I took a deep breath and resisted pretending to listen and asked: I forgave myself when I slipped outside of social norms and said something weird. People would love me or not — frankly I was okay with the risk. A few months later, I stood outside the club with a cigarette in my hand, looking over the busy highway at the deserted factories. She knew I was a stripper but had never been to the club. From the outside, it looked grim: But it was home to me. I kept the window open as the club disappeared, letting the cold air whip my face, feeling a mixture of relief and excitement.
Forums for autistic women advised pulling off masks that many develop to pass as non-autistic. The effects of camouflaging are toxic, they warned. But I still had so much to learn. There was vast, dormant space to grow into beyond my work persona. The twinkling lights opened the doors to Manhattan, my body still moving from the music of the club. The possibilities of the night unrolled in front of me and I intended to savor them. My analyst and I grew more intimately connected each week of treatment My entire body feels tense, not ideal for the setting.
I try to relax, but the plush leather couch crumples under me when I shift, making the movements extraordinary. Of course it has. On the surface, when the patient has been highly selective of the discussion topics, therapy always resembles a friendly get-together. I so supremely wanted this not to come up. She quickly and convincingly pointed out that I work rather hard and am, ultimately, paying my bills on time, that I have friends, an appreciation for arts and culture, and so on. Then Lori heightened the discussion a bit.
I was too insecure and too single to handle such a compliment from a beautiful woman. I shrugged my shoulders, only half looking up. I laughed a little, uncomfortably. She gently explained she could tell the day I walked into her office for the first time, after I flashed a bright smile and casually asked where she was from. Lori snorts, rolls her eyes. I smile, shake my head and look around the room, denying acceptance of my own ridiculous reality. I look again at her stark blue eyes, prevalent under dark brown bangs, the rest of her hair reaching the top of her chest, which is hugged nicely by a fitted white tee under an open button-down.
Do you bend me over and take me from behind? I take a second to let the red flow out of my face, and ponder what she said. So I go home, incredibly turned on and completely unashamed. In treatment I came to realize that all people have contradictions to their personalities. In my case, my extreme sensitivity can make me feel fabulous about the aspects of myself that I somehow know are good my artistic tastes and cause deep hatred of those traits I happen to loathe the thirty pounds I could stand to lose.
My next session with Lori is productive. One constant is that I put crudely high expectations on others, mirroring those thrown upon me as a kid. Then, a week later, Lori mentions it, and I become tense again. There were two ways to find out:. Here we go again. Lori, ever intently, peers into my eyes, wrinkles her mouth and slightly shakes her head.
We both know the answer to that question. All I can do is stare back. I see what she means. When our sessions finally resumed, I could not wait to tell her about my budding relationship with Shauna. Plans happened magically without anxiety-inducing, twenty-four-hour waits between texts. Her quick wit kept me entertained, and I could tell by the way she so seriously spoke about dancing, her chosen profession, that she is passionate about the art form and mighty talented too.
Shauna is beautiful, with flawless hazel eyes and straight dark hair, spunky bangs and a bob that matches her always-upbeat character. She is a snazzy dresser and enjoys a glass of whiskey with a side of fried pickles and good conversation as much as I do. So upon the precipice of my return to therapy I told Shauna about Lori, and admitted to having mixed feelings about what I was getting back into. The first two sessions of my therapeutic reboot had gone great. Lori appeared genuinely thrilled that I was dating Shauna and could see how happy I was.
I stuff the cat food back into the Tupperware and toss it into the refrigerator. I make my way into the living room, angry at myself for not changing the settings on my new iPhone to disallow text previews on the locked screen. I can tell she regrets looking at my phone without my permission, but I completely understand her feelings. On my walk home, instead of being angry at Lori, I understand her thinking behind the text. A patient may in turn contemplate that a love is blossoming between them, and, in fact, it sort of is. This takes genuine care and acceptance on their part.
In employing countertransference — indicating that she had feelings for me — she was keeping me from feeling rejected and despising my own thoughts and urges. Atlas has an upcoming book titled The Enigma of Desire: Atlas explains that there are certain boundaries that cannot be crossed between therapist and patient under any circumstances — like having sex with them, obviously.
What do you do with that? Do you deny it? Do you talk about it? How do you talk about it without seducing the patient and with keeping your professional ability to think and to reflect? I ask her about the benefits of exploring intimacy in therapy, and Dr. Atlas quickly points out that emotional intimacy — though not necessarily that of the sexual brand — is almost inevitable and required.
Atlas says this topic speaks to every facet of the therapeutic relationship, regardless of gender or even sexual orientation, because intimacy reveals emotional baggage that both the patient and therapist carry with them into the session. In order to be able to be vulnerable, both parties have to feel safe. After I briefly explain all that has gone on between me and Lori, Dr. Atlas steadfastly says she does not want to judge too harshly why and how everything came to pass in my therapy. Maybe I wanted to interview Lori about erotic transference in my therapy sessions for that same reason as well…to stand out as the most amazingly understanding patient ever.
