When Anita Blake meets with prospective client Tony Bennington, who is desperate to have her reanimate his recently deceased wife, she is full of sympathy for his loss. Anita knows something about love, and she knows everything there is to know about loss. But what she also knows, though Tony Bennington seems unwilling to be convinced, is that the thing she can do as a necromancer isn’t the miracle he thinks he needs. The creature that Anita could coerce to step out of the late Mrs. Bennington’s grave would not be the lovely Mrs. Bennington. Not really. And not for long.
I’ve been reading the Anita Blake books since, I think, 2004 – the release of the mass market Cerulean Sins. Even if I dislike a book or two, I’m going to keep buying and reading them; I’m invested. That being said, I actually liked Flirt (though I still hate the new covers).
Flirt is not really a full-fledged novel, it’s more like Micah, an interlude in Anita’s life amongst all the crazy-ness she goes through in the books. So, Flirt is about a third of the size of Incubus Dreams and about half the size of the most recent books! It’s a nice quick read that brings you back into what the early books were – Anita raising the dead and taking names.
We get to Anita at work, talking with clients, being an Animator. Which really, we haven’t gotten to see in a while. There’s also some nice interaction between Anita and her live in boys (plus Jason) that doesn’t revolve solely around sex. The main plot is that Anita has turned down a client who wants a zombie raised. Unfortunately, he just won’t take no for an answer and has Anita kidnapped and Jason, Micah and Nathaniel followed by snipers so that she will do what he wants. He was pretty dumb, though, and uses werelions to be he kidnappers. Suffice it to say, we do get one sex scene later on in the book. It was plot driven, though, so it didn’t destract from the book at all.
The only complaint I have is that we didn’t see any Jean-Claude again. He wasn’t in the last book at all, either. At least in Skin Trade he had some lines. All he gets in this one is Anita sensing his frustration. A big part of why I love the early books is the interaction between Jean-Claude and Anita. I’d like to see that again (and don’t get me started on Richard. I’m not quite sure where he disappeared too, and I’m too lazy to go back and re-read. Anyone know off hand?). Flirt was an enjoyable interlude in the Anita books, and I hope the direction these last two books took means we’re getting back into the main plot and the feel of the early ones.