Monday, June 2, 2008

The Midnight Breed Series, Lara Adrian

I'm going to write this review for the whole series, as of now, as opposed to doing it book by book. BUT FIRST! Here's the books, themselves, from Lara Adrian's website:

Kiss of Midnight: Lucan and Gabrielle (I had a friend by that name way back in Jr. High! We failed Geometry together.)
Kiss of Crimson: Dante and Tess (Tess is just a weak name to me, but hey! it could be Tehss)
Midnight Awakening: Tegan and Elise (Loved Elise's name, it just fit her so well.)
Midnight Rising: Rio and Dylan (Dylan's the girl, in case you were wondering.)

I read Kiss of Crimson first (I
Paperspine, and it came in before the others, by some strange twist of US Mail fate) but had no problem jumping right into the world of these vampire ("Breed") men. The worldbuilding was great, the characterizations were believable, and I appreciated the "everydayness" of the writing. It flowed easily, and (I just can't help comparison's to JR Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series) there wasn't any needless name-dropping or ghetto-ing up of the language in order for the series to stand out on it's own.

Which was great! Reading this subsequent to reading Ward's books makes them feel almost like a shadow of the BDB world, but really (really) Adrian's world is just better. I can't say it plainer. The worldbuilding is tighter, the heroines are stronger, the men are (more) believable, and I fully enjoyed both the individual books romance plots and the overarcing series' story.

But I do have somewhat to say about the series, as a whole, that I was disappointed in. Perhaps I'm jaded, but I LIKE when a person's issues stay alive EVEN AFTER (gasp!) they've found Twue Luv. Addicts are still fighting addiction, cutters still find solace in cutting, anger issues don't evaporate like the mist after dawn...sorry, got poetic. But you get my meaning. If a character is dealing with an issue, it's just so unrealistic to have that issue be solved through the presence of a spouce/loved one/Twue Luv. And I know I'm dealing in an unrealistic venue as it is, being romance, with a pre-requisite HEA, but STILL. There's nothing wrong with a character being real, and reality is, while a Twue Luv makes life easier, it doesn't make life's problems go away. And I, for one, am ready for that kind of reality in my paranormal romance...

So that's my main problem. Also, while the women aren't the dhoormats of a certain other serhies, they still aren't as kick-ass as I wish (which leads to my up-coming series review: Kresley Cole!). However, they ARE getting there! So that give me enough hope to wait out the next two anticipated releases. For all that they stretch into next year...

All in all, I was quite happy with my decision to tackle this series. I'm giving each individual book scoring about a 3.5/5, but the series gets a solid 4/5, due to it's great worldbuilding, and the author's ability to take an (admittedly) used concept and doing it as well (if not better!).

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