Monday, August 8, 2011

Love Makes You Stupid: A Killer's Kiss

I can't remember why I put this book on my TBR list; I went back to look at likely recommendation sources and find no mention of the author at all.  It's a legal murder thriller, a sub-genre I rarely dip into, and it seems to be the latest in a series about the lawyer Victor Carl.  William Lashner's A Killer's Kiss tells a deeply cynical story about true love (TM) that affirms the implausibility of such a bizarre ideal.

Carl pretends to be a cynic, but he follows his image of the love he had with Julia even when it's obvious to everyone including him that she never saw him as more than a tool.  Julia herself seems to have no impulses except for the True Love she feels for the miserable loser she had a crush on in high school, and all her interactions with the men in this book (most of whom also love her) turn on how she can use them to help the man who despises her.  Love is seen as a one-way street, something that you aim at someone else but that never looks at or reacts to that person.  I found this rather dull, since everyone in love with the annoying Julia spent pages and pages raving about this emotion; it was a bit of a relief to switch over the the murder and money parts where the torture and sleuthing had more of an emotional truth to them.  I could believe in the love these men had for money.  Maybe it would help to have a deeper understanding of the protagonist from previous books, but I found him shallow and unconvincing, while the women were baffling constructs lit mainly by the expectations of the men who pretended to love Julia.  The ending relied deeply on the amazing incompetence of the police (aren't most murder suspects caught evading arrest handcuffed? or at least noticed?) which just added to my general disbelief in the characters and their motives.  Not really my cup of tea.

No comments: