Top positive review
A werewolf or a vampire for a lover... Decisions, decisions!
on June 26, 2004
Once again, Laurell K. Hamilton hits a home run with this exceptional novel. The Lunatic Cafe is the fourth Anita Blake installment and my favorite thus far. Though this one has a bit of a slow start action-wise, it has a far more compelling plot that centers on Anita's personal life. Anita is dating Richard, something that doesn't sit well with Jean-Claude, the vampire Master of the City. Jean-Claude wants Anita as well and he, too, wants to date her. She's always said she wouldn't date one of the monsters, yet she is involved with a werewolf. But Richard has great human qualities. He is a schoolteacher, a genuinely nice guy, a boy next door of sorts -- minus the small fact that he's the leader of a pack of shape shifters with a secret and animalistic penchant for a mixture of blood, sex and violence. Jean-Claude is the proverbial bad boy -- a fearful leader and a shameless seducer who doesn't bother to hide his monstrous side, but irresistible all the same. In order to keep Jean-Claude from killing Richard, Anita acquiesces to his proposal of dating both men at the same time. But the reader knows that Anita is attracted to Jean-Claude, no matter how much she denies it. If this interesting little love triangle isn't bad enough, she has to find out why eight shape shifters and lycanthropes are missing. There are various twists throughout the novel...
This is the most exciting part of the series I've read thus far. Laurell K. Hamilton keeps you in suspense from beginning to end. Richard is a great character, but he's nowhere near as compelling and sensual as Jean-Claude. I am still hoping that he and Anita will get together. The building of tension is so slow it's torturous! But the aforementioned tension is delectable beyond compare. The characters are always excellent. The most interesting character in this series is Edward. He's a caricature of a character with an unreadable personality. Perhaps this is intentional, but I'm not sure. I hope to get to know this character in a deeper level in the future. Anyway, as said earlier, this is the best Anita Blake offering. I cannot recommend The Lunatic Cafe enough. A great summer read to enjoy resting on a hammock overlooking the sunset.