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3.9 out of 5 stars
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on August 27, 2004
After reading Blue Moon I really didn't have high expectations for this book. I thought it was going to be loaded with crap and passed off as a novel written by the talented Laurell K Hamilton. Ms Hamilton is an excellent author though I never understood why she wrote such a lame book. When I started to read Obsidian Butterfly it caught my attention from the very first page. This really does show the quality work Ms. Hamilton is capable of.
If you are an avid reader of Ms. Hamilton you will know more details about Edward. Edward is and will always be a cold-hearted murder, or, as he would say a hit man. He started to kill lycanthropes because people were too easy. Edward can put on an act that would have critiques showering him with Oscars. Edward is a complex character and that is shown throughout the story. What meets the eye isn't what it always seems. More of Edward is displayed through the story. And we come to love the character we meet so often in the series.
Anita owes Edward a favour. I wont give away the other stories if this is your first Anita Blake story. She owes him a favour and is surprised when he calls in that favour. He asks her to reach Mexico and help him solve a case he is working on. As a surprise for her he keeps the gory details to himself. Anita and him have this kind of contest. Who is tougher? Edward or Anita? On this case you really do find out.
This book is excellent and has the making of an excellent but gory movie. But please don't take my word for it. READ IT. It is excellent. And if you want that old Ms Hamilton books READ THIS. But words of advice don't read this over breakfast, lunch or dinner because you'll lose it. GO MS HAMILTON, you got your knack back, without the intense sex scenes!!
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on January 5, 2004
Obsidian Butterfly is one of those books you pick up and can't put back down until it's over, and even then with much regret. Laurell Hamilton knows how to keep her readers turning the pages. For those new to the Anita Blake series, here's a quick overview: The setting is present-day America, and the heroine is Anita Blake, the tough, sexy, and smart vampire executioner. She raises the dead for a living, quite legally, for such purposes as settling will disputes. Vampires and werewolves (aka lycanthropes) are legal citizens, only to be killed if they commit a crime. Anita actually has both a vampire lover, Jean Claude, and a werewolf boyfriend, Richard.
In Obsidian Butterfly, Anita leaves her hometown of St Louis to pay back a favor to her friend Edward, who is an assassin. He needs her help solving a string of murders, which were likely committed by something non-human. They team up with the local cops, the FBI, and Edward's mysterious accomplices to find the monster before it can mutilate yet another helpless family.
I would recommend this book to all fans of the Anita Blake series, even if many of the usual main characters are missing. You learn more about Edward and Anita, as well as the nature of her bond to "the boys".
It also goes well alone, precisely because there are not so many pre-introduced characters.
I recommend this book to anyone who likes a smart, well-written plot that is a combination of horror, suspense, and mystery with a little romance mixed in. Anita's constant sarcastic thoughts and witty comments keep the mood light throughout the story. The characters are extremely well-developed and draw you into their world of magic, witchcraft and a constant good vs evil battle that will keep you turning pages all night.
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on December 17, 2003
Obsidian Butterfly by Laurell K. Hamilton is one of the best books I've ever read. The book is about Anita Blake's newest adventure. She is called by Edward to help him solve a mystery in New Mexico. "I was running full out and skidded on my high heels, grabbing the receiver as I slid into the wall and nearly dropped the phone. I yelled into the receiver as I juggled the phone, "Edward, Edward, it's me! I'm here!"' (p. 2) Edward needed her help since she's a necromancer and has solved murders before with the St. Louis police.
The theme of the book is really about Anita finding out about herself. She didn't know much about herself, but in this book she finds out more than she ever thought she would. I do agree with it in the fact that everyone needs to find out about themselves. It doesn't relate to my life lately, but I used to try to hide information about myself from myself. I realized, after other people told me, that I can't do that.
I would recommend this book, simply because it's one of the best books I've ever read. Granted it's a bit unusual, but it still is the best book of this series. Don't read this book without reading the rest of the series, but it's an awesome series to read if you like magic, Vampires, Werewolves/Werelepords/ect, and a female good guy beating the bad guys.
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on June 26, 2003
I say that half-heartedly though. The laughing corpse was just the beginning. It was necessary to learn more about Anita's necromancy and only later did LKH saturate her books with her delicious characterizations. However, most of what made me lock myself in my room for hours to read her books was gone from this. The otherwordly elements (vampires, shapeshifters), her strong, coursing relationships with the leopards, wolves, and ahhh Jean-Claude--all gone. And though I love Edward, I feel his prescense was more haughty and strangely complete, when he made cameos. When he was just that guy who was mysterious, deadly, in it just for the kill and an inticing plage upon the books and to the readers. However, in this novel, there was too much. He lost some of his edge (mainly because Donna was...well, not too bad anyway). Though I thought Bernado was great, I was bored. Painfully bored. Perhaps if I had read this book standing by itself with no previous novels, I would have enjoyed it--the suspense and the gruesome descriptions--perhaps, I would have been more intrigued. But with the stunning characterizations and the obsessive ties I found with them, I was just not as impressed as with every other book. The next one was much, much better!
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on May 26, 2003
From all the things I've heard about this book, I didn't think I was going to like it. For one, it doesn't have all our regular characters like Jean Claude (except for a small cameo), Richard (not that I really care he wasn't in this book), Asher, Anitas wereleopards and wolves, etc. But all in all, it's a very good addition to the series.

I'll admit that the beginning is a little...slow. It takes a while to get into the action. I'm not going to give away any of the plot, because I really hate it when i'm just looking for an opinion and they give me the whole freakin plot! So, i'll just tell some highlights.

As always, Edward is a fantastic character. In this book, you really get to see a different side of him. I liked it a lot. Of course, Edward is one of my favorite characters, so he can do no wrong. But I thought he was as good as ever. He shows a little more "emotion." It's refreshing.
