Let me start out by saying that I had read a book named “Book Of Shadows” by James Reese way back in 2002. It was, to that date, the most enthralling book I had ever laid eyes on. I read it cover to cover in what seemed like minutes but was more likely a few days. I walked into our local Borders and told them that I had just read the most amazing book. I gave them the task of showing me something to rival or top that. And you know what, THEY DID! I was handed a copy of Narcissus In Chains. I read this book not knowing it was book 11 in a series. When I finished it I was hungry for more. I did search online and found that I had a lot of reading to do to catch up to where I was. Oh and did I ever. I read every single book in the series up to that point and since.
There are some out there that will argue that Anita Blake is just a slut now and that the books have turned to smut. I say that it is a free country and everyone has a right to their own opinion. Having read all of the books, I can tell you that Anita Blake evolves as a character. Nothing that happens in any of the books goes against normal character growth due to the situations she finds herself in. I will not give spoilers but I will say that the situations she finds herself in spin further and further out of her control. Anita is struggling to hang onto a shred of herself in everything that is happening to her. This latest book shows her coming back into more control. I am so very glad that I walked into that Border’s on that warm sunny afternoon all those years ago. I will continue to read every book Laurell puts out into the world until the day she decides she is done writing.
Thank you Laurell for all of the long hours that flew by like minutes inside the Anita Blake and Merry Gentry universes. Thank you for giving us Jean Claude and Asher and Nathaniel and the multitude of other multifaceted characters and letting us watch as they grow too. Thank you even for giving us Richard as he struggles to come to grips with who and what he is. I am eternally grateful for the escape.