Sunday, March 13, 2005

Seduced by Moonlight by Laurell K. Hamilton (book review)

The third book in Hamilton’s Merry Gentry series, I was interested in seeing if Hamilton would be able to pull off what she did in the first novel. The sequel lacked a certain oomph and I was hoping this book would remedy that.

Perhaps the biggest difference between Merry and Hamilton’s other character, Anita Blake, is the fact that the former is more open about sex. Seduced by Moonlight perhaps goes the extra mile by adding more men (and complications) to the protagonist’s life. And again, Hamilton executes this by delivering conflicted characters, powerful people yet with their own sets of strengths and weaknesses.

Despite being barely four hundred pages long, a lot of things happen in this book (and even a lot more is hinted). There’s been some good build up, although the end is definitely far, far away. While perhaps not as erotic as the first book, Seduced by Moonlight has its own share of good scenes (at least there isn’t any goblin sex in this book).

The plot remains surprising with the twists and turns the story takes. But what’s admirable about Hamilton is that her characters still retain their personalities, although I find it too coincidental for everything to center around our lovely protagonist (but then again, this is probably the equivalent of a romance fantasy, so that’s forgivable). Description remains another of Hamilton’s stronger points and she does get to exercise it a lot in this book.

Much like her Anita Blake novels, read Seduced by Moonlight because it’s fun, not because it’s the greatest piece of literature ever written. And while the Merry Gentry series is not even half as long (so far) as Hamilton’s Anita Blake books, in several ways, it’s superior to the latter, in terms of writing, storytelling, and execution. Hamilton also shows you how to tell a good stand-alone story that also leaves you wanting for more.

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