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Sarah's Library

I read pretty much anything, from fantasy (City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett) to romance (Bared to You by Sylvia Day) to classics (Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad).  The only genres I don't read are self-help and comic books/graphic novels.

Currently reading

The Last Honeytrap
Louise Lee
Progress: 100/346 pages
Complete Works of William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare

The Summoned (Angel Season 1, #9) by Cameron Dokey

The Summoned - Cameron Dokey, Joss Whedon

24/1 - This is the next book in my 'read everything on my library shelves' challenge, because it's the next book alphabetically and categorically.  Immediately recognised Dokey as one of the multiple authors from the book I was reviewing this morning - The Warren Witches (Charmed).  Her unexpected appearance writing for Angel just hours after I finished reading her Charmed story made me think of a British tv phenomenon I've noticed.  Others who watch a lot of British tv shows might also have noticed that if you were to watch any three random British tv shows you'll find you are about 90% likely to come across one or more actors who are in two or more of those three shows.  I figure there's only a limited number of actors for hundreds of different shows, so you come across the guy from that cop show last night in this sci-fi show with the girl from the period drama you watched on the weekend - it's a bit like that game 'seven degrees of Kevin Bacon'.  Hopefully Dokey's Angel story is as good as the one she wrote for Charmed - she got the 'voice' of all the main characters exactly right, unlike another author who writes fanfic for multiple tv shows including Buffy and Charmed.  To be continued...



27 pages later - I was all ready to point out the error in the idea that Cordelia might get a phone call that leads to her big break on Doyle's phone when Doyle pointed out the idiocy in the idea first - that was a good trap, I was all riled up and ready to slam Dokey for stupidness in her logic, when I turned out to be the one looking foolish.  Although I enjoyed Dokey's writing in the Charmed book, I'm not sure I feel like reading more fanfic right now.  I feel like fast forwarding through the shelves till I get to the crime or horror, but then that's the point of a challenge, to challenge yourself to read stuff you wouldn't normally read.  I know in my heart of hearts that if I don't read these (mostly Buffy) fanfics now (well, over the next few weeks) I'll probably never get around to them and then I'll never know whether they're worth keeping.  To be continued...


25/1 - Anyway, now to discuss the book, so the story starts off with a woman, Ellen Bradshaw, who tells the reader that she only has five minutes to live, till midnight, and is rushing to post a letter that will act as vengeance for her death.  She has received a 'mark' that summons her death to her and the only way to avoid her own death is to pass it off to someone else.  Ellen can't do it, can't put another person's life above her own (what makes her so special?) and comes to the realisation that she's going to die in the next few minutes.  She dies a horrible fiery death at the appointed hour.


Across town while doing a bit of late night shopping Doyle has a fractured vision of her death, although he doesn't know that it's a vision of an event happening at the same time, he thinks it's like his other visions - a vision of the future.  Angel and Doyle are quite perturbed to find out later (through Detective Lockley, who isn't on the case but has been sticking her nose in where it isn't wanted on behalf of an old friend whose father died, also in unnaturally fiery circumstances) that morning that the woman's fiery death scene has already happened.


Running parallel to that story is the story of Terri who is dreadfully depressed and thinks of herself as invisible to those around her.  She moved to LA to get away from her family, who were the ones who put the idea that she's worthless in her head to start with.  Her internal monologue sounds just like a demeaning parent and she never seems able to turn it off, it comments on every thing she does, laughs at every little hopeful thought she has.  It's always there putting her down, mocking her for thinking a good thing might happen to her, telling her she's useless and should stop even trying.  But then along comes Andy, a shining sun to Terri's darkness (or at least that's what Terri thinks).  To start with she's suspicious of his motives for talking to her and his explanation that even beautiful people get depressed sometimes (everyone in LA is so focused on your looks they never see the real person beneath).  He plays his part as the lure perfectly - reeling her in and then letting her run while pretending to be insulted that she's suspicious of his motives, before catching her for good by paying her the attention she never got from her family or the random person on the street.  Within 24 hours Andy has convinced Terri to join him at the next meeting of the Illuminati - a group of 'enlightened' people who were like Terri, before they joined up that is.  Now they don't worry what other people think of them and have put their faith in Andy and the leaders of the group to make their lives better, for just a small fee - someone else's life.


Now we're starting to see how the two threads of the story come together - the woman at the beginning of the book, Ellen was a member of the Illuminati and was going to escape the group and expose them, so she was marked for death.  Kate Lockley's 'old friend' is Deidre Arensen and somehow she's worked out that all these fiery deaths are connected and that they're being carried out by a fire-demon cult - clearly the same 'group' Terri just joined.  Now that we know how all the threads weave together we'll see how it all works out in the end.  To be continued...


27/1 - Finally we've got some action from Angel (and by action I mean scenes where he has dialogue).  The Summoned has been pretty Angel-free so far, so it's nice to see the main character get some screen time.  Mostly the camera's been focused on Doyle and the victims of the Illuminati.  Buuuuttt, while we might finally have Angel in the story, he doesn't sound like Angel.  Doyle and Angel just had an argument about whether Doyle was pulling his weight with the investigation, specifically getting Terri to trust him and confide in him about the Illuminati, and during the argument Angel used the word 'bent', as in 'Don't get all bent'.  There's no way Angel would have used that phrase/word, it's just too contemporary, plus the argument with Doyle over his job performance seems out of character for the usually outwardly calm Angel.  Obviously Angel's speech had changed with the times, he didn't speak as if he were still living in the 1700s, but whenever he attempted hip or cool words in the show it was shown as an awkward and humorous moment.  That's not how it was conveyed in this scene and it suddenly made Angel seem like he could be any everyday guy, not a 240+-year-old vampire.  That's gonna cost The Summoned half a star.