Thursday, December 5, 2013

Danse Macabre--chapter 40

We spend the next few pages watching Auggie complain about how he can't be a mob boss and be gay. I'd find sympathy for him if it weren't for that "mob boss" part. You want respect and the ability to do whatever you want with the dignity due every human being? Don't play in the scum-infested shark pond. You murder, rape, pillage, con, sell drugs and function as the pimp's pimp. I have absolutely no sympathy for you whatsoever. Either realize that you are scum-sucking vermin or suck it the fuck up.

Also: Whoever gave LKH a copy of The Godfather to watch? I hate you.

Jean Claude does the passive aggressive version of a sexual "neener neener neener" at Auggie.

Why is this POS a protagonist again?

Then Jean Claude offers Auggie a deal: You can come and fuck us any time you want as long as you behave, play nice, and let me get my claws in further. The guy should be Mephistopholes at this point, except that's kind of giving him too much credit. There's nothing sexy about an abusive manipulative POS.

Auggie is all panting dog at the idea of getting to shag Anita any time he wants to.

LKH then tries to write two conversations at once: One between Auggie and JC and one between Anita and were-lion Travis. This happens with no indications whatsoever and is more than a little jarring.

And then this happens:

“Perhaps we could even visit you in Chicago.” I was suddenly paying attention to their conversation. If we went to Chicago, oh, my God, the energy there would…
The heroine of this novel is eagerly contemplating the psychic rape of an entire city. And NOTHING indicates this is a bad thought.

Auggie refuses. Not because of the whole "rape a city" thing, but because it would make Jean Claude too powerful. Seriously? NOBODY is going to call bullshit on this? YOU WOULD BE RAPING A CITY.

Jean Claude tells Auggie he wants Auggie to stop manipulating HIM. Oh the irony.

Anita and Auggie share words about how much in love Anita is with Auggie and how bothered she is about the whole "Mind-fucked into falling in love" thing. I'd give her credit for FINALLY remembering this, but it's less "YOU MIND FUCKED ME" and more "gee, I don't even know you, but you made me love you so now let's go cuddle."

Also, and it bears repeating: Auggie is a mob boss. There are special places in hell for people like that.

JC then reminds everyone that there's a Ballet tonight and they need to decide if Anita is safe around the other masters. I'd say we've proven she is NOT about six times over, but that's the only plot thread LKH can keep track of, so yeah. Anita has to screw somebody else, or roll them, or do some bullshit with her sex powers, before this book can end.

Then we go back to talking about the were-lions, how Joseph's pride is more sane than all the other prides because they don't behave like "real lions" whatever that means, and how Haven is a Very Bad Idea, all caps required.

Then we go back to "If Auggie ever wants to feel the arduer again, he'd better behave."

This chapter is like watching children play ping-pong. You get three back-and-forths and then you have to go chase down the fucking conversation.

And then Anita regurgitates a textbook.

“Joseph’s pride know how to be lions. They just don’t do that whole Serengeti-plains-dominance-fight at each kill,” Micah said. “That’s what it means to be a lion,” Auggie said. “Actually,” I said, “lions native to forested regions don’t do that. The fluidity of dominance, and the complicated social system, seem peculiar to the African plains region.”
That voice and that language have been used nowhere in this book. That is not Anita's voice, that is not LKH's style of writing. That's academic and that does NOT belong here. I don't think LKH has the balls to plagiarize, but you cannot tell me that writing fits in with the sex and the "spilled/swallowed/poured" and the fucking=candy metaphores.

Noel goes back to begging Anita not to bond with Haven. Auggie keeps being an ass--which, in this book, is saying a lot--and the most this chapter manages to accomplish is get most of the wounded moving off to Dr. Lillian while Auggie cracks jokes about everybody here being "pussywhipped".

We are not even eighty percent of the way done yet. Send help.


  1. That bit about lions just screams first few results on google.

    1. Exactly. Badly, BADLY paraphrased. I don't get Anita's voice (mostly because sexist egotistical nutcase isn't something I've practiced much) but if it were, say, Joey saying that, it'd be more like "Well, that's just the plains lions. Forest lions seem more relaxed about the whole dominance thing."

      Anita Blake hasn't used "fluidity" in her entire fucking series. But like I said, I don't think it's plagerism. I think it's an intensely bad paraphrase without taking three seconds to think about what the character would actually say.

    2. I actually googled the quote itself just to see if it popped up in a paper somewhere, but nope. Slightly reworded probably, a tactic that not even a first year college student should get away with.

  2. re: random text-book dialogue

    Well, apparently LKH has a degree in biology. Yeah, I know, shocking. (I believe she switched to that from English, because she more or less got kicked out of the English program for - shock and horror - being a terrible writer.)

    And because Anita pretty mus is LKH, she too has a degree in biology. A fact that comes up even less often than her beatified* Mexican mother, probably because that sort of thing can't be milked for inappropriate angst.

    Still, all I'm getting from the discussion of the werelions (seriously? werelions?) is that Anita & co. will end up screwing up a system that works just fine, thank you, all because evidently were-animal societies aren't allowed to function like human society, even when it makes way more sense and doesn't utterly destroy the members' lives.

    *For the curious, beatification is the last step before a person is recognized as a saint. I know this because I've read Canticle for Liebowitz.

    1. Yep. Most of that I knew...and that ,only because LKH and Merry Gentry share the same "OH I COULD NOT KILL BUGS OH THE POOR BUGS" story as to why their degree is generalized biology and not something specialized.