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Lust After Death by Daisy Harris

Lust After Death

by Daisy Harris

Series: Love-Bots

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Check out my review, a teaser, and an excerpt during and after my blog tour stop on December 12, 2012 - http://frommetoyouvideophoto.blogspot.com/2012/12/blog-tour-made-grade-lust-afte... ( )
  fromjesstoyou | Mar 21, 2016 |
There's nothing like a bit of necrophilia in the morning.

Our RoboZombies (the zombies are actually referred to as 'steins', as in Frankenstein) don't decompose and still retain all of their bodily functions so there are no ball sacks falling off during fellatio or penises detaching mid-coitus (oh look a new dildo!) so my tea and toast stayed happily in my stomach.

Our heroine, Josie, is a newly made RoboZombie sex doll. Her memories have been wiped in favour of rudimentary programming to engineer her to need, and be submissive to, a 'husband'. Her obviously abusive maker had no other use for her than that. Free will is only for the living. She's child-like in her curiosity and discovery of new concepts and sensations, but she's very much able to learn and grow beyond her original programming.

The hero, turned Peeping Tom during recon, is also a RoZo of the soldier / assassin variety with PTSD, employed by a pro-free will organisation. Bane's been working towards earning a memory and programming reset to relieve his mental anguish to become blissfully ignorant of the deeds he's done while his free will was taken from him.

Bane's mission is to retrieve the heroine from her maker by any means necessary before an evil RoZo corporation can swoop in and recover the scientist and his research. As the heroine had been designed to require biofeedback via touch and an electronic mental connection from a husband, the hero has to fill that hole role to prevent her programming from degrading to the point of leaving her a lifeless rotting corpse.

It's important to note that Bane doesn't rape Josie, the very thought disgusts him. Josie's personality, that of a 'virtual child', also unnerves him so he's very careful about how he handles her, leaving Josie to decide what she wants.

I'm riding the line between love and hate, hiding in the no-man's-land of meh. Predictable paranormal romance that isn't too cheesy, worldbuilding and character development of the supporting cast is lacking, but it possesses an interesting, and I suppose plausible, possibility of cyborg RoboZombies in the future. I'd still take Langlais's cyborgs over Harris's though.

Favourite Quote:
But all idealism faded if exposed to enough reality. ( )
  Cynical_Ames | Sep 23, 2014 |
reviewed for http://scorchingbookreviews.blogspot.com

Bane is a liberated killing stein. When he was reanimated and programmed, it was for the purpose of killing for hire. His undead existence was about blood and gore until he was rescued by the zombie underground. Now he repays that debt by working for them to liberate other captive steins. At the time we meet him, he has one more job to do before he gets his “wipe” to erase the horrors of his past. This assignment is to rescue a love-bot; a stein reanimated for the purpose of sex. This stein has been made illegally by a slightly bonkers scientist. Now he has to rescue Josie, with no knowledge of her prior programming, before she is detained by the only legal stein company in the state. As time goes on, he realises how twisted her creator was as the coding reveals that she needs to have mental and physical feedback from a “husband”; this means if she doesn’t get touched by a man she will start to degrade. It also means that she needs a constant mental link to Bane. He doesn’t like being attached to the newbie stein especially as the side effect of this link is that she can now see into the dark recesses of his memories. Bane usually hates being stuck with other bots for any lengths of time but for some reason this one stirs things in him that he can’t deny. With his attraction for her growing, giving her the sensual contact that she needs doesn’t seem to be a bad thing. Problem is the constant mental contact is creating feelings other than just lust. He knows that when they are both wiped they won’t remember each other. He has always dreamed of getting rid of the bad dreams but will he consider keeping them for her?

I’ve never read a zombie romance before, but I will be reading more after this little book. The stereotypical undead monster is gone and in his place is a sub-race of people that have to struggle daily with discrimination. These zombies still eat organs, but the innards and brains are mainly from animals. They don’t age, they can live forever and the little chip in their head can turn them into any “lifers” fantasy. To be honest, the concept was fabulous, but the situation surrounding their creation was distasteful. These bots are created to be either living sex dolls or mindless killing machines. They can be trapped inside their own heads with a simple command and then their creator can make them do just about anything. Bane was created to kill others by faceless cowards. Josie was created to be a “wife” for a creepy bugger, who obviously couldn’t get a live girlfriend himself, making her sexual responses to Bane quite frightening for her. When it turns out she actually NEEDS sexual contact to survive, I wanted to smack that creepy bastard scientist. I was a bit icked out by the thought of Bane and Josie having to have sex because of her needs, but it helped me to think that they were blatantly attracted to each other. The sex scenes are smoking hot by the way...I do like the way Daisy Harris writes sex. This isn’t erotica; its erotic romance, therefore the story takes precedence over the smexing, but I looked forward to the sex scenes.

