Friday, December 7, 2012

Still on my Mind #3

This weekly meme is hosted by Haley at YA-Aholic! It gives us a chance to reflect on a book/novel we had read in the past that still effects us today!

The last one I did was about 7 months ago (ahh!) and I wanted to do another one because it really is STILL ON MY MIND, pretty much all the time. Especially when I read a new romance novel, I compare it to this one every time.

A Hunger Like No Other (Immortals After Dark #1) by Kresley Cole (link to Goodreads)
(Goodreads says it's #2, but the #1 they have listed is actually a short story that I believe came out after this did, so in my mind, this is #1 because it's a full book).
Released: March 28th, 2006

Description from Goodreads:

Acclaimed author Kresley Cole introduces a sizzling new series with this tale of a fierce werewolf and a bewitching vampire -- unlikely soul mates whose passion will test the boundaries of life and death.

A mythic warrior who'll stop at nothing to possess her . . .
After enduring years of torture from the vampire horde, Lachlain MacRieve, leader of the Lykae Clan, is enraged to find the predestined mate he's waited millennia for is a vampire. Or partly one. This Emmaline is a small, ethereal half Valkyrie/half vampire, who somehow begins to soothe the fury burning within him.
A vampire captured by her wildest fantasy . . .
Sheltered Emmaline Troy finally sets out to uncover the truth about her deceased parents -- until a powerful Lykae claims her as his mate and forces her back to his ancestral Scottish castle. There, her fear of the Lykae -- and their notorious dark desires -- ebbs as he begins a slow, wicked seduction to sate her own dark cravings. 
An all-consuming desire . . .
Yet when an ancient evil from her past resurfaces, will their desire deepen into a love that can bring a proud warrior to his knees and turn a gentle beauty into the fighter she was born to be?

I originally borrowed this book from the library, and after reading it in one sitting in about 4 hours, I ordered a copy for myself on Amazon. I don't normally re-read books. I believe I re-read Twilight before the movie came out, and I re-read Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi when she sent me a signed copy. But I didn't get enjoyment out of re-reading books for the most part because I already knew what happens. I like not knowing the ending and being confused or having a ton of questions not answered until the end. I can watch movies over and over again until my eyes go cross, but I've never gotten much out of re-reading a story (again, besides the few I mentioned before). Around the time I borrowed this book from the library, I hadn't been too into romance novels just yet. I was still reading a lot of YA and middle grade books, as I was about 16 or 17 at the time. I felt that romance novels were too intense and too mature for my age so I tried to stick with reading about characters my own age. But I read this book a year after it came out, in 2007 when I was 18 and had graduated high school and was about to start college. That was the summer I started reading romances and not feeling guilty for it. What I discovered is that a lot of romances feature younger women with mature men. Not 14 year old girls and 40 year old men, but women around 21-27 and men around the same age up to about 35 or so. I stuck to the stories that were closer to 21 year olds as I felt really weird reading about people that could be my aunt, uncle or older cousins. 

Kresley Cole was one of my first favorite romance author and continues to be to this day. She has written a dozen (#13 in the Immortals After Dark series comes out July 2013!!) novels in this series and they get better with each one. While in a few years, I do believe I could read this entire series all over again, it's because I would have then forgotten the major plot points. Yes, each book has a male/female lead and they have sexy time and fight and get all frustrated with each other, but the plot (the Accession - this is a Fantasy/Paranormal Romance) grows throughout each book and it is coming to birth in these next few books. It's one of the longest series I've read that I've enjoyed all parts of and look forward to continuing (Sherrilyn Kenyon is another - she's written like 30 books in a series). 

This was the first and only romance novel I've re-read in full more than once. Each time I learn something new that I didn't see before. I read it when I was 18, so the steamy scenes made the most impact. The second time I read it I was in college at age 20, and I focused more on the plot and the emotions of the characters. I read it again when I was 21, and I understood more of the struggle that these characters have against their future and what they could or couldn't do because of their responsibilities. The next few times I read it, the steamy scenes jumped out again, but for different reasons. I read more into them by action, not by their words. I noticed different things in the setting and how little aspects of their character shone through during the beginning of the novel when they didn't reach their full potential until the end of the story. Some romance novels I would just flip to the good parts and skip over dialogue, I admit I do it now when the plot gets boring. If the writing gives way to a bad or failing plot, I'll try to make the best of it even if the only worthwhile scenes are the indecent ones. Every time I read this book, I read it word for word, page by page, and sometimes went back a few sentences to read it again before continuing. I learned a lot about my reading style from this book. I noticed I like to linger on certain sentences much as I would rewind a scene in a movie to watch it again.

After writing this post, I find myself trying to remember where I last put my tattered copy and if I'm not too tired to start reading it again!

What's still on (your) mind? Happy Reading!

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