Monday, May 2, 2011

Read it for the vampire hummingbirds

When I started reading this fourth book in a series, I had only the vaguest memories of what happened in the previous books.  The author earned bonus points by making that not matter at all.  (Excellent summary work, author!)  At the end, the author lost all those points by ending on a cliffhanger.  (You're better than that, author!)  Cliffhangers should never be allowed unless the next book is coming out in less than a month.

I rather adore Karigan because she's so practical.  Pragmatic, realistic characters get on my nerves less when they encounter relationship drama, even if they do make stupid (but reliably consistent with their character) choices.  Sigh. 

And then there was that bit with her father, which was kind of painful.  One of Karigan's faults is one that I share: we build up unrealistic pictures of people we care for and then get smashed when we're wrong.  It's really no fun when we are forced to confront the fact that our parents have pasts and still make choices that disappoint us.  It's not (entirely) their faults that we look at them unrealistically.  The intense disappointment we feel when we come to see that they are fallible humans is because we were wrong, and we realize that being an adult will never make our problems go away, and we can never trust our parents in quite the same worshipful way again now that we know them better.  Growing up sometimes sucks.

In conclusion: I still like this series, but the author will have to do something big to appease me after that cliffhanger.  (Good thing the plot threads are going in such enticing directions . . .)