The story is only 90 pages long but it manages to pack a lot of story into that length. At the beginning of the story, Josie is a newborn in terms of her life experiences and memories. It contrasts sharply with the very adult urges that she has been programmed with and I think this made me more uncomfortable. By the end of the book, she has accepted what she wants/needs and accepted Bane. She can be quite the little manipulator when she puts her mind to it; I loved her and truly enjoyed how she gets her own way. Bane starts the book hating himself and, with the help of the lovely Josie, tries to accept that his past in his past. He is a lovely little hottie and his protective instincts are really quite endearing. As a couple, I feel they worked well. Their shared traumatic experiences with “lifers” gave them a solid foundation and they just built on that. I never doubted that they would have a HEA; they are fabulous together.

A dark and sexy read set in a fabulous reality. I enjoyed the variation on the traditional zombie story and I’ll happily read more books in this series. I loved Bane and Josie as they are quite possibly the most well suited couple I’ve ever read about! I don’t think I’ll ever look at a zombie quite the same again..:)
( )
  Scorchingrevs | Sep 21, 2013 |
Beyond watching Resident Evil movies, I never cared much for zombies. Lack of interest, really. I always felt that once you looked past the shuffling mob of flesh-eating corpses, there wasn't a whole lot of potential. A dead-end theme, if you'll forgive the pun. So I haven't been engaged with the latest trend of books, comics, and movies. Zombies are the new vampires, dontcha know.

Then I came across this title from Daisy Harris's "Love-Bots" series. It was a lark, really. Read it just so I can say I did, I thought. However, Lust After Death has opened my eyes up to the potential of this subgenre, and I just may have to get on the bandwagon.

The book opens with Josie, a recently made zombie bride. Her former life is a lost memory, as is everything she knew before she was recreated to be a man's illicit companion. Now all she knows is her "husband" and the island home where he keeps her secluded from the world.

Enter Bane Conner. He, too, is a zombie -- or stein, as they are called. He was created to be an assassin and a soldier. The blood on his hands was never by choice, and now he works for an underground organization that rescue steins from their forced existences. He was sent to save Josie from her captor. He was supposed to bring her to safety and help her build a new life. He wasn't supposed to fall for her.

Soon they're on the run from people that would force them back into servitude. Bane must protect Josie while, at the same time, protecting his heart from emotions he's not prepared to face.

This book was instantly interesting and held my attention from the very start to the very end. The first thing that struck me was how I got an immediate sense of the characters -- the captive heroine who may be helpless but isn't a dumb damsel. The hostile hero who's driven to save the world even though his weary soul just wants to rest. I found it to be a lovely and appealing pairing. But what I liked most about this book was the world Harris created. It was fresh and creative, yet reminiscent of some of my favorite PNR authors like Gena Showalter and Laurann Dohner.

And now the big question: can zombies really be sexy?

Well, apparently so. Especially since Daisy Harris spares us from the rotting flesh, rigor mortis, and drooling that one usually expects from the undead. Her zombies are not unlike cyborgs, programmed pseudo-humans caught between life and unlife. There was still some flesh-eating, which I thought was a nice touch. And Harris doesn't run from the fact that her characters are unnaturally reanimated bodies. But with no rotting, no shuffling limbs... You get the edge without the ick. So, success! I read about zombies getting it on without Getting squicked out! A new milestone.

I'll admit that this book wasn't a hole in one. A couple of issues did stand out to me. Josie, for instance, was a stumbling block here and there. Written to have a near-adolescent perspective, she wasn't always the most accessible character. Bane, in contrast, came through more tangibly; his character and actions were more nuanced, more complete, and easier to connect to. In addition, there were one or two narrative rough patches where the action didn't progress cleanly. Nothing that impedes the reading flow for more than a second.

Overall, this book is delicious fun. A dash of action, a touch of angst, a strong dose of sex... It's the perfect recipe for a good read. So, while I won't promise to be an instant convert, I'll give the zombie craze another look.

Originally posted on my blog: http://strangebf.blogspot.com/2012/12/lust-after-death.html ( )
  TheBooknerd | Dec 20, 2012 |
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