In order for Lori to advance in her field as a social worker, she has to attend 3, conference hours with another professional to go over casework — kind of like therapy quality control. We talk about all of this during one of my scheduled sessions, for the entire hour — and go over by a few minutes, too. It can become a cycle of behavior that Lori seeks to break.
I refer back to the time when, unprovoked, she brought up my attraction to her. There was no in between. Lori noticed that I was frustrated with myself and wanted me to know that an attraction to a therapist is so normal and happens so frequently that there are technical terms for it. I turn my attention towards the presence of countertransference in our session.
Lying in bed with Shauna a few months into our relationship, I ask her what she thought about me the moment she first saw me. She says she liked the fact that I was wearing a blazer and a tie on a first date. She adds that I was a little shorter than she anticipated, but was content with the two of us at least being the same exact height. I explain that my insecurity could often get the better of me in dating situations.
It seems my emotional workouts in erotic transference were just beginning to produce results. But, so you have a full understanding of how this works, we can date. The difference this time is the answer I want to give is on par with all of my involuntary urges. Would Lori and I really be compatible in every way? Would she ever see me as a lover, a partner, an equal, and not a patient? Could I ever reveal a detail about myself, or even just a shitty day of work, without wondering if she was picking it apart and analyzing it?
Frankly, all those questions could be answered in the positive. Work payments that were past due are finally finding their way into my bank account. As it turns out, my short-term money troubles were not an indication that I had no business being a writer, or that my life changeup was as irresponsible as unprotected sex at fourteen years old. I took a mental step back from my current situation and realized that in spite of my recent hardships, I was succeeding.
At first, the quiet girl from Craigslist seemed like a great match—we had just the occasional tangle over cats and cleanup. And then the men started coming over. It was late morning, and I was putting up a fresh pot of coffee when I heard the first meow. It sounded awfully close, as if from inside the apartment instead of the backyard one story down. Then I heard it again, and there was no doubt. I texted my roommate. You got a cat?! I suffer from allergies — through spring and summer I have a persistent itch in my nostrils, and the lightest bit of pollen or dander or even a freshly mowed lawn sets off sneezing spells that leave my entire body sore.
I was also concerned about the smell. And besides, the landlord forbade pets. I have a tendency to overreact, to exacerbate conflict. Instead I went for calm and firm, and maybe slightly paternal. We need to talk. Later that afternoon, in the kitchen between our bedrooms, we talked, leaning on opposite counters.
I was left somewhat unsettled. In the end, I told her she could keep the cat, but she better take care of it properly. We were unlikely roommates, a Craigslist arrangement: I, a near-middle-aged man, several years divorced, with adolescent children of my own. She, a twenty-year-old recent college grad. At first, I had a parade of eccentrics, men who seemed to have something to hide, smelling of whiskey, with slurred speech, crooked teeth, telling me about jobs as investment bankers or corporate accountants, claims I found dubious.
He left just as I was about to call the cops. So when Jenny showed up, I was inclined to like her. She looked like a typical post-college young woman: Her speech tended to the monosyllabic. I showed her the room. I showed her the bathroom. Then she asked what she needed for moving in, and I told her: I assumed this meant she had all those things, and at first, it appeared that she did. She told me she worked two jobs, as a clerk in a stationary store in Midtown Manhattan and as an art-school model.
Several days later, she brought documents attesting to her claims, and it all seemed to check out. She moved in a couple weeks later, with the help of her dad, whom I found affable in a way that put me further at ease.
Some time after she moved in, I met her boyfriend, who seemed about my age. I did have some mild concerns. I wondered why she would choose to live here — a part of town where she had no friends or family — and with me, a man twice her age. But I needed a roommate, and for the most part, she matched my criteria: There was something familiar about her, almost bland, like an unremarkable extra who might appear repeatedly in so many movies, which meant she was safe and normal and predictable — exactly what I needed if I was to share my home with a stranger.
It was soon after the cat incident that I began to notice she was home more. In fact, she rarely seemed to leave her room. She was always on time with rent, and she appeared to have enough money to buy groceries and order in meals. One afternoon, a couple weeks after Jenny took in the cat, I heard her voice and then a male voice I did not recognize. It was definitely not her boyfriend, whose voice was high-pitched; this one was deep, almost gruff. I was in my room, working, and I heard someone enter the bathroom, and then the toilet flush, and so I opened my door a crack for a glance.
In the hallway, emerging from the bathroom, was a short, squat man, gray-haired with a bald temple. I felt a kind of indescribable rage, almost like a personal affront. How dare she — in my home?! An hour later, I watched her escort the man to the door. Another part of me was so angry I wanted to evict her immediately. The rest of the day, I wrestled with my thoughts, my mind feverish with indecision: Should I say something?
Should I tell her boyfriend? Should I call her dad? Was it any of my business anyway? I decided to wait, see if it happened again, and just a few days later, it did. This time, it was a tall black man wearing an ill-fitting suit and tie, like thrift-shop formalwear. He, too, emerged from the bathroom and disappeared into her room, and after an hour or so she escorted him to the door, again in the blue pumps and rumpled ivory dress.
