A Caress of Twilight - Laurell K. Hamilton A Caress of Twilight was entertaining and very difficult to put down but when I finished it I felt like I was missing out on something. It took me a few days to discover exactly what it was. The writing was emotionally empty and the story seemed very rushed. The plot zips along from one crises to another and though Hamilton reveals a little more about Merry's feelings for her group of men (and reveals some interesting bits about their history) when she proclaims that she's in love with one of them I didn't believe her. Maybe I've read too many romances but these guys are all for the most part hunky, adoring and strong but they started to blend together in my head. Especially Nicca, Rhys and Frost. I never felt like I knew all that much about any of them and never felt any true emotional bond between the men and Merry. I'm guessing her king won't be any of the guys in this current group anyway . . .

Another problem for me was the muted gore. Call me a gorehound but the total lack of any sort of detail of the horror distanced me from the horrific impact of a few scenes that should have been tragic. There was absolutely no emotional reaction. Maybe it's that emotional distance thing again. I'm not sure. I just remember feeling horror, disgust, anguish and a wee bit of fear when reading the early Anita Blake books. I never felt any of that here. It all felt too safe.

Despite all that I did manage to enjoy it. I didn't pick it up expecting to be put through the emotional wringer anyway and it was a lot of fun to read. The sex was plentiful but toned down and I think Merry is an interesting character and particularly enjoy the scenes where she's dealing with members of the Unseelie and Seelie court while learning to wield her power and become a tough leader. She's free of sexual hang-ups and I like that too. If Hamilton would flesh out her plot lines (that creature at the end was pretty lame and too darned easy to take down for my liking), add in some of the dark humor that made me love the early Anita books and concentrate on a smaller cast of characters I might be tempted to rave.