His Lordship Possessed by Lynn Viehl
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
As I mentioned in my review of part one, I read this for a book club. I was startled to find the last book was only the first half, and so I read on, despite my dislike of the love interest.
This half has Charmian (Kit) Kittredge stumbling across a plot to take over the city of Rumsen, all traced to the husband of the woman who hired her. When her love interest, Lucien Dredmore, gets possessed by an evil spirit, her only option is to kill him before it can succeed.
Sadly, the second half takes everything that I liked about the first half, and throws it down the toilet. Kit spends the book running for her life or mooning about the odious Lord Dredmore. It has her hiding out in a brothel, just to give Dredmore an excuse to paw at her where other people can see. It also gives us the appearance of Harry Houdini a century earlier, just for some plot flavor.
And the worldbuilding I thought was so nicely handled in the first half suddenly takes on a kitchen sink approach, with conspiracies dating back generations, plots to take over the world, needless complications, and the creepiest declaration of love I've ever seen in written form.
Seriously, am I the only reader thoroughly creeped out by Dredmore's love being based on his ability to control her? Someone else in my group said she saw an unspoken, "But I'm not going to use it" in there, but that was the opposite of the impression I got.
Like it wasn't bad enough I had to stop to roll my eyes every time she was desperate to get him back after that, the ending is pure deus ex machina. The plot device that lets her fix everything came out of nowhere. It reads like the author wrote herself into a corner and couldn't figure out a better way to write herself back out. There were several better ways she could've handled it, including letting the alphahole stay dead.
The way the next book is set up, it sounds like a rehash of this one, without Kit having to be convinced magic is real. No, thank you.
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