I took to Google: What to do if my roommate is a prostitute? More than what to do , I was seeking clarity on why it bothered me. Who was I to judge if Jenny chose an unorthodox profession? Why would I care if she used her room to ply her trade? On Yahoo Answers and in Google Groups and various other forums people wrote about similar experiences, and the consensus was: I wondered about the practical aspects of her work: Does she have a Backpage ad? Did she use Craigslist?
Could I find her on The Erotic Review? Sit her down for a talk. Point her in the right direction. Instead, when we met in the kitchen the next afternoon, passing between the refrigerator and the trashcan by the sink, I decided to bring it up. I was washing a dish, the water running lightly, and she was behind me, waiting for something in the microwave. She turned slowly to face me, nonchalant, with a thin smile. What are you going to do about it? She offered no further explanations, and we both retreated to our rooms.
Let us, as adults, discuss this situation. In return, she took me for a fool. The words infuriated me, and I began to plot her eviction. Several days passed, however, and still I did nothing. We had just finished dinner at a SoHo restaurant, paid the check, and were about to head to her place when my phone rang. It was my landlord. There was trouble at the apartment. My thoughts went to the men.
My date raised an eyebrow to me. We were outside the restaurant, in the cool night air on a quiet street, a jittery yellow cab passing over the uneven cobblestone. Landlord says someone called The response came a few seconds later. I stared at that text, uncomprehending. She had been dead, in fact, for the past twenty-four hours, in her bed, in our apartment. My thoughts in those moments would later seem incongruous with the event itself, but at the time they were automatic, a cascading stream of impolitic ponderings.
I hung up the phone and looked at my date, who was gripping my arm and staring. My date reacted as I expected. Of course I was O. Mostly I was just annoyed that her death was getting in the way of my evening plans. Jenny and I had lived together for four months, but I barely knew her. An overdose of what?
I called my landlord, and told her what I had learned: No, she need not worry about a thing. The police will take care of it all. I was out of town, I said — not a lie, although not entirely the truth either. My date gripped my arm tighter, as if the news of death created some erotic charge, at once frightening and gripping, and we went off together to her apartment a few blocks away.
In the morning I took the subway home, and remembered: My roommate was dead. It felt surreal, and I found myself ruminating on the nature of death, and youth, and the way we often know so little about the people living just several feet away from us. It appeared that someone had taken the cat. Later in the afternoon, my phone rang. I felt momentarily caught off balance. She had seemed like a rootless child, unattached, unaffected.
I knew she had parents, a little sister, extended family somewhere, but I knew so little about them they were almost unreal to me. Her entire life seemed confined to her room across the hallway, as if she mattered to no one but herself. I am so, so terribly sorry. This must be so devastating. I could hear him sniffling on the other end of the line. There were the signs, of course. It was heroin, Steve told me. Her boyfriend, who was an addict, had introduced it to her. When I hung up, I felt guilty for feeling as unmoved as I did. Her father, at the same time, seemed to expect exactly that.
As if he knew that someone like me would be affected only by the trouble of it all. Here were people reminiscing about her, friends writing about the time she helped someone with a college essay, or about high school adventures, or that time they got passed-out drunk and high on that crazy spring break trip.
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Two days later, her aunt came. She packed some of her clothes into a few large trash bags. The bed that was ordered online just four months ago. The easy chair Jenny had brought from her childhood home in Westchester. A bunch of keys on a key ring, a bracelet of blue beads, a MetroCard, a bag of cosmetics.
It looked just like it had before she moved in: I closed the door to look behind it, and noticed a taped-up card, from HashtagThePlanet. I thought about how our physical possessions are like phantom lives: It made me sad, but I had little use for the rest, and ended up putting most of it out with the trash. The stuff sat on the edge of the sidewalk for a day or two, and through the window I watched as people passed, glancing at the items.
Some stopped to pick through them, holding up items for inspection, taking what they pleased, until the pile was about half the original size. Then the trash collectors came and tossed it all into the monster-mouth of their truck, until nothing was left but a shattered light bulb that slipped out of one of the bags, now spread in tiny bits of glass among the fallen leaves of a nearby honeysuckle tree. After years getting paid to bare my breasts at more clubs than I can count, when my funds hit an all-time low I pioneered a cleaner brand of sex work. When I arrive at the house of the first viable person to respond to my Craigslist ad, I knock on the door and take a step back.
He opens it right away. I like his work jeans and dirty white t-shirt, though. They feel kind of homey. I step in, a little flirty, but all-business to begin with. Just when the tour is complete my phone rings. Call me in like an hour. I turn to JimJohn and start to pull my shirt off, then stop. I shove it down one of my stockings as I take my pants off, because I have always believed that the safest place for my money is right against my skin.
Both are being helped by Christophe who may or may not be their friend and he's taking them to schola. A school for those who are not exactly human. Christophe knows there's a traitor at the school and wants Dru's help to find out how it is. That's how she ends up in a school filled with djampir's and weres who are all boys. She also knows that someone is trying to kill her, and she isn't sure who can be trusted and who can't be trusted.
