Midnight Harvest Mass Market Paperback – Jan 1 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Set in the 1930s, Yarbro's 16th assured Count Saint-Germain adventure takes the 4,000-year-old vampire to the United States. First, however, he must flee an unstable Spain on the eve of civil war, a move that costs him a lucrative airplane manufacturing business and gains him dangerous new enemies. Encounters in Boston and during a cross-country trip with the ever-faithful Rogerio reveal an America gripped by the Great Depression and wary of "foreigners." He's relieved to arrive in San Francisco, where he reunites with the now-mature but still desirable artist Rowena Saxon (first met in Writ in Blood), but his stay there proves less safe-for both himself and his friends-than he had hoped. Vintner Carlo Pietragnelli, sustained financially by the Count through the years of Prohibition, and his neighbors are suffering theft by "midnight harvesters," but a bigger threat comes from the murderous Ku Klux Klan-like White Legion. Meanwhile, a ruthless assassin has followed Saint-Germain from Europe. Though far from fast-paced or action-packed, the novel provides fascinating historical detail interspersed with sensual interludes and enough intrigue to sustain interest. Intelligent parallels with the present provide depth. The difficulties 20th-century life presents for a vampire are well handled by the remarkably consistent author, who is, as always, true to her character. Like its immortal protagonist, this long-running series deserves to live on.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Yarbro brings the long-running adventures of the vampire Saint-Germain to Spain in the 1930s, where her ancient hero is living comfortably, running several successful businesses, including an aircraft design and construction company, and enjoying a beautiful noblewoman as his lover. But the coming Spanish civil war encroaches on Saint-Germain when the army eyes his aircraft business, hoping to refit the planes for war over Saint-Germain's objections. Realizing he is fighting a losing battle, Saint-Germain sends his lover to England and then, with his faithful servant, Rogerio, flies to Boston, Chicago, and finally San Francisco, where an old flame, Rowena Saxon, awaits him. But the Spanish insurgents are worried that Saint-Germain will cause trouble for them after they seize his assets, and they send Cenere, a skilled assassin, to track him down and kill him. Slow at points--a whole chapter is devoted to Saint-Germain buying a car--the novel is filled with intriguing period details and, once the pace picks up, a compelling story. Kristine Huntley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
I'll overlook the fact that the book opens with an entirely gratuitous and graphic sex scene (can I just say I really don't need a blow by blow description of where the count is sticking his tongue...some things are better left to imagination). But let's move beyond that.
The whole plot of the book was weak. SG leaves Spain on the eve of civil war only to be followed by an assasin of the new regime. Sounds exciting? HA! This is a study in how to make nothing happen throughout an entire book. Things that should have been suspenseful were flattened by endless repetative dialog and an entire lack of action. He must get his lover out of Spain...blah blah blah, lover leaves Spain without incident. He must get out of Spain...blah blah blah, he drives out of Spain without incident. Once he's in America things really pick up. I particularly liked the entire chapter devoted to buying a car. Wheeee! Eleven pages conversations with a saleman...the test drive was really exciting.
It was nice to see Rowena Saxon again (more muff diving). However, the "problems" SG faces with the vinyards he has invested in seem entirely contrived...and again, the action is buried in the repetitive dialog. Let's Beat This Point to Death should have been the title of this book. When action finally does manage to shoulder its way to the fore, Yarbro gets it over with as quickly as possible and gets back to being tedious. SG gets severely injured, turn the page, bing, all better...back to endless yapping.Read more ›
Author Chelsea Quinn Yarbro does a fine job conveying a sexy and sophisticated vampire who uses love rather than violence ot gain willing providers to his blood-need. Saint-Germaine's wealth and generosity make him both sexy and a good friend. His four thousand years of life give him a broad range of experiences to draw upon. Together with his vampire ability to stave off the true-death, he is a formidable opponent to the Spanish and American facists.
For the most part, Yarbro's research rings true--from the cars to the movies to the political climate of depression-era America. A few errors stand out--discussions of Molotov Cocktails before this term came into use, description of the load of a shotgun as 'grapeshot' which actually consists of grape-sized balls fired from a cannon, but these can be largely overlooked. More seriously, however, Yarbro choses to slow down the action in her story with long conversations where a few points are discussed ad nauseum. MIDNIGHT HARVEST is interesting.Read more ›
I think in the future, if I get a hankering to spend some time with St. Germain, I'll go back and read one of the earlier, more heartfelt books. If you have yet to read Hotel Transylvania, Path of the Eclipse, Roman Blood, Out of the House of Life, The Palace, or Tempting Fate---by all means read any of those before this one. Many of the later novels are worth reading, once you've become well and truly hooked, but these last few have had a whiff of doldrums about them.
Most recent customer reviews
For fans of St. Germain, this book is not a disappointment. Chelsea Quinn Yarbro delivers as usual and I hope there are more to come! Read morePublished on Nov. 16 2003
It's the mid-1930s, and even though "The Great War" was supposed to put an end to hostilities, the political situation in Europe seems worse than ever. Read morePublished on Sept. 30 2003 by Lacey Savage
I have been reading the St. Germain novels since they were first published. I am very disappointed in this one. Read morePublished on Sept. 28 2003 by fanbot
Imagine witnessing the rise and fall of the Egyptian and Roman Great Empires. Ferenc Ragoczy, The Comte de Saint-Germain, walked the Earth when Nineva and Tyre fell, met Ghengis... Read morePublished on Sept. 15 2003 by Harriet Klausner
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