January 14th, 2010

Book review: Valentine's Exile

Today's book review is Valentine's Exile by E. E. Knight.

This is book 5 in the Vampire Earth series.  It's fairly necessary to read the previous books to understand the situation.  The ending isn't exactly a cliffhanger -- we wind up the current episode reasonably.  But we introduce something new and tantalizing in the last couple of pages to blackmail the reader into continuing.

I pretty much feel that the series has jumped the shark.  The way the plot arranges to send Valentine into exile is both hard to believe and rather frustrating, since it is such a grave injustice that it starts the reader wondering who the good guys really are.  I guess that if Valentine got the credit he deserved for his achievements in the last couple of books, he wouldn't be able to be a bold adventuring hero any more.  The romantic plot line is also rather frustrating.  The action scenes are still exciting, and the world is somewhat interesting, but I was sure I was ready to stop reading until we got to the very end, where we introduce the hook for the next book, and it really does tempt me.

5 out of 10.

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I will just briefly note that I went to Kickapoo for a while today.  It was solidly above freezing this afternoon, for the first time in 2010, and the white stuff is starting to retreat.  The mostly-frozen river was quite pretty.  I walked a little way out onto a frozen pond, but I decided that I wasn't absolutely sure how thick the ice is and there wasn't any real payoff to go with the small but not quite zero risk.  As I walked along the ridge in the middle of Emerald Pond, I realized that the big bird soaring overhead was an eagle.  I think he was the only bird I actually saw.