There was a lot of action in this book, but what I really liked was being able to learn more about the different non human species. The reader is seeing through Dru's eyes, and as she learns more we learn more. Then of course there was the chemistry flying between Dru and some boys. There were some interesting scenes involving pack dynamic and doms and subs. The reason I didn't rate is higher was because Dru annoys me slightly.
She's a little whiny, and she gets hurt.. Sort of one of those too stupid to live characters. Always trying to save others no matter what it costs to herself. That gets a little tiresome. Also, this book had some very reminiscent qualities from other books I've read recently. Referring to the evil Sergei as "you know who", a school for those who aren't human But still, I'll probably read the next in the series whenever it comes out. Nov 28, K. Lincoln rated it it was amazing. Betrayals is the second in this series about a teenage girl whose ex-marine father taught her to fight the "others", all the magical beings such as zombies, werewolves, and vampires that inhabit the shadows of our world Dru's life got turned upside down in the first book when she had to kill her father turned into a zombie by a bad vampire and was on the run with a boy from her high school who got bitten by a werewolf.
She gets saved from the bad vampire by christophe, a half-human, half vampir Betrayals is the second in this series about a teenage girl whose ex-marine father taught her to fight the "others", all the magical beings such as zombies, werewolves, and vampires that inhabit the shadows of our world Dru's life got turned upside down in the first book when she had to kill her father turned into a zombie by a bad vampire and was on the run with a boy from her high school who got bitten by a werewolf.
She gets saved from the bad vampire by christophe, a half-human, half vampire who is part of the Order, a group of Others trying to fight against the bad guys At the beginning of this book Dru gets dumped by Christophe at the Schola, a training school for teenage half-vampires and werewolves. Her werewolf-bitten high school friend is with her, and she begins to realize somebody is still out to kill her as strange things happen at school.
What makes Betrayals so fun to read isn't the "girl with special powers in a school for magical beings" scenario, we've all seen that, right?
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And it isn't the "caught between my friend the werewolf and the mysterious, cute, could be out to betray me half-vampire guy" either. It's that Dru herself reads like a mass of insecure, angry, frustrated, wanting to do the right thing, lonely, love-seeking person that really all of us are inside. The plot itself goes somewhat slow as we realize long before Dru does how wonky things are at the school, but it doesn't matter. Also, the creepy bloodfog was cool. Can't wait for the third installment in the series. This Book's Food Designation: Caramel Machiatto, for the grittiness of Dru's action scenes, and the creamy sweetness of her relationships with the boys.
Mar 12, Tammy K. Are all supernatural books involving females so whinny? Whats wrong with having a young female character who can and does stand up for herself without having to have young boys fight over her while she plays helpless? The two books that I have read of Lili St Crow have both fallen flat. The writer repeats herself constantly. I found myself flipping ahead just to skip over the main characters constant retelling of he 2. I found myself flipping ahead just to skip over the main characters constant retelling of her lost childhood memories or wait are they dreams, no..
Even more comical is the 'lack' of vital information which our young character seeks and is denied Someone should have told you! Only to have that very vital information skipped over and some rambling nonsense thrown out while our main character sheepishly accepts that she will not be told yet again! I found myself chuckling. The writer hints but fails to lead the story to any where relevant. The characters continuously spout off foul language which takes away from the 'dialog'.
I suggest skipping this book, skipping the whole series in fact. It's sad really because it had so much potential. Dec 05, Gemma rated it liked it Shelves: Even though it was definitely not one of the best books I've ever read, I enjoyed Betrayals, more than Strange Angels anyways. But there were a few things that got on my nerves. I'm kind of confused with the whole Graves-Christophe thing - I want to like Christophe, but his characterisation is seriously skewed.
One minute he's this dangerously attractive rebel who seems to really care about Dru, and the next he morphs into a complete jackass. Also, if he did have a bit of a thing with Dru's mum, that would be potentially disturbing. L I do feel sorry for him though - he did try to be nice to Dru multiple times only to be blown off for Graves.
Ah, Graves, the lovable werewolf. I think he's beginning to grow some balls, which is great since the whole puppy dog thing with Dru was becoming extremely annoying. One minute she's all over him, the next she's like - 'Oh no, Graves would never think of me in anything other than a friendly capacity, even though I'm in a tub with him in my soaking wet underwear. L Dru was much less irritating than she was in Strange Angels, but she still has her moments. The ending of Betrayals felt just like the end of the previous book, and I didn't really feel like we learnt all that much in between.
But there was a big improvement, so I'm hoping Jealousy will bring better literary tidings for me Jan 26, Kate Lansky rated it liked it Shelves: My biggest complaint with this book and the last, come to think of it , may be more edit-based than anything else. When you're writing, bits and pieces of ideas can sneak in here and there. You go "oh, this would be a great time to mention this little tidbit of knowledge The problem is, sometimes, 20 pages later, you may go "oh, this would be a great time to mention this little tidbit of knowledge" all over again.
