Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Meljean love

I heart Meljean. I do! I know many of you do, too. There is just something so lush about her writing. The characters she creates and the world in which they live are vibrant and real. Reading her work leaves me inspired to write, yet completely intimidated. Seriously, the girl is frickin' unreal!

I admit that I am late to the party where Meljean is concerned. Then again, when am I ever on the ball with book releases and trends in the industry? Never. That being said, I have only read Falling For Anthony, Demon Angel, and Paradise. I just finished Paradise (from the Wild Thing anthology) last night. The need to finish it may have contributed to me being late to a meeting (more about that meeting later.) I just could not put it down. Usually a novella leaves be feeling unfulfilled. I want more from the characters or the plot. Not so with this story. Lucas and Selah were wonderful. I completely believed the passion that developed between them, no matter how fast it happened. The vampire community in Ashland was hilarious. I have had vast experience with theater people. The fact that they were vampire theater people made me smile.

I am finding it difficult to be coherent with my thoughts on the book. I loved it. Lucas was this great, intense hero. He had the angst and tortured guilt that I just love in a romance. He was all that, and a vamp, yet managed to not be an Alpha hero. AND I STILL LOVED HIM! Me, the "I only break for Alphas" gal. The fact that he is not an Alpha is actually quite important when it comes to the nature of the vamp community that he leads. Selah is this combination of tough warrior and vulnerable woman. She is conflicted. She is being pulled in two different directions and it is killing her. She is 100% committed to the role of a Guardian, but something doesn't seem to fit.

I think the thing that I enjoy most about Meljean's books is that she doesn't take the easy way out with the HEA. It would be so easy to make all of the characters into Guardians at the end or to have all of the Guardians fall. With Hugh and Lilith (Demon Angel), they still have ties to their past. Lilith does not want to get married. In the end love wins out, but it is not a typical HEA. Lucas and Selah get their HEA (or perhaps more of a HFN), but it is not all tied up with a pretty, shiny bow. The book is a paranormal, but the HEA rings more true to me than those in many Contemporary Romances. There is an honesty to it that I appreciate as a reader. (Of course, I still love the rosy endings with the wedding and baby. I just like some realistic love endings, too. Gives a practical yet romantic single girl some hope.)
This novella is a must-read for me. If you have not yet jumped on the Mejean bandwagon... what are you waiting for?


JenB said...

I'm even later to the party than you are. I have four Meljean books sitting on my shelf and I haven't read a single one of them because I can't find the Hot Spell anthology at any of my local stores. I feel awful about it too, 'cause I talk to her on Twitter all the time.

meljean brook said...

*slinking in*

Normally I wouldn't comment, but I don't see much about the HEA/HFN issue in regard to my books -- so I just wanted to say: Thank goodness it feels that way. Emily and Anthony have a traditional wedding and HEA, but it definitely didn't feel right with Hugh/Lilith (after everything they'd gone through to be together, a marriage would just feel anti-climatic to me and not really true to the characters) and Selah/Lucas ... well, it would just be way, way too fast.

So I do often have to replace the marriage/babies (Guardians/vampires can't have babies, so that's not even an option) with a commitment that will last as long as they live. I know that's not always enough for readers -- but I also think that if by the end of the book a reader isn't convinced that the couple will stay together forever, no marriage proposal will fix that.

So this is a very long way to say: I'm so, so glad that you enjoyed it :-)

Leslie said...

LOL ~ Vampire theater people.
I've only read Falling for Anthony in the Hot Spell anthology so I really need to get the rest of this series. I keep hearing wonderful things about it. I like that she mixes it up with the HEA/HFN endings.

Great review!

Nicola O. said...

Hey Shannon, can you let me know the best way to contact you? I can't find an email addy for you. I'm at nicola327 AT hotmail DOT com.


Jessica said...

Great post! But I see you have yet to read Demon Moon. Let me just opine that when you do, you will be forced to abandon these rational posts and be reduced to the inarticulate "squee". IMHO, it's only after Demon Moon that you can truly be said to have drunk the Meljean Aid!;)

Shannon said...

Jen- You seriously need to read these books!

Meljean- ::squee:: Hi. Thanks for commenting. I love that you are true to your characters. It is great to read a book where the characters are not forced into a prescripted HEA, but are given their own ending. It is more organic. I love it!

Leslie- Keep reading!

Jessica- Demon Moon is coming up soon, trust me!