author for writing what sells! (Love your quote from the book, by the way – I’d have to agree that her writing is superb!)

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    • Yes, sex certainly does sell . . . to the point it’s almost impossible to avoid it entirely in adult books these days. Even if you’re becoming acclimated to it, I’m not sure I’d recommend this series to you. There’s some definite kink, some of it I just skim over it b/c it’s a bit much even for me. But, LKH has real talent. I love that quote too; I can almost feel the density of fog outside Merry’s window.

  26. My first UF book was Dead Witch Walking soon after it came out. So then I search for another book/series to read between the releases of Harrison’s book, and the Anita Blake series kept popping up. I only had Amazon and its reviews to go on at that time, and I admit, the reviews scared me away. Now, I’d be all over it. Unfortunately I have way more books to read than I did then. I wish I would’ve just started reading LKH years ago.

    • Gah, you sound just like me. Fortunately Anita was suggested to me by my sister who had been getting them from the library, so I never even saw the reviews until after the fact—they probably would have caused me to hesitate too. Back then I LOVED it when I found a multitudes-of-books-already-out series, but now . . . like you said, way more books available.

  27. Loved this book, don’t remember if I read any of the ones after this one though. Been forever!!

    • Yeah, it had been years for me too. Hence the reread—if I tried to just dive into A Shiver of Light next month, I’m pretty sure I’d have no idea what was going on 😉

  28. There’s a lot that I love about this series. The characters is #1. I don’t love all the sex, but I skim it with no issue. I do get a bit bored with the politics, I think. But that happened more later on. I LOVE how the fae are in this series. I’m on book 4, I think and had trouble getting into it so it’s been on my nightstand for probably 3 years waiting for me. So it’s obviously been awhile since I’ve read any of these but I still remember them pretty well!

    • Yeah, I just finished book 4 myself, and I know what you mean. I’ve skimmed several sex scenes too, but I actually like the politics (one of my favorite parts in epic fantasy). Still the series is dragging a bit for me at this point b/c books 2-4 took place over a handful of days, so not much was accomplished—it feels more like setting the stage for the big finale than actually having individual plot-driven books.

  29. I love Hamilton’s Merry Gentry series. I didn’t mind the sex in Anita Blake but the sex took over the plots and that to me was no bueno. But like you said, Merry has always been about the fae and SEX. And I have loved every book.

    • To be completely honest, if Micah had been the last available installment when I first started reading the Anita Blake series, I might have quit it too. If ever there was a book in that series that was almost entirely about sex, it was that one. But I had at least 4 after that, and whatever I ended with had enough plot to keep my interest. With Merry, yes, you always knew exactly what you were getting, and I’ve loved it too.

  30. After listening to Divine Misdemeanors, I had to add another comment. Everyone complains about the sex with LKH books, but you know what drives me nuts, the little things that aren’t accurate. In Divine Misdemeanors, Sholto’s father is a royal nightflyer at the beginning and later in the book, he is not royal again. That is not the first time something like that has happened in her books. In one of the Anita Blake books Vivian’s name changes. That is my number one complaint about LKH writing lately. Please take the time to make sure the facts about your characters are correct.

    Sorry, I had to rant after listening to that this morning. 🙂

    • Divine Misdemeanors is the one Merry book that I’ve never read (I don’t know why b/c I have it), but the Sholto thing would bug me too b/c I specifically remember it coming up (in this book, I think) that Sholto’s father was NOT a royal nightflyer. Merry wanted to know how he became king of the slaugh if he wasn’t royal, and that’s when it was explained that the slaugh chose their king. I’ll keep an eye out for that, and rant away, LOL. I’ll probably do the same thing to you when I get to that part now 😉

  31. I absolutely love your post Jessica, and I could not agree with you more. I long to read this new book myself very soon. You know by now that I am not an erotica fan at all, but LKH is one of the authors where I don’t mind it, I read everything she writes. I even bought a Star Trek novel!

    • Thank you! And I see a Star Trek novel in my future, Aurian! LKH wrote a Star Trek novel??!! And the whole reason I’m doing this reread is for the new Merry novel 😉

  32. I had no idea that Laurell K Hamilton was such a leader in UF! I feel a bit like a UF novice all over again because I have yet to read anything she’s written!! I’m starting to think I need to just shop your goodreads because you clearly have read everything I should have read. And I have NO PROBLEM with UF gone erotic, so I’ll be fine 😉

    • LOL! I have been a bit of maniac on the UF front. I know I’ve said that Fever was the first UF series I ever read, but that’s only a partial truth b/c only the first book was available at the time. But after Darkfever I read the first 6 Sookie books, then I moved to Anita Blake, then The Hollows, etc. If it was an UF/PNR series being published between 2006-2012, I’ve probably read it (or tried to read it). It’s only been the last couple of years with all the new small publishing house or independently published series that I’ve fallen behind. And no, I don’t think you’d have any problems with this. You can probably get it from the library too 😉

  33. YOU LOVE THOSE NASTY FAE MORE THAN YOU LOVE ME?
    This is an OUTRAGE! 😛

    I actually haven’t read anything by Hamilton because of what I’ve heard about her Anita Blake series .-. I think what would scare me most as a reader is the sheer length of that series O_O There are over 20 books or something right??

    But you’d rec this one for fans of the Fever series?? You’ve got my attention 😛

    WONDERFUL REVIEW as always hon! <3

    • Silly, alien. I love nothing more than I love you! I was speaking generally 😉 ARE YOU BACK?!

      And yes, the Anita Blake series is rather daunting. It’s a 22 available installments and counting. I don’t think many readers are beginning this series anymore—just long time devotees. But yes, I recommend this book for Fever fans, and thank you!