In the author's head, it's new - it hasn't come up yet. The au My biggest complaint with this book and the last, come to think of it , may be more edit-based than anything else. The author has been sitting on this little nugget, waiting forever to use it, and sometimes This is something that ought to get caught in the editing process, either when the author goes back through, or when the editor reads it. Unfortunately, it's something I saw repeatedly in both book 1 and 2 of this series a particularly glaring one in my mind? Dru was told on at LEAST 3 occasions, by 3 different people, that the schola she was in was a a smaller schola something she also figured out for herself at one point But she keeps forgetting this, and each time it's mentioned, it's a surprise to her.
It's all brand new and unexpected, and it drove me crazy. The same thing happened with objects - Dru's mom's locket, her dad's wallet, the swords, the lock of hair I was also once again frustrated by Dru's "we must hit the books and do research! Usually, it resulted in her skipping class and bemoaning her fate. It kind of drove me crazy. On the other hand, I feel like Dru did learn a little something from the last book, wherein she sat around going "where are the grown ups and why aren't they fixing this? I wish a few of Dru's observations had come to something in the book - she's a very observant young woman, but a lot of what she sees seems to disappear into the aether not long after it's mentioned.
These little plot ghosts could have been used to great effect For instance, Dru notes fairly early on that the schola seems to be silently encouraging divisiveness and instability between the wulfen and the part-sucker kids. She notices this, files it away Finally, there are moments of description that just didn't click for me someone was cheese-pale?
What does that even mean? And yet it was a light, fun, easy read. Go figure, I still enjoyed it. I just wish there was a bit more polish here. Sep 20, Becky rated it really liked it Shelves: Betrayals is yet another kick-butt book from the awesome Lili St. Yes, it is true; I am becoming quite a fan of this series. The prologue of Betrayals reminds us how Strange Angels ended. This is definitely a series to read in the correct order. And indeed, if you read this review you will give yourself gigantic spoilers for the first book.
You have been warned. For those of you still with me, we meet Dru again as she takes up Betrayals is yet another kick-butt book from the awesome Lili St.
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For those of you still with me, we meet Dru again as she takes up enforced residence at the Schola. She still has the feisty, crude and determined edge that defines her voice and character. So needless to say, she is far from happy when she gets put in the baby classes at the Schola, is prevented from training and is left out of all the supernatural action. Dru is miserable and the novel is structured around her being placed in a situation which is beyond her control. She spends hours in her room alone and brooding on her predicament and waiting for the impending doom to come.
Graves is perhaps even more adorable in this book. Hey, do you like the pun? Anyway, he is such a dopey wolf-boy, almost like an obedient puppy except for the killer instinct obviously and he commands his supernatural abilities in this book. I also loved meeting other wulfen, their individuality really stood out and the affectionate relationship between them endeared them to me. Christophe on the other hand is not my favourite character but he certainly adds an ever present sense of mystery and tension to the story.
I notice I have told you nothing of the plot. So what more do you need to know? It is exceedingly refreshing and fun. I was reading Betrayals expecting not to like it as much as Strange Angels. But you know, I have no idea what you lovely people were on about. I really enjoyed this book in equal measure to my love of the first. I am certainly intrigued because I thought it was gripping, adrenalin-fuelled, angsty and high on melodrama. The only thing I would say is that all the different groupings are starting to confuse me a little bit: I could do with a baby class on the breeding habits of the supernatural.
That little niggle aside, I thought this was fabulous. I am so excited to start Jealously. A definite series addiction is developing here! I really have mixed emotions about this book. Although i did enjoy it, there were times i felt that i wasn't really getting anywhere. While it eventually picked up pace towards the end, and then i couldn't put it down, i felt like Dru didn't really do a lot during the book. She either spent her time in her room, alone, or with Graves.
I found i enjoyed the bits where Christophe was there the most. He gave the book a freshness that sometimes wasn't there. He made certain parts fun. I hope to see I really have mixed emotions about this book. I hope to see him having a larger part in any future books. To be perfectly honest, after the first book, going into this one i didn't really consider Christophe a real love interest for Dru I'm not so sure. It's pretty obvious that Dru feels some sort of attraction towards him, although at times he scares her, and i really like how he acts towards her sometimes.
However, then there's Graves He's not what you'd usually expect of a male lead in a book. He's not exactly the most attractive guy I know, i know. That sounded shallow to me-even as i wrote it, but it's true and he's not always what you'd call 'cool', but he has his moments. Sometimes he'll say something really witty and funny, or do something really sweet and kind for Dru and i can totally imagine then as a couple.
Then i think of Christophe. Each time Dru's with one of them, i am completely on their side, however then i switch teams when she's with the other. Despite Dru being fairly sure it's Graves she wants to be with, i foresee a real love triangle popping up in future books. I really liked some of the new characters introduced. Dib's is a total sweetie and i'm interested to see just what exactly is in store for Ash.
