Sunday, May 04, 2008

Succubus Blues, Richelle Mead

I can seriously kick myself for waiting this long to read Richelle Mead.

I've had this beauty sitting on my TBR pile for a little while now but have always somehow bypassed it.

Initially I thought it was going to be completely sex-driven, a romp, a bit of Sex in the City or worse, a badly written urban fantasy / speculative fiction with monotonous sex scenes. (Who knew I could fit the word "sex" into one sentence that many times?!)

I was wrong, so very wrong. Succubus Blues introduces us to a very charming, witty, feisty and funny protagonist, Georgina Kincaid who is a succubus by demonic trade, yet she has a day job as an assistant bookstore manager. We get to meet her boss, Jerome, an archdemon with a thing for John Cusack, his best mate, Carter, an angel who resembles a bit of a hippy/street person, Peter and Cody, vampire mates and Hugh, an imp. These are the immortals. On the mortal side of things we meet various work colleagues, Doug, Paige and as love interests we have Seth and Roman.

I enjoyed the book tremendously, laughing out loud at some of her more genuinely real faux pas i.e. she chats to a young man whilst helping out as a barrista in the store's coffee shop. She carries on about how tiring it has to be for her favourite author to answer so many of the same brainless questions time after time, encouraging said young man to make sure to ask the visiting author intelligent questions thereby making sure he stands out in the crowd of faceless fans...needless to say, the young man turns out to be the author in question...can you say: ground please swallow me now? It is achingly real and funny as it would be totally something I do in a fit of stupidity.

It is rare where a protagonist is rendered so cleverly - I never once failed to believe in the storyline. Something is killing lesser immortals in Seattle and it shakes up the community, specifically Georgie and her friends. Especially when Georgie starts getting letters from the disturbed being causing all the havoc. We follow her as she puts the pieces of the puzzle together, we watch her mess up her relationships and we believe in her as a genuine character. There are some excellent scenes with strong imagery in this - she's a succubus with a heart and she longs for a bit of humanity - she can't love without causing destruction and without it, she can't continue to live as she lives off mortal men's anima to sustain her own life force.

Succubus Blues is a very clever book and I am looking forward to the other instalments. I'll place the other Richelle Mead books in my "wanted" list right now.


Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed SB by Richelle Mead - her other work is as good! Go buy them!

Anonymous said...

Hey Liz,
Yep SB was good however be aware that the follow up has more sex within its pages and its quite descriptive. Not that it should put you off but at times its worth a mention.

Good to see youre getting time to read again, it'll do you good.

Getting ready to read Grimspace by Ann Aguirre and Cait's (CE Murphie) latest. Should be good.

Lee said...

I'm interested in why you call this speculative fiction rather than fantasy. I'm never quite sure what the difference is, and even worse, I have no idea what to call my own combination of F/SF/SpecF!

Liz said...

Hi Lee - I use the generic term speculative fiction to encompass the genres of sci fi, horror and fantasy, urban fantasy (like your YA novel you wrote - am getting stuck into that now -)! And I have to say, I'm thinking your genre is urban fantasy. But to be honest, I hate catergorising, but it is a way publishers and editors sell books, so we have to comply.


Lee said...

Thanks, Liz, and I do agree about categorisation. I'm not even sure my work is even YA. And though I don't sell my work - and have no intention of doing so in any conventional sense - potential readers do tend to search in categories too.