So, during my enforced downtime I did some reading - most of it was older books that I'd all ready read before, cause I'm pretty much broke, but there were a few news ones, and one I feel the need to talk about.

The first Rachel Morgan book was recommended to me shortly after it was published, and I liked it. I really liked the first couple books, though I admit I found (and still find it) a bit weird that so much between the two worlds are still the same. Television and music are the things I'm thinking of - I could understand some of it being the same, but we should also see that some is different as well. For example, Harrison should make up a few television shows that we don't have, or change the ones we do have. For example, she mentioned the "Who shot JR?" thing in the first book, I think it would be cool if she'd revealed that while the show did happen in that reality that their version didn't have the same actors playing the characters, because in the universe she made I find it very unrealistic that ALL the actors exist in her world. Of course, when I first read the book I didn't think having Dallas made at all was realistic, but after I thought about I realized that her reality still having the show could make sense - all that would really be necessary would be for who ever created it to have survived the turn along with maybe one or two of the writers. Well, okay, and Larry Hagman, because I just don't believe Dallas would have been what it was without Larry.

So, I went on to read up until the books started coming out in hardback, though I think I read the first one after that but didn't get it until it came out in paperback. I liked the books, but I did not love them enough to pay hardcover prices.

Well, recently I decided to try and get back into them, so I purchased Book Five (For a Few Demons More), and, yes, I all ready knew about THE BIG SPOILER that happened in that book before I read it. It's probably the main reason I didn't try to continue the books after they went hardcover.
(Speaking of spoilers, I'm not going to cut for them, because the book I'm talking about was published in March 2007.)

There were many things about this series that just didn't add up to/for me, but as with the Dallas stuff I could fanwank it enough to have stayed with it. The real problem was/is that I simply do NOT understand the character of Rachel Morgan - I know she's an adrenaline junkie, but that's all I truly understand about her character, but what's worse is that I don't find her all that likable, which means I certainly don't understand why everyone else in that series (except the bad guys) love her so much. I've read five of those books, and I certainly don't think she's all that likable. Of course, I might be able to understand why they would keep her around if she could protect them, but she's basically an untrained witch, which while keeping her from being a complete Mary Sue (a good thing) means that she can't even properly protect herself let alone those around her.
(And, at times, Rachel is pretty much a "Sue," which tends to give me scary flashbacks to Anita Blake, who in the beginning was also only a borderline "Sue," so I'm a bit more gun-shy when it comes to "Sues" then I used to be.)

So, I guess I ended up cutting for spoilers after all...

That's probably why I like (or liked) Trent Kalamack so much. I didn't necessarily like that he put her in the rat fights way back, because at the time that did seem a bit much overkill on his part. Now I can completely understand why he hates her, at this point, if he liked her it would be weird, because the dumb bitch (Rachel) keeps trying to tag him (i.e. arrest), and she wonders why he doesn't like her. Gee, I can't imagine why. Now I could probably support her efforts to arrest him, because he is, after all, breaking the law, but Rachel keeps trying and failing to make any charges stick, which after the second/third time starts to look ridiculous. I mean clearly she can arrest him all she wants, but its never going to stick unless she catches him dead to rights, so maybe instead of trying to bust his ass on the little things she should be patient (maybe even try to get on his good side, though she doesn't seem to have people skills, which is also a reason everyone loving her makes no damn sense) and wait until she has something big enough that he can't wiggle out of.

I suppose this may be Harrisons way of giving her hero flaws, but there's flaws and then there's just plain flawed. The one point of slight redemption here is that several of the other characters seem to see that Rachel's actions are as stupid as I do (even one law enforcement officer who believes Trent is guilty still thinks Rachel over-reacts), which implies that Harrison sees the stupidity of her characters actions, unless Harrison is going to pull a Hamilton (Anita Blake) and turn things around to make everyone but Rachel wrong when it is clearly Rachel that is wrong, or if not wrong at least going about things in the worst possible way ever.