Why did he help Dru? Can he really be helped? Or is he a lost cause like Christophe thinks he is? I was shocked to discover that he was Sergej's son. I did not expect that one, at all! I can't wait to discover just what he knows and what he's keeping to himself. After Christophe had drank from Dru, Dibs mentioned that he hadn't drank enough for Dru to be at risk of bonding before Peter had shushed him- ending anything he'd been planning on saying. Then later on when Dru was accusing Christophe of betraying her mother he told her 'it isn't possible'. What exactly is bonding? Is it something that just happens between djamhir's or can it happen to anyone?
And is it possible that Christophe was bonded to Dru's mother? Bring on the next book Feb 19, Sue rated it it was amazing. I did not want to put this book down.
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My heart was racing right along with Dru's. St Crow does an absolute fabulous job of allowing the reader to relate to and empathize with Dru. She mixes the right amount of toughness and vulnerability to make these characters seem real, instead of the typical fearless, superhero type. I like how she shows the inward struggle Dru constantly faces over recen Man! I like how she shows the inward struggle Dru constantly faces over recent events including her father's death and her new surroundings.
She lets us see Dru deal with the grief, the overwhelming change of everything, and the constant need to have someone she can trust and the loneliness of her situation. Dru is one of the most realistic characters that I have come across in this genre. I'm usually all for the hard-core heroines who show no weakness but I find that Dru's "weaknesses" are endearing and that much more relate-able I like what St Crow did with Graves in this one too.
In Strange Angels, it was quite obvious he was going to be a contender for the love interest role and I hated it. He just didn't seem strong enough be with Dru and in her world. I find the whole dominant thing sexy, along with his loyalty and protective-vibe he has for Dru. And what about Christophe? It's just so painfully obvious that there was something going on between him and her mother. Can someone tell me, was that a kiss for sure that "something soft and warm" that pressed against her mouth? Could this be explained any other way besides a kiss? Apart from this his behavior could be that of a protective father.
Please someone prove me wrong!!! I will be devestated if I end up being right. I'm really cheering for Dru and Christophe being together. I guess I will just have to keep reading. July 29th can't come quick enough. St Crox's ingenius writing is a perfect combination of keeping mysteries and unknowns with perfectly timed revelations and insights. With one answered question comes several unanswered ones and even though at times it was maddening it made this book irrestible.
If you liked Strange Angels then you will love Betrayals. If you're someone like me who wasn't absolutely blown away by Strange Angels give Betrayals a try I can't imagine anyone being disappointed!!! Jan 02, Vinaya rated it liked it Shelves: Of the three books in this series thus far, I think Betrayals is my favourite. The story flow is not as slow as in the first book, there is a lot more action and the narration of Dru's inner feelings about both the boys in her life sounds convincingly like the thoughts of a tough-but-confused teenager.
However, all is not perfect, as is all too common these days. First off, Dru's still being irritatingly obtuse in this book, as also in the third one, so maybe it's a personality flaw I'm going to Of the three books in this series thus far, I think Betrayals is my favourite. First off, Dru's still being irritatingly obtuse in this book, as also in the third one, so maybe it's a personality flaw I'm going to have to come to terms with. There are several instances when someone gives her a broad hint, or actually tells her about something, but she doesn't consider it, or realise the truth until it is spelt out for her in words of two syllables.
Like for example, when Graves tells her that the Schola they're in is a reform school, and Christophe wonders why she was put in a school of this type, and she's still all like, a school of what type? Buy a clue, girl! And the author really needs to be a little less lazy about her re-tellings. Okay, I get that publishers want you to recap the previous books in a series so that a reader who picks up a book halfway through the series is not completely lost.
But you can still retell the story in an interesting way, with different perspectives or something. Try to think of your loyal audience. Cutting and pasting entire scenes out of the previous book is just plain unacceptable, not to mention that it broke my concentration and made me annoyed enough to want to tear the pages out. I read all three books in a row, so I had to read about how Dru's mother protected her from the evil vampires three times in the exact same words! And about how Dru's dad became a zombie. And about her encounter with Sergej. But despite my ranting, I did like the book, quite a bit, so if you're sitting on the fence, I would tell you to jump on the side of reading, as opposed to not-reading Betrayals.
Dec 24, Francis rated it really liked it. I guess I would go 3. I liked it better than Strange Angels; I felt like more happened in this book than in the first one. In this book, Dru and Graves are placed in a Schola, ostensibly for their protection. But it rapidly becomes clear that Dru is not safe, and she has no idea who she can trust.
Presumably more is coming in future books. We find out some big reveals about the dhjampir Christophe, and Ash the werwulf comes back in several interesting ways. Dru's emotional isolation and claustrophobia are palpable, and I felt pulled in to see what happens next. There's talk about how she's the big hope of the Order, since as a female "svetocha", she will become toxic to vampires when she blooms assuming she lives that long. Her relationships to the two boys in her life continue to be explored, as she learns more about the enigmatic Christophe, and Graves matures and begins to find his alpha-male place among the wulfen as a "loup-garou".
