This is book 8 in the Meredith Gentry series by Laurell Hamilton. It was an okay book, about par for the course in this series. It was entertaining, but had some plot problems and some pacing problems.
This book takes up where the last book left off. Merry and crew have chosen to move back to LA. After choosing to save Frost instead of become the King and Queen of the Unseelie court, Merry and Doyle (along with Merry’s male harem) are in exile from fairy. They are working on setting up a place for themselves when Merry’s contact at the LA police department, Lucy, calls and asks Merry to investigate a crime scene with multiple fey dead. The scene of the crime leads both Merry and Lucy to believe that a serial killer is loose. Can Merry and her guys figure out what is going on before more fey are killed?
Like many of the previous book this book has a loose plot interrupted with numerous mediocre sex scenes, as Merry tries to keep all six fathers of her unborn twins (and a few other new guys) happy. The murder plot goes on pretty well for the first 100 pages and then for the last fifty-or-so pages. In between that is a lot of sex, and a lot of Merry trying to get her overemotional man harem in check. Merry uses her normal combination of sex, pleading, humor, over-the-top proclamation, and prayers to the Goddess to do this.
I liked the murder investigation overall, despite the fact that it took backseat to the management of Merry’s household for parts of the book. Reading about how Merry keeps her household running and how she deals with all these emotionally scarred guards from the Queen of Darkness, was somewhat interesting. Although, like previous books, too much time is spent on this and too many new characters are added in. It is like Hamilton has just added so many players to this story that it just takes up way too much time to juggle them all and there is no way she can give each character good page space.
I did like that there was less of Merry praying to the Goddess to solve all her problems, Merry actually had to work some of the issues out herself. I did like that some of her male leads (Frost, Doyle, Rheas) have overcome their insecurities and are actual acting like stable, supportive people.
I wasn’t sure if I would keep reading this series of not. I thought “Swallowing Darkness” would have been a great stopping point for this series. This book is very much a transitional one; it deals with all the characters adjusting to their new lifestyles. There really isn’t much of an over-arcing storyline that makes you interested in the next book…it makes me wonder what future books hold in store for Merry. I enjoyed the book some, I liked some of the characters. So, I will probably read the next book in the series just because these are a quick read and somewhat entertaining.