But now we come to the biggie - Kisten. My feelings here are interesting, but hard to put into words. I understand why people applaud Harrison for killing him, but I actually think it was a mistake, or at least a mistake to have the first death and the final death happen with no spacing between them.

But lets start at the beginning. At first I loved that this series seemed to be heading toward a Rachel/Ivy (lesbian) ship. Now I think she missed the Rachel/Ivy/Kisten boat, but that's really neither here nor there. The problem is that I get tired of the "will they, won't they" bullshit that can happen while building up to a pairing. Always after a certain amount of time I will stop caring - do it/don't do it I no longer care - R/I is not quite there yet, because Harrison had come up with a creative way of working around the whole "will they/won't they" thing by having Rachel dating Kisten. I suspect if Books Four/Five hadn't soured me on R/I I would quickly reach the "don't care" state without Kisten around.

Of course, as I hinted above, I've pretty much stopped liking the idea of R/I, and at first it wasn't really because of the characters of Rachel and Ivy themselves, but because all the other characters (though mostly Jenks) started shitting on Rachel because she wouldn't/won't give in and do what Ivy wants. Well, f*ck you! Just because Ivy wants Rachel a certain way doesn't mean Rachel wants Ivy that way, and she shouldn't be pushed in to it simply because Ivy wants it. You know what I mean, right? I mean, because so many people are trying to shove Rachel under/above Ivy we might never know if that's truly what Rachel wants or if she's just doing it to get everyone and their brother off her back, or...

Well, there are other problems with Rachel/Ivy, and some have always been there to a certain extent, but it was really brought home for me in Book Five. The first is that it seems Rachel is only into Ivy because she is a vampire. So, I'm starting to suspect that Rachel only really wants Ivy for the so-called "safe" terror being with a living vampire could provide. Obviously, I wouldn't consider even a living vampire safe, but evidence (from the books) certainly suggest that playing around with a living vampire is a whole lot safer than playing around with an undead one.

(The above could be solved if Harrison could simply show that Rachel is growing and would eventually mature, but sadly enough Rachel is exactly the same in Book Five as she was in Book One. There's been absolutely no growth for the character of Rachel that I can tell. Though to be fair, at least she hasn't gotten less mature over the course of the books like several other characters from other series's I could name. *cough* There is also the fact that Ivy is pretty much the same in Book Five as she was in Book One, but to be fair, Book Five should have been a so-called game changer for Ivy, so while I haven't read the book I'd like to think she'd come across as more mature in Book Six.)

The second is how Kisten's death fits in, and this one while in my head to a certain extent wasn't one that stood out until after Harrison killed and kept Kisten dead (not undead). We (the readers) have never seen a living vampire transition into an undead vampire, and I realized after reading Book Five that that transition was something I personally needed to see before I could jump behind Rachel/Ivy 100%, because at the moment Piscary is the only other undead vampire we know, and we didn't know him when he was alive, and if he is a reflection of what a living vampire becomes after death... Oh hell no! If that's the case then Rachel (indeed ANY not-vampire) should run away as fast as they can as far as they can from all types of vampires; those living or undead.

Now I'm not saying Harrison should have kept Kisten around forever, because at some point unless she did a threesome, and that didn't seem likely) Kisten would've become (pardon the pun) dead weight. I'm also not saying that she shouldn't have killed him the first time in Book Five, because I think she should have. I think having his first death happen in Book Five was a good thing. The bad is that she had his second death happen right after that. I think she should have let Kisten escape at least for a brief time, because that would have let us get to know undead!Kisten a little bit before his second death. Seriously, she could have have had whoever killed him track him down at some point in Book Six and do his second death then. So, I'm not saying undead!Kisten should have been around forever, but I do think we should have seen undead!Kisten at least once. At least then we'd truly have some knowledge of what the transition between living vampire and undead vampire really is, which would have given us (me) a much better idea whether or not Rachel and Ivy would/could be a good pairing, because as I've mentioned (repeatedly) as it stands now I don't actually think it is a good pairing.