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Serpentine (2018)

by Laurell K. Hamilton

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1981899,706 (3.39)6
A remote Florida island is the perfect wedding destination for the upcoming nuptials of Anita's fellow U.S. Marshal and best friend Edward. For Anita, the vacation is a welcome break, as it's the first trip she gets to take with just wereleopards Micah and Nathaniel. But it's not all fun and games and bachelor parties... In this tropical paradise Micah discovers a horrific new form of lycanthropy, one that has afflicted a single family for generations. Believed to be the result of an ancient Greek curse, it turns human bodies into a mass of snakes. When long-simmering resentment leads to a big blowout within the wedding party, the last thing Anita needs is more drama. But it finds her anyway when women start disappearing from the hotel, and worse--her own friends and lovers are considered the prime suspects. There's a strange power afoot that Anita has never confronted before, a force that's rendering those around her helpless in its thrall. Unable to face it on her own, Anita is willing to accept help from even the deadliest places. Help that she will most certainly regret--if she survives at all, that is...--… (more)

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» See also 6 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
Interesting story

It was nice to see Anita getting back to more of the crimesolving stuff that showed up in the first books. The basic story is ok. ( )
  tetisheri | Aug 15, 2020 |
So. Yeah. I keep wondering why I keep up with this series, but it boils down to just one thing:

Investment. I have a ton of hardcovers. This must be it.

But, let me go over what isn't so bad about this book. NO NEW LOVERS. See? That band-aid has now been torn off. We don't have to go into another long introduction of a new character who has been mind-raped by Anita or is mysteriously overwhelmed by her monstrous sexuality. That was the last book. And many, many others. No.

In this one, we're in firm familiar territory again.

What? You mean we're ass-deep in murder investigations featuring paranormals or we're dealing with one bad-ass necromancy horrorshow again?

Um, no. The OTHER familiar territory. You know, butt-hurt feelings, relationship snafus, Nathaniel crying because Micah won't twiddle his bum, and missed VACATION opportunities. *cry*

But no pride or litter box or the fourteen hundred other lovers? NO! Not this time. This time we get to focus a bit more on Edwards marriage, the fallout of the lies told and bad deeds assumed, and a bunch of jealousy, scene-making, and biting a scratching. In practically any other novel it would be standard near-comedy romance drama.

AH, but then there's missing persons, murders, and YET MORE reactionary cop behavior hating on polysex folks. Is this count up to around 40, now? Maybe higher, depending on how you rate it. Is it by individual or by each offense? If it's the later, then we're probably up to about 4,000.

Alas. But even so, out of all the possible complaints I could levy against this series, I can say with perfect honesty that Hamilton is remaining true to form. She's consistent. The final blowout is interesting as hell, the monsters interesting, the plot is somewhat cool, and the power-ramp up is fascinating. The good and the bad is in perfect balance.

Did I actively not have fun tho? No. I admit I had fun even as I rolled my eyes. Yes, pointless sex, pointless procedural shit, more pointless sex. And yet, less pointless characters even if we have more hurt feelings. The full hate-on everyone seems to have for polyamorous individuals is frankly baffling. But other than that, wooooo. It's another Anita Blake novel!

It's not the worst of the lot. I'm just glad I can spread them out now. :) ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
It takes a while

Your mileage may vary...

You have to wade through a good chunk of the relationship stuff to get to the part I enjoyed. The mystery and the action at the end are solid. The ‘boss fight’ was almost anticlimactic, in a way, but still good. Too bad they didn’t have a rocket launcher.

Olaf shows up; it was interesting.

The sex part was less weird than previous books. Not as many partners. No new ones, which is definitely different.

The relationship stuff was still messy and histrionic and complex. Enough to make me positive that I never want to be in a polyamorous relationship. With or without the supernatural element.

I kind of want this series to end. She’s not even a vampire hunter anymore. Ever since they killed the queen the series has felt like it moved past the plot. It’s a Superman thing: now that Anita has all this power, the only way to challenge her is to handicap her. Moriarity is dead, so Sherlock has no real challenge. The case from this book was more coincidence than anything. There is no real forward momentum, other than the wedding, and that’s been building for a couple of books now. ( )
  wildwily | May 28, 2020 |
It takes a while

Your mileage may vary...

You have to wade through a good chunk of the relationship stuff to get to the part I enjoyed. The mystery and the action at the end are solid. The ‘boss fight’ was almost anticlimactic, in a way, but still good. Too bad they didn’t have a rocket launcher.

Olaf shows up; it was interesting.

The sex part was less weird than previous books. Not as many partners. No new ones, which is definitely different.

The relationship stuff was still messy and histrionic and complex. Enough to make me positive that I never want to be in a polyamorous relationship. With or without the supernatural element.

I kind of want this series to end. She’s not even a vampire hunter anymore. Ever since they killed the queen the series has felt like it moved past the plot. It’s a Superman thing: now that Anita has all this power, the only way to challenge her is to handicap her. Moriarity is dead, so Sherlock has no real challenge. The case from this book was more coincidence than anything. There is no real forward momentum, other than the wedding, and that’s been building for a couple of books now. ( )
  wildwily | May 28, 2020 |
Fuck it.

