Divine Night
by Melanie Jackson, fantasy (2007)
LoveSpell, $7.99, ISBN 978-0-505-52737-0


Divine Night is... oh god, how do I put this nicely? While I appreciate an author taking some risks in her story, author Melanie Jackson's attempts to spice up her story using some narrative gimmicks backfire spectacularly. While I would normally suggest that you keep an open mind while reading stories like this one because the hero and the heroine don't meet until page 78, here I would suggest that you get ready with a few ways to keep your eyes open as well because this story is a dreadful bore.

This is part of the author's series revolving around fictionalized historical figures who turn out to be immortals, in a way, because they had signed a contract with the devil, so to speak, a long time ago. This book tells the story of Alexandre Dumas as he... Well, this is the first problem of this story. For a long time, this story takes on the self-indulgent navel-gazing vibe of the most dreadful of French movies, as Alex spends pages after pages reflecting about his life and his writing. Is the story going anywhere? For a long time, I have no idea. Instead, I'm treated to snippets of Alex's writing, which is autobiographical. He had a lost love named Thomasina, although given that his love for her is told entirely from his point of view, Thomasina comes off as flat as a pancake, personality-wise.

Finally, by page 78, I'm introduced to eco-terrorist and wanted woman Harmony Nix who also indulges in her own navel-gazing introspective babble as she reflects on her possessive ex-boyfriend and such. And then she meets Alex and they quickly fall into bed with all the chemistry of oil mixing with water. There is a mystery of Alex's old enemy being seen again, but for a long time, we have two utterly boring and chemistry-free people gazing deeply at each other's navel and pontificating about... things. There is a plot here, but it is buried deeply under a mountain of meta-references, joyless sex scenes, and dry, boring conversations so I am not sure how to even begin describing it to you.

The last quarter of so finally sees some action, as ghouls show up and people start fighting back, but by then I'm beyond caring. Reading this book is like listening to someone babble endlessly in a most boring monotonous manner that, at the end of the day, I have no idea half of what that person had been babbling about. I just know that my eyes had glazed over so much that I feel like a stuffed animal.

Rating: 56


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