Friday, December 13, 2013

Review: Affliction by Laurell K. Hamilton

Title: Affliction

Author: Laurell K. Hamilton

Series: Anita Blake, #22

 •Source: Purchased
 •Publisher: Berkley Books
 •Publication Date: July 2, 2013

Opening Line: My gun was digging into my back, so I shifted forward in my office chair.

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Some zombies are raised.
Others must be put down.

Just ask Anita Blake.

Before now, she would have considered them merely off-putting, never dangerous. Before now, she had never heard of any of them causing human beings to perish in agony. But that’s all changed.

Micah’s estranged father lies dying, rotting away inside from some strange ailment that has his doctors whispering about “zombie disease.”

Anita makes her living off of zombies—but these aren’t the kind she knows so well. These creatures hunt in daylight, and are as fast and strong as vampires. If they bite you, you become just like them. And round and round it goes…

Where will it stop?
Even Anita Blake doesn’t know.

Vampire HunterNecromancerShifterPolice OfficerKick Ass CoupleBad Ass HeroineAlphaZombieVampireBDSMOralMFM

Affliction is a thousand times better than Kiss The Dead. Anita's personal life and work blend together seamlessly. You're not drowning in constant WTF moments. The new vampire council is explained a little more in Affliction. Jean-Claude is in charge of the council. As the leader of the vampire council all master vampires have to make a fealty oath to Jean-Claude. Every oath made to Jean-Claude increases his power level. Which in turn increases the power levels of people connected to Jean-Claude, including Anita. It's not a great deal of information, but still, it's more than we learned in Kiss The Dead.

Anita receives a phone call from Micah's mother. Micah's father is dying and Miicah needs to return home immediately if he wants to make peace with his father and say goodbye. When Anita, Micah and Nathaniel arrive they learn that Micah's father is the latest victim of a zombie attack. There is something very wrong with these attacks though. The zombie bites cause their victims to die an agonizing death as they rot away. With the help of Edward, YAY!!!, Anita has to figure out how these monsters are breaking all the rules.

It was exciting to meet Micah's family. There were a couple of surprises with a healthy dose of crazy. And, I do mean crazy, I'm a zealot and you should listen to everything I say kind of crazy. Join Us. While the good girlfriend thing for Anita to do would have been to stay by Micah's side I'm extremely happy she did not. Nothing against supporting Micah, but that would have been an extremely boring book.

Anita does not take on any new lovers this time around, which was nice since she was there supporting Micah. It was also a nice change of pace. Anita gets to focus on her main squeezes allowing us to see how much the relationships have grown. I love how Nicky and Anita's relationship has evolved. I was surprised to see how dominant Nathaniel becomes in the bedroom when he teams up with Nicky. It was a really nice surprise, Anita seemed to think so too.

My favorite part of any Anita book is Anita's relationship with Edward. Affliction is no exception. I did not think Anita and Edward could be any more comfortable around each other, but they managed it. No they are not sleeping together, although you will never convince Donna of that.  They have finally fully embraced each other's weird lives and the fact that they really are best friends. The funniest part of Affliction is when Edward "accidentally" sees Anita naked and she freaks out. I love that she's still "classic Anita" when it comes to Edward.

Over the years there have been many people wishing the old Anita was back. The Anita before the ardeur. I could not disagree more. That Anita was a naive girl who saw the world in black and white. She lived in this tiny world. Most of what she believed, about anything, Anita believed because it's the acceptable norm. She believed because it's what most of the population believes. It never occurs to Anita to form her own opinion about anything, especially in a situation where she feels guilty for not feeling guilty. Do not even get me started on her sexuality. I cannot think of anyone who is more uncomfortable in their own skin.

But now. Now Anita is this powerhouse of awesome. The epitome of girl power. Anita is in full control of her powers. Anita loves, is loved in return and the happiest she's ever been in her life. So what if she has to have sex a few times a day. Anita's a succubus. It's kind of what they do. Anita has finally accepted who she is. She stands up for what she believes in. She has embraced her sexuality and is no longer uncomfortable with herself. Why would you want to give that up and go back to the other Anita?

On the Dedication Page, LKH wrote "This one's for Anita and me. Here's to another twenty years of facing our fears, solving mysteries, catching bad guys, and finding love." If the next twenty years are held to this caliber, then I will be a very happy girl. Affliction is simply phenomenal.

Favorite Quotes

You'd think if someone was asking me to raise the dead for them that they'd have better nerves, but gins seemed to scare them a lot more than talking about zombies.
I'd take a nice straight-up firefight to families and hospitals any night.
Yay, I wasn't becoming some emotionless killing machine. Boo, I was staring down at a partially rotted corpse and all I could think was, what a horrible way to die.
Make all the jokes you want about Marines, but they won't pussy out. I like that in a person.
Something heavy hit the door, and I screamed like a fucking girl.
"One little zombie apocalypse and they call out the big guns."
"Whose the biggest, baddest motherfucking necromancer?"
"This girl."
"Damn straight."

5 Moons


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