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Sex on Earth: A Celebration of Animal Reproduction
Jules Howard

Touch the Dark (Cassandra Palmer, Book 1)

Touch the Dark - Karen Chance 2.5 stars

This book had a lot of potential and while I did enjoy it somewhat, it also had numerous flaws. I have not read the Anita Blake series so I cannot make comparisons, although a lot of reviewers claim they are quite similar. I will discover that for myself eventually. As for this book, I thought it was bogged down with too many storylines which distracted terribly from the main plot. Chance is not a bad writer (although not great in this book either) but she has a horrible addiction to overwriting/info-dumping. There were so many interruptions during scenes that at times you wondered what HAD been going on prior. Scenes also took much too long to end because of the endless information. To put it simply: I think Chance tried to shove too much into one book.

Add to that the laughable number of historical figures that are vampires (Cleopatra, Raphael, Jack the Ripper, Rasputin and the list does go on folks). It made me wonder if Chance is completely unable to generate characters on her own (especially if the Anita Blake comparisons hold true). I was great with one or two historical figures but then when more started popping up it made me want to stop reading (and I LOVE historical figures but it took away from the story). You know all those famous historical figures you‘ve learned about? Well they never died, they’re all vampires…I’m sure Elvis, Ramses, Marie Antoinette, Henry VIII or others will be showing up in book two.

I also did not enjoy the time travel aspect, I felt like it was yet another distraction. Had Cassie’s ability shown up later in the series, or even book 2, it would have been more believable. The book ended on a cliffhanger of sorts and it did leave me intrigued. Cassie as a main character was okay, but not great and I could really take her or leave her at this point. I liked the character of Mircea and the ghost Billy. Also, Chance’s dialogue is pretty entertaining and I wish she would rely on it more instead of overdoing it with paragraphs of info.

I’ll continue with the series and hope it improves.