Rainer Maria Rilke

"Live a while in these books, learn from them what seems to you worth learning, but above all love them. This love will be repaid you a thousand and a thousand times, and however your life may turn,-it will, I am certain of it, run through the fabric of your growth as one of the most important threads among all the threads of your experiences, disappointments, and joys."--Rainer Maia Rilke

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Friday, June 17, 2011

New For Me--In More Ways Than One!

Skindancer, Book One:  Frost Moon by Anthony Francis
(Adults Only)

As soon as I started this book, I knew I probably wouldn’t like.  The main character, Dakota Frost, and I could not have been more different.  She is over 6 feet; I’m 5’4” on a really tall day.  She is muscular and intimidating; I can occasionally make it 20 full minutes on a treadmill.  She is a tattoo artist with her body a masterpiece of work; I have been known to faint after a flu shot.  She is young and hip; I vaguely remember young but can’t even guess how to be hip.  She obliterates the mores of sexuality; I have been married to my college sweetie for almost 20 years.  She hangs out with werecreatures and biker dudes; I teach middle school (okay, maybe that one isn’t too dissimilar!)
We had absolutely nothing in common.  There was no way I was going to be able to connect with this character or this book.

And yet……..
Slowly, without me realizing it, she had me hooked.  With all of our dissimilarities, I discovered how very much we had in common.  Then I really started to like her.  She is one kick-butt heroine with a soft marshmallow center she doesn’t want anyone else to see.

The best way to describe the plot?  It is noir/goth vampire murder mystery with werewolves and other creatures of the night thrown in.  That’s the best way to describe this mess.  I mean mess in the highest complimentary way, though.  That’s the real strength of this book.  It’s like you’re traveling along in this girl’s messy life, trying to figure out who is bad and good and what should she say and/or do to not offend and just get along the best she can.  (See what I mean about having stuff in common?  Surely, suddenly!, I’m not the only one whose life is too complicated.)
The plot twists and turns were unexpected and thrilling; the secondary characters were intriguing and scary; the setting was fascinating—everything about this book worked for me.  There is plenty here for a lengthy series with new adventures. 

Did I mention the magical tattoos?  The real strength of this book, and this series, is going to be this new genre of magic.  I have honestly never read a book about doing magic with tattoos and love the concept.  The author made all those inks and colors leap off the page and into my imagination.  I can say I’ve never read anything like it before and I loved it.
Maybe enough to get my own tattoo?  Well, I’ve have to read the second book to decide for sure.

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