I'm done. I am so done with this series.

I've stuck with this series through thick and thin. The first 9 books were great. 10-12 were ok. But since Cerulean Sins this series has went downhill fast, and this book just continues that trend.

Once again, Hamilton has focused almost exclusively on the sex life of Anita Blake. This entire book takes place over 2 days. The story is all over the place.

Is it going to focus on the new, interesting type of shifter introduced in the first chapter? Nope.

Is it going to focus on the weird behavior of Edward, Nathianal, And Micah? Somewhat, but not the way you'd expect. If Hamilton had had the boys being effected by some metaphysical shit, it would have made sense. But nope. Complete attitude changes from all 3, with nothing to really explain it.

Oh look, Olaf is back, and he's a motherfucking werelion now. And a damned powerful one at that. Maybe the story is going to focus on Olaf and what Anita has to do to defeat him. Oh, nope, not that either. Ok.

Oh, Debra has a psychotic friend who hates Anita, and suddenly people tied to Anitas group are getting blamed for murders. Maybe it's got something to do with her. Nope; 2 chapters focus on psycho bitch, and then she's out of the picture.

Literally the big bad of the book is taken out in one page, after being revealed as the big bad on that exact same page, and you never get to find out how it came to be.

Hamilton needs to stop living her sexual fantasies out in this series, and get back to the what made the series great in the first place. The mystery. The character interactions outside of sex. The sarcasm. The metaphysical shit. The chapter long action to defeat the bad guy. The fleshing out of characters.

Until then, I'm done with this series. ( )
  tebyen | May 27, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
Serpentine by Laurell K. Hamilton
Urban Fantasy - Aug. 7th, 2018
4 stars

In the Serpentine, Laurell K. Hamilton brings humor and her usual mix of mesmerizing sex and violence. This long awaited book will thrill fans as the darkly enigmatic and coldly practical vampire hunter, Edward is finally getting married! Edward has worked and helped train Anita in her career as a vampire hunter/U.S. Marshal. As his best friend and a woman it has been difficult to get along with Edward’s love interest Donna. Donna has always been suspicious of their relationship although they have never been intimate. But Edward believes Donna’s feelings are in the past and Anita has been invited to be a part of their wedding. Anita brings her lovers Micah and Nathaniel. But soon jealousy rears its ugly head and then a serial murderer darkens the happy nuptials. Plus Micah is distracted by a family of snake shifters who need his help. As Anita takes it upon herself to try to solve the murders, protect Edward’s family from a catastrophic meltdown and support Micah. She has her hand full. But the wedding is in jeopardy when a conniving bride’s maid and sudden doubts from the bride bring the wedding to a standstill! This joyous occasion may not end so well, Anita save it from utter disaster?

There are plenty of things to enjoy in this erotic fantasy/murder mystery. Anita has grown more comfortable with herself and her sexuality. I liked that she isn’t as self conscious and has seemed to settle down with those she loves. Anita’s books are known for their erotic scenes, however, this book seems to have less sexual scenes than usual which may be a let down for some fans. Plus, her vampire lover, Jean-Claude makes a very minor role in this book. Many fans (including myself) will feel that the best part of the storyline is the cold and calculating Edward. That he could actually marry such a sweet lady when he is such a remorseless killer is hard to understand. His ‘secret’ life with Donna is compelling reading because it is so strange. The change in his personality from when he is with his fiancee is so different than how he is in his normal ‘professional’ life is fascinating reading. Even now, I still can’t really envision Edward marrying!

The mystery in the story is interesting but somewhat anticlimactic. Most of the plot is centered on the wedding and the fights and difficulties of trying to keep it from not being called off. I wish the author has spent more time developing the snake shifter story and the mystery. The snake shifters seemed unfinished and tragic. I felt that the author didn’t take full advantage of incorporating them into the story. Overall, this was a highly entertaining read, Laurell K. Hamilton is unparalleled in creating characters that you can’t forget. I can’t wait to find out how Anita will finally settle her love life and if her wedding will also take place soon!

Reviewed by Steph from the Bookaholics Romance Book Club
 

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A remote Florida island is the perfect wedding destination for the upcoming nuptials of Anita's fellow U.S. Marshal and best friend Edward. For Anita, the vacation is a welcome break, as it's the first trip she gets to take with just wereleopards Micah and Nathaniel. But it's not all fun and games and bachelor parties... In this tropical paradise Micah discovers a horrific new form of lycanthropy, one that has afflicted a single family for generations. Believed to be the result of an ancient Greek curse, it turns human bodies into a mass of snakes. When long-simmering resentment leads to a big blowout within the wedding party, the last thing Anita needs is more drama. But it finds her anyway when women start disappearing from the hotel, and worse--her own friends and lovers are considered the prime suspects. There's a strange power afoot that Anita has never confronted before, a force that's rendering those around her helpless in its thrall. Unable to face it on her own, Anita is willing to accept help from even the deadliest places. Help that she will most certainly regret--if she survives at all, that is...--

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