Heavy dialogue. Little action... Anita breaks one of her rules. Hostages and hormones. No real point to the story besides adding to the harem.
I'd say there are spoilers in here, but it's hard to spoil something that's already unpalatable. You may not believe this as you read (if you read) my review, but I was a die-hard Anita Blake series fan for over half the series. I'd get the books, read them in a day, read them again, and then wait impatiently for the next in the series to come out. I recommended the books to dozens of friends, probably about as many people as Anita now has lovers! That said...
People who might enjoy Flirt more would have to be those who hadn't read the first eight or ten books. In the beginning of the series, Anita was fun, multifaceted, and had real adventures. By God, the books had plot, subplots subtext, intrigue, mystery, vision, and cool characters. Anita was one of them--she used her necromancy powers all the time, and was actually vulnerable. When she went into the fray, emotional or physical, she always had something to lose, and the stakes were always very high for her. She didn't always get her way, and she liked to drink coffee and snuggle her penguins. In other words, she was someone who made you curious to learn more about what made her tick, and you couldn't be sure she would always save the day. It created spectacular tension, and made for consistently page-turning good times.
But ever since the Ardeur came into the picture, Anita has become a boring skank who just wants all the boys to herself, and bones pretty much anyone new in the story. I'm amazed she hasn't jumped Edward and Otto yet. It's so frustrating to fall in love with a character who delivers time and again, then see the series turn to total predictable crap. Yes, I say crap, because I'm the idiot who keeps buying the books, hoping to be engaged on the level that I was in the first books. And it's not just Anita, everyone has turned into personality-free automatons. Of those who still have personalities, they are generally Anita's lovers, and I use the word "personality" very generously. I find it hard to believe that ancient powerful beings are so damn whiny! Asher, when he first came into the picture, was dark, brooding, and dramatic. Now he's just a crybaby. Ugh! And he's only one in dozens at this point... is there any reader out there who has any idea just how many lovers Anita has now? Does anyone care? It's not even interesting, just dull.
My biggest problem with the last few books, and this stinker is no exception, is that THERE IS NO STORY! I'm sorry, but if I'm going to spend my hard-earned money on a book with no story, I'll pick up a textbook or a dictionary. It is so disappointing to become bored with a book you expect to entertain you, and the Anita books have become a hackneyed and sadly predictable series. The worst part of strongly suspecting what each new book has in store? Being right about the fact that they are increasingly recycling the same story (and I use that word loosely) over and over.
What can you expect in Flirt? Most pages are filler-type scenes where Anita's sissyboys sit around talking about their relationship with Anita like grade school girls in gym class. It's a classic case of telling, not showing, and just plain lazy writing. Bad enough that nearly every one of Anita's men are pansies who whine constantly and can't seem to sprout a pair when she makes them feel emasculated, which is, hmmm... almost always.
This is despite being half-animal in most cases, with the exception of one or two men. And what the heck happened to Jean-Claude? And Richard? I didn't really like Richard, but at least he had a decent storyline.
You can also expect that Anita is still completely invincible, the leader of nearly every were-breed pack that she encounters, and has a bigger penis than any guy she could ever meet. Nothing will happen until the last few pages of the book, where it will all be very quickly wrapped up in some confusing half-paragraph having to do with Marmie Noire, and then everyone will still be alive. I would love to see a book where Anita loses all her powers. Now that would be good reading-- but Super-Anita, having been there more or less for the last 7-8 books, is just tiresome.
The final insult is that Flirt, and Bullet and Hit List all have spelling and grammar errors, repetitive language, and feel very much like first drafts that haven't been proofread. I mean, seriously? Some editor can't be bothered to read the book itself more than once and catch that stuff? It makes the entire production feel shoddy and half-baked, and suggests that LKH doesn't really care about the stories anymore. If they can't even be presented on the page in a professional way, how can we expect LKH and the editors to take the time to evaluate the story too? It's like nobody reads this stuff before it hits the shelves.
At this point, after investing so much time in the series, and after being disappointed repeatedly of late, I'm not going to buy Kiss The Dead. I've been on the fence for the last five or so books, and hate myself enough for sticking with them that long. For me, the series began to die with the publication of Micah, which I could barely finish. If I went out with a guy who kept disappointing me like this, I'd just end the relationship. LKH, I hung in as long as I could, but you don't care about the books anymore, and the writing has long been on the wall. If you decide to actually give a damn in the future, I may be back, but for now, thanks for the memories :/
The way the narrator made the voices of each character.
I wouldn't Laurell to me has her own category.
Of course the intimate one.
Kept me on the edge of my chair wanting more.
Bring on book 20
I did enjoy this book but felt it was really short. NICE fluff story but I like my drama alittle like the earlier books in the series.