169 Followers
170 Following
LG

Familiar Diversions

I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.

Currently reading

Space Battle Lunchtime Volume 1: Lights, Camera, Snacktion!
Natalie Reiss
Progress: 20/120 pages
Fluency
Jennifer Foehner Wells
Progress: 58/367 pages
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet: A Novel
Becky Chambers
Progress: 148/441 pages
The Count of Monte Cristo
Alexandre Dumas, Bill Homewood, Naxos AudioBooks
Progress: 667/3165 minutes
A Matter of Oaths
Helen S. Wright
Progress: 101/277 pages
Report on the Selected Problems of the Technical Departments of the University of Illinois Library
Raynard C. Swank
Progress: 20/42 pages
Medical School for Everyone: Grand Rounds Cases
Professor Roy Benaroch, The Great Courses, The Great Courses
Progress: 34/725 minutes

Reading progress update: I've read 250 out of 250 pages.

Shadow of the Knife - Jane Fletcher

Well. I've finished this, and I am now very angry. So very angry. All of Fletcher's other books that I've read have been sci-fi (or, more accurately, sci-fi that feels more like fantasy) with romantic aspects. This...was not that.

 

I don't know how spoilery my review is going to be, but I need to rant right now, and it will contain spoilers. So here goes.

 

 

Fletcher tried really hard to redeem Hal. Hal was nice to Ellen, she set her free, she didn't tell her the lies she was supposed to tell her, etc. I don't care. I don't consider her to be redeemable. Ellen may have forgiven her, but I couldn't bring myself to do the same. She gave an old woman, a relative of hers, brain damage. Yes, it was on accident, but it was while she was trying to hurt her on purpose. She murdered someone in cold blood. She stood by and watched as Ellen was tortured. And I don't care if the Butcher was her cousin - the Butcher was a monster, Hal knew it, and Hal's decision to stand by her was in no way a good thing.

 

Hal and Ellen's sex scene (scenes? I can't remember, I'm trying to blank it all out) while Ellen was being held captive made my gorge rise. It was painful to watch Ellen going from "I still want her, and hate myself for wanting her" to "I know she did awful things, but I love her and don't want her to die." It was more the Butcher than Hal holding Ellen captive, but I wonder, could this be called Stockholm syndrome?

 

And the bit where the partially healed wounds from Ellen's recent torture were just "sensitive areas" during sex? OMG.

 

The ending felt like an attempt to heighten the "tragic romance" feel, which just made me angrier. According to one review I read, another one of Fletcher's books refers to the events in this one and gives the full conclusion. Although I've read all the other books in the series, I can't for the life of me remember any other mentions of the characters in this book, so I'm going to need to do some searching. Hopefully one of them tells me that Hal was killed and Ellen eventually came to terms with her death and found love and happiness elsewhere.

(show spoiler)