There were a few infelicities; as in the first book, I found some places where the writing was unclear enough that I actually couldn't quite figure out what happened. There were also some "quotables" like "A warm car never stays warm for long. Heat is like love. I suspect a Polish dictionary might increase one's enjoyment of the book a bit, as Christophe tosses in several terms of endearment at various places. It was good enough that I'm waiting eagerly for book 3, "Jealousy", in June Nov 19, Tynga rated it it was amazing.
Fast-paced, action-packed, full of mystery and hidden secrets, you won't be able to put that book down! First book ends when Dru gets to the Schola and the second books picks where we left off, Dru is in a Schola full of delinquent djamphir and wulfen teenage boys, and even though Christophe promised she would be safe there, something is wrong. Teachers won't let her learn figh Fast-paced, action-packed, full of mystery and hidden secrets, you won't be able to put that book down! This book is all about mysteries and lies, secrets from the past and..
Christopher is awesome, even though he isn't present very often he always makes a big impression. The wulfen and djamphir boys also have very interesting personalities, and different opinions and reactions toward Dru. Also Graves grows a lot in that book, he really isn't the skinny goth-boy anymore while Dru loose her tough girl facade to reveal a wounded and scared girl. I had a very hard time put the book down because you really want to know more, and even after finishing the book I still feel that way.
My questions aren't answered and it's killing me! I want to know what's the entire deal with Christophe, how does he relate to Dru's mom? What's going on within the order? Why is Dru so special? For Althea's young nephew Wintrow, wrenched from his religious studies and forced to serve aboard ship, Vivacia is a life sentence. But the fate of the Vestrit family--and the ship--may ultimately lie in the hands of an outsider.
The ruthless pirate Kennit seeks a way to seize power over all the denizens of the Pirate Isles The author and protagonist are both women. This is a very strong series with a realistic character and realistic, often complicated, relationships. Romance is a strong element in this book, but it's not handled in the ham-fisted method that abounds in most fantasy books. But good romance is not the only thing this book has going for it. The world Hobb has created is simply marvelous.
This is one landscape you just want to explore; it's quite simply magical. Robb's prose is also top notch and her descriptions transport you into the fantastical world she has created. I highly, highly recommend this book to both men and women. If you want a fantasy that's different, compelling and has some very strong female characters who will appeal to all women, read this series!
McKinley is one of the best female-empowerment writers in the fantasy genre, crafting masterful fantasy tales with compelling, realistic, and strong female protagonists. This is the story of Aerin, a female protagonist who's probably one of the best developed in the whole genre. She is the everywoman, a girl who faces the same struggles that many a woman deals with, and in the face of these struggles, learns to overcome them — and not by the helping hand of some dashing young prince who rides in from the forest to save the day.
No, this is female empowerment where a woman has the potential to solve her own problems and does so. There are no sudden plot devices that save the day, no deus ex machina that fixes all problems, just good old-fashioned struggling and learning and using the knowledge gained to find a solution. So for one of the most compelling fantasy tales with a seriously strong contender for the best written female protagonist ever, this is a book you cannot skip.
Lovely Sorcha is the seventh child and only daughter of Lord Colum of Sevenwaters. Bereft of a mother, she is comforted by her six brothers who love and protect her. Sorcha is the light in their lives, and they are determined that she know only contentment. But Sorcha's joy is shattered when her father is bewitched by his new wife, an evil enchantress who binds her brothers with a terrible spell, a spell which only Sorcha can lift-by staying silent. If she speaks before she completes the quest set to her by the Fair Folk and their queen, the Lady of the Forest, she will lose her brothers forever.
When Sorcha is kidnapped by the enemies of Sevenwaters and taken to a foreign land, she is torn between the desire to save her beloved brothers, and a love that comes only once. Sorcha despairs at ever being able to complete her task, but the magic of the Fair Folk knows no boundaries, and love is the strongest magic of them all Mariner writes some of the best female characters in the fantasy genre.
These fantasy books are good. With some intelligent, complex, and interesting female protagonists and some really well handled romance, this trilogy is a gift to all women -- and men.
I Was a Hells Angel for 40 Years. This is the One Time I Doubted the Outlaw Lifestyle.
It's Celtic fantasy with a very strong romantic element, a lush, vivid world, and some really compelling characters -- especially the protagonist a woman. Fantasy written by a girl, for the girls. This is romantic fantasy at it's best. With a Martin-esque plot and Jim Butcher pace, The Axe and the Throne is a definite "must read" for even the pickiest fantasy fans. In his stunning debut, Ireman has built the type of world so vivid and engrossing that leaving it at the end is agony.
In spite of leaning toward grimdark, where authors often enshroud every scene in depressing darkness, there is no lack of cheerful moments or brilliant scenery. Yet the pangs of near-instant nostalgia that come after you put down a book like this have less to do with the inspired setting, and far more to do with those who inhabit it. From savage, unremorseful heroes, to deep, introspective villains, the cast of this story is comprised of believable characters capable of unthinkable actions. And it is these characters -- the ones you wish you could share a drink with or end up wanting to kill -- that forge the connection between fantasy and reality.
