Thursday, May 15, 2008
Thursday Book Report: Tangled Webs
I hate it when I want to love a book and I don't.
I was so excited to see that Anne Bishop had come out with another book in her Dark Jewels universe - and even moreso when I learned that the main character in this story was to be Surreal, the courtesan assassin from previous novels. I dove into the book as soon as it arrived and was struck right off the bat how utterly domestic the book seemed.
Tangled Webs starts off with a short creepy intro, then lulls into Surreal being disenchanted with a book she is reading. Perhaps I should have taken that as a cue. The long and the short of it is that Jaenelle and Marian decide to host a spooky house to poke fun at how the general populace views the Blood... but someone beats them to the punch with horrific results. Surreal and her friend Rainier are trapped in the house and there are limited means of escaping; to make matters worse, they invited some children in with them and they must protect them as well.
What I didn't like about the book was how powerless Jaenelle seemed (oh, I miss the near-omnipotent Jaenelle!), how pale a character Saetan came across as, the domesticity of Daemon Sadi and Lucivar, the annoying kids... This isn't to say there weren't some things I did like - I appreciated the puppies, the occasional glances into Witch, and the core of the story (Blood vs Non-Blood and what happens when the two should meet), but it took an awfully long time to get there. If you are looking for a good fantasy read, try out some of the earlier books in this series - or Bishop's World of the Fae or Ephemera books. This particular book just didn't do it for me. There was a brief short story about Surreal at the end of the book and that had more meat than the novel that preceded it.