August 2017

Anne Marvin Blog Posts

The Practice of Art

The Practice of Art

John Hartness, author of the Quincy Harker books and the Black Knight Chronicles, is an excellent author. He’s an even better publisher. His small press, Falstaff Books, is batting 1000 by putting out paranormal fantasy books that make me think. Every Falstaff book I’ve read so far has been provocative. The latest, Perishables, by Michael G. Williams, is the first of the Withrow Chronicles and recounts the first and second zombie apocalypses from the perspective of a 350-pound vampire who enjoys both food and blood. Withrow Surrett was an artist both before and after the Big Bite, as he calls his turning. In the present, he palms himself off as the grandson of a famous artist, selling “newly discovered” works by his “grandfather” to fund his immortal life. At a dinner party for the board members of Withrow’s Homeowners Association (’cause, you know, don’t all vampires join their local HOAs?),… READ MORE

Privilege

Privilege

I finished Spellbinder by Thea Harrison, a number of weeks ago and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. This is the second in her Moonshadow series and it was compelling with a complex plot, characters I felt were old friends and themes that made me think. The story’s heroine, Sidonie, a concert violinist, is kidnapped and taken to Avalon (King Arthur’s Avalon), where she is imprisoned and tortured. Eventually, Sid is discovered by a “Magic Man” (he is actually the masculine incarnation of Morgan Le Fey) who heals her and helps her, bringing her food and drink in her prison. In one especially poignant scene, Sid is eating the bread and grapes her savior has brought and she thinks to herself that “she had ever been so grateful for so little before.”  And she realizes just how very privileged she’d been. I try to stay away from politics in this space, but… READ MORE

No Matter What

No Matter What

I just finished Into the Fire by Jeaniene Frost; the continuation of Vlad (aka Dracula) and Leila’s (modern, young wife) story. As is always the case when a centuries-old vampire falls hard for a sweet young thing, Leila has some special talents that recommend her to the ancient Impaler, so I guess it all makes sense. Yet I am haunted by the little voice in my head that questions why such an old, hardened creature like Vlad would fall irretrievably head-over-heels for a 25-year-old carnie. I questioned their supposedly unbreakable bond. And whether it could ever be true, and not just a fantasy, that couples can share a mutual mindset that says, “No matter what, we will work it out.”  Which leads to questions about my own insecurities and trust issues, but let’s not go there – at least just yet – shall we? As I was reading about Leila’s… READ MORE

Trust, But Verified

Trust, But Verified

I just finished The Accidental Sire, the latest in Molly Harper’s Half Moon Hollow series. In this installment, Meagan is a coed at the University of Kentucky when she is mortally wounded and subsequently turned into a vampire. Not her best day. And it gets worse. Meagan, in turn, accidentally turns her date, Ben, into a vampire like herself—a suped-up vampire special. As Meagan and Ben navigate the treacherous waters as newly risen vamps under the care and supervision of the Vampire Council, Meagan learns to trust herself, and, as a result, others.  Trust is a huge leitmotif in the romance genre generally and especially in paranormal romance; writing about vampires, werewolves and witches, allows authors to take their themes to extremes. Where else but in the paranormal universe could an orphan wake up, after an unfortunate incident involving ultimate frisbee played with a 45-pound weight, as a genetically modified vampire?  Nowhere, that’s where. And when said orphan is farmed out to… READ MORE

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