Keethro, Titon, Ethel, Annora. These are names you will never forget, and each belongs to a man or woman as unique as they are memorable. No book would be complete without a its fair share of intrigue, however, and there is no lack of it here. Each chapter leaves you wanting more, and Ireman's masterful use of misdirection leads to an abundance of "oh shit" moments. Do not be fooled or do -- perhaps that's part of the fun by storylines that may appear trope-ish at first.
This is no fairytale. It is said that angels found the land and saw it was good Love as thou wilt. Sold into indentured servitude as a child, her bond is purchased by Anafiel Delaunay, a nobleman with very a special mission Treachery sets her on her path; love and honor goad her further. And in the doing, it will take her to the edge of despair Set in a world of cunning poets, deadly courtiers, heroic traitors, and a truly Machiavellian villainess, this is a novel of grandeur, luxuriance, sacrifice, betrayal, and deeply laid conspiracies.
Not since Dune has there been an epic on the scale of Kushiel's Dart-a massive tale about the violent death of an old age, and the birth of a new. Unique, passionate, sad, jubilant -- these are all words that come to mind when reading Carey's tremendous effort. These are fantasy books for women and guys too. The protagonist is a woman and probably the most complex female character in the entire genre of fantasy.
The Asharite empire has splintered into decadent city-states led by warring petty kings. King Almalik of Cartada is on the ascendancy, aided always by his friend and advisor, the notorious Ammar ibn Khairan -- poet, diplomat, soldier -- until a summer afternoon of savage brutality changes their relationship forever. Meanwhile, in the north, the conquered Jaddites' most celebrated -- and feared -- military leader, Rodrigo Belmonte, driven into exile, leads his mercenary company south.
In the dangerous lands of Al-Rassan, these two men from different worlds meet and serve -- for a time -- the same master. Sharing their interwoven fate -- and increasingly torn by her feelings -- is Jehane, the accomplished court physician, whose own skills play an increasing role as Al-Rassan is swept to the brink of holy war, and beyond. Hauntingly evocative of medieval Spain, The Lions of Al-Rassan is both a brilliant adventure and a deeply compelling story of love, divided loyalties, and what happens to men and women when hardening beliefs begin to remake -- or destroy -- a world.
Gavriel Kay has never written a bad fantasy novel. He always populates his worlds with fully realized characters. His female characters are always strong, with sassy personalities and strong intelligence. Follow Lois McMaster Bujold, one of the most honored authors in the field of fantasy and science fiction, to a land threatened by treacherous war and beset by demons -- as a royal dowager, released from the curse of madness and manipulated by an untrustworthy god, is plunged into a desperate struggle to preserve the endangered souls of a realm.
It's a great story about a strong female character written by an outstanding female author. It's got everything there is to like in a good fantasy novel: This is technically a sequel to The Curse of Chalion, also another great book for men and women , but The Paladin of Souls can be read as a stand alone. If you are planning to read Paladin of Souls, then my recommendation is to read Curse of Chalion, then Paladin of Souls, then The Hallowed Hunt, as the three books are connected albeit loosely.
I know I said Paladin of Souls is a standalone, and it is, but it's worth reading Chalion first if you can get it. If not, then it's not that big of a deal. Seriously, this is a lovely series with an outstanding female protagonist. Romance, love, loss, adventure -- this series has it all. The novel is by Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts, but it's pretty clear that Wurts wrote this all on her own -- the characters are a whole level better than Feist's regular work. The protagonist is a woman who controls her own destiny.
The book could be classed as historical fiction, but the setting is that of an Asian fantasy world, one that is fascinating. Don't worry though, it's not all just historical fantasy -- there's plenty of fantastical elements that will keep hard core fantasy fans entertained.
Here is the magical legend of King Arthur, vividly retold through the eyes and lives of the women who wielded power from behind the throne. A retelling of the classic Arthurian tale from a woman's perspective literally.
Top 25 Fantasy Books for Women | #1 Guide to the best fantasy books, games, movies, and more!
Some outstanding female characters in this book and it's got everything most women would love. And yes, this one appeals to the guys too. This is a modern fantasy book with modern sensibilities for the modern woman. Its the story of a womans transformation from possessing brittle strength to becoming a woman of steely strength. Its a novel that takes you on the journey that follows Katsa as she matures and evolves.
Theres quite a bit of romance involved as well, but its handled so deftly that the whole process never comes off as ham-fisted. Magic is present in the story, but its tastefully done with never so much of it thrown at you that it gets overwhelming. For a book that doesnt flinch at addressing some of the social issues that woman currently face, a book that doesnt flinch at thumbing its nose at some of the conservative values society adheres to, and a book with a well-drawn female protagonist, a gripping plot and an interesting, fantastical world, you wont do any better than Graceling.
This is one of those complex, intelligent books that will stick with you long after you've finished turning the last page.