The plot itself was very good as well. Some ancient monster stealing the skins off of people. Creepy.
Anita's character continues to grow into something greater. As always, there is character development. In this book, Anita realizes things that might have been better if she'd realized them a while back. She's maturing, but at the same time, backing off from what she is.
So, I really liked this book. I reccommend it, actually. It's one of my favorites. So go out and buy it. Or stay at home and buy it. Whatever tickles your fancy...
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on April 7, 2003
There are few books in my life that I read more than once. Typically the readings are years apart. I read this book uncounted times over a span of 3 days. I literally could NOT put it down.
This is the first Anita Blake book to really part from Ms. Hamilton's usual writing style, but it's worth it.
Back in "The Killing Dance", Anita ended up owing Edward a favor (Want to know why? Go read the book!). In "Obsidian Butterfly", Edward is calling in his favor. He needs backup. Apparently there are a rash of murders so gruesome that even he doesn't know what caused them. So off Anita goes to help solve the case, question a Master of the City, have issues with the local police, run up against a local werewolf pack, and even get into trouble with HUMAN bad guys!
In truth, this book is more about Edward than Anita, so I can see why some who don't like him might not enjoy the book as much. Don't get me wrong, Anita still has her (very large) part, but you learn more about Edward then you'd ever dream. You also get to see how Anita's hard and bloody lifestyle is beginning to catch up with her.
All in all, I'd definitely recommend this book to any Anita Blake fan.
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on January 30, 2003
When I first picked up the book, I thought my god it's huge! The book is much longer than the others in the Anita Blake series, not that this deterred me in the least I devoured this book as I do all by Laurell Hamilton, I am now a devoted fan.
Even though the book is very long, it is still not long enough and through parts of the book I flicked back to see if I missed pages as some parts let you assume things happened that Laurell would normally let you experience. That is the only gripe I have about this book :)
Many Laurell Hamilton fans are dismayed by the overt sexuality and amount of sex in the novels. I am not one of these fans, I think the sexuality is fabulous and along with the violence and gore makes all her novels oage turners and keeos the pace on the extreme dial. In this book however there is no gratuous sex scenes so many fans will be gratified with that.
This book takes a look in to Edward, who Anita always hopes she will never become. He is the scariest "person" she knows which is saying a lot espeically with her group of BDSM friends :)
Edward, Anita and recruits are hunting down the most gruesome monster I have ever met on my reading travels. The Murders are disgustingly gruesome and I said "Ewwww!" a lot out loud while reading this novel, but I loved it! I would not recommend it for anyone with a weak constitution.
Not my favourite Anita Blake book, though probably the one that affected me the most. I really missed Richard and Jean Claude in this novel though and will be happy to get back to them in my next reading :)
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on January 15, 2003
I started reading Hamilton with "Narcissus in Chains," the book that comes after this one in the series. While there was something that bothered me about the book, I couldn't put it down, and decided to start at the beginning. Well, I've now read them all, and while I think Hamilton has a fantastic imagination (and I had as much difficulty putting any of the others down), there are some things that need fixing. Superficially, the editing. I've never read a series of books with so many errors left in.
As far as the stories themselves, Hamilton is overly repetitious in so many ways, and frankly, Anita Blake simply isn't likable. Oh, at first I thought "Gee, isn't it nifty that there's a strong female character" but her attitude grows old real quick. The other characters grow equally tiresome, as half of them are complete bad-... with no redeeming qualities (why is it that 95% of the police introduced in the books are such jerks?), the remaining characters are either (for the most part) sex-obsessed, overly submissive, or otherwise unlikable?
With that said, though, I've noticed a definite improvement in Hamilton's writing style as the series progresses, and this particular book is significantly better than the previous ones... Narcissus is even better. So while I certainly recommend the series, I also recommend to Ms. Hamilton that she get a better editor and take a hard look at her characters.
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on July 30, 2002
Obsidian Butterfly is truly a departure from the usual Anita Blake novel. The first thing that jumps out at any reader is the fact that Anita is the narrator, but not really the main character. Anita travels to New Mexico to help out her mercenary friend Edward, and that's where things get weird. On one hand it was nice to read an installment where the plot didn't revolve around Anita's love life (Richard and Jean-Claude were conspicuously absent), it was also nice to see Anita get involved with some straight forward paranormal criminal investigation. There was even a tiny spark of romance with one of the New Mexico cops, but it never developed (we all know by now Anita needs a lot of monster in her man).
The book goes beyond the typical vampire story and sends a message about defacing ancient relics and artifacts when some Aztec vampires go on the rampage and start skinning humans alive. The title 'Obsidian Butterfly' refers to a female master vampire, a character so well-written and powerful that I personally would love to see her in another installment.
I wouldn't recommend 'Obsidian Butterfly' as the best novel in the series, but in combination with the previous installments it is excellent and well worth the reading.
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on July 18, 2002
Thank God for Edward. Otherwise, this book would have most likely been yet another of LKH's more recent books to be only supported by their erotic appeal. In this book, Anita returns her favor to Edward, the one she owed him when she killed his sidekick Harley. The favor involves her flying out to New Mexico to meet Edward, aka Death, aka the Undertaker, aka one of the few people in Anita's world that kill without a second thought--only to meet his fiance, Donna, at the airport. As if things weren't crazy enough, with vampire/goddesses and a necromancer, now Edward has a FAMILY.
That major plot twist is enough to keep you riveted for the entire book, through both Anita and Edward's moral issues with life, love, and, as Edward puts it, "the monsters". Anita comes to terms with herself in this book, and although no familiar characters other than Anita and Edward show up, the book kept me interested. LKH proves that she can write a book with an actual plot, not just one supported with sex.
Buy this one, skip the rest.
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